Hank is a multi-camera sitcom shot on a cheap-looking set with a forgettable supporting cast speaking rarely funny dialogue. Kelsey Grammer plays the titular character, a former New York CEO who takes his family back to Virginia, where he has to figure out how to relate to his kids, wife, and other non-board members. No one stretched their brains coming up with the kids: Son Henry (Nathan Gamble) is going through a Yoda phase and teenage daughter Maddie (Jordan Hinson) is a moody brat who misses her boyfriend. Hank’s average-Joe brother-in-law, Grady (David Koechner), communicates with the kids better than Hank does and is enjoying Hank’s financial distress. Hank’s wife Tilly (Melinda McGraw) is far more engaging, but we get little insight into her character other than that she breathes strangely when she sleeps. If anyone but Grammer were playing Hank, the show would have been relegated to ABC Family, though those shows generally have better narrative structure. After moving into their perfectly spacious Virginia family home, Hank requests that he use the family room for his “office-slash-study,” to which his wife says “sorry-slash-no.” It’s a funny moment, but a smattering of funny moments isn’t going to carry the show between inane conversations about Obama’s campaign slogan and lame gags of Hank stepping on bubble wrap. They’ve only had 22 minutes so far, but I can’t think of a future episode-slash-story in which anything could happen to the characters that I might care about-slash-remember.
- ABC, Wednesdays, 8 p.m.
- Kelsey Grammer, Melinda McGraw, David Koechner, Jordan Hinson, Nathan Gamble
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