5 August 2002 | pjfarr
Not even a twitch of the nose could've saved this one...
Having been a big fan of its parent show BEWITCHED, I really wanted this "spin-off" to work. I thought the idea of following the escapades of a now grown-up Tabitha was an interesting continuation of the BEWITCHED concept.
The first outing (with Liberty Williams as a very unlikely brunette Tabitha) bombed. I actually cringed while watching it. But ABC seemed determined to make it work (someone there was obviously just as big a fan of BEWITCHED) so they reworked the pilot episode by scrapping the entire original cast and crew.
Lisa Hartman was then cast as the lead and proved to be more charming and likeable. The rest of the cast and the writing however were no improvement over the first pilot. It was mainly a regurgitation of many of the familiar BEWITCHED plotlines and ideas, with mortal brother Adam chastising Tabitha every time she used her powers (as daddy Darrin did with Mom Samantha), and obnoxious, mischievous mortal-phobe Aunt Minerva filling in for Endora - causing problems for all the mortals in Tabitha's life. However, even with original characters from BEWITCHED turning up a few times (Dr. Bombay, Mrs. Kravitz) played by the actors who first originated them, the show seemed somehow detached and alien from the original show.
The whole thing was really not funny and only mildly entertaining, and it lasted only a handful of episodes.
Another nail in the show's coffin seemed to be that the sophisticated TV audiences of that era (the mid 70's), by then used to gritty and groundbreaking sitcoms like M*A*S*H, All In The Family, and The Mary Tyler Moore Show, scoffed at such frothy nonsense. It would perhaps seem more fitting now in this current TV decade when audiences are more willing to accept such supernatural, effects-heavy shows as The X-Files, Buffy The Vampire Slayer, and Sabrina The Teenage Witch (which is in many ways the BEWITCHED of the 90's). With all the current nostalgia these days for the shows/music/movies of the 60's and 70's, it's only a matter of time before someone takes another crack at it...