26 November 2002 | Mulliga
A zany, quirky, and often witty show
"Honey, I Shrunk the Kids" is the rare film-to-TV series that beats its source material. While the movies are often plodding, cumbersome messes with anonymous characters, "HISTK" the TV series is firmly grounded in Matheson, Colorado, a sort of Anytown U.S.A. where anything can happen. Realistic science is, thankfully, tossed out the window: it's supposed to be a silly romp through suburbia fueled by wild creations from the Szalinskis.
I dare say the casting and acting is better than all the movies. Peter Scolari replaces the recognizable Rick Moranis, and actually does an even better job at the character. Scolari's Szalinski is a family man who invents things that go wrong, but he still has enough charm to make his relationship with his wife and kids reasonable. Barbara Alyn Woods makes what could have been a typical "Mom" character into an interesting, intelligent, and active co-conspirator/victim/commentator on the happenings in the household. Hillary Tuck and Thomas Dekker play the Szalinski kids, with Amy being a witty, sarcastic-but-never-irritating rival to Nick's sensible, science-minded personality. They form a believable family, more believable than most "normal" sitcoms on primetime.
Created by Kevin Murphy (he also created the brilliant "Weird Science" TV show on USA with Vanessa Angel), the show's stories are often breezy, sometimes predictable, but never boring. Unfortunately, HISTK is over (it had a three-season run), but, for my money, it remains a memorable comedy/scifi with truly likable characters.