9 June 2006 | Dart_Adams
A Tale Of Two Shows...
This show was crap when it first came on. The first actress that played the daughter didn't fit the role, the writing was hit or miss, and Damon Wayans CLEARLY wasn't comfortable doing such a cornball family friendly show. The chemistry between himself and Tisha Cambell (they're long time friends, as are all of the Wayans clan with Tisha's husband and Will Smith and Jada Pinkett) DID work so they retooled the show. Once it returned, they recast the daughter, made the son much dumber (a la Eric from "Boy Meets World")and made the youngest daughter into a genius...(later they gave her a little genius boyfriend to do comedic guest appearances). The show, while if often rollercoasters from over the top buffoonery to being corny walks the line enough to keep it as a show that you can see Damon Wayans be comfortable in his own skin on the set (especially since the main writers, directors and consultants were ALL members of the Wayans family) AND in his character. Once everyone had been on the show for a while, they worked to everyone in the casts strengths and were able to make a consistently funny show on the air.
However, there is TOO MUCH buffoonery, too many over the top antics, and oftentimes too much chaos happening in the life of the Kyle family. They made Junior TOO STUPID, they also made the eldest daughter an attractive, clumsy idiot from time to time and the youngest daughter wasn't even spared by the writers. I feel they jumped the shark and signed the shows death warrant when Junior got his girlfriend pregnant, she moved in and he married her and her parents were introduced (Junior's wife's father's character makes me WINCE just thinking about him). The show remained funny...but it was a UPN show on ABC if that makes any sense to the reader.
The reruns are funny enough, but I'm relieved it's over...there was nowhere left to go with it. When it's bad it's REALLY BAD. It tends to be cornball at times but at least he was a black man who had a sitcom make it to syndication on a major network..Who can say that for themselves now? (Given the CW merger and the "brownout" on TV networks lately, that is). One.