Ever since “The Cosby Show” left the air in 1992, many have argued that shows displaying quality Black images are on the verge of extinction. Could BET’s new sitcom, “Reed Between the Lines,” be the savior?
Scheduled to premiere tonight at 10 p.m. EST, “Reed Between the Lines” resurrects a bit of that “Cosby Show” flair with Malcolm-Jamal Warner playing the dad. This go around, we see the actor formerly known as Theo Huxtable as Alex Reed. By his side is his wife Carla Reed, who is played by Tracee Ellis Ross. Together this college English professor (Alex) and psychologist (Carla) govern their professional lives, three children and relationship — all in 30-minute spurts.
BET seems to have taken a slightly different approach than some other networks with this romantic sitcom, however. There are no over-the-top comedic gestures, but rather a soft, convincing chemistry to be found amongst the cast.
The beloved Joan, from the hit series “Girlfriends,” that fans enjoyed for eight seasons is long gone. The audience can expect a vastly different Tracee on this new show. She admits that the quirky single lawyer has been traded in for a role with a little more stability. “Carla has a lot more faith, is a lot less neurotic and she has a man behind her and at her side,” Tracee told BET.com of her new role.
In the first episode, multi-tasking is shown at its finest, when a female patient gets a little too close for comfort. The audience gets its first taste of the Reeds’ relationship and Carla’s juggling skills — trying to find a balance between professionalism and her own reservations about the situation.
“There’s no drama, but there’s obviously family stuff and obstacles. But it’s nice to be able to play a couple who really dig each other. …You knew that Cliff really dug his wife, and she loved him, so it’s kind of reminiscent of that,” Malcolm told "Access Hollywood."
Neither of the actors seem to mind the comparisons to “The Cosby Show,” it remains to be seen whether these new age Huxtables will be able to hold their own in a era far different than Cliff and Claire’s.
Decide for yourself with the two back to back half-hour episodes scheduled to hit the small screen tonight.
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