Grandma never met an illness she didn't like and reads the grandkids disease-of-the-week bedtime stories. Work-at-home product-tester Dad, an unreliable helpmate, worries about why his 2-year-old son sits down to go potty. Mom juggles a thankless job, her irresponsible husband, housework, kids, Grandma and guilt.
In tried-and-true fashion, "Committed," a weekly animated series premiering Sunday at 7 p.m. on WE: Women's Entertainment, mines the ups and downs, lunacy and bliss of domestic life and related real-world stresses for humor.
Based on Michael Fry's syndicated comic strip, which has legions of fans, the series stretches the parent-centric humor thin, despite the top-notch voice cast--an "SCTV" reunion of sorts, with Catherine O'Hara as put-upon Mom, Eugene Levy as Dad, Andrea Martin as Grandma and Dave Thomas as Bob the dog, who observes it all.
In the first three episodes, the running jokes lose steam fast: the put-downs of Mom's sexist boss and the manipulations of her unscrupulous male colleague, Dad's willingness to have Mom shoulder most of the load, not to mention his persistent angst over his toddler's masculinity; and Grandma's unpleasant hypochondria--she walks around in a germ-free "bubble" and at one point makes this response to what she considers an obvious question: "Is colonoscopy a pain in the butt?"
Not even the show's few moments of genuinely resonant parental reality can overcome forced plotlines involving a confrontation with a cookie-peddling Mafioso and the boss' wife blackmailing Mom into becoming the poster-child for her "women who can't afford a nanny" campaign.