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Advance notice: NBC’s ‘Bent’ is straight-up worth watching

Variety TV critic Brian Lowry has permitted me to sneak in an early word about Amanda Peet starrer “Bent,” the Tad Quill comedy that NBC is premiering — and seemingly burning off — beginning March 21.  That word: charming.

Having seen the first four episodes, I can say briefly that “Bent,” centered on folks whose lives are in need of repair, starts off mildly promising and then only grows more appealing with each ensuing installment. The trailer above doesn’t really do the program justice. 

BentIts winning ensemble includes some great talent: Peet, David Walton (in shorthand, something of a cross between Mark Ruffalo and Timothy Olyphant), Jeffrey Tambor (“Arrested Development”), J.B. Smoove (“Curb Your Enthusiasm”), Margo Harshman (grown up from “Even Stevens”), Joey King (“Ramona and Beezus”) and “Friday Night Lights” graduate Jesse Plemons.

In what seems like a surrender, NBC is launching “Bent” opposite hit ABC comedy “Modern Family” and planning to run its six episodes over three weeks in back-to-back airings Wednesdays at 9 and 9:30 p.m. My advice: find a spot on your DVR for “Bent” and enjoy it while it lasts.

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