Kurtz is certainly entertaining playing Effie Conklin, the champagne-swilling , mega-pampered wife of Nicholas Conklin (David Ogden Stiers). He’s a pompous doughboy of a billionaire who waddles around acting belligerent and inconvenienced. It’s a tired stereotype that finds Stiers belaboring the single joke to death in the first pair of “Love & Money” episodes. He’s a billionaire, and he can’t stand anybody. So?
Punchless pilot, penned by exec producers Dan Staley and Rob Long, centers on the central plot of heiress Allison Conklin (Paget Brewster) and her sudden reluctance to marry a dull Ivy Leaguer from the right side of the tracks named Howard (Vince Grant). She suddenly discovers that her hunky old flame Eamon (Brian Van Holt) still has custody of her heart.
Well, it so happens that Eamon is the superintendent of the building in whose penthouse Allison and family reside. He lives in the basement with his wisecracking daddy (Brian Doyle-Murray), the building’s doorman. In the middle of Allison’s wedding ceremony, Eamon dramatically appears on a window ledge (he seems to have a thing for that) and asks her to choose: him or, uh … well, money.
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Only thing is, Allison has already demonstrated her earthiness by working as a kindergarten teacher. So it’s a big “duh!” when she opts for Eamon over the Ivy Leaguer. Besides, just because she walks out on a $ 1.6 million wedding ceremony, there is no indication whatsoever that daddy will now disown her or anything. I mean, he’s a billionaire. Not quite high drama, this.
Second installment improves not at all on the first, introducing such dubious phrases as “piece of ass” and “buttful of couch” to the 8 o’clock hour (ah, artistic freedom). “Love & Money” is essentially a collection of insufferable and or/dense people doing broad, illogical things. The crew also includes the sweet Allison’s slutty bimbette of a sister (Judy Greer) and a rebellious slacker brother (John Livingston) who has little to say and an annoying way of saying it.
Romantic leads Van Holt and Brewster could grow into the part if this indistinct comedy is somehow able to prosper opposite ABC’s “Boy Meets World” and NBC’ssurprisingly strong soaper “Providence” in the Friday, 8:30 p.m. timeslot. But at the outset, this pair exhibit little comic energy while giving the proceedings a dull whitebread center. Which is too bad, because Kurtz is a bubble-slurping delight as the highbrow lush from hell. But one inspired performance does not a show make.
Tech credits are fine and dandy.