×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Harry Loves Lisa

After one heavily staged episode, it's hard to imagine anyone being particularly wild about "Harry."

The opening shot of “Harry Loves Lisa” finds Harry Hamlin reading Variety, fretting about opportunities during pilot season. Free publicity aside, hopefully someone will hide the paper before he sees this review of his unscripted half-hour comedy/drama with wife Lisa Rinna, which exhibits a deflating kind of desperation. The couple has already made separate appearances on “Dancing With the Stars,” and now transforms their lives into a kooky TV Land sitcom-like construct, only with mixed-in moments of bathos. After one heavily staged episode, it’s hard to imagine anyone being particularly wild about “Harry.”

As with many a reality show, this one labors to create its own familiar narrative framework — the self-described hook, if you believe the central duo, being Hamlin is cerebral and cautious while Rinna is a wacky free spirit. TV Land calls them a “celebrity uber-couple,” which suggests someone should be forced to take remedial German.

“I can’t keep my mouth shut,” she says cheerily about causing a stir with her Twitter account, having tamely bad-mouthed another reality star for excessive plastic surgery, inviting charges of hypocrisy because of those puffed-up lips.

Hamlin, meanwhile, goes on an audition that badly misfires (viewers aren’t privy to the offending performance), not very convincingly prompting him to try his hand at stand-up comedy. In doing this he seeks strategic counsel from actor-comic Robert Wuhl, which — along with the “This season on” tease — suggests there will be no shortage of celebrity guests.

Like a lot of programs built around private lives of the famous and once-famous, the producers work too hard trying to engineer such conflicts. That’s mostly because the show appears to have been sold primarily for the title (sounds a little like “Bridget Loves Bernie,” or “When Harry Met Sally!”) as opposed to any compelling reason to spend time with these two at home.

Admitting to being 58 years old (egad, was the original “Clash of the Titans” really that long ago?), Hamlin speaks of how he and Lisa are “both trying to get back in the game.” For those connected to or familiar with Hollywood, there’s a certain poignancy to that predicament.

To appreciate the show, however, requires ignoring the obvious: You’re back in the game already, Harry. You’re just playing in the minor leagues.

Harry Loves Lisa

TV Land, Wed. Oct. 6, 10 p.m.

Production: Produced by Good Clean Fun. Executive producers, Jason A. Carbone, Harry Hamlin, Lisa Rinna; co-executive producer, Nick Lee; supervising producer, Robin Radzinski; story producer, Maya Tasaka.

Crew: Camera, Laura Merians; supervising editor, Sean Hubbert; music supervisor, Dan Wilcox. Featuring: Harry Hamlin, Lisa Rinna.

More TV

  • VFX Studio Framestore Launches Suite of

    VFX, Animation Studio Framestore Launches Pre-Production Services Unit (EXCLUSIVE)

    Visual effects and animation studio Framestore, which won Oscars for “The Golden Compass,” “Gravity” and “Blade Runner 2049,” and whose recent work includes “Avengers: Endgame” and “Spider-Man: Far From Home” in movies, and “His Dark Materials” and “Watchmen” in TV, has launched FPS, which offers a suite of pre-production services. The move sees the company’s [...]

  • Harmonica

    NENT Group Tunes into Warner Bros. Sweden Romantic Drama 'Harmonica'

    Scandinavian major NENT Group has commissioned romantic drama “Harmonica” from Warner Bros. International Television Production Sweden. The Swedish series has been co-created by Josephine Bornebusch, whose previous drama “Love Me” has performed strongly on NENT Group’s Viaplay streaming service in the Nordic region, and was recently renewed for a second season. The six-episode “Harmonica” is [...]

  • ITV Studios Snaps Up Endemol Shine

    ITV Studios Snaps Up Endemol Shine Executive Lisa Perrin

    ITV Studios has snapped up Endemol Shine executive Lisa Perrin, appointing her as the new managing director of international production. Perrin joins the company from Endemol Shine Group (ESG) where she served as CEO of Creative Networks. Her exit comes as the business prepares to merge with Banijay Group, resulting in the departures of a [...]

  • Daniel Burman, Sebastian Borensztein, Lucia Puenzo

    Amazon’s Latest Latin American Deals: 5 Takeaways

    “The only absolute in history is change,” said the Victorian historian Lord Acton. He might have been talking about the streaming platforms’ current international strategies. Since they launched internationally, Netflix and Amazon’s focus and priorities have been in constant evolution. Current pressures – evolving demographies, new regulation, new competition, still untapped growth  – mean that [...]

  • Patrick Nebout and Henrik Hansson Schweizer

    U.K. Scribe Michael Robert Johnson Signs with Dramacorp for ‘Heritage’ Series (EXCLUSIVE)

    GÖTEBORG, Sweden  —  Swedish prodco Dramacorp has signed with U.K. scribe Michael Robert Johnson (“Sherlock Holmes,” “Mute,” “The Frankenstein Chronicles”) for the English-language supernatural thriller “Heritage” (a working title). Co-writers are Göteborg-based Morgan Jensen (“Thicker than Water”, “Hassel”) and Theo Gabay. The show, in early development, deals with modern elitism and hereditary. In it, a [...]

  • A still from LANCE by Marina

    'Lance': Film Review

    Late in the film “Lance,” a documentary that depicts the ascent and the crash of disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong, the subject recalls the disappearance of his lucrative sponsorships. These deals — with a massive market value and a perhaps more important intangible value of keeping him in the public eye as a figure of rectitude [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content