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Picks and Pans Review: The Man in the Family

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ABC (Wednesdays, 9:30 P.M. ET)


In this summer replacement series, Ray (Wiseguy) Sharkey plays a wastrel who returns to Brooklyn to take over the family’s corner grocery after his father dies.

Sharkey, as unlikely as anyone this side of Mickey Rourke to take on a sitcom, is surprisingly effective. His trademark Roman candle—effusive style doesn’t tip over the show, because the producers wisely balanced him against another bomber, Anne DeSalvo. As his sister, DeSalvo can match Sharkey, stridency for stridency. Julie Bovasso and Leah Remini costar. While this is strictly formula sitcom humor, the show is loud and lively. During the summer, that’s enough to earn it a look.