By Terry Kelleher
Updated September 16, 2002 12:00 PM

The WB (Thursdays, 8 p.m. ET)

According to a network press release, the ’60s sitcom Family Affair has been “rejuvenated and fast-forwarded to the current day with The WB’s unique flair.” This much is true: You’ll want to fast-forward through the remake’s Sept. 12 opener whenever Tim Curry isn’t onscreen.

Curry, best known for The Rocky Horror Picture Show, does bring a bit of flair to this affair with his work in the old Sebastian Cabot role of Giles French, proper British manservant to rich New York City bachelor Bill Davis (Gary Cole, succeeding Brian Keith). Curry arches his brow to an imperial height when Mr. French first sets eyes on Bill’s ever-so-cute niece Buffy (Sasha Pieterse) and nephew Jody (Jimmy “Jax” Pinchak). And the premiere gives the butler a decent opportunity to wax waspish when the 6-year-old twin orphans move into the dee-luxe apartment just ahead of their 14-year-old sibling Sissy (Caitlin Wachs). Unfortunately, things turn sticky-sweet when Bill and the tykes share some quality time—soft music, big hug—and by the end of the hour the rejuvenation has worn off.

Bottom Line: Only the butler gives good service