Picks and Pans Review: P.o.p.

updated 09/03/1984 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/03/1984 AT 01:00 AM EDT

NBC (Wednesday, Aug. 29, 9:30 p.m. ET)

Here's a summer special from Norman Lear, whose comedies tend to break new ground. This one, unfortunately, should go six feet under. Charles (Tootsie) Durning plays lovable con man P. Oliver Pendergast, a name precious enough to make your gums bleed. Beatrice (Maude) Arthur is his ex-wife, a New York magazine editor with a passion for 1920s clothes, long pearl necklaces and a flaming red wig. A lobster in drag comes to mind. After 20 years of happy divorce, the couple's lives become entwined again when P.O.P. shows up at her office promoting a new scheme. Scatological humor, cartoonlike characters and a hyper audience that cheers each line of dialogue as if Tinkerbell had taken a fairy poll make this a recommendable skip. Great opening credits, though.

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