Picks and Pans Review: Punky Brewster

updated 10/15/1984 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 10/15/1984 AT 01:00 AM EDT

NBC (Sundays, 7:30 p.m. ET)

While watching Punky Brewster, one gets an uncontrollable urge to pour salt on the TV set, to douse it in vinegar. Punky is so sweet it makes your gums ache. The star is an admittedly cute kid who has a cute real name, Soleil Moon Frye, and an even cuter puppy, which you'll swear has been blow-dried to make it look cuddly. But Soleil has no daddy and her mommy disappeared. So Punky happens to meet crusty George (Tootsie) Gaynes, as Henry, and she moves in with him, bringing sweetness into his sour life and spewing platitudes even Michael Landon wouldn't try to get away with on Highway to Heaven: "If you never let yourself feel sad," Punky the tot therapist tells Henry, "how can you ever feel happy?" That's a little hard to take from a kid who just learned to tie her shoes.

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