Picks and Pans Review: Platypus Man

updated 03/06/1995 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/06/1995 AT 01:00 AM EST

UPN (Mondays, 9 p.m. ET)


Stand-up comic Richard Jeni plays Richard Jeni, the host of a local channel cooking show in Manhattan. No cordon bleu dishes for this guy. As Jeni explains, "This is a cooking show for any moron who ever tried to make tuna fish on toast and wound up in the burn unit with mayonnaise in his hair." Every time he starts a recipe on the air, it reminds him of his most recent dating debacle, and we drift off into a lengthy flashback.

Jeni is a likable, funny guy, but you'd have a hard time telling that from this spotty, often smutty mess. The sitcom (which takes its name from a 1993 stand-up special Jeni starred in—in which he compared himself to a platypus) aspires to be a cross between Dream On and Seinfeld. But our comic chefs ingredients are curdled: hit-or-miss humor that often strikes a desperate note, an anemic supporting cast, gag-me gags and feeble plotting. And the portions are so small.

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