Picks and Pans Review: Hiller and Diller

UPDATED 09/22/1997 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 09/22/1997 at 01:00 AM EDT

ABC (Tuesdays, 9:30 p.m. ET)

B+

Like George & Leo, this promising sitcom from writers Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel (City Slickers) stars two known quantities and proves there's no match like a mismatch. Kevin Nealon (Saturday Night Live) is TV comedy writer Ted Hiller, lanky, laid-back, slightly goofy. Richard Lewis (Anything but Love) is his partner Neil Diller, neurotic, self-absorbed, anything but calm. Ted has a smart wife (Jordan Baker) and three fairly well-behaved kids (Faryn Einhorn, Jonathan Osser and Jill Berard). Neil is newly divorced and saddled with sole custody of two alarmingly worldly children (Kyle Sabihy and Allison Mack).

The likable Nealon looks more at home on a sitcom set than he did at SNL 's "Weekend Update" anchor desk. Lewis leans on his stand-up mannerisms in the Sept. 23 premiere, but with time he should find his character. Eugene Levy (SCTV) is strong as the writers' boss, so look for office humor in Dick Van Dyke Show tradition. And the kids earn good marks.

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