Picks and Pans Review: Oh Baby

updated 09/07/1998 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/07/1998 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Lifetime (Tuesdays, 10:30 p.m. ET)

Show of the week

To be honest, our initial reaction to the concept of Oh Baby was a sigh of "Oh, brother." Let's see: It's a sitcom about an unmarried software executive in her 30s who decides to have a child by artificial insemination. The woman talks directly to the audience and shows scenes from her life on a video monitor. Sounds like two kinds of artificiality for the price of one. But Oh Baby, which premiered Aug. 18, turns out to be frequently funny and surprisingly truthful (thanks no doubt, to the experience of creator Susan Beavers, who had a child by artificial insemination in 1995). Cynthia Stevenson (Hope & Gloria) is engaging as the protagonist, but it's the supporting roles that are exceptionally well cast: Joanna Gleason as Stevenson's droll best friend, who happens to be the company psychiatrist; Jessica Walter as her disconcertingly candid mother; Doug Ballard as her calm but unnerving gynecologist; and Carol Ann Susi, hilarious in the second episode as a sperm-bank counselor who provides too much information.

Bottom Line: Welcome this Baby to the world

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