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Picks and Pans Review: Extreme Makeover

updated 05/05/2003 at 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 05/05/2003 01:00AM

ABC (Wednesdays, 10 p.m. ET)

This new reality series, following the ratings success of a December special, is virtually an infomercial for cosmetic surgery. But it leaves me humming that old Dionne Warwick song "Don't Make Me Over."

Each week two imperfect Americans get the chance to be remodeled by such miracle workers as plastic surgeon Garth Fisher and William Dorfman, described as "cosmetic dentist to the stars." In the premiere a 40-year-old Florida woman receives a face-lift, an eye-lift, etc., after tearfully lamenting her haggardness. She does look more youthful several weeks after surgery, but it's awfully hard to forget the early postop scenes where her visage resembles bandaged hamburger. Meanwhile, a 29-year-old Chicagoan wants Fisher to operate on her malformed lips, an obvious problem worth correcting. But as long as she's in his Beverly Hills office on the show's dime, she adds abdominal liposuction and a breast lift to her order. When he asks if she'd like her bust "perkier and fuller," I'm thinking this doc couldn't be smarmier.

BOTTOM LINE: It ain't pretty

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