Picks and Pans Review: Psych

updated 07/10/2006 at 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 07/10/2006 01:00AM

USA (Fridays, 10 p.m. ET)

MYSTERY

This new series is being paired with the fifth season of Monk, the detective series that has won Tony Shalhoub two Emmys. It's not in the same league. Or astral plane. James Roday plays Shawn Spencer, whose powers of deduction are so extraordinary he passes himself off as a psychic consultant. He's partnered with his best friend (West Wing's Dulé Hill), an anxious pharmaceuticals salesman willing to tag along for the adventure. When Roday surveys a crime scene, the clues falling within his line of vision light up in his head. This is a bit like the gimmick on ABC's Evidence. It's also like watching someone test Christmas lights for faulty bulbs. The show is meant to be fairly lighthearted, and Roday never stops kidding around. Unlike Monk, a gently comic character coping with mental illness, Roday's just an overgrown kid. Who needs him?
[STARS 1.5]

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