TV Review: 2 Broke Girls

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The most entertaining aspect of 2 Broke Girls, CBS' latest effort to be hip, is identifying which of the jokes in the pilot were written by Michael Patrick King and which by Whitney Cummings-who is perpetrating comedy murder on not one but two networks this season. King's are easy to spot: Just follow the pun. The Russian waitress who turned out to be "Vladimir Putin out"? Pure King. And Cummings' material sounds like something Rusty Warren would have turned her nose up at (see: the clam chowder/semen stain joke).

Too bad, because Kat Dennings and Beth Behrs have a lovely, tart rapport as a Recession-made odd couple. Dennings is tough-talking waitress Max, who reluctantly takes recently de-trust funded Caroline (Behrs) under her prickly wing. Not content to leave well enough alone, however, King and Cummings have crammed the series with annoying eccentricities (see: the horse Caroline brings with her to Max's Brooklyn backyard) and unnecessary gimmicks. Armed with a degree from Wharton, Caroline sees a way out for herself and Max via Max's talent with cupcakes. They'll pool their savings and open a bake shop! So every episode ends with the new tally of their savings. One can only assume that this modern day Laverne and Shirley will eventually wend their way to a beer factory.

Set in a fantasy New York, where Williamsburg is vaguely dangerous and subway cars are scary because they're filled with black people. 2 Broke Girls tries hard to be edgy but feels as comforting and familiar as a TV Land rerun. These girls will bicker, sure, but they'll always have one another's back. Unless you have a thing for retro-style sitcoms and are going into withdrawal now that Hot in Cleveland has gone on hiatus, there's really no reason to give these Girls your time.

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