Not every friendship is worth the effort, and NBC's new sitcom "Best Friends Forever" (8:30 p.m. Wednesday, WBIR, Channel 10) is proof.
The series focuses on two longtime gal pals, Lennon (Lennon Parham), who's happy with her live-in boyfriend in New York City, and Jessica (Jessica St. Clair), who lives in California and has been served with divorce papers. Once Lennon learns Jessica's life is on the rocks, she instantly invites her buddy to come crash at her apartment.
Cramped in one place, Lennon and Jessica are too absorbed in "girly" things (like watching "Steel Magnolias" for a good cry) and making Lennon's boyfriend, Joe (Luka Jones), feel like a stranger in his own home.
In this case, three is definitely a crowd.
And a creepy one to boot.
"Best Friends Forever" is one hot mess. The instantly unlikable Jessica is needy and whiny beyond a practical expectation. Lennon is an enabler and seems to have more of an interest in Jessica's needs than Joe's.
And then there's Joe. He's clueless. With Jones playing him, Joe has one expression — dumbfounded. He's a one-note character who may be overlooking the fact his girlfriend is more invested in her best friend than her beau.
Just when you think all is lost with this throwaway half-hour, young actress Daija Owens pops up in a marvelous supporting role as the sassy Queenetta Carpenter, a 9-year-old neighbor who doesn't mind calling out Jessica. "You gotta put some work in it if you wanna keep a man," she deadpans to Jessica. "Nails done, hair done, everything done."
Queenetta's got spunk — and, in this case, we not only like spunk, we need it.
The best thing NBC can do now is to end this friendship, develop something for Owens and see what goes from here.
After all, who needs "Best Friends" like these?
Score: 2 (out of five)
Terry Morrow may be reached at 865-342-6445 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
© 2012, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
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