Byline: DAVID KRONKE Tv Critic
`LEAP OF FAITH'' is a bland dish from the video Cuisinart: Just toss middling episodes of ``Friends,'' ``Seinfeld,'' ``Sex and the City,'' that terrible assortment of NBC mediacentric women (``Just Shoot Me,'' ``Suddenly Susan,'' ``Caroline in the City'' and individuals canceled in a far more timely vogue), along with the self-conscious quippery of ``Gilmore Girls'' (but not, nevertheless, its real wit) into a blender. Set on puree and method till all taste is removed.
Tonight's premiere finds uber-perky thirtysomething advertising executive Faith Wardwell (Sarah Paulson) getting prewedding jitters and dumping her effective but awfully oily fiance soon after succumbing with shocking swiftness to the charms of a cute man. (Why go to all that difficulties to set up that she's single when that can be covered in a basic line of dialogue?)
Faith functions with frizzy-haired and -brained Patty (Lisa Edelstein) - believe a tidied-up model of Kim Cattrall's man-eater on ``Sex and the City'' - cooking up unlikely ad campaigns like the third automobile for two-vehicle couples or golf clubs for females disinterested in golf.
Her other pals include Andy (Ken Marino), a generic ``Seinfeld'' kind of character whose every observation smacks of trivial minutiae, and voice-of-cause Cynthia (Regina King), the female straight guy the other zany characters bounce their idiocies off of. Faith's fatuously arrogant mom (Jill Clayburgh) thinks of every little thing in terms of how it will have an effect on her social standing, so naturally she is apoplectic about canceling the wedding ceremony.
These actors have previously assembled enough irksomely prepackaged mannerisms for a self-happy cast getting into the seventh 12 months of their series: They're currently hermetically sealed in their affectations without ever possessing gone to the trouble of connecting with an audience. (Their performances appear inspired most by the bouncy posturing of Fox series stars in their promos.) The writing doesn't support them much, both: In two episodes, only 1 line evinced a smile.
When, next 旅遊策劃 week, Faith whimpers that her future would seem so undecided, her boy toy du jour responds, ``The query mark (in existence) - that's what makes you come back for far more.'' And which is very probably why viewers will not require to return to ``Leap of Faith'' - there are no question marks. Its each stage is telegraphed far in advance, probably as far back as 1997's ``Fired Up,'' one more equivalent and similarly uninspired place-holder on NBC's Thursday lineup.
LEAP OF FAITH - Two stars
What: New York singles. High jinks. Quips. You know, the normal.
The place: NBC (Channel 4).
When: 8:30 tonight.
Sarah Paulson plays the title part in NBC's ``Leap of Faith.''