Milano Gets By With Help From New Friends

Episode Commentary: Don’t Be Yourself

It’s been a while since the uber sexy Alyssa Milano has graced the small screen and luckily for her biggest fans, “Romantically Challenged” is worthy of both their time and hers.

Following a quartet of friends as they try to find their way in the game of love, the show’s pilot is a quirky and fun experience that is propelled by good acting and solid writing.

Divorced for only a few months, Lisa [Milano] is scared to get back in the dating game and with the help of her friends Perry [Kyle Bornheimer], Shawn [Josh Lawson] and little sister Lisa [Kelly Stables], she overcomes her fears and takes the plunge. However, still battling nerves, she somehow creates a web of zany lies that Spider-Man himself couldn’t get out of. Still the vivacious and super cute actress, Milano does a good job of pulling off the character and even though she’s not hilarious, she still keeps your attention and plays a part in making the first episode of this show an enjoyable one.

While Milano is billed as the lead in this show, the trio of Bornheimer, Lawson and Stables are all hilarious and do their best to get laughs. Playing Milano’s younger sister, Stables’ character is reminiscent of Phoebe from “Friends,” but far less weird and much more focused. In love with life and her friends, Stables is willing to do whatever it takes to keep them happy, even if it includes getting them riled up before sex with a dirty-talking hottie.

Channeling her inner Darth Vader, Stables provides easily the best moment of the show and gives Bornheimer more than enough room to do his thing with the best line in the pilot.

Speaking of Bornheimer, his relationship with roommate Lawson will remind many of Chandler and Joey from “Friends” as well, as Bornheimer is reluctant to go through with things and needs Lawson, who, in spite of his quirks, is a bit more of a free spirit, to push him along. Much like Stables, Lawson too proves he has his friends’ back and even volunteers to sleep with his roommate’s lover after he can’t, creating a situation that brings even more laughs.

What are friends for after all?

Overall, with four good-looking and funny characters, quality writing and of course, directing from sitcom legend James Burrows, “Romantically Challenged” may have enough staying power to stick around for a while.

About Patrick Hickey Jr. 9955 Articles
Patrick Hickey Jr. is the Founder, Editor-in-Chief, Master Jedi and Grand Pooh-bah of and is the author of the book, "The Minds Behind the Games: Interviews with Cult and Classic Video Game Developers," from leading academic and non-fiction publisher McFarland and Company. He is currently the Assistant Director of the Journalism Program at Kingsborough Community College and is a former News Editor at NBC Local Integrated Media and a National Video Games Writer at the late He has also had articles and photos published in The New York Times, The New York Daily News, Complex and The Syracuse Post-Standard. Love him. Read him.

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