American TV writers have stomped on the US version of Aussie comedy show Kath & Kim, saying it's bad enough to warrant severing trade relations with Australia.
Starring Molly Shannon and Selma Blair, Kath & Kim premieres on American NBC TV tomorrow night.
Chuck Barney of California's Contra Costa Times describes the remake as "hammy, over-the-top and ... utterly forced".
"If you thought all those gag-inducing ads for Kath & Kim that NBC ran during the Olympics were awful, wait until you check out the actual show," he wrote.
"Better yet, don't bother.
"It is based on a comedy that originated in Australia and it might be just cause to immediately cease trade relations with that country."
Meanwhile, Rob Owen of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette called it a "dumb dud" and "an unpleasant way to spend a half-hour".
In an earlier interview, the US show's executive producer Michelle Nader, whose past works include Spin City and King of Queens, said she had jumped at adapting the Aussie version for an American audience.
"We wanted to really sort of get the emotional core of the show more than they did in the Australian version. The Australian version is very funny, and we're absolutely going to be hopefully as funny as
them," Nader said.
"But they do eight episodes and we do 22."
The American version would "dish out the level of reality in a different way," she said.
The original ABC series about the Fountain Lakes foxy morons created by Gina Riley and Jane Turner was a hit with Australian audiences, but there were questions about whether its uniquely Australian humour
would translate to foreign viewers.
Australians will get the chance to check out the US version when the Seven Network, which now has rights to the show, screens it this Sunday night at 7pm.
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