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'Made in Jersey' review: accent on tedium

Janet Montgomery, stars as Martina Garretti, on

Janet Montgomery, stars as Martina Garretti, on "Made in Jersey," on the CBS Television Network. Credit: CBS

DRAMA PREMIERE "Made in Jersey"

WHEN | WHERE Friday night at 9 on CBS/2

REASON TO WATCH Dream Fulfillment Theater: Suburban working girl shows those elite Manhattan smarties.

WHAT IT'S ABOUT Janet Montgomery's Jersey girl isn't just the first in her family to go to college. She's also a first-year associate in a sprawling city law firm that's "a lot different from the Trenton DA's office" where she started. (For one thing, you don't see the mayor and other officials get arrested all the time.)

Manhattan's snooty privileged people may sniff at her and her (voluminous) hair. But she knows from chipped nail polish and using pliers to pull up your jeans -- which, y'know, constantly comes in handy when it comes to murder investigations.

Isn't she just the kind of girl you'd pluck from legal grunt work to ask courtroom questions in a big-time murder case?

MY SAY "Made in Jersey" does the legal thing, all right. It telegraphs what it's gonna say, then it says it, then it tells you what it said. The pat pilot overflows with exposition and obvious moments, all pointing straight at That Girl, forever underestimated and invariably triumphant.

Might there be a "there" there beneath all the predictability? Fresh face Montgomery does demonstrate flashes of charm, when she isn't seeming utterly in over her head. Maybe she's just wrestling with her native British intonation.

The "Working Girl" vibe is hammered home hard. But surface fashion styling can't cloak the underlying framework of yet another CBS procedural.

BOTTOM LINE The ax-cent just isn't enough.



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