THE SHOW "2 Broke Girls"
WHEN | WHERE Monday night at 9:30 on CBS/2, then moves to 8:30 p.m. next Monday
WHAT IT'S ABOUT Max Black (Kat Dennings, "Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist") is a waitress in a Williamsburg diner when a new waitress, Caroline Channing (Beth Behrs), arrives with an idea. Max is a talented cupcake baker, so why not sell the little sweet nothings for $7 apiece?
Caroline is working as a waitress because her father has just been jailed for embezzling billions (yes, another Bernie Madoff story line) and she's been left penniless. Caroline moves into Max's apartment, and they plot a profitable future. (Also in the cast is "Saturday Night Live's" Garrett Morris as Earl, who mans the diner's cash register.)
MY SAY Pretty much of necessity, TV sitcoms have to make lightning-quick introductions with audiences, and you'll probably see no more economic an opening than that of "2 Broke Girls." A dude snaps his fingers to get Max's attention, and she snaps right back. In less than 30 seconds, she unleashes a series of put-downs that reduces the guy to a pile of hipster rubble. You learn that Max is smart, tough, fast, sexually confident and, above all, authentic.
"Authentic" is the landing that King really wanted to stick here, and does. In a world of poseurs and primping punks, Max is the real deal. She's the Working-Class Heroine model you've seen a million times in sitcoms -- Roseanne does Brooklyn -- but what's unique is Behr's Caroline, who brings her own brand of ruthless uptown authenticity. They're twins -- from different sides of the tracks. Will an audience embrace this setup? Most likely. The well-written pilot has a couple of brazenly vulgar sight gags, but nothing that will shock "Two and a Half Men" fans.
If anything, "2 Broke Girls" is too packed with jokes, barely pausing to take a breath. But like I said, introductions have to be quick, and this is a slam-bam one.
BOTTOM LINE "2BG" should stick around for a while.