Guest Author - BJ Champagne
Last year TV Land put its toes in the water of original programming and produced Hot in Cleveland, its first original sitcom. Airing last summer, Hot in Cleveland became the networkís highest rated show. The second season has recently started and promises to be as much fun as the first, with an all- star guest line up.
For anyone who has not seen the show, the premise is fairly simple. Three LA women have an emergency landing and layover in Cleveland on their way to Paris. While waiting for another flight, the trio wanders into a local bar. To their surprise every man in the establishment canít take their eyes off of them. The people are so friendly, and the women are eating real food. This is a huge culture shock for the LA ladies. With this big ego boost, one of them decides to stay and even rents a house.
The three leads are played by sitcom veterans Valerie Bertinelli, Jane Leeves , and Wendie Malick. Bertinelli of One Day at a Time and Jenny Craig fame plays Melanie Moretti, a recent divorcee and self-help book author. With her marriage over and her kids grown, she sees Cleveland as an opportunity to start a new life. Her friends tag along for the ride.
Leeves of Frasier plays Joy Scroggs an eyebrow artist to the stars. She is unmarried with a disapproving mother and a very flexible job. Her motives for staying in Cleveland arenít very clear. In the first season, you find out she gave up her son for adoption when she was only 15. The move maybe a chance for her to make changes in her life and look for her son.
Malick of Just Shoot Me plays daytime diva Victoria Chase. Recently, her long running soap was cancelled. Unemployed with a string of ex-husbands, she flounders with her new identity as an older actress in Hollywood. Cleveland gives her an opportunity to be a big fish in a small pond.
While in Cleveland, the girls meet Elka Ostrovsky the caretaker of the house Melanie rents. Elka Ostrovsky is played by the TV legend Betty White. She lives life to the fullest with her active social life and bejeweled track suits. Elka wastes no time spouting off insults and wisdom to the three. Recently, for her Hot in Cleveland role, Betty White won the Screen Actors Guild Award for outstanding performance by a female actress in a comedy series.
Hot in Cleveland is a great show for anyone who is a fan of classic television. The show is clever, funny, and gives the viewer the added benefits of seeing TV icons on screen again. The list of guest stars includes Carl Reiner, Mary Tyler Moore, Hal Linden, John Schneider, Tim Conway, and Bonnie Franklin just to name a few. The second season has already started and seems to be living up to the first.
Hot in Cleveland airs on Wednesday night on TV Land. Check your local listing and set your DVRs.