'Are We There Yet?'
Two and a half stars
8 and 8:30 p.m. on TBS
The main problem with "Are We There Yet?" is that it requires a "Cosby Show"-level suspension of disbelief. No -- more. We are presented with a new husband eager to bond with his stepchildren. He is accomplished in both athletics and computers, and comes with his own throw pillows. After much discussion about whether his wife should take his name, he tells her that he'll hyphenate HIS name.
Men like this do not and should not exist, even in fiction. "Are We There Yet?" may do more damage to young romantics than Jane Austen novels.
The sitcom is based on the 2005 Ice Cube film "Are We There Yet?" and its sequel, neither of which were very good. The show is corny, with cartoonish supporting characters. So it pains me to say this, but the series started to grow on me.
A few reasons to watch:
*Terry Crews, late of "Everybody Hates Chris," somehow pulls off the saintly dad role without seeming like an insipid wuss. He's funny. Like in the movie, he confides his feelings to a bobblehead - except it's Charles Barkley instead of Satchel Paige, and it doesn't talk back with Tracy Morgan's voice.
*Essence Atkins, who takes over the Nia Long role as the mom, has a professional wardrobe to kill for.
*The token white people are open about their ignorance. Christian Finnegan, as the dad's best pal, at one point says, "I'm allowed to say jigga, right?" (Probably not.)
The frequent pop-culture references might not age well in syndication -Michelle Obama maybe, but Heidi Montag? Overall, though, there's enough originality and likability in "Are We There Yet?" to make it a pleasant destination.