The three new shows joining the network lineups Wednesday night have one thing in common: all are high-concept shows. That means they are willing to use aliens, animals and babies as a lure.
NBC's "Animal Practice" looks for comedy inside a major veterinary clinic, while the network's new "Guys With Kids" banks on babies for its humor.
The wildest concept comes from ABC's new comedy "The Neighbors." It is the story of a group of aliens -- all with the names of famous athletes -- who live in a quiet suburban neighborhood.
Here's a look at each show:
There's a lot of monkey business on the NBC comedy.
The chief aide to Dr. George Coleman (Justin Kirk), the top veterinarian at the Crane Animal Hospital, is played by a monkey named Crystal. You might recognize Crystal from the Matt Damon movie "We Bought a Zoo."
Kirk already has discovered there are some rules when working with Crystal. When he asked Crystal's handler Tom the best way to bond with her, he was told to ignore her.
"I've been doing that all my life," Kirk says. "So it shouldn't be difficult. So she's just super-cool."
Actually, Kirk has another female co-star. JoAnna Garcia Swisher joined the series after the original first episode was filmed. Swisher, best known for her work on "Reba," has nothing but praise for Crystal.
"She hits her marks, certainly better than I do. She picks her mark up and she goes for it," she says.
"They really are special, and I think a lot of it has to do with the humans that are there with them that make them feel so secure and confident."
"GUYS WITH KIDS"
Anthony Anderson, Jesse Bradford and Zach Cregger play three friends who are all dads. But just because they have kids doesn't mean they have to give up things they like, such as going to a sports bar or having sex.
The show was pitched by executive producer Jimmy Fallon.
Anderson, who has a longtime friendship with Fallon, says the main reason he signed on is because it shows a positive African-American family on network television loving one another and raising their children.
"I'm a stay-at-home dad by choice, not by any other reason," Anderson says. "You know, I celebrate my wife going out to work, and I sit at home, and I raise our four children, four young men."
Anderson adds that it was a bonus that he gets to kiss his childhood crush, Tempestt Bledsoe, who plays his wife.
This new ABC comedy looks at a world where the neighbor who borrows your lawn mower -- and has a famous
"It is a high-concept idea, but we also want to ground it as a family sitcom. So what we're going to explore is we have all the relationships. We have the dads and the moms and the kids and the teens," says executive producer Dan Fogelman.
"In future episodes, the aliens are going to start going out into the world a little bit. In an early episode they go to a shopping mall for the first time.
"And they kind of look around in complete abject horror at all the things we take for granted: people with children on leashes and facedown in massage chairs and gorging themselves at food courts."
© 2012 The Fresno Bee (Fresno, Calif.)
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