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Spin City: The Complete Second Season
Another strong season
The second season of the 1990s sitcom “Spin City,” which is being released on DVD on April 28, has the same elements that made the first season of this show so good. Michael J. Fox does an exceptional job as the ambitious and charming deputy mayor of New York Mike Flaherty, who was validly considered to be the adult version of the ambitious and charming teen that Fox played on “Family Ties.”
Fox is one of the few actors who could make these egotists lovable.
The office of misfit bureaucrats that make up the rest of the cast also contribute to the appeal of the show. Adding Jennifer Esposito to the cast as a sassy young secretary helped achieve a better balance between the male and female characters than existed during the first season.
Highlights from the second season include an episode in which a Howard Sternesque shock jock challenged the character of the mayor of New York, played by Barry “Brad” Bostwick, to a mock election for mayor. This included cameo appearances by talk show hosts Regis Philbin and Kathie Lee Gifford, who were good sports about the show teasing them about their personas.
Another notable episode involved Meredith Baxter, who played Fox’s mother on “Family Ties,” playing the liberal mother of Flaherty. She and Fox still make a great team, and her character overstepping several boundaries was amusing. This pairing suggests as well that Fox and Baxter would be perfect for a MILF version of the play “Love Letters.”
The weakest episode was one in which the women in the office fantasized about being married to Flaherty. It was still good but was very predictable and was a blatant rip-off of an episode of “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” in which the male characters fantasized about being married to Moore’s character.
Putting a final spin on the show, it is a good example of the New York-based comedies of the era and is worth your support.
Please do share your thoughts regarding “Spin City” as e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Review by John Stahl
John Stahl is a freelance legal writer who is also a fan of classic and cult television programs. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Spin City: The Complete Second Season
This season he has got a little more help from his new hire, hard-nosed secretary Stacey Paterno (Jennifer Esposito, Samantha Who).
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