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Tuesday on TV: Pretty people in 'Famous in Love' are pretty boring

Published April 18, 2017 1:18 pm
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2017, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

If I tell you that "Famous In Love" (10 p.m., Freeform) is a new series from the I. Marlene King, the producer of "Pretty Little Liars," you probably won't be surprised to learn that it's about mostly vapid, impossibly pretty people in iver-the-top, impossible-to-believe situations.

Bella Thorne stars as Paige Townsen, a plucky college student whose life changes when she's plucked from obscurity to star in a Major Motion Picture.

We get a glimpse of her a year in the future, when she's a Major Motion Picture Star, but most of the narrative takes place in a present where she's just a nice girl thrust into a crazy world.



"It's just as twisty and curvy as 'Pretty Little Liars,' but the twists are all dramatic," King said. "And just really more soapy twists and turns that come along the way — all character driven."

Yes, it's a soap opera. But if this is "character driven," well, it's worth noting that none of the characters (or the situations) seem the least bit believable.

"Famous In Love" is based on a series of YA novels by Rebecca Serle, but it's a lot more adult. And a lot more crude.

"The book skews a lot younger than the show," King said. "We've really edged it up and made it a lot more dramatic and sexy and edgy than the books."

Among the dramatic and sexy and edgy scenes — movie studio executive Nina Devon (Perrey Reeves), attempting to protect her scandal-prone actor son, Rainer (Carter Jenkins), grabs a gossip columnist by his genitals and threatens him with far worse physical violence.

"Stay away from my son, because I don't ever want to have to grab your balls again," Nina says. "It's beneath me."

There's not much beneath this surprisingly uninteresting series.

Freeform is putting all 10 first-season episodes online today, but watching that much "Famous In Love" seems like punishment. Ugh.

• Also tonight, it's Game 2 of the Utah Jazz's first-round playoff series against the L.A. Clippers (8:30 p.m., ROOT and TNT) — and who would've thought that that the Jazz would've won Game 1?

Elsewhere on TV ...

• "Bull" (7 p.m., CBS/Ch. 2): Bull assists a high-powered attorney on trial for his fiancĂ©e's murder.

• "The Middle" (7 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4): Frankie takes Axl shopping for a suit to wear to interviews.

• "The Voice" (7 p.m., NBC/Ch. 5): The live playoffs continue.

• "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" (7 p.m., Fox/Ch. 13): A burglary on the set of a detective TV show distracts Jake, who is charmed by the glamour of show business.

• "If Loving You is Wrong" (7 p.m., OWN): Kelly panics when she learns about Travis' crime.

• "American Housewife" (7:30 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4): Anna-Kat tells her parents that all she wants for her birthday is to be able to walk to the library alone.

• "NCIS: New Orleans" (8 p.m., CBS/Ch. 2): The team investigates when Navy weapons are stolen in a train heist.

• "Fresh Off the Boat" (8 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4): After learning that Tiger Woods is half Thai, Louis and Jessica want to make Eddie and Evan the next great Asian golf prodigies.

• "Frontline" (8 p.m., PBS/Ch. 7): The long-term effects of solitary confinement in prison and efforts to reduce its use.

• "Prison Break" (8 p.m., Fox/Ch. 13): Michael plans his next move.

• "iZombie" (8 p.m., CW/Ch. 30): Liv consumes the brain of a murdered lifestyle guru.

• "The Detour (8 p.m., TBS): Robin and Nate make record time to get to the kids in Florida.

• "Imaginary Mary" (8:30 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4): Andy struggles to find a prom date.

• "NCIS" (9 p.m., CBS/Ch. 2): A Marine's murder becomes linked to a dirt bike gang he joined for an undercover operation.

• "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." (9 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4): The truth behind Fitz's turn threatens to bring down S.H.I.E.L.D.

• "Trial & Error" (9 and 9:30 p.m., NBC/Ch. 5): Josh takes a huge chance and puts Larry on the stand; the jury reaches a verdict — and we find out who killed Margaret.

• "Pretty Little Liars" (9 p.m., Freeform): A.D.'s final endgame is revealed.

• "Face Off" (10 p.m., Syfy): The last four contestants create gargoyles.

• "Outsiders" (10 and 11 p.m. WGN): Farrell family alliances are shattered.

• "Independent Lens" (11 p.m., PBS/Ch. 7): In "SEED: The Untold Story," farmers, scientists, lawyers and seed-keepers protect seeds, thereby protecting the future of food.

• "Rebel" (11 p.m., BET): Mack enlists Rebel to investigate a worker at his mother's assisted living facility.

• "The Americans" (11 p.m., FX): Paige becomes more involved in her parents' world; Stan faces the consequences of overplaying his hand at the FBI.

• "Cosplay Melee" (11 p.m., Syfy): The cosplayers create vigilante superheroes.

• "Team Ninja Warrior" (11 p.m., USA): What with the demise of the Esquire Channel, this moves to USA.

 

 

 

 

 

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