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(ABC's "Family Tools" stars Edi Gathegi as Darren Poynton, Danielle Nicolet as Lisa "Stitch" Poynton, Kyle Bornheimer as Jack Shea, Johnny Pemberton as Mason Baumgardner, Leah Remini as Terry Baumgardner and J.K. Simmons as Tony Shea. Courtesy photo)
Wednesday on TV: ABC's "Family Tools" is a big disappointment
First Published May 01 2013 04:38 pm • Last Updated May 02 2013 10:10 am

Family Tools (7:30 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4) is supposed to be a comedy, I think. It was hard to tell, because it's not funny.

The premise is rather simple. Cranky ol' Tony Shea (J.K. Simmons) just had a heart attack, so he can't keep running his contracting/handyman business. At the urging of his sister, Terry (Leah Remini), Tony reluctantly turns the business over to his beyond-bumbling son, Jack (Kyle Bornheimer).

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Oh, by the way, Terry refuses to let the EMTs into the house to treat the stricken Tony until he agrees to call Jack. Really.

The basic problem with this comedy is it's not funny. Everything about it - including the physical comedy - is entirely predictable.

Try to guess what happens when Jack handles a nail gun. Just try.

"Family Tools" is trying to be the next "My Name Is Earl" or "Raising Hope." It was written by Bobby Bowman, who wrote for both of those shows.

But it lacks their heart. Simmons and Bornheimer are very likable actors, but the characters in this show are more like cartoons than real people.

Actually, the funniest thing about "Family Tools" is the title. It's about a family business in which they use tools - and they are tools! Hilarious!

OK, not hilarious. But it's still funnier than the rest of the show.

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