Alicia Silverstone will quickly replace the fading memories of Fox’s “Ally McBeal.” Silverstone’s NBC show, “Miss Match” is a delightful hour-long dramedy, just without the extreme quirkiness of “Ally.”
Silverstone plays Kate Fox, a divorce attorney who believes that everyone should find his or her true love. She’s not as klutzy as Ally McBeal, but she does like to interfere in others’ lives. She has a special talent for setting up blind dates. They don’t always work, but at least she helps people break out of their desperation.
Her matchmaking has been a hobby, a token gesture for the many friends in her life. But all that changes when she makes the newspaper’s society page. A bride excitedly informs everyone that Kate made the match, and they are her third couple to get married. That announcement starts the phones ringing off the hook. Women declare their willingness to pay $1,000 for Kate to find them the man of their dreams.
However, Kate’s romantic idealism clashes with her dad’s narcissistic personality. Sid Fox (Ryan ONeal) can charm anyone, but especially the ladies. Which may be why his own marriage failed long ago. He never had time for Kate while she was young, which explains why she asked to join his law firm.
“I could have gone to any law firm, but I came to you so we could work together and maybe actually get to know each other,” she tells him.
While Sid is glad his daughter is in the firm, he can’t convince her to use the “any means necessary” strategies that have become his trademark.
He will do anything to win, even send clients to consult with other divorce attorneys so they will not be able to represent the client’s spouse.
“We’re divorce attorneys,” Sid explains to Kate. “We could walk on water. Nobody’s going to be impressed. Let’s just focus on winning.”
Kate does worry that her matchmaking image my hurt her professionalism.
“People can’t think of me as some romantic softie,” she says.
But that doesn’t stop her from looking for the perfect couples. Once she runs out of friends and acquaintances, she begins to approach men on the street.
“You can’t just stop people on the street and set them up on a blind date. It’s weird,” says Victoria (Lake Bell), Kate’s best friend.
Victoria works as a bartender at a local restaurant, the perfect hunting ground for Kate. Soon, Victoria is dragged into the dating game as Kate’s accomplice. She’ll order the perfect drinks, coach a guy on how to sit or even fix his hair.
“Miss Match” is a fun look at relationships of all kinds. Silverstone is adorable as Kate, a role that could be a continuation of her career-making turn as Cher in “Clueless.” As long as there are single people in the world, Kate will have a job to do.
8 p.m. Tonight, NBC