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Olsen Twins Are Double Lame Fun
By Chris Cousino
From The Michigan Daily Online

Now that you erased "Family Matters," "Step-by-Step" and Sasha Mitchell (star of "Kickboxer" II through IV) from your memory, you may be forewarner. ABC reminds us again to give thanks for Fridays with their new cutesy family sitcom "Full House 2," ... err ... "Two of a Kind." And just who might these "Two" be but none other than Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen of the not-so-Clint Eastwood epic, "How the West Was Fun." Oh yeah, they also played the ingratiating Michelle on the enjoyable "Full House."

In "Two of a Kind," the Olsen twins are grown up, playing two 11-year-old sisters that are into boys or baseball. (Don't ask which is which. Who cares really?). Gone are the days of toddler Michelle, Uncle Jesse and Joey, not to mention Bob Saget. But don't fret. The creative essence of "Full House" is still in full effect.

First off, the "Full House" set is practically, if not the same, set used for the "Two of a Kind" series. It also borrows the same premise as "Full House" in that the Olsens' new characters lost their mom when they were young and their widowed science professor dad (Christopher Sieber) must raise them on his own. To assist in the parenting of the troublesome two, Dad hires babysitter Carrie (Sally Wheeler), a cute, perky redhead to guide the girls through the toils of boys, makeup and homeruns.

Carrie is the female combination of John Stamos' Uncle Jesse and Dave Coulier's Uncle Joey--both tough rebel and zany kid at the same time. Wheeler brings a bouncing, crazy charm to the role, which young viewers will definitely enjoy because they see an adult child or a child adult.

The straight adult role goes to Sieber, who is an uptight, conservative but loving father, like the Saget role that preceded him. Sieber is effective as a dad, but college professor Burke is a little bit of a stretch. But he does add a few quirky quips, such as when Mary-Kate and Ashley bring a picnic basket filled with snacks up to their team meeting and Dad questions, "Who are you feeding up there? The Donner party?"

An even better reply comes from one of the Olsens saying, "I'm sure that'd be funny if I knew what you were talking about," which is a response most young viewers will have.

Ashley adds the best line of the show during a discussion about poker when Carrie explains, "Nothing beats a four-of-a-kind," and Ashley retorts, "Boy, when we were little, full house beat everything."

Following in "Full House" footsteps, "Two of a Kind" appears to be ABC's attempt to bolster a once powerful, now weakening TGIF line-up.

Though the show isn't great, it works and young children will enjoy it. Unlike many other sexually oriented sitcoms and news programs, parents can be content in knowing this one is harmless.

The great artificial chemistry created by Sieber and Wheeler is very basic and can only be the vision of an ABC producer for a wedding episode that is probably set to air next season. But the final shot of this series premiere episode of the three females standing together with cheeks bursting in a sappy grin could drive many adults into a psychopathic state.

If parents can conceal any hateful thoughts "Two of a Kind" may conjure up, they can sit back and watch their young tots giggle and laugh at a prime example of mediocrity in a mediocre new fall season.