I think the writers of Family Affair 2002 couldn't decide whether they wanted to do slapstick comedy, plain drama or a hybrid dramedy, so the show ends up as an odd mix that isn't really any of the above.
The decision not to record the show in front of a live audience was a huge mistake, since the subsequent "laughter tracks" seemed to be inserted out of place. It would have been way better if they followed Ally McBeal or The Gilmore Girls and dispense with the "canned" laughter altogether. There is simply not enough humour to spread out over each half-hour episode. I can't remember seeing any episode with more than two good jokes.
The actors tried their best, especially the younger actors. Caitlin Wachs is brilliant as Sissy and she's perhaps the only reason that kept me watching the show. Her acting is natural and convincing and is a step up from her performance in The Divine Secrets of The Ya Ya Sisterhood. Sarah Pieterse's Buffy has a surprisingly good range of emotions for her young age and has great potential. But the biggest boo-boo for the casting directors is their choice for the role of Jody. Jimmy Pinchak does a fine job as Jody, but he looks like he's much younger than Buffy and there's no way they could pass off as twins. Luckily the two of them have enough chemistry to make their sibling act believable.
Still, good acting alone can't save the show that is neither funny enough to be a comedy nor serious enough for a drama.
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