Tim Allen Tim Allen

So apparently Tim Taylor had a secret family. Either that, or nobody thinks we'll realize that Last Man Standing is Home Improvement with daughters instead of sons. And groans, instead of laughs.

Kicking off last night despite the fervent prayers of TV Guide Magazine's Matt Roush, Tim Allen's new comedy tests the meaning of both "new" and "comedy." Using the Improvement template as a cookie cutter, the show casts Allen as a macho dimwit (sound familiar?) with a manly job (right?), a hot sensible wife (of course!) and a house full of smart-mouthed children. Only this time, it's smart-mouthed daughters — and that's what passes for an original idea around here.

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Because ABC is counting on the folks who loved Improvement to eat up Standing, they presented a pair of episodes last night so we could get a full dose of parental doofery and "you're not a real man unless..." jokes. Sorry, that stuff may have flown back in the '90s when flannel was an acceptable look and Jonathan Taylor Thomas had a career, but today it just feels Cro-Mag. In fact, if it weren't such a reminder of one of ABC's other comedic misfires, this thing could have been called Last Caveman Standing.

Did you check out Tim Allen's return to TV? And will you be coming back again next week?

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