By Kirven Blount
April 18, 2006 at 04:00 AM EDT
Kate & Allie: Everett Collection

Kate and Allie: Season 1

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How do you go from dodging a hell-bent John Belushi in the SNL hallways to hitting laugh-track beats in a mild-mannered sitcom about divorcees living together to save on rent? Jane Curtin seems to have welcomed the tranquility of Kate and Allie, playing Connecticut lockjaw Allie with relish whether the writing was sharp (she calls the estrogen-heavy household a ”nylon ghetto”) or sappy (Saint James: ”Sometimes I wonder who’s the mother around this joint”). If you can get past the formulaic structure, it’s comfortable viewing.

EXTRAS In an infomercial-esque featurette celebrating ’80s TV, Hollywood Reporter writer Ray Richmond says, ”We took greater leaps of faith in the ’80s than at any time in the history of mankind.” A gag reel reveals that Curtin avoided cracking up by repeating the mantra ”dead pets” to herself, and Saint James claims the instant sitcom hit ”revived the formula.”

Kate and Allie: Season 1

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