Who knew Calista Flockhart had it in her to play anything but the walking tick in a short skirt that was Ally McBeal? She's excellent as Kitty, the one conservative in a liberal family, while her sister Sarah is played to perfection by Rachel Griffiths. Rachel played the uber-dark and disturbed Brenda on "Six Feet Under", but here she is a driven career woman and mother who is currently going through a tough divorce. When she had to pack her kids off to their dad's for two weeks recently, she broke my heart. At this point, I have to remind myself that these people are not actually related, they are that good.
And the guys are as good, if not better...well, except Balthazar Getty, as eldest brother Tommy, but I have to blame the writers more than the acting. It seems like they liked the idea of having five kids, but then they forget Tommy periodically because they only really have stories for four kids going around the writers' room. His plots are the ones you can see coming a mile away, even the current adultery plot. Dave Annable, who was so good on the very disappointing "Reunion" a couple seasons back, is great (and such a babe!) as tormented drug addict Justin, who just returned from Iraq with a busted knee. And then there's Matthew Rhys, who has done most of his work in his native Britain, as gay brother Kevin, who is always good for a great one-liner when things get too tense. Not to mention, he plays the "funny gay guy" without being a stereotype; he's a far cry from "Just Jack". And, I'd be remiss if I left off the underrated Rob Lowe as Kitty's fiance and boss, Senator Robert McCallister. He's come a long way from Billy Hicks in "St. Elmo's Fire" and dancing with Snow White at the Oscars. Basically, if you're looking for a good relationship show to curl up with on Sunday nights, this is the one. Every episode has pathos and humor mixed in with the drama. If you're a crier like me though, you might need a box of tissues with you. You have been warned. In the meantime, "drink your juice Shelby, drink your juice." (I'm going to hell for that one.)