Good ‘n Ugly.

The reviews for this show

…which debuts tonight, have been consistently glowing.

Set in the enchanted and dangerous forest of New York publishing and fashion, peopled with characters who are obviously good or evidently evil, it has the power and sweetness of a fairy tale; but it isn’t exactly the Cinderella story it first seems. It is more emancipated than that. Betty is also Dorothy gone over the rainbow — though all the color is back home in Queens, where she lives with her loving father (Tony Plana), sassy sister (Ana Ortiz) and budding fashionista nephew (Mark Indelicato), while the offices of Mode are largely white and icy blue, designed with the clean, curving and slightly antiseptic lines of a 1960s vision of the future.

As the magazine’s creative director Wilhelmina, frostily furious at having been denied the editor’s job, Vanessa Williams is every inch the evil queen and comes with her own Magic Mirror/Flying Monkey, the obsequious and ironic Marc (Michael Urie), who does her dark errands and administers her Botox injections. Ashley Jensen plays a fairy godmother figure, a Mode wardrobe mistress who looks out for Betty. And Daniel is the charming prince, but only sort of.

This is not “Working Girl,” though it repeats that film’s Manhattan versus the Boroughs dialectic, nor “The Devil Wears Prada,” though it also concerns an unfashionable person coming to work at a fashion magazine. Betty, though she is not what walks down the runways of Milan and Paris (and is sometimes shot in a way that emphasizes her wideness), is neither a frump nor a mouse for technicians or magicians to make over — she’s a ray of sunshine, a whole sunrise, bursting with color, face lighted up by a wide smile doubly gleaming for the braces splayed across her perfectly white teeth. When she tells herself “You are an attractive, intelligent, confident businesswoman,” she is only reminding herself of what she already believes.

I’m definitely going to be tuning in.

It seems like it’ll be fun to watch, especially since it’s set in the worlds of publishing and fashion.

Now that this has been added to the lineup, looks like Thursday night on ABC is gonna be pretty hard to beat.

ABC.com: Ugly Betty
LATimes.com: ‘Ugly’s’ many attractions

8 thoughts on “Good ‘n Ugly.

  1. >First thing I thought when I saw the previews for this show was, "Wow, what a blatant rip-off of Devil Wears Prada"…Haven't seen either so I may be full of it but at first glance that what it appeared to me to be…

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  2. >Vanessa is still a hottie (are we currently using this word in today's vernacular). No matter what she is in, she's good on the eyes. So, she could do her dirty deeds on me any day.Nevertheless, this doesn't strike me as my kind of show, so I doubt if I watch it.

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  3. >haven't seen the show (probably won't with my work schedule) but i saw a billboard off the major deegan expwy in the bronx and i thought…beryl unger. them mo-fos are at it again….but, i haven't seen the show.yeah, rich. vanessa is STILL hot, is she playing "the bitch" role on this show?

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  4. >Morning Guys….I havent seent the show I was watching and slightly becoming confused at the incomplete season of Project Runway last night. This show has been getting some good reviews and its on my list to see.Lance comparing Betty to Beryl…very interesting grasshoppa! But in my book Beryl was a pretty girl with a gorgeous smile. This chick seems just weird all the way around. I dunno…still trying to figga out Project Runway.

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  5. >whoops sorry…Beryl wasnt pretty…She was jacked up. I dont know why I typed that…Running out of the room wishing I could edit and wondering where is Rich when you need him?????

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  6. >Okay, so because of this post I watched the show tonight. As an "ugly duckling" from time to time I certainly could relate. Not a bad show and I'll probably watch it again. I see similarities in the Devil Wears Prada but I think that will end with the first episode. The core message (if it had one) of that movie/book was good versus evil and what people do to get to the top. There seems to be some interesting plot twists in store here.

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  7. >i haven't seen "the devil wears prada" or "ugly betty", but the way y'all are describing it, it's like a pg-13 version of SEX.LIES.MURDER.FAME!!!!bitin' MO-FO's!!!!!grrrr!!!!

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