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Eliza Dushku

Eliza Dushku - "Dollhouse" Tv Series - Fall TV’s Comeback Kids

Saturday 16 August 2008, by Webmaster

Actress Paula Marshall either has a really great agent, or a really, really crappy one.

Since the mid-1990s, Marshall, probably best known for playing the NYU journalist who "outed" George and Jerry, has been cast in no fewer than a half-dozen failed prime-time comedies, including Snoops, Cupid, Cursed, and Out of Practice.

And if the trailers are any indication, she’s poised to add another to that list, as she’s playing Jay Mohr’s ex-wife in the stinky-looking new CBS romp, Gary Unmarried, set to debut this fall.

Despite solid recent guest stints on shows that don’t totally suck (here I’m thinking Veronica Mars, Nip/Tuck and Californication, Marshall, to me, is one of TV’s most perenniel losers when it comes to lasting prime-time appeal.

But she’s not the only comeback kid on the block this fall. Jerry O’Connell rebounds from the blink-and-you-missed-it Carpoolers from last spring to lead the promising Do Not Disturb, which boasts an impressive behind-the-scenes pedigree (Arrested Development’s Jason Bateman is producing and Arrested scribe Abraham Higginbotham is also on board). And then there’s Jay Mohr, who had a pretty decent one-season wonder in the bawdy showbiz comedy Action, and whose Gary, Unmarried I give six eps. Tops.

There are some comeback ladies crowding Marshall’s end of the pool. Elizabeth Reaser, fresh from her stint as the disfigured-but-now-hot Rebecca/Jane on Grey’s Anatomy, is hoping to wipe away her losing series record (remember her paramedic drama Saved? Yeah, neither did I) with this season’s chick-fest, The Ex-List.

And then there’s cutie Eliza Dushku, who scored the coveted lead in Joss Whedon’s much-anticipated sci-fi outing for FOX, Dollhouse, despite her flop from a few years ago, Tru Calling, which somehow managed to last two seasons. (Though to be fair, Dushku’s nerd-cred has been high for a while from her many years playing Faith on Buffy and Angel.)

Casting and then re-casting veterans of failed shows can mean only thing: Hollywood is as forgiving of its actors who didn’t make their marks on viewers as they are on actors who drive drunk, cheat on their wives, and land in jail for drug possession. Repeatedly. (Paging Charlie Sheen.)

Yes, a gal like Paula Marshall, who is actually a very appealing performer, deserves much better than Gary Unmarried, after all her years spinning on the prime-time hamster wheel.

But Paula, if this one doesn’t work out— and your record shows that it probably wont — the good news is that another pilot season is just around the corner. So keep your chin up, kid.