TV review: The chemistry on ‘A to Z’ can’t overpower its limited gimmick

Milioti and Feldman are both charming and have solid chemistry, but after just one episode, their romance already feels played out.

Two and a half stars

A to Z Thursdays, 9:30 p.m., NBC.

This fall has turned out to be the season of the romantic comedy on network TV, and NBC’s A to Z falls around the middle of the pack. Its biggest liability is the gimmick indicated by the title: As the narrator (Katey Sagal) explains, the show is a comprehensive account of the relationship between idealistic web designer Andrew (Ben Feldman) and pragmatic lawyer Zelda (Cristin Milioti, the mother from How I Met Your Mother), who will date for about eight months. With that inherently limited shelf life (each episode is also named for a letter of the alphabet, implying a maximum of 26 episodes), there’s little room for surprises or originality, and the first episode pretty closely follows the full narrative arc of a typical movie rom-com. Feldman and Milioti are both charming and have solid chemistry, and the supporting cast generates a few laughs, but after just one episode, Andrew and Zelda’s romance already feels played out.

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