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More Sex Than Stocks in Fox’s New Libido-Driven ‘The $treet’

TIMES TELEVISION CRITIC

Speaking personally, the nicest thing about “The $treet,” Fox’s new drama about guys being guys on Wall Street, is that it offers reviewers infinite opportunities for cheap wordplay.

It’s already been called “blue-chip” in one publication, for example, and a “bad investment of time” in another. What it is, actually, is orgasmic, an uneven hour that initially, at least, is less about stocks than sex.

Expect nothing even approaching the rawness of “Sex and the City,” the urbanely witty HBO comedy from “The $treet” creator, Darren Star, who also gave viewers Fox’s “Melrose Place” and “Beverly Hills, 90210.”

But sex is Star’s libidinous undertone here, from tonight’s overture under the sheets to its closing (sorry) bell. At one point, stock tips become a means of transacting sex. “You guys wanna party, we want the IPO price,” demands one of two hookers making some lusting young Wall Streeters a deal they may not be able to refuse.

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And young they are. Cut to a meeting of hotshots engaged in marketspeak around a long conference table. Not one of these suits was alive when John F. Kennedy was assassinated in 1963. Perhaps not even when his brother, Bobby, was murdered five years later. But do they know about testosterone or what?

“The $treet” is passable but hardly a highlight on turf that TNT’s new “Bull"--another series about brash marketeers--is covering more appealingly.

It’s not without some charm, however. There’s an amusing subplot, for example, about an investment scheme involving sperm. Tom Everett Scott has a freshness as straight shooter Jack Kenderson, Adam Goldberg is engaging as Evan Mitchell immersing himself in an exotic sexual situation and Jennifer Connelly kicks Wall Street butt as new sales VP Catherine Miller, identifying ace salesman Freddie Sacker (Rick Hoffman) as a “troublemaking pig.” She’s right. He’s such a revolting character that he should be sacked--by the show.

More important is whether Jack’s high-powered fiance, Alexandra Brill (Nina Garbiras), is really stuck on him or thinks of him as just another company she wants to acquire. Like much of the show, it’s something to be (gulp) bearish about.

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* “The $treet” premieres tonight at 9 on Fox. The network has rated it TV-14-DLS (may be unsuitable for children younger than 14 with special advisories for suggestive dialogue, coarse language and sexual situations).


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