TV

Not 'Pain'-ful To Watch

USA debuts a new series, "Royal Pains," tonight at 10 p.m. after the season premiere of "Burn Notice" at 9 p.m.



"Pains" is about a hot shot New York surgeon, Hank Lawson (Mark Feuerstein), who has a seemingly perfect life until he is blamed for the death of a hospital patron. Out of work and money, his brother (Paulo Costanzo) drags him up to the Hamptons for the weekend, where Hank saves the life of a young girl at a party.



Suddenly, Hank finds himself in demand as the new on-call doctor at the Hamptons, a seemingly perfect fix for his problems.



"Pains" is a light-hearted show that fits well with "Burn Notice" in the sense that Hank, like spy Michael Westen, is at his best when he has to come up with a MacGyver-like solution to an immediate problem. "Pains" is also similar in that the show likes to have plenty of beautiful women in the background to add to the scenery.



"Pains" isn't up there at the same level of "Burn Notice," since it's hard to find a rooting interest in the Hamptons crowd (apparently none of whom suffered with the collapse of the economy). Still, there's enough light-heartedness to make the show a solid summer watch.



Meanwhile, "Burn Notice" is back in typical high form, as Michael (Jeffrey Donovan) is finally free of the agency that burned him. Unfortunately, all that does is put him on the radar of the Miami police, especially a determined detective (Moon Bloodgood). But Michael is still out to help the helpless, and no series makes better use of title cards.



R.I.P. DAVID CARRADINE: A member of a respected family of actors and the star of "Kung Fu" in the 1970s was 72. He was found hanged in a Bangkok hotel room in what is believed a suicide. Carradine had recently become known to a new generation of fans in the "Kill Bill" movies.



THURSDAY'S BEST BETS: Also debuting tonight are two episodes of a new drama called "The Listener" (NBC, 9 p.m.) It's about a paramedic (Craig Olejnik) who has telepathic abilities which he uses to help people.



Game 1 of the NBA finals between the Lakers and the Magic tips off tonight (ABC, 9 p.m.), preceded by a Jimmy Kimmel special at 8 p.m. Meanwhile, Fox has a new "So You Think You Can Dance" at 9 p.m.

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