• September 23, 2014

NBC’s ‘Camp’ offers sweetness worth writing home about

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Posted: Friday, July 5, 2013 4:30 am

In its continuing adventures in throw-it-against-the-wall-and-see-if-it-sticks programming, NBC debuts “Camp” (9 p.m. Wednesday), a comedy-drama about life at a summer camp that would be more at home on ABC Family.

There’s nothing particularly new about this camp story, although to keep the show from becoming a total teen-fest, the conceit is it’s a family camp, so there are a few other adults around to interact with camp owner/leader Mac (Rachel Griffiths, “Brothers & Sisters”), including a couple of gay dads and the owner of a rival, more upscale camp on the other side of the lake.

But the show’s focus is mostly on the younger characters, both counselors-in-training and campers, though at first it’s difficult to discern who’s a camper and who’s a counselor at Little Otter Family Camp. City kid Kip (Thom Green) doesn’t want to be at the camp (“They don’t even have Internet!”), but soon falls for another counselor. Mac’s son, Buzz (Charles Grounds), wants to hang with the older kids. Counselor Robbie (Tim Pocock) has a longtime crush on a fellow counselor.

Created by Liz Heldens (“Friday Night Lights,” ‘‘Mercy”) and Peter Elkoff (“Deception,” ‘‘Gossip Girl”), there’s a sweetness to “Camp” that makes it a fine summer diversion, but nothing that elevates it above similar past comedic movies set at sleep-away camp.

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