Katharine McPhee stars in Netflix’s new family sitcom “Country Comfort,” which feels like a familiar blend of “The Nanny” and the von Trapp family, with a pinch of cowboy culture thrown in.
Netflix doesn’t give the audience a moment to settle into the series before diving right into Bailey’s sob story (which, fittingly, would make for some traditional country song lyrics), as she shows up on a family’s doorstep unannounced, hoping to use their phone after her truck died in the middle of a storm.
The older children quickly size up Bailey, hoping that she’ll be their new “hot” nanny, as she reels from the life changes that led her to the family’s doorstep.
While spilling her sob story to the family, Bailey ends up sheltering with them during a tornado alert, which results in her forming a bond with one of the family’s more difficult children. She quickly learns that the family’s five kids are still grieving their mother’s death; despite having zero qualifications, Bailey ends up getting hired as the family’s new nanny.
Given that Bailey doesn’t have much experience with children, it’s not a surprise that she quickly drops the ball and gets herself involved in silly squabbles with the kids.
The series itself is predictable, and the storylines aren’t particularly exciting, but the series does offer up a number of musical performances by McPhee, who initially found herself in the spotlight in 2006, when she competed on “American Idol” (back when Simon Cowell was still on the show). “Country Comfort” also features a guest appearance by singer LeAnn Rimes.
As a sitcom, the series gives each child a distinct personality, playing into the cutesy and goofy nature of sibling relationships, while also hamming up the various issues that arise in each episode.
“Country Comfort” doesn’t exactly boast spectacular performances, but McPhee’s optimistic and overly chatty Bailey holds the series together. While her part feels like a country-sunshine version of Fran Fine from “The Nanny,” her sugary sweetness at times comes across as too naive.
“Country Comfort” has one season available on Netflix and is rated TV-PG. Viewers looking for more series to watch with the whole family might enjoy “Fuller House,” which has five seasons on Netflix.