Lincoln Heights



7 p.m. Monday, Jan. 8
ABC Family

ABC Family's new weekly dramatic series "Lincoln Heights" is a savvy, unpretentious look at how one black family makes a difference to their Los Angeles neighborhood and to their society. The story of a family's move back to the inner city after living in the suburbs also is wishful thinking about the way life in the tougher neighborhoods could be improved.

Russell Hornsby plays Eddie Sutton, a dedicated LAPD officer who decides to move his wife (Nicki Micheaux) and three kids (Erica Hubbard, Mishon Ratliff and Rhyon Brown) into a run-down home in the city's Lincoln Heights area, a not-too-safe place to raise a family. But Sutton decides it is the right thing to do for the Heights and for the family he hopes will make a difference.

The drama is fast, the dialogue smart and the story line sophisticated. Split-screen action makes the pace seem even quicker and the drama even more heightened. There really is nothing new under the sun in family drama, but "Lincoln Heights" manages to make the familiar seem comfortable and original at the same time.