It's been great sport these past few months ridiculing the brass at NBC, but let's take a break from the tomato hurling to give them credit for greenlighting "Parenthood" (★★★ 1/2, 9 p.m. Tuesdays, KARE, Ch. 11).

This promising new series reminds us that you don't need time-traveling islands to create addictive drama. The travails and (minor) triumphs of a middle-class family will do just fine -- as long as you're blessed with witty writing and a top-notch cast. "Parenthood," the second series based on the 1989 Ron Howard movie, has both in spades.

Minnesotan Peter Krause's battle with a possum in this week's second episode provides the kind of goose bumps one normally expects from a high-speed car chase, while Lauren Graham's attempt to get through a job interview without fainting reminds you why it's so great to have our "Gilmore Girl" back in action.

Ratings last week were so-so, but let's hope NBC sticks with this gem -- and resists the temptation to cast Jay Leno as the cranky neighbor.