Nicole Wilder/ABC
Nicole Wilder/ABC

Even in a year of derivative network-TV ideas — series based on “MacGyver,” “Lethal Weapon” and “The Exorcist” are coming this fall, for starters — ABC’s “Uncle Buck” outdoes itself in doing to death what’s been done and redone.

The sitcom, which begins on Tuesday, is an adaptation of the 1989 John Candy movie about a ne’er-do-well who learns to become a father figure. It’s not even the first one — that would be the CBS comedy that aired a single season from 1990 to 1991. (If you can’t get enough of the premise, Kaitlin Olson will play a version of it in Fox’s “The Mick.”) And it borrows elements from plenty of family sitcoms past.

There’s a lot of familiar DNA in the family tree of “Uncle Buck,” none of it combined in novel ways.

For the complete story, visit TheNewYorkTimes.com/Arts/Television.

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