"Ben and Kate" (Fox; premieres at 8:30 p.m. Sept. 25): This is the funniest new comedy of the fall. Ben is a high-rev, up-for-anything flibbertigibbet. Kate, his younger sister, has been pressed into timidity by setbacks in life.
A single mother of adorable Maddie, she is barely making ends meet as a bar manager when Ben drops in to stir up his trademark chaos. Kate and Maddie are ready to help ground him a bit.
This slender premise is made robust by the writing and the actors, notably Nat Faxon and Dakota Johnson in the title roles, who both are irresistible in vastly different ways (he is kinetic, she is winsome), not to mention being skillful comedians.
And Lucy Punch is a scene-stealer as Kate's co-worker and her sexy, screwball best friend.