Oh, Those Inept Dads! 'Meet Mister Mom'

class=img_thumbleft>For years, sitcoms and commercials have delighted in portraying fathers as incompetent boobs who fall to pieces in Mom's absence. If TV is to be believed, chaos theory takes hold the instant Dad's left in charge of the brood: socks go unlaundered, kids run wild, and Whoppers are on the menu until further notice. But in the age of dual incomes, same-sex couples and fluid parental roles, the whole notion of Dad-as-bumbling-homemaker seems beyond quaint. Being an attentive, nurturing father is

de rigueur

these days, at least in our neck of the woods. Which is why

Meet Mister Mom

(7:00 p.m. Tuesdays on NBC), a new show that challenges fathers to "see how hard Mom's job is," already feels like a relic.

The rules of this competitive reality series are simple: two dads are left to care for the kiddies while their wives vacation at a McResort in the tropics. The father who parents the most effectively (based on categories such as "Housekeeping," and "Time Management") wins a scholarship for the sprogs. Sounds potentially "hilarious," but NBC's seemingly airtight premise fell apart by the very first episode when it was revealed that the contestants were actually good fathers. Both men scored high marks across the board, even with such scripted crises as a "new pet" (ie; a llama) appearing in the yard and wild ten-kid slumber parties arranged by the producers. Sure, one of the dads allowed his son to consume 14 Fudgsicles in a five day period, but where's the harm? Guess a bad dad is hard to find.

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