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I've always loved the idea of a spin-off -- particularly if you could pull it off in real life. You know, pop into a new city, already have a great place to live, a fantastic job and a bunch of cool friends (they'll all be in the opening credits). Odds are a potential love interest will miraculously materialize in the pilot (he'll probably live next door) and you'll still be able to visit your old friends during a sweeps month.

But it's a rocky remote to having a successful spin-off. For every "Rhoda" there's a "Joey." For every "The Jeffersons," "The Tortellis." How will the "Grey's Anatomy" spin-off featuring Addison fare? On first blush, pretty well. Kate Walsh has already succeeded in making us like a character who, by all accounts, we were supposed to despise. My rules for a successful spin-off are pretty simple:

The Character Isn't Played Out: There is still information we don't know about the character -- stories left to tell, a side of him/her we haven't seen. That's why "Angel" succeeded and poor Sarah Reeves definitely didn't have the time of her life when she left "Party of Five." I think there are still stories left to tell for Addison and it will be good to get her away from all the McDreamy/McSteamy/McAlex shenanigans.

The Character Isn't One-Dimensional: The "Cheers's" spin-off "The Tortellis" didn't succeed because the Tortellis were only entertaining during their infrequent visits to "Cheers," where their stupidity and shallowness was funny. A whole show built around them simply wasn't amusing. The problem with "Joey" is that after 10 years on "Friends" he was back to season-one style Joey. And 10 years later his revolving dating door was a little less funny and a lot more sad. Addison is the best kind of TV characters: complex, multi-dimensional and her career as an ob/gyn easily lends itself to patients of the week stories.

The Show Is Completely Different: "Frasier" was a success because the producers gave Frasier a brother who was more Frasier than Frasier. They also moved Frasier out of Boston and gave him a whole new setting, new workplace, and new family. "Grey's" would be well-advised to move Addison back to New York. And if Taye Diggs is her new boss all the better.

We're Okay With the Character Leaving: Before leaving Sunnydale to join "Angel," Cordelia made amends with Xander, came through for the gang on the day of the Ascension, and was so over her crush on Wesley. A little thing called closure can make a huge difference. I can't wait for Addison to get away from whiny Meredith, increasingly annoying Isabel and the constant repetitive story lines over on "Grey's Anatomy."

Who else do I think is worthy of a spin-off? Let's take a look:

Kyle on "The Class": Ever since "The Class" went through its restructuring, Kyle has been reduced to Ethan's asexual sidekick. While the other third grade friends have veered into concerning directions (Richie's sarcasm has gone from sweetly insecure to angry), Sean Maguire's Kyle is the only character I would like to know more about. Here's what I'm thinking: he can be on a spin-off with Matthew Rhys, Kevin on "Brothers & Sisters." For one thing, we've got to get Kevin away from Chad and he is my favorite Walker sibling. Plus maybe then Ethan can visit Kyle and have a nonexistent romantic life.

Sun and Jin on "Lost": You all know they have long been my favorite back story on "Lost." I'd love to see a whole series based on what their life before they got on that fateful plane.

Kellerman on "Prison Break": Network TV keeps searching for an anti-hero (see "The Black Donnellys") and I think Kellerman, a fantastic character on an progressively mediocre show, is the perfect choice. Plus, I really want Paul Adelstein to have his own series. Who could be his deliciously evil partner in crime? Sylar, played by the equally fabulous Zachary Quinto, of course.

Abby on "ER": If "ER" does end after next year, I would still follow Abby Lockhart. Maybe she and Elliot from "Scrubs" could open their own practice.

Who would you like to see have their own spin-off? Write me at and let me know.

Where Have I Seen Them Before?

I voted this most fun familiar face of the week. Don't have a cow, man, but Nancy Cartwright, the voice of Bart Simpson on "The Simpsons," was the AA sponsor Chloe called on "24."

Michael Reilly Burke, Kevin on "Lincoln Heights," is Carson, the man who assembled the bomb to kill President Palmer on "24." He was also Brady on "Providence" and, fun fact, Rex in the original pilot of "Desperate Housewives."

Michelle recognized Tina Holmes as Kellerman's brother on "Prison Break." Holmes was Deborah on "Vanished," Maggie on "Six Feet Under" and Ms. Wade last season on "Invasion."

All of this week's bonus points go to Joe who figured out that Trent Ford, who played Benjamin Chow on "The Class," played Zoey's obnoxious French boyfriend Jean-Paul on "The West Wing."

And here's another good one. Matthew John Armstrong, the radioactive Ted Sprague on "Heroes," was Pete Pryor on "American Dreams." It took me forever to recognize him with the long hair and beard.

Quotes of the Week