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Tyler Perry visits the dark side for OWN

Gail Choice | 5/15/2013, 5 p.m.

We all know that Tyler Perry and Oprah Winfrey are BFFs, and if you're like me, you've been waiting for his latest offerings that will air on OWN, Winfrey's Network. First up, Perry's first dramatic series, "The Have and Have Nots," premiering May 28.

The show follows the complicated dynamics between the rich and powerful Cryer family and the hired help who work in their opulent Savannah, Ga., mansion.

This is a familiar story line, and Perry is going to have to bring it to keep viewers watching.

Perry's latest film, "Temptation," took his audience to the dark side of love and lust, and this new series will more than likely have some viewers packing their bags and moving in--to the dark side, that is. Sex sells and Winfrey's Network can use some spicing up.

From the outside, the Cryers are the enviable face of success and wealth, but behind the veil, the family's dysfunction threatens to destroy their world of privilege. The Cryer family patriarch, Jim Cryer, (John Schneider) is a powerful judge whose double life, including tawdry affairs with high-priced escorts, puts his family and political ambitions at risk. His wife, Katheryn Cryer (Renée Lawless), is the ultimate matriarch, portraying a loving and dutiful wife, but she is willing to do anything to protect her family's status.

Their son, Wyatt (Aaron O'Connell), is a troubled, angry jock who cares little for his own image and finds himself in and out of rehab. His sister, Amanda (Jacyln Betham), a struggling law student, tries harder to live up to her parents' expectations but unknowingly has befriended a scurrilous young woman, Candace Young, with the power to ruin the entire family.

Hanna Young (Crystal Fox) is the Cryers' maid and the matriarch of her own family. Despite having no money, she has found other types of wealth through religion and virtue. She prides herself on her dutiful son, Benny (Tyler Lepley), who helps keep the family together. Hanna does have one dark secret, however--her estranged daughter, Candace (Tika Sumpter), a manipulative opportunist who will stop at nothing to get what she wants. In a bizarre coincidence, Candace is shocked to find that her newfound friend, Amanda's father, is Jim Cryer, the very man who has been paying her for sex and who also employs Candace's mother as his family's maid. Armed with this knowledge, the stage is set for what will be, in Candace's eyes, the opportunity of a lifetime.

Other characters in the series include the Cryers' chef Celine (Eva Tamargo), their wealthy friends Veronica (Angela Robinson) and David Harrington (Peter Parros), and Wyatt Cryer's rehabilitation counselor, Jeffery Harrington (Gavin Houston).

Perry's second entry which premieres May 29 is "Love Thy Neighbor." Hattie Mae Love lives in the simple home that she and one of her husbands bought some time ago. Linda, her daughter, splits her time between Hattie's home, and the apartment she sometimes shares with her on-again, off-again husband Lionel.

In the first season of this comic tale, Hattie Mae has had enough of grown people living in her house.

She puts her foot down and shows the toughest love there is by sending Linda to the door. Linda eventually helps out down at Hattie Mae's Love Train Diner.

Read more: http://www.oprah.com/own-love-thy-neighbor/Love-Thy-Neighbor#ixzz2SXnlPWmR
Tyler Perry's "The Haves and the Have Nots" is produced for OWN by Tyler Perry Studios. It is created, written, directed and executive-produced by Tyler Perry.

"The Have and Have Not's" premieres May 28 on OWN.

Gail can be reached at gail@hollywoodbychoice.com