Star America Ferrara makes the show completely worthwhile. I have seen most of the new show's that have premiered this season so far and, in my opinion, Ferrara gives hands-down the best new female performance out there. The portrait that she paint's as Betty is realistic, humorous, and makes you feel for her in everything that she does or wants to do. I doubt there is anybody that won't root for this lovely girl (and yes, she is lovely and MORE, even in the "Betty" get-up because she is such a sweet, intelligent, accomplished, and kind person).
The show as a whole is a bit formulaic, but what show isn't up to a certain degree? The rest of the characters are pretty well done (most especially the girls who become Betty's friends at the magazine), though it will take some time to make them as interesting as the main character.
My wife wanted to watch this first episode more than I did, but I'm very glad I watched with her. This will easily be classified as a "chick show" but I believe that anybody will like it once they give it half a chance. Everybody has felt the way Betty feels at some point in there life & that will be a drawing point into her world, I think.
All I can say is WATCH IT. It won't be for everyone but many will be pleasantly surprised. America Ferrara is brilliant. I think she should get her Emmy speech ready now.