|Grade: B+ | Genre: Drama
Summary: Grey’s Anatomy has tremendous potential to become one of the hot new shows this season. It has that smart, hungry feel of a fresh, potent series that ER misplaced long ago.
Starring: Ellen Pompeo, Patrick Dempsey, James Pickens Jr., T.R. Knight, Sandra Oh, Katherine Heigl & Isaiah Washington
Programming: Sunday 10-11 ET
I think we may have something worth sinking into the couch on Sunday night. Grey’s Anatomy is a smart, new drama following a group of surgical interns as they swim out of their small med school pond into the shark-infested waters that await them at Seattle Grace Hospital. The show’s focus rests on Meredith Grey played by Ellen Pompeo (Old School, Moonlight Mile). She is an intern who comes from impeccable medical pedigree.
She walks into her first day meeting the other sheepish interns and her attending physician, a half-pint appropriately referred to as “the Nazi”. The tone is set when they announce that before its over 8 of them would switch to an easier discipline, 5 would crack under the pressure and 2 would leave of their own devices. They quickly survey their fellow interns to guess who would beat the odds and to wonder if one of those numbers would fall on them. The show’s pace is mock 3 similar to ER yet with a much higher confusion quotient. Life and death situations keep taping on their uncertain shoulders as their hearts jump, desperately wanting to prove themselves, but unsure if they have what it takes to avoid failure. Failing at this level means their patient doesn’t see tomorrow. The competition is intense as they jockey to make a place for themselves in this crowded field.
We see our first notice of sexual tension as Meredith is forced to consult with attending surgeon Dr. Derek Shepard, played by Patrick Dempsey (Can’t Buy Me Love, Loverboy), concerning her seizure patient. She only finds out at the point of no return that the attending is the same guy she had a one night stand with the evening before and only finished booting him out of her place a few hours prior. He is quite smitten with her, yet she keeps him at arms length in the name of professionalism. When she scores a key surgery over a fellow intern (Sandra Oh), harsh words rain down accusing her of sleeping her way into it. It’s cutthroat and emotions are balanced on a hulking cliff at Seattle Grace Hospital.
Grey’s Anatomy is very clever in its execution and adds a lot of elements to make this thick with reality. When one of their fellow interns gets to scrub in to assist at the coveted appendectomy, they all place bets on how far he would make it before inevitably choking. Afterwards, they all refer to him in whispers as 007, meaning that he has a license to kill. There is another scene where a couple interns sit outside the hospital after an exhausting shift, propped up against the wall like limp Raggedy-Ann dolls. They speculate on other professions, easier professions, they could have pursued instead, but its crystal clear that each of them realizes that nothing would have completed their lives like fulfilling this dream of becoming a surgeon. Its light brush strokes like these that really makes this show standout from the other dramas crowding the airwaves.
Call me strange, but one of the major sticking points I look for with new shows is the music featured behind the vignettes. If the show can duck the impulse to lazily tape top 40 to our foreheads and instead go out on a limb by featuring a few new bands, then I can overlook a lot of other weaknesses it might have. Grey’s Anatomy sets the perfect tone, giving us strong selections from such cutting edge artists like Jem, Butterfly Boucher, Rilo Kiley and Thirteen Senses. I hadn’t even heard of the Coldplay-esque Thirteen Senses prior to viewing the pilot so the producers get major kudos for including this one.
Grey’s Anatomy has tremendous potential to become one of the hot new shows this season. If Scrubs were a serious drama, it would be called Grey’s Anatomy. It has that smart, hungry feel of a fresh, potent series that ER misplaced long ago. The actors involved are very talented and the script constructing the pilot was extremely well crafted. It’s hard to tell from one episode if a new series has the traction to really make a run for it, but Grey’s Anatomy looks extremely promising. Following the savvy, hit drama Desperate Housewives, ABC is grooming Grey’s Anatomy for great things. Will it catch fire with audiences or get smoked out? I’m stocking up on marshmallows, hoping for a bon-fire.
Check your local listings for Grey’s Anatomy on ABC, Sunday evenings at 10 ET. For more critiques by this reviewer, please visit PM Media Review.Powered by Sidelines