'Miami Medical' - 'Pilot' Recap (Series Premiere)
by Allison Waldman, posted Apr 3rd 2010 2:08AM
(S01E01) Like CBS's other medical drama for this TV season, 'Three Rivers,' 'Miami Medical' is very earnest and filled with moments that strive for poignancy. The fact that it doesn't succeed is less a reflection on the network than the creators. At least CBS gets credit for realizing that 'Miami Medical' was less that the sum of its aspirations and planted it in the little viewed Friday, 10 PM time slot.
Unfortunately for Miami, 'Miami Medical' is like the world's worst postcard of paradise. It's not actually filmed in South Florida, but the fakey shots of the real place tries to simulate the locale. In the first few minutes, all the oversaturated sunlit scenes are replaced by dripping blood.
Like something out of driver's ed videos to scare the hell out of you, there's an explosion, then a truck crashes into a nice young pregnant lady and her husband, just when they thought they'd survived the explosion. And all right outside an ice cream shop. Thank you, Jerry Bruckheimer, for the 'FlashForward' style disaster opening.
The whole angle of 'Miami Medical' is that these are the emergency docs that you see when you have only 60 minutes left to live. You have to be at death's door to enter the golden entry, bypassing the raggedy ER downstairs for the penthouse with the premium surgeons. They're the Rolling Stones in the world of rock 'n roll surgeons. That's the tag line for the show, and if CBS is smart, they'll drop it immediately. They would have been better off with less rock and more 'ER' -- gritty and sharp.
Andre Braugher appeared for about seven minutes as an experienced trauma pro, Dr. Raynard, who saved a life -- when nobody else could -- then had a nervous breakdown and couldn't take the sight of blood anymore. Stripping to his all-together, he marched out of the trauma center and off the show. Good move. He's needed back on TNT's 'Men of a Certain Age.' (Did Andre owe someone a favor for this extended cameo? It was like Judd Hirsch in the pilot of 'Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip.')
Lana Parrilla, who was so good in 'Swingtown,' was one of the few bright spots, although as Dr. Zambrano, she had one too many occasions to remind her co-stars that she was Latina. We got it after the first three references.
They gave Jeremy Northam a star entrance, although it wasn't exactly realistic that the new attending would just enter in a tee-shirt and shades, wheeling in a trauma patient, and spouting instructions. Very 'ER,' which was obviously the intention. As Dr. Matthew Proctor, he gets the wise words, like "Life. Bloody beautiful," after a baby is delivered prematurely. And then, "This is golden hour. Every patient life or death," when explaining the point of the trauma unit. Heavy.
If you have an interest in good medical drama, this show won't be around very long so don't get involved. NBC's 'Trauma' is also on life-support, but 'Mercy' has a chance. In fact, that's a better show, so give that a shot. 'Miami Medical,' as another critic put it, is pretty much D.O.A. (dead on arrival).