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August 1, 2014

MedicalDrama

Review: A Terrific Cast Brings 'A Gifted Man' to Life

by Maureen Ryan, posted Sep 22nd 2011 10:30AM
The best thing about the very good drama 'A Gifted Man' (8PM ET Friday, CBS) might be the fact that it's every bit as skeptical about ghosts as you are.

Well, maybe you're not skeptical about visitors from beyond the grave. Whether you are or not, 'A Gifted Man' should still work for you, because it treats the ghost, the person she appears to and the whole concept of working things out after death with an intelligent mixture of curiosity, confusion and compassion. There's no contempt, but neither is there any cliched, sentimental blather.

What I'm trying to say is, even though this show airs on Friday night on CBS, at no point will you be reminded of 'The Ghost Whisperer.'

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NBC dusts off Trauma's corpse

by Danny Gallagher, posted Nov 20th 2009 12:38PM
Oh my God! It's a zombie! Quick! Get a shovel or something heavy that will remove a human head or destroy its brain! Yes, TV shows can become zombies too.

NBC has revived its once doomed drama Trauma giving it a full 13 episode order plus a few more after they canceled it last month.

What made the network breathe life back into the expensive action drama? Apparently the show saw a brief boost in the ratings and NBC had a change of heart, assuming of course that they have one in the first place.

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J.J. Abrams producing comedy for Fox

by Jane Boursaw, posted Sep 23rd 2009 9:25AM

J.J. AbramsI guess even J.J. Abrams needs to lighten things up now and then. With shows like Fringe, Lost and Alias, and movies like Star Trek, Cloverfield and Mission Impossible III on his impressive resume, maybe he needs a break from the sci-fi / action / drama genres.

Now he's exec producing an untitled, half-hour comedy for Fox. It's written by Mike Markowitz (who's worked on Becker and It's All Relative), but other than that, details are few and far between. The tagline is that it'll be "a comedic medical show." Hmmm, so maybe like Scrubs?

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Nurse Jackie: Health Care and Cinema (season finale)

by Jane Boursaw, posted Aug 25th 2009 4:20AM
Nurse Jackie - Health Care and Cinema(S01E12) "I've never been a fan of movies where idiots talk to people in comas." - Mrs. Akalitus to a comatose Mr. Nutterman

Well, things didn't go as wrong as I thought they might have, with the whole Eddie hanging with Kevin at the bar business. Yeah, it wasn't good, and Jackie downing three vials of morphine was just ... not sure what to think of it. Was she trying to kill herself, or just numb the pain from everything?

My favorite part of the episode was Zoey and her sweetness at wearing the gray scrubs and being all mopey after getting sacked from dealing with patients. I was glad when she put on the bunny scrubs again, but things don't look good for movie critic guy losing his memory. "Oh my god, I broke him," she says.

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Nurse Jackie: Pill-O-Matix

by Jane Boursaw, posted Aug 18th 2009 2:46PM
Nurse Jackie - Pill-o-Matix(S01E11) Nothing really jumped out at me about this episode ... well, ok, the spider scene. And the end scene. That opened up a big can o' worms for Jackie that I'm sure will have big consequences for her one way or another. And I appreciated seeing Victor Garber as the movie critic patient, and the mess Zoey made while caring for him.

But that's how Nurse Jackie operates. There usually aren't any major "wow" scenes; the episodes just sort of float along, one playing off of the other in more of a real-life fashion.

In case anyone hasn't seen the episode yet, I'll get into more details after the jump.

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Nurse Jackie: Ring Finger

by Jane Boursaw, posted Aug 11th 2009 6:10AM
Nurse Jackie - Ruby Finger(S01E10) "Just for the record, I'm officially questioning your judgment." - O'Hara to Jackie

This episode of Nurse Jackie drove me a little nuts. All through my notes are little messages to Jackie, like I think she's going to see my notes and take my advice -- before she ruins her life even further.

I mean, I've commented before how difficult it must be keeping her personal life completely separate from her work life, and this episode was like a time bomb waiting to go off.

You just know that sooner or later, she's going to be so fried that she'll forget who knows what, and say something to reveal her secret -- just like she almost did to Mo-Mo when she started talking about the mother-daughter tap dance class.

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Nurse Jackie: Nosebleed

by Jane Boursaw, posted Aug 4th 2009 4:30AM
Nurse Jackie - Nosebleed

(S01E09) "She's just a nurse." - Dr. Cooper to Melissa, talking about Jackie


Sometimes I think Dr. Cooper is starting to be a human being, and then he turns around and says something really stupid. Females are naturally more empathetic than guys, so I would think that having two moms would have made him a little bit more sensitive. Guess not.

He really was a jerk in this episode, and I imagine Jackie having to make the decision about the organ donor (the PETA card!) will come back to haunt her. But what's a nurse to do? Get another doctor maybe? I don't care if he DID stay awake for 53 hours once.

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Nurse Jackie: Pupil

by Jane Boursaw, posted Jul 28th 2009 4:16AM
Nurse Jackie - Pupil

(S01E08) "Honey, I know I'm pretty, but you just wasted 30 seconds staring at me." - Mo-Mo, to a male nurse who needs to get back to work


Well, there are certain things about Nurse Jackie that you just know are going to come into play. Like the assisted suicide story we had recently, and tonight's chilling opening scene where Jackie's daughter accidentally gets Jackie's drugs mixed into the sprinkles on her doughnut (loved that slo-mo camera work, though).

Sooner or later, Jackie's not going to catch stuff like that, and it'll be disastrous. I know we've talked about this before, but you have to wonder how she can function so well doing all those drugs. And what would happen if she suddenly didn't have access to them.

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Nurse Jackie: Steak Knife

by Jane Boursaw, posted Jul 21st 2009 3:51AM
Nurse Jackie - Steak Knife

(S01E07) "I am God, and you are an asshole." - God

Oh, the times I've wanted to say that in my life. I'm sort of living vicariously through Nurse Jackie these days. She does stuff that everyone else wants to do, but doesn't because they don't have the guts. Like:

  • Yanking the catheter out of the repeat sex-offender, then telling Mo-Mo, "He's a fucking pedophile!"
  • Giving the Cartier bracelet that Eddie gave her to the morphine-drugged, steak-knife guy to give to the girl who's really just looking for a nice guy.
  • Telling God to get back on his meds.

Yes, I want to be Nurse Jackie when I grow up.

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Nurse Jackie: Tiny Bubbles

by Jane Boursaw, posted Jul 14th 2009 7:21AM
Nurse Jackie - Tiny Bubbles

(S01E06) "Nonsense. Nothing is better if I leave." - O'Hara to Nurse Jackie


Come on, people! I'm not getting much comment love on my Nurse Jackie reviews. Is no one watching the show? Because I'm sort of loving it at this point.

Well, I guess it had to happen. It was a sure bet that we'd get a storyline where Jackie plays Dr. Kevorkian and helps a patient end their life. I have to think there's no way that crusty old Nurse Korsenowski would have done well in palliative care. Why not let her go out in dignity?

Jackie is all about breaking the rules for the good of the patient, but was this really for the good of the patient? I think it was, and the "do no harm" thing would have been if she hadn't helped her die. It would have done more harm for her to go into hospice. Thoughts, please!

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Nurse Jackie: Daffodil

by Jane Boursaw, posted Jul 7th 2009 5:47AM
Edie Falco in Nurse Jackie

(S01E05) "It wasn't even my money. I got it off a dead guy in the morgue." - Nurse Jackie to Zoey, after giving a surly woman money to buy a pregnancy test at a drug store

Lots of interesting stuff in this episode, the above quote being one of them. Jackie told Zoey she was kidding, but I'm pretty sure she wasn't. Giving a woman money to buy a pregnancy test at a drug store -- rather than clog up the emergency room because she doesn't have enough money or is too cheap to buy a pregnancy test herself -- is classic Jackie. Getting the money from a dead guy in the morgue? Spot on. Hey, that money might as well be used for the greater good.

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Nurse Jackie: School Nurse

by Jane Boursaw, posted Jun 30th 2009 6:45AM
Nurse Jackie - School Nurse

(S01E04) I liked Nurse Jackie from the first episode, and I continue to like it more and more each week. I like that the characters look like real people, not stick-thin Hollywood types. And even though Jackie is worn down by life, she seems to thrive on the hospital stuff and caring for patients. I guess that's the sign of a good nurse (ya think, Jane?).

Let's take the scene where Dr. O'Hara is telling a young patient's mom and brother all this scary stuff about his lung collapsing. She's not all that great with kids, is she? When the brother hugged her, I just wanted to smack her for not hugging him back, after all he'd been through that day with his twin getting shot. Meanwhile, in the background, Jackie is mouthing to the mom and brother that it's not that bad, that he'll be alright. It's this kind of hope that families need when they're going through a trauma.

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Nurse Jackie: Chicken Soup

by Jane Boursaw, posted Jun 23rd 2009 5:46AM
Nurse Jackie, Anna Deavere Smith

There were some awesome guest stars in this episode of Nurse Jackie! Eli Wallach played Mr. Zimberg, the old guy who refused treatment for his heart issues. Wallach was born in 1915 (!) and has been working steadily since the 1950s. I mean, what a life he's had and what a piece of film history he is. His credits include The Misfits, The Magnificent Seven, and The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. It's such a pleasure seeing him on Nurse Jackie.

Playing his wife was Lynn Cohen, who played Magda on Sex and the City and Uncle Pete's wife on Damages, not to mention dozens of other film and TV roles.

And then there's the wonderful Anna Deavere Smith (pictured above), who plays the ongoing role of Doctor Akalitis. She's such a great actress; she makes me despise her character, but in a good way.

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Nurse Jackie: Sweet-N-All

by Jane Boursaw, posted Jun 16th 2009 4:40AM
Nurse Jackie - Sweet-N-All(S01E02) Nurse Jackie is such an interesting show. Just about every scene has both drama and humor, though sometimes it leans more one way than the other. Like the opening scene with Jackie cutting her hubby's hair that ends up with them having sex on the kitchen floor:

Kevin: "What am I rolling around on down here?"
Jackie: "Fruity Pebbles."
Kevin: "Feels more like Cap'n Crunch."

You do have to wonder how Jackie is able to function so well doing all those drugs. I guess she's built up a tolerance level, but it sort of drove the point home when hospital administrator Gloria Akalitus accidentally swiped some of Jackie's Percocet-laced Sweet-N-All and ended up loopy.

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Nurse Jackie: Pilot (series premiere)

by Jane Boursaw, posted Jun 9th 2009 2:46AM
Nurse Jackie

(S01E01) "Shut up. I don't like chatty. I don't do chatty. I like quiet." - Nurse Jackie to young nurse Zoey


It's hard not to think of Edie Falco as Carmela Soprano, because she's so identified with the role. But I have a feeling that after a few episodes of Nurse Jackie, Carmela will fade a bit in our minds and Jackie will start to take over. She's a complex character who snorts painkillers, has sex with the hospital druggist, looks after patients with a vengeance, tells doctors off, and goes home each night to a loving husband and two kids. She's one hot mess.

Seriously, they had me with the opening song, "Theme from Valley of the Dolls," sung by one of my favorite singers in the world, Dionne Warwick. They couldn't have picked a better song to start this series. Like the three women in that movie, Jackie is on a mission, but gets messed up in the process.

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