Friday, September 7, 2012

Emily Owens M.D.--the Show That Teaches High Schoolers This is the Best It's Ever Gonna Get

So, yeah, the "CW" (sorry folks, it's always going to be the WB to me, and possibly whatever in the hell it was before that) has offered several new items for its fall lineup.  Aside from Arrow, which is ostensibly about Green Arrow (who is so ridiculously ripped, that I might just have to watch it) and a re-imagining of Beauty and the Beast (where the Ron Perlman-originated beast character is the result of a military/science experiment, instead of, you know, NATURE), there's this little gem:

Kill. Me. Now.

First, it's not that I don't love the actress who plays the title character.  Well, actually, I don't "love" her, but I don't hate her either--which trust me, is saying a lot.  She's not typical-celebrity gorgeous, and she plays the awkward and unsure of herself role seemingly well.  My issues concern everything else: the utter and total lack of originality, the ignorant attempts at cleverness, and the idea that you can never escape high school-like atmospheres.  Ever.  (Also, I'm pretty sure this show is majorly cribbing from Scrubs in an incredibly un-funny manner).

Not According to the CW!  May as well just kill yourselves now, kids. Source.

Let's just go at this chronologically, shall we?

First, we learn about how Emily was kind of geeky  in high school.  She's interrupted from her musings about how much she and her life used to suck by a teenage loner calling her a loser.

And what does she do? Nothing. She's at a loss for words and stumbles off to the hospital across the street, at which she now works.  WAY TO GO THERE, EM.  I like it when my doctors don't have any spine; makes 'em easy to manipulate and bully into giving me Xanex, Ambien, Adderall, and Viagra--most of which have an excellent street value.

Who says drug abuse can't be cute? Source.

Enter in hot-guy (well, he's supposed to be, but not my type, thanks).

Hot(ish) guy: " I hear hospitals are a lot like high schools."
Emsy: "Please don't say that."

Really?  REALLY?


Nice female surgeon--who we never see again--gives our awkward heroine the run down.

orthopedic surgeons = jocks
plastics = mean girls
anesthesiologists = stoners


Now throw that shit at the TV, or they'll never learn.  Source.

Do you have any idea of the complexities involved in anesthesiology? I have a superficial notion due to having had a c-section, but a quick Google search will tell you exactly how meticulous that particular branch of medicine requires its practitioners to be.

 And seriously?  "They deal with drugs and stuff that like, make you sleepy or whatever, so let's make them stoners, duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuur."

He's special brownies-ing his way through med school. Source.

Who in the fuck shat that idea out of his or her brain?  I'd be willing to bet many more doctors, you know, the ones who can actually prescribe medication are "stoners."  Or why not the pharmacists?  THEY'RE SURROUNDED BY FUCKING PILLS.

No. Anesthesiologists sometimes use gas which you inhale.  "Stoners" inhale marijuana smoke.

Plus, there really aren't going be any obvious "stoners" working at a hospital.  Walking around with a bag of Doritos and wearing reefer perfume will get your ass fired in the medical profession, mkay?

I'll consider giving them the "orthopedic surgeons are jocks" claim.  Most of the orthopedists I've seen are at least athletic, so I can see how in TV Land that might transfer over to being "jocks" . . . who hang out together being frat boys in the hallway.  Nothing better to do, eh kids?  I'm sure all those hips will replace themselves.

They have time with all that lying they're not doing.  Source.

As for the "plastics," that blatant reference to the movie Mean Girls (in which the plastics weren't exactly "Doctor Material"), most of the plastic surgeons in the US are male.  Again, I'm getting the HAHAHAHAOMGWEWILLBESOFUNNYANDCLEVERIFWEHAVETHEBITCHESBETHEPLASTICS/MEANGIRLS,GETIT? vibe.  (I can't tell you how much I would kill to have Tina Fey blast these people.  You guys know anyone associated with 30 Rock?)

When soon to disappear nice surgeon is asked "what about us?"  She replies that surgery is a melting pot, so no one gets along.

Diversity breeds contempt, didn't you know that?

Nothing makes people hate each other like over-priced fondue. Source

Our heroine then gives us a hint about just how old she is--she's been in school for 23 years straight.  Let's assume she started Kindergarten at age five.  That's gonna put Emmy at 28. Too bad she has the emotional and mental maturity of a 16 year-old.  Again, that's the kind of doctor that I want.

Oh no, her teenage tormentor!  And look!  Her personality hasn't changed any either!  (Good thing that's how it is in real life!) I must have missed the part of the preview where it shows the location of the hospital as Neverland.

Time to meet the boss: nice resident and bitchy attending.  SURE HAVEN'T SEEN THAT BEFORE.

I appreciate your utterly underwhelming sincerest form of flattery, really.  Source

Cut to the little nerdy-but-trendy girl who is so perceptive and adult--in fact, she could probably give Emily a run for her money. Oh, and her heart race when she sees "Cody" (which, I'm sure will certainly NOT end up being a House-inspired casual mention of a crucially important symptom).  Surely nothing bad will happen to this child . . .


Emsy-Wemsy: "Someone get me a doctor!"
Stern, no nonsense older nurse (named Laverne maybe?): "You ARE a doctor."

It's a good thing that Laverne's sternness magically unlocked all that medical training Emmy's adolescent awkwardness had imprisoned.  Precocious nerdy girl with boy problems is saved!

Cue congratulations and . . .

Popular girl: "Now I remember why we called you pits!"

Ah yes, because a fellow mature adult who just happens to have gone to medical school certainly would not understand or empathize with the body's sweat-related reaction to stress.  She's too busy being a catty bitch, JUST LIKE IN HIGH SCHOOL.

What cuntish bitches looked like in 1973 Source.

Nerdy, but cool, kid wants our little gosling in the surgery room with her--probably because she's the one who acts closest to her age.  Emsy says sure and pisses off her big, bad attending who--according to the  disappearing surgeon's compartmentalizations--should be a plastic surgeon.

So the hot(ish) guy tells her she's a rockstar and proceeds to hug all up on her--like a really solid, lots of contact hug.  And all of the sudden, Emmy sacks up!  She tells him how she feels!  (Holy shit, will this show be saved after all?)

To which Mr. Touchy Feely says, "I'm so sorry, I just don't see you . . .  like that."


Let's take a brief trip back to reality-land for a minute.  There's nothing wrong with him not liking her "like that."  In my experience, however, guys who don't like you "like that" either avoid physical contact with you as much as absolutely possible--because they are decent human beings-- OR, they use your obvious infatuation to their advantage because they would very much like to get laid.  The unsaid (UNTIL NOW) third option here, and honestly from what I've seen, the most believable, is that he's GAY.  This may very well be the case and they're just trying not to give it away in the preview, but since all I'm choosing to focus on today is the preview, the writers/editors/whateverers are getting shit for it.

Her confidence back to hovering just above zero, Emmy takes a time out in the stairwell.

Emily: "I'm just having the worst day."

Ah, let the dark-haired, attractive resident--who just happened to single you out to talk to earlier--show you all these people with REAL problems . . . not to make you feel totally shallow and guilty about having perfectly valid emotions of your own, or anything.  NOT AT ALL. (It certainly won't send you into therapy when you feel bad for being depressed about your shit day but then force yourself to ignore it, and your own mental well-being, because there are starving children in Africa or Asia or Kazgoogilystan.)

Kazgoogilystan  is generally found  near the world's shapely, left shoulder.  Source.

Emmy: "You must think I'm incredibly self absorbed"

SO-going-to-be-a-love-interest resident: "Just human" (which makes me an ass for intentionally making you feel like an ass, but since I said "nah, you be human," that makes me okay again.  You, um, wanna bang?)

Looks like female-Dr. Cox wasn't too mad at our girl as there she is, in the operating room.  Here, Em really gets to show off her medical prowess . . . by putting her finger where bitchy-but-brilliant attending tells her to, applying pressure and holding it still.

I need a doctor, STAT. Source

For this herculean task, she gets a "Well done, Dr. Owens," from the hard but (inevitably) fair attending--who's just trying to weed out the chaff and turn the rest of y'all into great doctors, I'm sure.  Then, Mr. short, dark, and handsome mentions that she "kicked ass in surgery."

I could totally be a surgeon--it doesn't matter that I have shaky as shit cutting hands, as long and I can hold my finger still-ish and apply pressure.  PROBLEM SOLVED, I'M GONNA BE RICH.

(God knows writing doesn't pay fucking BALLS)

Here comes little JD's, er, I mean Emmy's final inner monologue (complete with the lesson of the day/episode):

"The thing about being an adult that no one tells you when you're growing up, is that all your stupid insecurities and anxieties, they're still there.  You're supposed to have the answers, you're supposed to know, but we don't always know. But you know what? I'm done feeling stupid and insecure about feeling stupid and insecure."

Aaaaaand then she watches the "popular" girl who tormented her in high school flirt with her current hot-ish crush, to which our girl replies, "Oh come ON!"

But wait!  The snarky loner teen from this morning is looking at her!

Snarky: "Hey. You a doctor?"

Emmy: "Yeah, I am."

Snarky: "Pretty cool."

Ah, validation from the high school loner.  We know that's what we all REALLY want.

The moral of this show so far?  You'll never be able to get away from who you were in high school, from the people who tormented you, or from caring about what high-schoolers think.

I'm just gonna stick to Green Arrow's abs, thanks.

Or I could just, you know, LICK his torso.  Source.


  1. I'm so with you here!

    This show seems like a combination of every cliched hospital and teen drama you can think of. I mean, why commit your time to three different shows when you can get it all here?!

    Also, it seems that the CW is geared towards a slightly younger audience--teens, young adults, etc. So, what better message to send than "it doesn't get better!?"

    That's just fucking awesome. Way to go, CW. Way. To. Go.

    Maybe the problem is the age of the writers...

    I mean, if it's written by very, very young writers (and I use that term loosely), maybe they lack perspective to see that things (and people) actually do change. If you just graduated from high school (and by the writing chops presented in the preview I don't think this is a far cry from the truth) it would be really easy to assume that "mean girls" will always be mean. Obviously some people choose to remain stagnant (typically those we label as "douche-bags"), but most people grow and become better versions of themselves. These poor, feeble young things are just too immature to conceive of it.

    Add to an unoriginal plot a terribly boring title. Why call it "Emily Owens, MD"? Why not call it what it is--"Schlocky, Shoddily Written Piece of Crap." That seems like a far fairer title to me.

    So, in the end, I say way to go, Meryl Streep's daughter. Enjoy your second TV doctor role on another show that will probably be cancelled after the first season. Maybe you should consult your mom for some advice.

  2. D,

    I'm going to admit that I did NO research so I had no idea this was a) Meryl Streep's daughter and b) her SECOND medical show. Wow. Just wow.