Thursday, September 29, 2005

What? You're kidding!

With Monday's discussion about TV medical dramas (Grey's Anatomy, ER, House), this essay from Slate by Ingrid Katz and Alexi Wright seemed particularly interesting. Get this - doctors don't like these shows!

"We have a professional beef with Grey's Anatomy: Along with House, the other hospital show on the air at the moment, it is medically far-fetched and misleading. Most of all, we dislike the show because it loses sight of the point of any medical enterprise—the patients."

See, I'm not sure I agree with that. You build a show, with a regular cast, and those guys need to stick around. Patients go in and out of the hospitals. Doctors and nurses stay there. That's why these shows feature the staffers.

Besides, we're the patients. We already know what it's like to go to a hospital, right? What would you rather see dramatized, what you don't normally see or what you're familiar with? Sure, some people want to see their experiences echoed on-screen. I get that.

But you can always bring in a special guest star to play a patient when a ratings boost is needed! Like Ray Liotta! And Sally Field! Bob Newhart! Alan Alda! Hey, what about LL Cool J? And there was, uh... Colin Farrell! Wait, he was on Scrubs. That's not a medical drama. And he didn't play a patient. He played a guy who beat up a patient. But that doesn't matter. You get what I'm saying.

You know, I always thought Gilbert Gottfried would be a great guest-star on ER. I would've had him play a guy who gets brought into the E.R. because he got something stuck up his ass. Like a gerbil. C'mon, you'd tune in for the whole hour, wouldn't you? Especially if that surly Dr. Benton had to surgically remove the gerbil. Man, that would've been "Must See TV." I need an agent.

I'm digressing, aren't I?

Anyway, the point of the article was that doctors don't do what these TV shows say they do. Such as hump like jackrabbits, as they do on Grey's Anatomy. I think Katz and Wright's description of that particular facet of the show was probably a bit more tactful than mine.

"Many moments would make the old-time AMA vetters cringe. Instead of asexual father figures, the doctors on cast are hyper-hormonal. Attendings sleep with residents. Interns bed nurses. Even patients are fair game. On one episode, Grey kisses an injured biker brought in to the hospital after an accident involving spokes sticking out of his abdomen. Normally, any of these infractions would be grounds for dismissal. At Grey's hospital, they're all in a day's work."

Hey, you say po-TAY-to, I say pa-TAH-to. It's all about their hoo-hahs in their yum-yums. Whatever. Say it however you want; those doctors are plowing each other like Iowa cornfields, man.