ER Without the Room (Trauma Premiere Review)
Posted by Mr. Feeny on September 29, 2009
“There’s a point?” – Nancy
That’s what I was wondering with every explosion and crash. What’s the point? Where is this going? (Isn’t it nice when writer’s include such a perfect line? It’s like they almost realized I’d need it.)
There’s a ton of action in Trauma. After all, this chronicles the day-to-day activities of the first responders. The ones who treat victims on the scene and transport them to doctors. An interesting world, but I wonder if it will get old after a while. Everything has to take place in a traumatic situation…no time to really digest or advance stories, so it would seem. And, won’t we just be seeing things we’ve already seen in other medical dramas?
Again, almost on cue, the writers proved me wrong, in easily one of the best openings to a new show yet. DON’T READ this paragraph if you don’t want to know what happens. Just skip to the next one……….After trying to get to know these characters for the first five minutes, what happens? Their medical helicopter collides with another chopper and crashes in flames. With two of those characters on board. They cut to the title screen, and I expected them to return to that scene. How the others would rescue their friends. Instead, it opens a year later, with the radio mentioning the 1-year anniversary of the fatal helicopter crash. Regardless of what the rest of the show brought, that was exciting and surprising. It had me hooked. Especially since they killed off one of the seemingly lead characters. A great decision, since it adds a layer of problems to the routine drama.
But the rest of the episode was routine. As a semi-regular viewer of ER, I’ve seen it before. The characters, the situations, the medicine. Why do we need a replacement for it? I thought Jay Leno was replacing it. My title’s a bit misleading. This is ER with a whole lot of Emergency, no Room, and very little focus on the characters. ER was a hit because viewers cared about the personal lives of Dr. Ross, Dr. Green, Nurse Hathaway, etc. We only got to really know three characters, and frankly, only one is relatively interesting.
Rueben (Cliff Curtis), or “Rabbit,” initially comes across as your typical macho pilot character. Headstrong, rule-breaking, insulting. That makes him the most enjoyable character, but not much in the area of caring about him. That changed midway through the episode. Following his accident, Rabbit tries to put on a strong front. But he reveals both his vulnerability and compassion. He’s a layered character. And those are the best. But right now, everyone else is flat as a dead guy’s line.
I’m going to keep watching this show to see if it becomes “must-watch.” But it’s worth 40 minutes if you have nothing better to do and enjoy action-packed adventures that are better suited for movies.