Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday—Two is the Magic Number with “Do No Harm”

Television’s winter premiere season is officially here!  With all of the new TV programs airing these next few months, Amber West and I have a ton of homework to do.  We have had so much fun these past few weeks posting dual reviews, we’ve decided to do it again!  Will Amber and I agree or disagree after watching NBC’s new primetime drama, Do No Harm?

Does anyone remember the short-lived Christian Slater TV series My Own Worst Enemy?  Mr. Slater played a secret agent who had been implanted with a chip that transformed him into a super agent at will.  His “normal” identity, Henry Spivey (his cover), had no idea until there was a malfunction.  This glitch disabled the control feature of the chip and he flipped back and forth between his “normal” personality and the “super agent” (Edward Albright) involuntarily.  And of course the two personalities did not like one another—Henry was scared of Edward and Edward was annoyed with Henry.

Anyway, this is what Do No Harm reminds me of… only this time we’re watching a doctor with dissociative identity disorder.  I know it’s not the same concept; it’s more like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde; but when I first saw the commercial for the new NBC series, I immediately thought of My Own Worst Enemy.

By day, Dr. Jason Cole (Steven Pasquale, Rescue Me) is a brilliant neurosurgeon.  At night, Dr. Cole transforms into his other personality, Ian Price.  At first, Dr. Cole was able to control these switches with his own mixture of pharmaceutical drugs.  But when his self-medication fails, he realizes quickly that Ian will do anything to make his “real” life more difficult.  Jason fears Ian; he focuses his life around protecting the world from his  alter ego.  Ian, on the other hand, could not care less about Jason and possesses a more dominant personality—he controls situations according to his own desires, not to find the best solution to a problem.

Will Jason inject the serum and stop Ian before it’s too late?

Both personalities have the ability to recall what the other did while in possession of Jason’s/Ian’s body.  But for the most part, the two communicate via video cell phone messages—exactly like Christian Slater’s show.  And after a certain amount of shenanigans on Ian’s part, Jason decides enough is enough.  Outwardly, Jason agrees to play nice and stop “caging” Ian.  But secretly he plans to “kill” Ian with the help of a researcher (the one who provided Jason with the pharmaceuticals that silenced Ian in the first place).

To be honest, I really like Ian.  He’s kind of hot, well except when he’s partying, taking drugs, and having rough sex.   But other than that, he makes me smile.  Why do girls always like the bad boys?

And let’s talk about Mr. Pasquale’s eyes for a second.  There’s just something about his eyes… When he plays Jason, we can actually see his sweet nature in his eyes; and when he’s Ian, pure Rebel.  How this is possible is beyond me, I guess that’s why it’s called acting, but it is all in his eyes.  “The eyes are the windows to our soul,” right?

Ian’s eyes… oh, the eyes.

I could say more… like the fact that similar to most medical dramas on TV today, the surgical scenes tend to be a bit graphic (I personally wouldn’t watch while eating)… but I won’t.

Why?  Because Do No Harm has already been pulled by NBC.  That’s right; after two episodes, the network has yanked it.

Uh-oh… here we go again.  Remember my rant about Made in Jersey?  It wasn’t the best show, but it also wasn’t given much of a chance before receiving the exact same fate.

This is upsetting… not because Do No Harm was my new favorite show, but because of how, in essence, the network treated this series.

First of all, the 10 PM EST time slot on Thursday night is a tough one.  Viewers already have an abundance of top shows to choose from.  In my house, we already DVR Suits (USA—a HUGE show), Scandal (ABC—another HUGE hit), Elementary (CBS—again, a BIGGIE amongst audiences), and Archer (FX—for an animated series, a popular “cartoon”).  Now, how in the world can NBC expect big numbers from a show that’s competing in this time slot?  And how is it fair to pull after only two episodes?  Did the network truly believe their fresh series would outrank the others on what might just be the most popular night and hour on television?  Why not air more than two episodes, or move it to another night or time slot?  Or why not at least air the episodes already “in the can” instead of hastily removing it from the TV schedule?

Networks, please stop playing with viewers.  Give us a chance to fall in love with new shows.  Dropping a bomb on a freshman series like this does not make us, particularly me, want to give the new shows on your network a chance until they’ve established themselves… and by then, it could be too late.

He looks mad… perhaps Jason/Ian just got the call that his show has been yanked after only two episodes?

Oh, and before I go, I might as well mention that this now-gone-from-our-lineup series also starred, as in past tense: Alana de la Garza (CSI: Miami and Law & Order) as Dr. Lena Solis; Phylicia Rashad (The Cosby Show) as Dr. Vanessa Young; and John Carroll Lynch (Body of Proof) as Will.

Oh, and nice play on the name… Do No Harm has double meaning just like the lead character’s dual personalities.  On one hand, it’s the basic definition of a doctor’s Hippocratic Oath.  And on the other, all Jason wants is for Ian to “do no harm.”  But I guess this just doesn’t matter anymore—two seems to be the magic number for this show: double meaning, dual personalities, and two episodes.

What do you think?  Have you watched Do No Harm?  Will you add this series to the “gone too soon” category?  I’d love to hear from you! 

Now click over to Amber’s blog and see what she thinks about the Jekyll and Hyde TV program.  Did we agree or disagree?  Trust me; we usually have very different tastes in our television viewing pleasure….

Come back next week when Amber and I review something…  hopefully something that hasn’t already been cancelled!

Remember to stop by the #watchwed hashtag in Twitter to discuss any of today’s reviews, or to mention any television programs that you’d like to see on Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday in the future.

A Recap of The WatchWed Review System:

GTV (Gourmet TV): Everything we want and more
MacTV (MacNCheese TV): Guilty pleasure. Not perfect, but is satisfies
GMacTV (Gourmet MacNCheese TV): A combination of fine wine and comfort food
JFTV (Junk food TV):It’s not great for us, but we’ll go back for seconds
TBPTV (Twice Baked Potato TV): Part gourmet and delicious, while absolutely horrible for our cholesterol
SSTV (Still Simmering TV): It has potential, but the jury is still out
NIV (NyQuil Induced Viewing): Perfect for that late night television sleep timer
LOTV (Liver&Onions TV): Do we really have to explain? Blech

12 Replies to “Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday—Two is the Magic Number with “Do No Harm””

  1. The Networks are beginning to sound like English Soccer teams – unless you win every game from the moment you take office as Manager, you’re fired after a couple of losses! Someone is either setting the bar way too high for viewing figures, or they haven’t made the adjustment to the new environment of TV versus internet viewing.
    Since Firefly got canned after irresponsible time slotting and micromanagement, I have no faith that the Networks know what’s a good show and what isn’t. Especially with Jersey Shore running to … How many seasons?

  2. I didn’t know this had already aired, so I haven’t watched it. I guess there’s no point in trying to catch up now. I love the Jekyll and Hyde story, so I would have probably liked this show. Stupid networks.

  3. Networks are idiots. How’s that for blunt? Yes, the following is from Wikipedia, but it’s true about SEINFELD–one of the most popular television series ever: “The series debuted on July 5, 1989, on NBC as The Seinfeld Chronicles. The pilot episode met with poor reviews, and as a result, NBC passed on the show. However, NBC executive Rick Ludwin believed the series had potential. He therefore gave Seinfeld a budget to create four more episodes, which formed the rest of season 1 and began airing on May 31, 1990. The first season is considered the smallest sitcom order in television history.”

    NBC was going to pass!!! Seinfeld was rescued and only give 4 episodes. Good gravy! And then there is Firefly, Jericho, the cancellation of Emily Owens (which had great acting), etc. You have hit the nail on the head, Tiffany.

  4. Just like the Jersey show, I never got a chance to see this one. I guess maybe it’s better that I don’t see them in case they go off the air. But I am now worried that I have been missing Suits! I didn’t know it was back on yet. I can’t quite keep track of USA’s schedule. There is just too much to watch. 🙂

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