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Old 12-30-2013, 10:32 PM  
Baby Lee
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HBO's Getting On

Really solid show, possibility of being one of the greats.

Another remake of a BBC mainstay.

Set in the convalescence ward of a CA hospital.

Alex Bornstein and Niecy Nash are ward nurses. Laurie Mecalf is a frustrated doctor with big ambitions turfed to the ward by higher up doctors that include her husband. Mel Rodriguez is a big ol' poofty nurse brought in to manage the staff and initiate 'data driven' changes.

If there was one show it is most similar in tone to, it'd be the BBC Office. There is no 'documentary' aspect to it, nor any of the attendant camera winking. But the air of mindless functionaries going about their business, with high drama and rich personal lives simmering below the surface, is certainly there.

It presents some fairly wacky stuff in a matter of fact manner that increased it's potency.

For instance, the show starts with the nurse played by Alex playing a video game on her phone bedside as one of the patients expires. She takes this in stride as Niecy's nurse advises that there is poop of unknown origin on one of the waiting room chairs. What should be a routine cleanup matter becomes a fiasco as Laurie's doctor character is performing a stool study that will 'revolutionize the field of stool assessment,' so the chair poop is sequestered as she tries 'to discreetly' determine its origin.

The second episode deals with one of the most vociferously loud and adamant racists and homophobes who pulls no punches with a sense of ambiguity about how much of the ranting is her innate bigot and how much is her worsening state of health.

Later is some hilarious stuff with Harry Dean Stanton as a 'suitor' of one of the convalescees who is rip-roariously sanguine about when and where he gets his beak wet.

It pulls off that 'fiddling while Rome burns' air with aplomb, and manages to interject real and moving moments of compassion and dedication.

The characters have the issues that make for good storytelling, but are not as psychotic as tends to come to light in The Office. The setting makes the characters more than vice versa.
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Old 12-30-2013, 11:41 PM   #2

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The wife started watching it and I joined her recently. I think I like it. I enjoy Niecy Nash's character on the show. Fat/gay dude is annoying. (Nothing against gay people by any means, the guy is just an asshole.)

I particularly enjoyed when the old Swiss lady (I think they were Swiss) needed to have a stint implanted, but her son yanked her out of the hospital, stating to the doctor it was because it would cost them $50 to have the procedure done in Switzerland, rather than the $300k it would cost here.
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