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Hercules Says Fox Should Maybe Amputate THE MOB DOCTOR From Its Primetime Grid!!

I am – Hercules!!

A new hourlong that (barely) combines the hospital and crime drama genres, “The Mob Doctor” comes to us from “Drop Dead Diva” writer-producers Josh Berman and Rob Wright.

It stars Jordana Spiro (“My Boys”) as a gifted surgeon who has to moonlight for the bad guys after her kid brother gambles his way into hot water with organized crime figures.

This is a great idea (or at least a great title) for a show, but the execution feels like a dose of anesthesia, with too much distraction provided by standard medical drama clichés and not enough actual mob doctoring.

I’d like to see a series about somebody like that fellow in “Breaking Bad” who was charged with patching up Gus, Mike and Jesse following their Mexican poolside showdown with Don Eladio. “The Mob Doctor” is so not that show. “The Mob Doctor” is just dull.

The New York Times says:

... from the pilot one thing is sure: the writers never encountered the adage “less is more." … The pilot is so packed with generic scenes of medical crises and mob muscle-flexing that it feels as if the creators went to a buffet of past series and desperately piled everything they could reach onto the mob doc’s plate. … 

The Los Angeles Times says:

... the pilot teeters between odd and simply ridiculous …

The Chicago Sun-Times says:

... Someone needs to take a scalpel to the script and cut out the melodrama. The show should focus less on catty hospital politics and more on the inherently compelling conflict of a person who has good reason to do bad things, a la “Breaking Bad.” …

The San Francisco Chronicle says:

... Despite being jam-packed with plot twists, character reveals, surprises, a car chase, a couple of dead people and a lot of cell phone calls followed by "I have to go," it is a constant struggle for a viewer to avoid being bored to tears. …

The Washington Post says:

... It’s never good news when you start to watch a new show and can’t get past quibbling with the whole concept …

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette says:

Fox's preposterous organized crime/medical show combo platter "The Mob Doctor" manages to be silly and sappy. ... Not grounded enough to be taken seriously and not clever enough to be truly funny, there's only one prescription for "The Mob Doctor": fuhgettaboutit.

The Boston Herald says:

Some TV series get by through sheer force of will. They embrace their inner stupidity and race along, figuring you’ll never catch up. Take Fox’s “The Mob Doctor,” whose title tells you everything you need to know about this show …

USA Today says:

... why bother trying to separate the bad from the worse when it's all awful. Which is what happens when you concoct a show out of leftover scraps instead of new ideas.…

Variety says:

... even with a few unexpected twists, this show is about as typical as TV gets. … there's nothing initially compelling enough to warrant regular visits, much less house calls. …

The Hollywood Reporter says:

... trying to reinvent the wheel has led to a truly flat idea. … Mostly, it's a hospital drama -- and a rote one at that. The side job stitching up bad guys seems tacked on for no reason, like racing flames on a Prius. Yeah, yeah, it's different. It's not just a hospital drama. See, she's a doctor and she works for the … oh, never mind.

9 p.m. Monday. Fox.


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Readers Talkback
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  • I guess I will watch the pilot tonight since nothing else is on.

  • Sept. 17, 2012, 10:48 a.m. CST

    Hell, 'The Crime Doctor' would at least be a better title.

    by Bill C.

    'The Mob Doctor' just sounds kind of weak and doomed. Saw a promo for this last night. It looked pretty meh, though I may at least record the pilot just to be sure it's meh...

  • Sept. 17, 2012, 2:34 p.m. CST

    You clicked to read about some throwaway, shitty Fox show...

    by JonJonB9

    and got yourself a big fat spoiler for one of the best TV shows ever. (although if you haven't made it a priority to see Breaking Bad by kind of deserve it)

  • Prime time major network television would never allow this character and her choices to really go the dark places the premise would suggest.

  • Sept. 17, 2012, 3:16 p.m. CST

    The premise is flat out stupid.

    by caprica

    No execution could make a cute female doctor working against her will with the mob a good show, sorry.

  • Sept. 17, 2012, 5:18 p.m. CST

    Who is the target audience for this shit?

    by Michael Lunney

  • Sept. 17, 2012, 6:29 p.m. CST

    Horrible title. Sounds like that shit Duchovny film.

    by BigTuna

  • Sept. 17, 2012, 7:11 p.m. CST

    Fox Dumbshits

    by Truxton Spangler

    They already had a good Chicago show, created by a Midwesterner, shot on location, that was finding its stride by the latter part of the season -- Chicago Code. But they cancelled it.

  • Sept. 17, 2012, 7:29 p.m. CST

    The Blob Doctor.

    by Metroid_Fetish

    Coming soon on the Food Network.

  • Still pissed that House is gone.

  • Sept. 18, 2012, 12:50 p.m. CST

    House was awesome

    by tomdolan04

    Even in later series when its peak audience had buggered off, it was great and Laurie was godlike - but it was time for it to go and bowed out true to itself. <p> This sounds like shit. Seconded for more shows that examine just normal people truly having motive to do dark things. The appeal of Breaking Bad isnt the violence or cursing - its the belief you have in Walter White and the writing. That isnt and shouldnt be alien to primetime networks and audiences. Have faith in the audience and they will come...

  • Sept. 18, 2012, 1:34 p.m. CST

    The colour-coded syringes was goofy

    by jim

    Why didn't mob nurse guy who laid them out just fill all the syringes with whatever, not just the red one? So, even if she drops it "by accident", she'd still end up killing him when she uses one she thinks is safe. I thought that's what would happen. Taking that thought further, if they have access to the syringes, why did they need the surgeon? Just fill the first couple of syringes with the killing juice, let whoever happens to inject it inadvertently kill him, and call it a day. Also, if Grey's Anatomy has taught me anything (other than how to love again), surgeons and their teams are anal. One red-tipped syringe among a line of black-tipped ones, when all are supposed to be the same thing inside, would have caught someone's attention, would it not?

  • Sept. 18, 2012, 1:36 p.m. CST

    Like Spiro...should do a Huntress reboot.

    by mjgtexas

    Only USA show I ever liked.

  • Sept. 18, 2012, 4:01 p.m. CST

    Poisoning all the syringes

    by Truxton Spangler

    The implications and ramifications of such a scenario probably would have been a little too much for the target audience to fathom. Then we wouldn't have been treated to that awesome car chase. You're asking too many smart questions. You'll never make it as a writer on this show.

  • Sept. 18, 2012, 4:42 p.m. CST

    My apologies, truxton spanglers cereal cabal

    by jim

    I now see now how pointing out the redundancy of the doctor in the mob's plan (had they taken one more pass at it) negates both the premise and the title character. She's forced to work for the mob even though they could get on just as well, even better, without her. Can't have that. Good thing too. After all, what's been lacking on TV since the dawn of time is a car chase.