July 02, 2011

Adam Beach in Combat Hospital

Combat Hospital is a summer-replacement TV series about a military hospital in Afghanistan. Adam Beach guest-starred in the second episode, Enemy Within (airdate: 6/28/11).

Here's a mini-review that applies to the second episode also:The first episode follows a medical staff composed of people from various English speaking countries in a military hospital near Kandahar in 2006. A show that at first glance might remind you of M*A*S*H yet probably resembles something along the lines of the short-lived Off the Map which premiered also not too long ago on ABC.

The Canadian show depicts a war that the US is still currently waging. However this aspect is used more simply as a backdrop while the show concentrates on the more typical medical drama aspects. The cast is all around likable and talented enough and Borth is charming enough to get by.

The pilot was pretty basic and lacked substance although I do see potential in certain story lines. Overall it felt old fashioned brought nothing new to the table. With a little more imagination I'm sure this show could do just fine, however there is so far not much incentive to return to the show.
Beach plays a Special Ops officer called "Joe" who is embedded with Afghan troops. He brings in a wounded soldier and flirts with Dr. Rebecca Kincaid while he waits.

A review of the second episode:

Combat Hospital Review:  "Enemy Within"As much as I wanted to get excited about this show, I'm disappointed to find it rather ordinary.

It's not terrible. In fact, the cast is quite likable. ... What I'm looking for from Combat Hospital is drama, though, and I simply don't feel it. It's set in a war zone. I want to feel that intensity, but just isn't there.

Joe, the new special ops guy, is cute. He and Rebecca certainly have some chemistry and I hope to see more of it.
Comment:  Beach's character "Joe" doesn't say or do anything to indicate he's Native. The only curious note is how the doctors think he's Afghan until he speaks perfect English.

I guess you might mistake a brown-skinned Native American for a brown-skinned native Afghan. Especially in a harried hospital where you don't have time to think. I believe Afghanistan as a crossroads of Asia, has many different ethnic types from Iran, Russia, Pakistan, India, and China. Beach's vaguely Asiatic look might pass muster.

Anyway, it's nice to see a TV show set in Afghanistan. But don't the producers understand that TV has done generic hospital shows to death? Combat Hospital is forgettable for the same reasons Off the Map was forgettable. Without such characters as Hawkeye Pierce, Hot Lips Houlihan, and Radar O'Reilly, it has little or nothing to offer.

For more on Adam Beach, see Adam Beach in Arctic Air and Adam Beach the Comedian.


none said...

When I first saw the previews, I immediately thought of China Beach. Surely I can't be the only person who watched and loved that show?

Anonymous said...

And Indians are always mistaken for the enemy. Goes back to the rebellion in the Philippines.