“Everyone thinks that when you go to a hospital, life stops. But it’s just the opposite—life starts.” These are the words of 12-year-old Charlie from Fox’s new fall drama, Red Band Society. The show premiered on Sept. 17 and it showcases something particularly close to home. If the lobby of the hospital looks familiar, that’s because it is. Atlanta’s High Art Museum was transformed into “Ocean Park Hospital”—a contemporary approach to medicine that mixes the medical aspect of a hospital with the social construction of a boarding school.
With all the talk about the film industry moving to Georgia, the premier of Red Band Society really puts things into perspective. Atlanta is becoming a hub for the film making industry, which means potential jobs in the future for many UWG students and graduates. Several of our students have already worked as extras over the summer for different shows and movies. It won’t be long before ATL becomes the Hollywood of the South.
As for the show itself, Fox seems to be taking a new approach by directing its content towards teens and young adults. The show features characters of different stereotypes, but they all have one thing in common—they are so sick that they are confined to the hospital. From cancer, to cystic fibrosis, to anorexia—these kids are facing life-threatening diseases while also tackling the struggles of growing up. It’s got the clash and mash vibe of The Breakfast Club mixed with the heart wrenching fate of The Fault in Our Stars.
Octacvia Spencer, who won an Oscar for her role as Minny in The Help, plays the sassy, catty, yet loving Nurse Jackson, and she couldn’t be more perfect for the role. In fact, all of the actors seem as if they were born to be in this show. The characters are all so unique and easy to relate to. Charlie, who is actually in a coma, narrates the show and offers up an extremely unique perspective considering everyone tells him things assuming that he can’t actually hear them.
This is not just another silly teen drama or over intense medical show. Fox seems to be going in the right direction, making it’s viewers trail along with curiosity about what will happen to this group of patients united by the red bands on their wrist. Whether it’s young love, unexpected friendships, or loosing a leg, these kids are sharing their lives with us. It definitely gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “live like you’re dying.”
Red Band Society comes on Fox every Wednesday night at 9.