Review: Red Band Society (Pilot)

Red Band Society

Red Band Society is a show I wanted to hate.  I thought the idea was kind of dumb when I originally saw a preview for it.  As more previews aired on tv, I actually became interested in it.  Then, it surprised me, and turned out to be really good.

There have been many shows about kids before, both comedy and drama.  Many of these shows are about kids in high school specifically.  One of the strongest things this show has going for it is that it’s a show about high school in a hospital.  Personally, I can’t think of a show that’s done this before, so the concept is fresh to me.  It starts off with a couple of your typical high school stereotypes, but they get chipped away (some quicker than others).  These kids don’t have much choice in their company, and regardless of how different of places they come from, they can all identify with one another through the fact that they’re all sick enough to be in long-term care at a hospital.  The focus so far is not about the sicknesses of the characters, but the lives they choose to have inside the walls of the hospital.

The main adult on the show is Nurse Jackson (Oscar-winner, Octavia Spencer).  She is a nurse in the hospital, and knows these kids better than they likely know themselves.  As the main adult, she is definitely the mother figure of these children, and acts protective of them as you would expect.

Great stories are generally driven by a strong narrator.  This show has a very strong narrator, and it is not who I expected it to be at all.  With the person it ends up being, it adds a lot of depth and observation to the story, which I thought was clever.  The narrator definitely has a unique view on everything that goes on at the hospital, and that is all I’ll say to avoid spoilers.

The only thing I found really that hurt the show was the number of characters.  I counted 10 potential main members of the ensemble cast, and that is a lot to introduce in a single episode.  I don’t really know any of their names yet, and it’s a still a confusing hearing them refer to each other by name when they’re in a larger group.

Red Band Society has potential.  Teenage dramas are very hit or miss, and this one comes out of the gate with a solid hit for it’s pilot.  I look forward to watching this week’s episode, and hope it’s given a chance to show us what it’s got up it’s sleeve for a full season (and hopefully more).

Red Band Society airs Wednesday nights on at 9pm on FOX.


2 Responses to “Review: Red Band Society (Pilot)”
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