A week ago, Saving Hope premiered to reception that was less
then favorable and less then middling viewership numbers. (though it did look like a success for eOne) One thing that is known that after the first episode; things supposedly get better... Well the second episode is better; they have their own set, they improved the chemistry and they even reduced the lens glare (which is appreciated, much better.) but honestly, it's only a minor
improvement; even with the plot they have going on.
This episode does show that there's more to it then it being a Greg's Anatomy inspired show; for instance, it has many of the character moving up, situations changing and certain character relations being improved. Michael's wife is a specific example since this episode shows just how much her world changes without her if you can imagine being in her shoes, having to report to someone else then you can just imagine
how she feels. Let's not forget about the relationships being formed, certain people getting involved in his life and the formation of a story arc that'll keep viewers interested. (because this show is about Michael; people would tune out if Michael did nothing
but stand there while the people around him saved lives.) However, it still
has some of that Greg's Anatomy feeling (especially in conversations), the camera angles and effects that seem generic (but done decently when the situation warrants it.), the music (again, also done decently), the same old cases that don't bother to be anything unique and the feeling that this is nothing more then a generic hospital drama with the gimmick of having Michael Shanks onboard. The characters here do serve their roles well and it is competent in it's execution but still...
Don't mind me, I'm just here for the ride...
One of the best things the episode has going for it is the focus on Michael, which is what the people will obviously
flock to when they watch this episode. I find it nice that they begin to focus on Michael's world in the second episode, almost as if they're aware that they needed to do something or they'd lose their audience. We've only been hinted at it in the pilot episode, I mean who knows how this world exists and how many people inhabit it so to see some exploration of it is nice though the exploration of it is small in general as half of the episode consists of Michael's usual thing of narrating while he watches hospital life around him. But the other half where he encounters a boy who just so happens to be in a near-death state like him is pretty good; these scenes showcase what made Michael Shanks so good in the first place; by dropping the attempts to be dramatic and just being sensible and caring, he manages to provide a performance that is straight to the point, fits his character well and just may be the most
dramatic performance that he has done yet; the bond between him and the boy isn't as good as you may expect but it does work to provide a sense of charm and cuteness that makes these scenes super special. It advances the story sure but it also shows how much of a nice guy Michael Shanks is and it reinforces the love he holds for his dear girlfriend.
Speaking of which, Michael's girlfriend continues her reign as one of the
best actors of Saving Hope by continuing to act as good as she can be. She manages to act like she did in the first episode, stern, caring and a little bit emotional but this time she's putting a just a teensy bit more effort into it, I think that may be due to the improved chemistry the show has and the plotlines she's being put through... Throughout the episode, you can see her devotion as she saves lives, makes some casual conversation and just cares about Charlie in general; the scenes she does with the boy really showcases the characters skills as a doctor and it shows that she can really
act when the moment calls for it. If there was one thing I disliked her in, it'd be the generic fight that isn't really a fight but it's a fight with Michael's ex-wife; I understand if this is relating to the lengths they have to take to save Michael but can it not
be a fight? I want to focus on treatments that may not 100% work; not focus on a fight and whether or not these two will start duking it out in the end. I will admit, the thing she and Michael has is special and she makes it clear throughout the episode; whether it's in the hospital or even in the past, these two have a connection that carry the show. Fact.
[SIZE=1]A boy and Michael, a true bond.
There are certain things that irk me though, the promos that NBC showed during the last episode implied
that the kid had a gift to see him and that he would be able to communicate with him while his wife doubted the kids ability. I doubt that it would work out the way it was implied but that promo was misleading and it also spoiled what was the best moment of the episode that happened in the end. The picture was something which I thought would happen in the middle or the beginning, not the end
; if I were running NBC then I would of just omitted the picture entirely and just showed Shanks with the kid, that would of been 10x more powerful and effective then the promo that we got. Oh and there could of been a whole lot more with the kid, it was just a shame it had to be squeezed in with a couple of plots relating to other hospital patients and people who are not
So anyway, this is an improvement but not
a major improvement. Michael Shanks and the kid is a very good plot, one that explores the world, gives credit to the character and also works to showcase the love between her girlfriend which is one of the best things the show has going for it. However... It still feels stuck in the generic hospital drama routine and even though the lens flare is reduced, there still needs to be a lot
more work done. Still, this is more enjoyable then the previous episode and at least eOne has a successful Summer series under it's belt.