Monday, January 28, 2008

Sepinwall on TV: The doctor is in

Today's column previews the new HBO series "In Treatment," which I discussed briefly last week:
Therapy, as any good shrink will tell you, requires commitment. You're not going to solve all your problems in one session, or five, maybe even 500. Achieving mental health means sticking around for the long haul.

"In Treatment," the new HBO drama about a therapist and his patients, requires a commitment of its own, as it will air five episodes a week for more than two months straight. It's an almost intimidating amount of TV to watch - even at a time when the writers strike has wiped out most other scripted programming - but like therapy, the more time you spend with it, the more you get out of it.

The format is derived from an Israeli drama, and it follows psychologist Paul Weston (Gabriel Byrne) through his week, with a different appointment each day. On Mondays, it's Laura (Melissa George), a beautiful, damaged woman whose crush on Paul may or may not be requited. On Tuesdays, it's Alex (Blair Underwood), a control freak naval aviator trying to come to terms with a battlefield tragedy and a recent near-death experience. Wednesdays bring Sophie (Mia Wasikowska), a 16-year-old gymnast who wants Paul to proclaim her non-suicidal. On Thursdays, we get Jake and Amy (Josh Charles and Embeth Davidtz), a married couple whose relationship has grown toxic after years of battling infertility. And on Fridays, Paul goes to see his own shrink, Gina (Dianne Wiest), to tell her (and us) how he really feels about his patients.
To read the full thing, click here.

And after thinking about it over the weekend, I've come up with a blogging gameplan. Every weeknight (or, if I go to bed early or am otherwise detained, the next morning), I'll post an open thread for anyone who wants to discuss each episode. Because of the nature of the show and the fact that I'm three weeks into the season already, it's hard for me to discuss each episode individually without betraying what I know about what's coming -- which comments are lies, which seemingly minor bits of dialogue turn out to be important later, etc. So you can talk all you want (or not), and I'll weigh in with comments if I think I won't be giving things away. Maybe I'll post some expanded thoughts at the end of each week, maybe not. And maybe no one will be watching, which would render the whole thing moot. But I think the show is pretty cool and merits discussion.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The Doctor is in ?


...ouch. Sorry. Wrong doctor.

We're still passing time in the waiting room...