'Do No Harm' review: New Dr. Jekyll should hide
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THE SERIES "Do No Harm"
WHEN | WHERE Premieres tomorrow night at 10 on NBC/4
WHAT IT'S ABOUT By day, or specifically from 8:24 a.m. to 8:25 p.m., Dr. Jason Cole (Steven Pasquale, "Rescue Me") is a top neurosurgeon, who is also charming, nice, compassionate and sort of a ladies' man. His patients like him; colleagues, too, especially department head Dr. Vanessa Young (Phylicia Rashad) and Dr. Lena Solis (Alana De La Garza), who would like to get to know him even a little bit better, if you know what I mean.
What they don't know -- by night he's a wild lascivious cad, who really likes the ladies and a lot of them. Cole's alter ego even has a name -- Ian Price -- and so far Cole has been able to keep Ian suppressed with a strong drug. But Ian has grown resistant to it.
MY SAY If you've read this far without laughing out loud or groaning out loud, then you've clearly misread. So go ahead -- laugh, groan, shake your fist at the heavens. "NBC, what have you done to quality drama! Why why WHYYYYY!!!?"
Chances are, of course, NBC won't listen, nor will the heavens, but the message should still be loud and clear: "Do No Harm" is bunkum. Worse, it's confusing, illogical, regressive bunkum. Regressive how so? In the sense that this feels like a kind of show that would have found a cozy spot on NBC's 1985 schedule, though certainly never Thursdays at 10, where "ER" aired for many years. (Reminder alert: It's 2013.)
One of the showrunners of this Dr.Jekyll / Mr. Hyde misfire is Peter Traugott, a well-regarded producer who has handled another split-identity drama ("Ringer") and even a comedy one ("Samantha Who?"). This third go-round may not be his lucky number.
BOTTOM LINE Part Dr. Jekyll, part Mr. Hyde and all dumb.