'The Mob Doctor' review: This is whacked

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Jordana Spiro as Dr. Grace Devlin in Jordana Spiro as Dr. Grace Devlin in "The Mob Doctor." Photo Credit: Fox

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REVIEW

DRAMA SERIES "The Mob Doctor"

WHEN | WHERE Premieres Monday at 9 on Fox/5

REASON TO WATCH What a cast -- Jordana Spiro ("My Boys"), Zach Gilford ("Friday Night Lights"), Zeljko Ivanek ("Damages"), William Forsythe ("Boardwalk Empire").

WHAT IT'S ABOUT You read the title? You get the idea. Spiro's young Chicago doctor spends her days bouncing between a hospital where she's a surgical hotshot and a furtive second life/career pulling screwdrivers out of thugs' heads. She doesn't wanna, but she's gotta -- her brother's debts had him marked for death till she saved his life by trading the mob her medical services.

This creates problems. Will she agree to kill a turncoat on the table? Can she still help kids from the 'hood? What about Gilford's oblivious doctor boyfriend? How is she connected to Forsythe's "retired" capo? Whassup with the white Caddy?

MY SAY "I gotta go" is the doc's M.O., and the show's, too. The producers decided to cram every single plot possibility into the pilot, then pare down the clutter once they figure what works. Everything's in the mix except a car chase. And then there's a car chase. (Under the el tracks!)

"The Mob Doctor" is whacked out of its gourd, but the cast has the stones to sell this stuff. (Bonus points for atmospheric shooting in Chicago.) No, it's not exactly "House." But it isn't like any other show, either, with its mad mix of moral dilemmas, medical crises, family ties, double-life-living and, y'know, rubouts 'n' stuff.

BOTTOM LINE Cut some slack for a show that's too ambitious. Better than more of the same-old.

GRADE B

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