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Private Practice Review
The morning of Pearl Harbor, right?
I didn't know Private Practice was a spinoff of Grey's Anatomy until I started watching it and brought up the IMDB page. Goddamnit! Grey's Anatomy is a godawful program I've thankfully never had the displeasure of seeing. But thanks to the idiocy of Private Practice, I now understand the evils of that atrocity of a program. Why would Grey's Anatomy need a spinoff? There are enough shitty, bathetic soap opera things on television already. Grey's Anatomy times two doesn't need to happen. Americans suffer enough with that crap on the air without this crap being on the air too. Shonda Rhimes is behind both shows, and more proof of the idiocy of letting women have input in the behind the scenes work in Hollywood. She wrote Princess Diaries 2: Royal Enragement and Crossroads for fuck's sake. She doesn't deserve to have hands with which to write, much like two prime time television shows. With Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice, she is shown to be a threat to the human race. Extinguish the vile weed that she is so there will be no more inanity with the special Rhimes flavor on primetime television. I wish I had my own special team of snipers.
Since this is a soap opera, you're supposed to care about the motley crew of characters more than the medical cases they take on each week. I mean, who fucking remembers if the assholes on General Hospital even practice fucking medicine? The practice films a commercial which serves as an introduction that reminds returning viewers of who the fuck's in the cast, or showing what the program has to offer to people like me who knew nothing about Private Practice. From what I can tell, the cast consists of black woman, black man/Taye Diggs, white bitch, another white bitch, wimpy guy, white guy, other white guy, other white bitch. There may be more, there may be less, I don't know. The character who comes from Grey's Anatomy is named Addison, but I know nothing about her because I have better knowledge in my brain. I'd much rather know about the specifics of Brezhnev's economic policies than the character movements on Grey's Anatomy and related programs. I'm a better person for it too, I think. It's not a stretch to say people who can give names for all of the people on Private Practice would be better off dead. What could they contribute to society? The characters have no personalities, making them truly unmemorable. Usually when I'm watching shit I can latch onto one or two people on the show that pique my interest, but there's fucking no one here.
See, women are pathetic voids who compensate for their loathsome 'existence' through thoughtless purchases of capitalist idolatry and fattening, nutrition free food! Shonda Rhimes I believe is actually a pen name for Christopher Hitchens or Frank Miller.
The main plot for the season 2 premiere is that the black woman, who's in charge of the practice (which is called Oceanside Wellness, the worst possible name for anything), doesn't know how to manage the practice's money and she wasted the last of it on the commercial. I don't think it's particularly inventive, storytelling-wise, for a black person to be unable to manage money. Quite racist too, showing it takes a white person to get the black woman to admit she's a financial fuckup. "This is what happens when you leave Blackie Drago in charge!" What next, Taye Diggs taking too long to go to the sto'? It's not surprising for a show created by a white woman to feature racism, but Shonda Rhimes is black, making it more disheartening. Girl apparently knows how to write as a white woman for white women, what with the show resembling a KKK meeting in terms of demographics, token blacks excluded. Then again, perhaps I'm overreacting because from watching Private Practice I'm pretty sure Shonda Rhimes hates all of humanity. Lack of funds isn't a compelling storyline because the audience already knows the place won't shut down during the season, so it's fucking pointless. The fucks will come up with some ingenious means to save the practice, or some rich elderly asshole will leave all their capital with the practice upon their death because Addison or whoever the fuck gave the geezer one last blowjob.
When you've been in the shithouse for so long, can Private Practice truly be called Taye Diggs slumming it?
Private Practice's medical storylines this episode ("A Family Thing", which to me suggests you ought to kill your family if they're watching this tripe) likewise show little thought or intelligence. Private Practice splits the action between the three female doctors and the three male doctors. For the women, who obviously must be involved with the production of babies since they have no other attributes about them (besides purse purchasing, of course), a man and woman want their baby delivered prematurely because having it early will save the life of their son, who has leukemia and needs umbilical cord blood to survive. But that could jeopardize the life of the baby! The classic moral dilemma of umbilical cord blood usage. It's riveting shit if you're missing several chromosomes. For the man, he must deal with a boy who wants to have unprotected sex with his girlfriend (cause condoms are for pussies, am I right?)...BUT HE'S ALSO HIV-POSITIVE. And bees come out of his dickhole when he comes. African killer bees. This is seriously one of the most hilarious instances of manufactured retarded drama I've ever seen on network television. And I saw every episode of fuckin' Becker.
At dinner, the whole gang discusses the plot, namely the HIV-positive kid. Addison thinks it's wrong for people to keep a secret like that whereas Naomi defends the decision. See, they use the question of whether or not to tell the boy he's HIV-positive into an argument about whether or not to tell the rest of the cast about the Practice's financial problems! It's that kind of veiled passive-aggressive arguing I love to hear on soap operas, even though it makes my ears want to bleed. When dude decides to tell the kid he's HIV-positive, the parents are pissed off and he's especially pissed off BECAUSE HE JUST HAD SEX WITH THE GIRL. Oh shit, son! ("I ATE ALL YOUR BEES!" he yells to the doctor.) The outburst of the kid is one of the funniest scenes I've ever seen on television. I don't really think that was the point, though. The storyline ends well, though, as the doctor is able to teach the kid and the girl he probably just infected with an incurable virus about what HIV really means. It has all the trappings of an after school special. I was surprised Magic Johnson didn't show up to explain the 'magic' behind HIV. God, I'd love it if it didn't fill me with so much fucking rage. If you live in America and don't know what HIV is and what it means in 2008, you're a fucking moron who deserves to die a horrible, painful death.
That's 60% of any given episode.
As for the baby/dying son bullshit, the parents remain adamant about having the kid whereas some doctor bitch disagrees. The parental justification is "I've smelled his skin, I know Jason." That's actually...a really creepy thing to say about your dying son. What does skin smelling have to do with it? Stalkers and rapists and serial killers and dogs somehow turned into human beings care about the smell of skin, not regular people. I don't really care how it's resolved because the important (well, in the context of this shit) conclusion involves black man Taye Diggs taking over the practice from his ex-wife without her knowledge. It's a hostile takeover! Hurt feelings and lack of trust ensue. It would be an interesting development if I a) liked/cared about any of the people on the show, b) liked/cared about the show itself or c) if my brain had been replaced with a small length of Hot Wheels track. No doubt it is a move done to fuel more relationship drama as opposed to...well, anything approaching anything I'd want to watch.
Interpersonal subplots occur too to fill up time, but I care about that shit even less. The main chick Addison must decide which guy she wants to pursue, which I assume happens every single episode. As the majority of soap operas' escapism rests on every single woman on the program having several men to choose from, all of them attractive and great and willing to do anything for them, it explains why Addison and all the other white women must choose between so many attractive, available men. (The black woman doesn't count because network television refuses to sexualize a black woman unless she's in a relationship with a white dude.) Me, I don't understand Addison/Kate Walsh's appeal: those eyes of her suggests to me she's dead on the inside, and her willingly appearing in Private Practice gives ample evidence to her being dead inside. "A Family Thing" also proves another longstanding theory of mine: in both of these Rhimes programs, the main chick cries a lot. Sure enough, Addison cries. Women have relationships and cry and think about babies. Shonda Rhimes: revolutionary feminist. I don't think Dave Sim could make a show more hateful towards women.
Were this a 90s Image comic, kid would retaliate by injecting the doctor with his HIV blood against his will.
My medical TV knowledge begins and ends at House, because there's no real way to do an innovative medical procedural on network television, it eventually just ending up a web of relationships and grade school level character interaction. Private Practice does nothing to disprove my beliefs and instead strengthens them. Who to date takes precedence over anything medical, which is not surprising considering how fucking boring and predictable the medicine is. It's not like House where the team must find out why someone is sick before they pass the point of no return. Both the HIV kid and the preemie were ethical dilemmas, neither of them complex. You tell the kid before he ends up sticking a bitch with his Magic Johnson. Give birth to the baby prematurely because if the dying kid dies the parents will forever resent the newborn who could've saved their majestic skin scent son. So the viewer ends up seeing countless scenes of women begging, crying, mulling and generally giving no thought to anything not involving boys boys boys. Goddamnit, we can't be far away from Addison asking out four eyed schmuck to the practice's Sadie Hawkins dance.
Ooh, I wonder who the baby's gonna hook up with! I bet it's Dell.
Private Practice could've had a good hook in exploring the the costs of healthcare, the discrepancies between public health and private practices, the role of insurance companies...if the show was on HBO...and created by David Simon...and not starring anyone who's in the cast. It would be interesting because it's never been done before. One can't make a gritty Shield-esque medical program (the results would be akin to Shark or Canterbury's Law), yet a Wire-like one is certainly possible. The farthest medical dramas go into the institutional aspects inherent in the American healthcare system is the ever standard (and here employed) generic "budget cuts", financial trouble bullshit which miraculously is solved in the span of a couple of episodes. And although the characters are assholes, Private Practice never does anything to explain why doctors would prefer to work in a private facility (most likely because they're cash-chasing scumbags like those Cuban exile docs). Well, you know, all that fucking Wire shit is boring. McNulty should've been the McDreamy to Kima's Meredith (Kima wouldn't be a lesbian because lesbians don't make for ratings unless they're lipstick). Clearly America needs more lighter than air romantic retard dramas than they need 'artistic merit'. Also, America needs some nukes dropped on it.
I just don't get why this show exists. I understand Grey's Anatomy: bored housewives and women who hope to become failures at life (and most often succeed at that less-than-daunting task) like the soap opera elements and wish they were Dr. Grey's Anatomy, dating "McDreamy" or "McSteamy" or "McBigDick" or whatever. I get it. But Private Practice? There is literally no appeal for anyone on the show. Nothing. NOTHING. You want to watch Grey's Anatomy, you watch Grey's Anatomy (or better yet, you rent out a Smith & Wesson and 'clean' it). The critical reception to Private Practice suggests it's worse than Grey's Anatomy by a mile, a conception I do not dispute insofar as there's no fucking way Grey's Anatomy could ever possibly fucking be worse. Even if Grey's Anatomy ended in an execution of a real person every week, it wouldn't be worse than Private Practice, as Private Practice surely must kill what adds up to several brains worth of brain cells with each episode. Fuck this show. Kill it. Kill it dead and then kill it again and again until Shonda Rhimes' face no longer resembles even the most liberal approximation of a human face.