Saving Hope Review: Power Struggle

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Saving Hope focused on characters making decisions tonight. Some good and some bad, but decisions nonetheless. And some editor made the decision to bring back the blue light, which made me question what that person was thinking. But I digress.

"Consenting Adults" dealt with what happens when the people we love, or for whom we're caring, make choices we disagree with and the consequences of those decisions. It also firmed up what I love and dislike about this show.

Making Contact

Just to get it out of the way, we'll start with what I dislike about so we can end on a positive note.

First, the medical jargon they force the actors to use is almost over-the-top. I wrote in the first few Saving Hope reviews that this didn't feel very medical. What I think I meant is that it doesn't feel like the medical aspect of this show comes very naturally to these actors. The dialogue during the surgical scene tonight was almost laughably bad. There was a complete six or seven line exchange of nothing but medicines and procedures and none of it felt real.

If you want me to believe this is a medical drama, study other medical dramas who've done medicine better and then try again. Right now it really feels like these actors and actresses are just playing doctor. If that's the case, let's just fix everything with a bandage and call it a day.

The second thing that is making me a little cranky week to week is the uneven writing of Daniel Gillies' character, Joel. One week he's an altruist who wants to give his patient the best possible outcomes. The next he's a cocky surgeon. Then he's a cuddly teddy bear having trouble becoming exclusive with his girlfriend. Then he's convinced his patient is crazy without so much as a conversation with the man and snaps at the psych resident whose consult he requested.

If this is an attempt at nuance for this character, it's failing.

Nuance is subtle. It's a doctor who will speak his mind with authority, maybe even be an ass, and then deliver a cup of coffee to the recipient of his verbal attack without acknowledging that the coffee is an apology. This, quite frankly, is a poorly fleshed out and understood character. If Joel were a med student, or even a resident, and in the process of "finding himself," then Joel's back and forth nature would be slightly more understandable. But that's not the case here. And what makes this more difficult to bear is the fact that Gillies is really talented. He's doing the best he can with what he's given. But what he's being given isn't spectacular.

I love-hate that Charlie's ex-wife wants to petition for decision-making privileges as far as Charlie's care is concerned. I love it because I hope it brings out a little feistiness in Alex. We started to see that tonight when Alex told Melanda that Dawn wasn't allowed in Charlie's room. We need to see more of that because it develops that character. I hate this plot, however, because it's just such a sucker punch. I felt the sting of her words and kind of wanted to slap her for being so high-and-mighty. But, this serves the purpose of making me want to know more about this marriage and why it didn't work out and helps to explain, at least a little bit, why the ex-wife was introduced this season. She is yet another battle Alex has to fight.

What I love completely, however, is Charlie. All things Charlie.

I love flashback Charlie. I love in-between Charlie. I even love coma Charlie.

The interactions Charlie has with the patients who are in-between and dying have been and continue to be my favorite part of this show. Enough so that I say it week after week. (To read a few of them, check out the Saving Hope quotes page.) Tonight, however, was perfect. Here was a woman who was content to be in the in-between because it meant she didn't have to face a life she wasn't sure she wanted. Charlie helped her realize that she wanted a better, different life, so when she awoke, while she didn't remember him specifically, she remembered her decision to be happy.

Charlie, even in the in-between, is still saving lives despite the fact that he can't seem to save his own.

What did you think of tonight's episode? What are you loving and hating about Saving Hope in general? Do you think it's going to survive, or is it on life support like Charlie?


Editor Rating: 3.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.2 / 5.0 (60 Votes)

Miranda Wicker is a Staff Writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.


I hate when the epasoide is over !
i LOVE Saving Hope.
makes you want to keep watching


I can understand when people find this show boring. I think the show is having a hard time finding it's niche. It's not sure if it's a medical drama, or a supernatural one, and therefore, not living up to either. I think they need to flesh out the supernatural portion a bit more. Never answer all of the questions, but I'd love to see Charlie explore. Can he leave the hospital? Any other coma patients to come across? etc. Perhaps they could parallel what he's going through in his life with that's going on in the real world, rather than physically connecting the two with a patient who almost dies. But they might just have to work up to all of this. That being said, the complicated and subtle nature of the show leaves a lot of potential for it to work itself up to, and they have amazing actors to work with. Michael Shanks is simply outstanding, and the show seems to revolve around his character's crisis. Just don't put him on the back burner! (Side note: I'm thrilled it's been picked up for a 2nd season (would love ABC to keep airing it!). I think shows like this need the time to become outstanding, but they do get there.)


To all you haters out there ain't nobody pointing a gun to your head and telling you to watch Saving Hope if you don't like this amazing show then don't watch. Better yet Fuck Off!!! I LOVE SAVING HOPE ALWAYS AND FOREVER!


Each week this show is losing my interest...we know that the first patient will either die or be in a coma so Charlie can converse with them...getting old


I've watched all the episodes and find this show extremely boring. I only continue to watch because of Daniel Gillies. Loved him in Vampire Diaries and like him in this show. The only other character I find interesting is the girl who play's Daniel's girlfriend in the show. I won't be sad if this is cancelled and hope that Daniel Gillies will get another show that will better utilize his talents.


I want to see more of charlie and his interaction with the people in a coma or dead. I was disappointed last episode when they did not let Alex be pregnant with charlie's baby. I felt this would have kept Alex tied to charlie, where as they way it stands now I see her moving on with life without Charlie. I have been in a situation where my mother was on a vent and in a long term care facility 50miles from my home and I had many conflicts between trying to be with her and still be with my family. That is a conflict Alex could have if she has a child. But most of all I would love to see Charlie come out of the coma with the ability to still see the dead and try to explain this to Alex.


Sad to say, but this show is losing its charm for me. It's trying to combine several other shows together and come up with its own take, but it's failing :( While I like most of the actors, the characters range from meh to annoying. I don't see this getting a second season, so hopefully, Charlie wakes up, in the finale, and they live happily ever after.


Think the show is hit or miss. Watched since the beginning. As far a medical dramas go, I've seen better. I can't figure out where this is going. I can't imagine someone being in a coma for an entire length of a series. Is he supposed to come out of the coma and still be able to "see dead or in-between people?" Think I watch to see how it plays out, but Charlie's outcome is getting a bit drawn out.


What is the name of the actress who portrayed the Indian bride who had the surgery? Cannot find anywhere. She's beautiful.


I love this show. I hope it is not cancelled. Seems to me a lot of the really good shows last only one season. Some of the less entertaining ones never go away.

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Saving Hope Season 1 Episode 7 Quotes

Charlie: Kinda want to jump back into it, don't you? Just get back into your body and make yourself wake up.
Patient: No, actually, I don't. I'm in no rush.

Alex: She's about to get married and she's too young for this. I can't just stand by and wait.
Shahir: Sometimes all we can do is wait.