I’ve been paying attention to the political scene both at home and abroad and find it bizarre enough to make captivating prime time viewing. However, until now I have managed to keep from being sucked into the maelstrom of mainstream “entertainment”.
Apparently millions and millions of people have been waiting breathlessly for the ending of the final season (8th year!) of Game of Thrones. Not me. I did read two or three of George Martin’s books but gave up when some mysterious lady in a far away place began raising dragons. King Arthur and Merlin and magical swords and all that stuff I’ve always enjoyed but I’m too old for a surfeit of dragons. (I understand these grew up on TV to be a metaphor for nuclear bombs.) I’m also too old to absorb a story one chapter at a time, a week apart, year after year. A good book takes a few days and it’s done.
Throughout all this Game of Thrones finale I’ve been in a quiet cocoon of cultural ignorance and, unless it’s on Netflix mighty soon, will remain there. The same goes for The Sopranos. That series apparently had blockbuster viewer statistics which are now being compared, unfavourably, to the Throne saga.
All this current hoopla got me wondering what else I’ve been missing and then, thanks to Netflix, I stumbled onto Grey’s Anatomy. All fourteen seasons (years) of it! In a bundle.
I recalled that everyone had been talking about Grey’s Anatomy but that once again I had ignored it. Maybe, I thought, it’s time to catch up. Besides, I always rather liked medical shows full of drama dedication desire and dissections.
So here I am binging on Grey’s Anatomy and just midway into the second season (year) what do I find in this particular cultural icon?
Well, all in one single episode in this ultra modern upscale hospital we have a situation where a doctor, the chief surgical resident (greatly beloved, respected and feared by the junior resident surgeons who call her “the Nazi” as a term of endearment) is defying nature and refusing to deliver her own baby without her husband present. Of course she doesn’t know that her husband, who drove too speedily to be by her side, is in a nearby OR having his skull partially removed by an ace of a surgeon who happens to be the semi-estranged husband of the Nazi’s obstetrician. Meanwhile in another nearby OR an ambulance gal (pretty, young, and petite) has a problem in that she has brought in a patient with an un-exploded bazooka grenade in his chest. This is explained by the fact that the patient, suitably dressed in military fatigues, is a re-enactment nut who chose the wrong moment to peer into the muzzle of his home made bazooka. I feel that logically it should have blown his head off thus shortening both him and the story but apparently it made a considerable hole in his chest, and remained there. Fortunately the little EMR gal had had the foresight to stick her entire hand into the cavity, stabilize the stalled missile, and put one finger into a tear in the heart to keep the patient from bleeding out.
All unessential personnel are ordered out in case the bomb explodes and the anesthesiologist complies with unseemly alacrity. For a period the EMR heroine is left alone, one hand in the cavity the other methodically pumping an oxygen bag. Fortunately the hospital’s other hot shot surgeon arrives — along with his mistress who is also a doctor and gung-ho to do or die at his side. She of course must be forcibly expelled (and he doesn’t even know she’s pregnant). But in come the bomb squad and another resident surgeon who happens to be Dr. Grey, the show’s titular heroine. Dr. Grey also happens to be the former mistress and current would-be lover of the hot shot who is currently opening the father-to-be’s skull in the other OR.
Seeing all these skilled people around her the little medic shows a great deal of common sense and suddenly takes off to safer parts leaving heroine Grey with her hand in the cavity and being told not to so much as jiggle the grenade. Dr.Grey is soon in a flak jacket which in case of an explosion will preserve her torso but I assume her head, hand and arm are expendable.
Dr. Grey’s hot shot surgical superior is standing by poised to do something interesting with his scalpel and the bomb guy is giving Grey orders to gently but swiftly remove the grenade when the Head Surgical Honcho slips in to report that the building plans show that the main oxygen supply runs under that OR and if the grenade explodes the whole shebang will go up. So of course they start off on a slow trip to a safer OR with their patient on the gurney and Grey with her hand around the bomb and her finger in the heart hole. (It’s only fair to report that Grey is under considerable additional stress in this episode because her estranged mother – a super surgeon in her own right – is elsewhere in the hospital suffering from Altzheimers and reliving her past which apparently included hanky-panky with the current Head Surgical Honcho and had to do with Grey’s estranged father doing a run.)
And, oh yes, how could I forget — while all this is going on there is a great deal of stress amongst the other young resident surgeons which is relieved by vigorous copulation. So far, it’s discrete — and so far there’s no really naked T and A in this epic.
I’m not sure how much more of this cultural drama the old heart can take. The series began in 2005 and went on for fourteen seasons (years). Maybe I’d better quit and dip into The Sopranos and even, gods willing, eventually into Game of Thrones. Or simply settle for the equally implausible but all-too-real TV dramas featuring Brexit, Trump, Pipelines, Scandal, Fossil Fuels, Fires, Floods, Tornadoes and other Catastrophic Scenarios.
Or re-read a good book.
One of my all time favourites is The Eagle and the Raven by Canada’s own Pauline Gedge. It chronicles Queen Boadicea’s valiant and bloody efforts to stem the Roman invasion and the accompanying rape and plunder of dear old Britain. Much more soothing.
* I gave this post its particular title because it seemed to be what today might pass for an all-purpose executive summary. It could just as easily be applied to US Attorney General Bill Barr’s 4 page summary of the Mueller Report.
Farce Fantasy Fact Fiction and Fal-de-ral. Copyright 2019 © Munroe Scott