Tuesday, April 28, 2015

TV Show Review: Royal Pains - Season 6

Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: More medical mysteries surrounded by wonderful characters and their personal drama
Cons: None worth noting
The Bottom Line:
Doctor entertains
Mixing drama, medicine
In perfect combo

"Can I Count on You Hank?"  "Don't You Always."

What I don’t know about medicine fills volumes, and it’s not a normal interest of mine.  Yet I continue to be hooked on Royal Pains because of the lovable cast of characters.  Season 6 was no exceptions as we continue to follow the adventures of the staff of HankMed.

If you are new to this fun show, HankMed is named after Hank Lawson (as played by Mark Feuerstein).  He is a doctor who, after he was unfairly fired from a hospital in New York City, wound up setting up a private practice as a concierge doctor in the Hamptons thanks to his brother Evan (Paulo Costanzo), who takes on the job of CFO.  Also on board right from the start is Hank’s physician assistant Divya (Reshma Shetty).  The business has become so successful that they added Dr. Jeremiah Sacani (Ben Shenkman), who has a little bit of trouble getting along with others at times.  Rounding out the cast is Evan’s wife Paige (Brooke D’Orssay).

This season picks up at the start of a new summer.  Hank has been gone for nine months working with Boris (recurring guest star Campbell Scott) to help him with his medical condition, but he’s back for a ceremony honoring Divya’s new baby.  But coming back just briefly doesn’t seem to be possible, and Hank gets drawn back in to the business, setting up a possible conflict with Jeremiah who has been running the medical side of the company while Hank was gone.  Meanwhile, housemates Divya and Jeremiah have to adjust to the mess that her new baby makes while she attempts to return to work.  Jeremiah, meanwhile, tries to move on from his crush on Divya and meets someone in a quite unexpected place.  But the biggest surprise of all is Emma, the new sister that Evan and Hank learn they have (played by Willa Fitzgerald).  Her appearance puts pressure on all the relationships in the Lawson family, including Paige and Evan’s marriage.  But is Emma all she claims to be?

Oh, you thought this was a medical mystery show?  Between the sometimes soap opera nature of the story lines, they do work in some medical mysteries.  Over the course of this season, they deal with pressure from the nearby hospital, take on a client who might be part of the mob, help a tennis pro, and deal with a birthday boy who gets out of hand at his own party.

As you can see, this show is definitely more about the characters than it is the medical mysteries.  Oh, the medical part is there, but if is often a sub-plot or even just an excuse to see the characters.  Whether it is the sub-plot or the main plot, I always find it believable and compelling.  Then again, as I said before, I really know nothing about medicine, so I’m probably not the best person to judge believability.

However, I keep turning in for the characters.  Really, I just love them – all of them.  At times, I might want to slap some sense into one or two, but in the end, I come back to loving them.  I think one reason I do is they all truly care for each other.  While there are some serious misunderstandings at times, they all work things out eventually.  I love to see that in a relationship and a show.  We need conflict.  I get that, but I like to see the happy endings, too.

The cast, as always, is superb.  The main actors know their characters well and bring them to life perfectly every week.  The guest cast matches that week to week, whether they just appear the once or recur though much of the season.  Sadly, some of the characters we met in the early seasons don’t seem to pop up as much as I would like any more, but that’s a minor complaint.

All thirteen episodes from the season are included in this three disc set in their native wide screen and full surround.  But it’s just a barebones release with no extras.  So if you’ve just seen these episodes, there’s little reason to rush out to buy the set, until you are ready for some fun revisiting the characters.

If you want to escape to a lovely destination spot but don’t have the money, may I highly recommend Royal Pains season 6.  And if you get sick while there, I know that Dr. Hank will be able to fix you up in no time at all.

Season 6 Episodes:
1. Smoke and Mirrors
2. All in the Family
3. A Bridge Not Quite Far Enough
4. Steaks on a Plane
5. Goodwill Stunting
6. Everybody Loves Ray, May
7. Electric Youth
8. I Did Not See That Coming
9. Oh, M.G.
10. Good Air/Bad Air
11. HankMed on the Half Shell
12. A Bigger Boat
13. Ganging Up

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