Red Band Society takes unique spin on medical shows

Lauren Lee, Graphics Editor

After watching shows like Grey’s Anatomy and movies such as The Fault in Our Stars, you start to wonder how many more shows and movies can feature hospitals and diseases. The answer is quite a lot; however, the new show, Red Band Society, takes a different approach. It follows the lives of teenagers who live in a hospital ward, the teenagers who deal with day-to-day life and find unlikely friends through sickness.
Episode one starts off with two of the main characters, Dash and Leo, smoking in a closet. One of the nurses walks in, accuses them, drags them out and then that is when Dash and Leo make a lot of excuses such as “I thought this was the supply closet.” Then you start hearing a voice that tells you about their lives, which is none other than Charlie.

Despite being a show with comedy and drama, there is a deeper meaning to the obstacles the teenagers face. One of the most powerful quotes is “Luck isn’t getting what you want. It’s surviving what you don’t want.” The show makes you think what it is like to live through something so hard, to overcome it and to still enjoy life. The show is quite moving, and aims to focus on inspirational and humorous elements.
The characters each have their own distinct personality especially nurse Jackson, one of those sassy characters who doesn’t take anything from anyone but also has a soft spot. She rats Leo out for smoking, yells at a car driver because pedestrians have right of way, but then also comforts Jordyn and Leo in a time of need.

Charlie, the youngest of the main characters, is another one of those characters you cannot help but love; the first time you see him he is in a coma and is the one who is narrating parts of the show. Pretty ironic right?
But you can’t just pick one favorite character. All of the characters, from the doctors to the teenagers, are written perfectly. They each react to situations like real people and have flaws that make them unique, which is unlike other shows where the characters are too stereotypical and react to everything as if life was a walk in the park.

In the first three episodes, you start to meet more characters and learn about why they are in the hospital. One of the story arcs focuses on Jordi and his surgery for cancer, and even though this part of the plot is heart-wrenching, it is also meaningful.

In episode one, the characters have a party and bond while Leo gives everyone the hospital red bands, which is a signify moment for the show and the character who begin to grow as a group. Through each episode you discover that this is a laugh-through-the-tears sort of show.

I thought after watching so many different shows about hospitals and diseases, this one would probably be boring just like the rest of the genre. I was wrong. It takes a unique spin on ‘dealing with diseases,’ has beautifully written characters who are teenagers, and has an interesting plot that deals with life as well as deeper topics such as dealing with surgery, self-discovery and the making of unlikely friends.