For viewers bored or distressed by the constant gore and breakneck speed of hospital dramas like ER, GREY'S ANATOMY comes as a breath of fresh air. Unlike other shows set in the world of medicine, this series is just as concerned with its characters' personal lives as with their medical careers, and thrives by stressing the way in which they intertwine. After all, for surgical interns who have chosen to dedicate their lives to medicine, the hospital largely becomes their home. Extremely well-written, the series mixes serious issues like mortality with funny storylines and wit. Each character is well developed and individualized, coming off as real rather than a stereotype. The relationships between the characters are what make the show unique, with interesting bonds developing like the one between vulnerably hardheaded Christine (Sandra Oh in an Emmy Award-winning role) and the show's main protagonist Meredith (Ellen Pompeo). Self-pitying, stubborn, selfless, and determined all at the same time, each character plays a crucial role in the show's pleasing ensemble feel. Rather than standing on its own, each medical challenge sheds some light on the doctors' personal experiences, bringing the hospital environment to a refreshingly relevant level. While the series may not be the most realistic medical drama on television, it is certainly the most compelling and entertaining, containing such juicy plotlines as love triangles, affairs between coworkers, and secret crushes and romances. A thoughtful soundtrack full of indie artists like Rilo Kiley helps give the show its youthful tone, while narration by Ellen Pompeo's character highlights each episode's themes, helping to bridge the gap between the show's lighthearted issues and more somber ones. This release contains every episode from the show's highly addictive first season.
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