Set in a County General Hospital, the multi-Emmy winning ER
is very much in the tradition established by the earlier Hill Street Blues
. Like that series, ER
is also set in Chicago and features a range of strong characters whose personal lives often reflect the turmoil of their working environment. It also similarly features a deft, fast-moving mix of comedy, intrigue and tragedy. It's could also be seen as a precursor to The West Wing
, in that we regard with some awe the ability of these characters to keep on top of the mounting chaos in their day-to-day lives and the myriad problems thrown at them. In ER
, this chaos may mean crack addicts, violent patients tumbling through plate glass screens, vindictive senior staff or a Chief of Staff who insists that fellow surgeons operate on his sick dog.
ER is best known for introducing George Clooney to the world as the likable but maverick Dr Ross and has often featured star guests such as Sally Field and Ewan McGregor, while several seasons have seen the coming and going of various personnel. However, if one character embodies the strength of ER it's Dr Mark Greene (Anthony Edwards), whose dedication to his job has seen him turn down lucrative and cosier offers in the private sector, and who is an exemplar of decency, selflessness and emotional stability. The episodes dealing with his father's death were among the most moving in the series, touching as they did on a theme never far from ER's surface, that of reconciliation with mortality. --David Stubbs
The complete second series of the popular medical drama. In 'Welcome Back, Carter' Carter returns and Mark begins dealing with the problems of his new position. 'Summer Run' has Dr Ross meet a young firestarter. 'Do One, Teach One, Kill One' sees Jeanie end things with Benton. 'What Life?' finds Benton injured and thus prevented from performing surgery. 'And Baby Makes Two' has Kerry take a day off, leading to much joy among the other staff. 'Days Like This' sees tensions erupt in the ER when opposing gang members line up for treatment. 'Hell and High Water' has Doug rescue a trapped boy who is in danger of drowning. 'The Secret Sharer' finds Benton surprised when he hears that Jeanie has broken things off with her partner. 'Home' sees Hathaway and Jeanie try to find a new home for a schizophrenic student. 'A Miracle Happens Here' has the hospital visited by someone who looks very much like Father Christmas. 'Dead of Winter' finds Jen filing for divorce and the ER staff treating a mass of abandoned children. In 'True Lies' Benton asks Jeanie to accompany him when he gets an invitation to dinner at Vucelich's. 'It's Not Easy Being Greene' has Carol look after some worms and Benton discover some surprising information about Vucelich. 'The Right Thing' sees Carter peddling gossip about an affair between Susan and Mark. 'Baby Shower' finds the ER swamped with an influx of pregnant mothers. 'The Healers' has the hospital staff struggling to deal with the victims of a devastating fire. 'The Match Game' sees Ross and Benton argue over a professional decision. 'A Shift in the Night' finds Mark stretched to the limit on a busy night shift. In 'Fire in the Belly' Mark tries to come to terms with his new bachelor status and asks a woman out on a date. 'Fevers of Unknown Origin' has Susan try to forget her personal problems by throwing herself into her work. 'Take These Broken Wings' sees Al Boulet receive the results of a HIV test. And 'John Carter, M.D.' finds Carter approaching his graduation day.