Just finished watching the finale of Nip/tuck. To those who’ve never heard of the show, it’s a drama about two plastic surgeons, Dr. Christian Troy (Julian McMahon) and Dr. Sean McNamara (Dylan Walsh), who happen to be best friends since college and are now business partners. The story revolves around these two main characters and their personal lives as well as the interesting personalities they encounter through their work.

We initially watched the show out of curiousity, we’re big fans of Julian McMahon and would like to know if this new show is a better gig for him. We first noticed McMahon in Charmed as Alyssa Milano’s love interest, Cole Turner. As one of the lead stars of the now Golden Globe awardee for Best Television Series for Drama, I’d say he got a better deal indeed.

Anyway, as I was saying, the finale for the second season was aired today and I’m left wanting more. Which led me to think about what made the show click with me, as I once thought that a show about plastic surgeons is incredibly shallow. I had no illusions that it would regularly feature people who’d like to change their appearance for vanity’s sake. So what has changed?

Well, for one, the situations the protagonists get into were interesting and sometimes even hilarious. One recent episode shown was of a pretty Latina lady who’d like to go under the knife to be a copy of Jennifer Lopez. She’s under the impression that once she looks like J.Lo, stardom would automatically follow. How would they convince her that life doesn’t work out that way and that being a copy of J.Lo just makes her that, a cheap copy?

Then there’s the steady memorable women – wife Julia McNamara, gay anesthesiologist Liz Winters, psycho model Kimber Henry, sex addict Gina Russo, cancer victim Megan O’Hara, female circumcision sufferer Manya Mabika, Saks applicant Bobbi Broderick, disfigured model Naomi Gaines, stigmatist Agatha Ripp, conjoined twins Rose and Raven Rosenberg, blind Natasha Charles and the fascinating Ava Moore (played by Famke Jannsen). As you can see, women have a big role in the show perhaps because a lot of plastic surgery patients are women.

Although all of these women are flawed and mostly misguided, they come across as being strong in their own way. They have their own problems and they may not choose the right thing but somehow you find something in them to love and admire anyway. Take Kimber for example, she has given everything for her love for Dr. Troy and has gotten into one bad situation to the next. And yet she’s still there, still loves Christian but now realises that maybe she’ll never have him. She’s currently trying to set up a business on her own. Sure she’s producing porn movies but at least she’s not crying in some corner still pining hopelessly for Christian. Maybe she’s moving on in her own way and maybe, just maybe, there’s hope for her yet.

Some people say that the show lacks moral center because it may glorify vanity, drugs and sex. Maybe so, but it also teaches us that there’s redemption for everyone, that changing your appearance may make you look attractive but it won’t give you happiness, that everything you do have consequences and you’ll have to face them sooner or later. Watching the characters in the show does not make me want to emulate them, instead I live vicariously through them. I watch them do the dangerous things they do and see that none of them are happy despite plastic surgery, money and fame. But then again maybe they’ll finally find salvation next season. Here’s to hoping they do…

Published in: on January 28, 2005 at 1:22 am  Leave a Comment  

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