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Series premiere: Bloodletting and Miraculous Cures miniseries

In television on 01/10/2010 at 10:08 am

Miniseries name
Bloodletting and Miraculous Cures

Debuts
Sunday, Jan. 10, 2010 on HBO Canada at 8 p.m. ET

Regularly airs
Over eight Sundays, on HBO Canada at 8 p.m. ET and repeating on The Movie Network or Movie Central channels

Premise
This is a behind-the-scenes look at the lives of three doctors in a Toronto hospital called Mercy, their emotional entanglements and the couple’s desire to have a baby. It’s told in flashback, covering the time from medical school to the present. Based on the Giller Prize-winning book of short stories by Vincent Lam, also a doctor.

Primary cast and crew
Shawn Ashmore (X-Men films, Terry) plays Fitz, the womanizing world traveller who can’t stay away from Mercy hospital. Ashmore is also the miniseries’ exec producer.

Mayko Nguyen (ReGenesis, Rent-a-Goalie) is Ming, who is caught between Fitz and Chen, but also labouring under pressure from her family and herself. Outwardly cool, inwardly roiling.

Byron Mann (Streetfighter, Invincible, Dark Angel) is Chen, Ming’s husband and Fitz’s friend.

But what do I know anyway? After having previewed the miniseries …
I expected to love this, and in the end I liked it, but the first two hours left me cold. The particularities of this romantic triangle — it’s not the cliche that it is in other TV series and movies — and the medical challenge of the couple’s attempt to conceive are revealed in flashback. Playing with time in a mystery narrative can be very effective, but here, after four hours I was still uncertain when some scenes were taking place. That distraction would not be fatal, but two of these characters, Ming and Chen, are chilly and seething respectively. Patience pays off and all three characters do eventually draw you in, but were this viewing not for review I doubt I would have stayed the course.

Official website
Series and cast info, with video (the first episode is viewable online), as well as behind-the-scenes video.

Facebook
91 fans, lots of video, link to watch first episode online, not a lot of fan chatter.

Can’t wait for the next new-series preview?
Human Target is an adaptation of a comic-book series about a guy who assumes the role of threatened individuals and makes it right in a way that Mike Holmes would not have considered. Premieres on CTV Friday Jan. 15, on Fox Sunday Jan. 17.

Wondering when the other new series and returning series are kicking off?
Click here for my select list of fall 2010 premieres and other important dates. Who am I to tell you what to do, but you could consider bookmarking it…

— Denise Duguay

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