I’m Recommending a TV Show – blogUT

The biggest and most exciting of all my Netflix pleasures is BBC’s Call the Midwife.

It follows a group of midwives (some nurses, some nuns) in an East London slum in the 1950s. Soldiers on the front line fighting for public health, they bring life into the post-war world, braving pain and hostility.
If you follow one UofT blog TV recommendation this year, let it be this one. Here’s why:

It’s Just as Good as Anything from the US

The Golden Age of TV Drama, which we’ve either just entered or are about to leave, is defined by excellent dramas that are distinctly American. Breaking Bad and Mad Men dance around with Gatsby-ish ideas of men finding second lives; The Wire and Orange is the New Black are about American institutions that aren’t done the same anywhere else in the world.
But there’s good drama across the Atlantic, if you’re willing to look for it. Don’t let the fan-service of Sherlock and Doctor Who throw you off. Call the Midwife is as serious, and seriously excellent, as whatever the Americans can dish up.


It’s not Afraid to be Sentimental

“Right in the feels” is a cutesy way of saying that someone’s felt something, but I don’t see why we need to be cutesy. When did it become bad to cry? These days great TV and good movies focus on ambivalence, anger, resentment… interesting emotions, but not powerful ones. Give me a show about the start of life and the brink of death. Give me the shadow of the Victorian workhouse, the poverty of a crumbling superpower, and the young women helping to bring new lives into a sometimes devastating world.




It’s not Afraid to be Sweet

When they’re not delivering babies or working with clients, the nurses of Nonnatus House talk about love, play monopoly, go to the movies, and have a bond so close you’ll want to be there with them. Because the tension of Call the Midwife comes from the environment – the patients, the world – there’s no need to pit characters against each other. There’s no Skylar/Walt or Betty/Don, no festering resentment or deep-seated unhappiness. Wouldn’t it be nice to like the characters for a change? Then get ready to love them.

The Guardian

It’s British

I mean come on.

Leave a Comment