HD Highlight: The Knick (Series Premiere)

The Knick: SoHo, 8.30 Thursday.

This sensational newcomer from Oscar-winning director Steven Soderbergh stars Clive Owen as a doctor in New York’s Knickerbocker Hospital at the turn of the 20th century and has been likened to the Deadwood of medical dramas. Said New York magazine: “Not since Deadwood has a period-drama production designed to a fare-thee-well and steeped in nasty atmosphere been so politically astute about who has power over whom and why–although the subtler brand of gallows humor and Soderbergh’s fondness for intricately choreographed long takes aligns The Knick with a different TV classic that Deadwood creator David Milch worked on, Hill Street Blues.” The Boston Herald alluded to another Hill St contemporary: “For fans of quality TV, The Knick will evoke memories of the South Boston-set St. Elsewhere. That show needed more than a season to work out its kinks. The Knick is already off to a robust start.”  And the Kansas City Star compared it to a much more recently groundbreaking drama: “Like True Detective, The Knick benefits from a consistent vision and stellar cinematography. Its turn-of-the-century sets and costuming will transport viewers into the past more vividly than any stuffy sitting room in Downton Abbey. But it requires dedication to stick around with The Knick until the action gets going a few episodes in.” The Hollywood Reporter called it “a risky, rewarding walk on the dark side of medicine in early 20th century New York” but trade paper rival Variety thought it “a bit like an impressionistic painting: intriguing to look at, perhaps, but not always clear in conveying what the actual intent is. And while the characters and their relationships do progress, for the most part those arcs develop along assiduous and fairly predictable lines.”

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