By EMILY WEIKL
With hit shows such as “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal” and “How To Get Away With Murder,” producer Shonda Rhimes has established workplace dramas are undoubtedly hers. “Station 19” recently joined her catalog on March 22.
“Station 19” focuses on a fire station in Seattle, Washington, the same location of “Grey’s Anatomy.” Doctor Ben Warren (played by Jason George), joins the station after leaving Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital. Like “Grey’s Anatomy,” there are more shows like it. Stacy McKee, the show’s creator, chose to focus on the characters instead of the flashiness.
“I approach telling a story from the characters I build, and where I go personally and where I take them with the environment filtering into that,” said McKee. “That’s how I break story, and I want to do right and true with our
characters first.” Entertainment publication Variety agrees with McKee in that the show has some elements of being a Rhimes drama, but not everything.
“The new drama dials down the heightened emotions and quicksilver banter that are hallmarks of the Rhimes brand for a sturdier, subtler story,” Variety wrote.
While the premise and execution of the series is great, there is some room for improvement. One of them is being too on the nose in approaching feminism.
“‘Station 19’ is a series that’s keenly aware of the difficulties of being a woman in a male-dominated profession, and there are moments when it lays on the rah-rah dialogue a bit thick,” according to entertainment website Vulture, “to the point where it seems as if the series is trying to hard-sell itself to you, even though you’re already sitting right there watching it.”
Like most of Rhimes’ television, it is melodrama. There are dramatics in “Station 19” that might seem convoluted and moments that come off as sappy, but that’s the point.
“At the same time, Rhimes’ series feel ‘real’ and relatable, however absurd they may become, because they are packed with intense emotions — and many people do feel packed with intense emotions,” according to The Los Angeles Times. “Like big pop ballads in which everything matters terribly, these shows give shape to yearning.”
There is a reason why “Grey’s Anatomy” is currently in it’s 14th season. Doctors, and now firefighters, dealing with life and love is what keep shows like these going and viewers wanting more. “Station 19” airs on Thursdays at 9 p.m. on ABC.