New Amsterdam is a US medical drama series based on the book “Twelve patients: Life and Death at Bellevue Hospital”. In this programme, the action is based around the comings and goings surrounding the New York-based hospital which the series is named after – New Amsterdam.
The series is largely based on the main character who runs the hospital, Dr Max Goodwin (played by the excellent Ryan Eggold), and his unorthodox approach to getting things done by asking his trademark question “How can I help?”. This not only throws up problems and concerns for the hospital administration but also stirs up how the hospital treats its staff and patients. There are of course other regular members of the cast who help make the story more interesting with their own tales to tell and personal struggles. This is then combined with episodic storylines which involve not only the hospital staff but of course the patients and emergencies that you would expect a large city hospital to have to deal with.
When I first watched Season 1, the episodes had a tendency to have a slight air of being a little twee and predictable where everything worked out at the end of each. However, as the season progressed, it became grittier and as you get to know the characters you start to see that they are complex and not perhaps as superficial as you might originally think.
Of course, being based in a hospital, you would expect scenes of a medical nature and some tough issues to be dealt with (literally life and death) and New Amsterdam does not shy away from these. Some viewers have said they have found it too gory and so if you are squeamish then perhaps this is not for you. If you can get through the first episode, then you are probably going to be okay.
Without giving any spoilers, the start of the second season annoyed me as I suspected that the writers had decided to neatly square away the end of Season 1 cliff-hanger. This left me feeling somewhat cheated until I realised that all was not as it seemed, and the second season built nicely on the first with a few twists and turns as it went.
Where the drama is headed is hard to tell, I suspect there will need to be an injection of some new characters as the seasons progress, but for those people who have already been hooked, then the good news is that there are already another three seasons commissioned.
If you are a fan of US medical dramas (like ER And Grey’s anatomy) then this is one to add to your Amazon Prime watch list.