Parents' Guide to

Mercy Street

By Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Soapy Civil War hospital drama has lots of blood, history.

TV PBS, Online Drama 2016
Mercy Street Poster Image

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Is It Any Good?

Our review:
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Kids say (2):

This intense series, which is based on the real Mary Phinney's memoirs, shows how gritty life was in a Civil War hospital. Although the show is fictional, the stories based on Phinney's writings and other published memoirs of the era offer some insight into the way medicine was practiced at the time, as well as the way the turbulent political, economic, and social climate of the time affected the lives of those living in the Southern border town.

It takes on a soap-opera-like quality at times thanks to its extensive cast of characters and the way their past and present lives intersect. Adding to this is the vast mix of story lines, which range from doomed romances and spying to disturbing narratives about corrupt officers and lingering slavery practices. There's also lots of blood and gore thanks to the endless images of horribly injured and dying soldiers. But these scenes are offered in context and help create a loosely accurate -- albeit entertainingly polished -- portrayal of what doctors and volunteer nurses had to endure during this difficult time.

TV Details

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