A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Despite frequently mature content (deaths; illness; death of family members, parents, children; crime; political intrigue; and more), there are messages about teamwork, communication, compassion, empathy. Show's sympathies are clearly with suffering patients and the doctors who care for them.
Positive Role Models
Doctors and nurses are often heroic -- and always try to do the right thing for their patients -- but they're also complex, flawed people whose personal problems sometimes get in the way of their work. This show's hero is a Syrian man who speaks Arabic to his friends and loved ones and practices the Muslim religion -- he is portrayed as a strong, ethical character. The rest of the cast is diverse, with women and people of color in strong roles.
Violence & Scariness
Expect graphic, bloody injuries: gory wounds, images of patients getting surgery, accidents that leave patients with glass sticking out of their bodies, etc. Patients sometimes die; expect to see dead bodies. A lot of high-intensity medical drama, like doctors yelling and running, beeping machines, medical equipment. Young children are occasionally in danger. We see family members grieving loved ones.
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Infrequent and includes "hell."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
References to drugs can be a part of medical care, like when a doctor asks a woman with a "racing heart" if she has used cocaine.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Transplant is a drama about a Syrian man who unexpectedly gets a job as a doctor in a prestigious hospital emergency room after immigrating to Canada. The show is low on sexual content (although young, attractive doctors are definitely available for romantic complications), cursing, and drinking/drugs (although drugs may be referred to as a part of medical care, like in a scene when a jittery woman is asked if she's used cocaine). Violence, though, can be intense, with sudden accidents accompanied by grievous and gory injuries. We see patients with bloody wounds, gory shots of a man using a power drill to relieve pressure in an injured man's skull, a young child choking to death, and more. Some patients die -- we see their dead bodies and loved ones grieving. Language is infrequent and includes "hell." Doctors and nurses are frequently heroic, and use empathy, communication, and compassion to treat patients and respond to their needs. The show's lead character is a Syrian man and Muslim, and the rest of the cast is diverse in terms of gender, age, race, religion, and ethnicity.
Is It Any Good?
Bashir Hamed's status as a Syrian refugee and shadowy background add some juice to these proceedings, but otherwise this is a fairly rote medical drama. Viewers who just can't get enough of scrubs, dense medical-gobbledygook dialogue, and sudden plot complications announced by the arrival of a gurney piloted by running doctors may be pleased with Transplant, because there is wheat within the chaff. With his expressive face and natural gravitas, Hamza Haq makes a creditable leading man, and it's certainly delightful to see a character of Middle Eastern extraction who's playing a hero instead of a terrorist. Hamed's relationship with his young sister Amira (Sirena Gulamgaus) feels touchingly authentic, and we're definitely interested in learning who this guy is, and what exactly drove him and Amira to emigrate.
However, between the moments of intrigue are dull spots that will remind you of every other medical drama you've ever watched. There are elements of House (with doctors intuitively and instantly grasping the root of a patient's mysterious ailment), of ER (with shameless drama milked from the suffering of sympathetic sick people), and of Grey's Anatomy (hot young doctors looking for love). And none of that is bad, it's just been done before, so to make this type of drama work, it has to shake things up somehow. Leaning on Bash's background just isn't enough, no matter how appealing Haq is as an actor. This drama needs a shot of adreneline; otherwise, the prognosis is meh.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.