FX’s new series Nip/Tuck is not for the squeamish. It is set in the world of plastic surgery, and “surgery” is the operative term there — people getting cut open and oozing blood shows up here aplenty. However, they let you know what’s going on right up front, with someone’s ass being sliced open for some ass-backward surgery (literally) right in the first few minutes.
The series is focused on a pair of surgeons, one a slick, attractive Goofus and the other a bland, unloved Gallant. The initial story seems to make it clear that being Goofus is the more satisfying of the two, a sadly easy choice for a TV show to make.
This is a drama, although it is not clear totally from the first episode what the drama is going to be. Certainly, there will be family drama, which is playing out in terms too broad to be involving. Gallant’s marriage is too dead, his wife’s attraction to his partner is too convenient, it’s cheap drama that seems to want to masquerade as something more.
But the first episode also focused on a criminal getting plastic surgery, which brought the shoe into crime drama mode. That storyline appears to have been concluded in the pilot itself. If they try to pull the series in that direction too often, it will strain credulity; the life of plastic surgeons may logically go many directions, but it would make a poor base for a crime-of-the-week show.
The production doesn’t look cheap and shoddy, and the actors acquit themselves respectably. I’m just not sure whether there’s enough point to this. Still, it kept my attention to the hour. I’ll probably check out a couple more hours of this just to see what show they think they’re making.