Looking for your next binge? Night Shift may just be it. Of course, that depends on whether you like hospital-based drama or not. Set in San Antonia, Texas, Night Shift follows the team of doctors, nurses, and staff who work the night shift in the ER. It's easy to assume that this would be very similar to the likes of New Amsterdam, Grey's Anatomy, Chicago Med or ER but there are definite differences.
Night Shift follows a very specific timeline. Each episode starts at the beginning of the shift and ends when the shift is over. It doesn't cover the expanse of a normal hospital so the set is more confined and it leans heavily towards the military with many of the doctor's ex or current soldiers or marines. Because of this, there are plenty of flashbacks to Afganistan as various characters recount their time overseas at war.
It's tricky to pin down Night Shift. With four series, what started off as a medical drama slowly morphed into less about the medicine and more about the saving of the hospital with far more scenes set in Syria. That then impacts the hospital and the interplay between characters.
So what about those characters? Largely overacted and always very dramatic, we have Eoin Macken (Nightflyers) as Dr. TC Callahan who suffers from PTSD, and Jill Flint as Dr. Jordan Alexander who used to date TC but then started dating Dr. Scott Clemmens (Scott Wolfe) the on-call surgeon, before she broke up with him. Brendan Fehr stars as Dr. Drew Alister who struggles with coming out of the closet and Robert Bailey Jr. as Dr. Paul Cummings who struggles under the weight of his famous father's expectations.
The chemistry is good but the storylines are frankly ludicrous. The only problem is one that all tv dramas suffer from when they hit streaming services. Weekly, it probably made sense but if you binge it, the turnover of the cast and the overall trials and tribulations of the hospital just don't add up.
All that said, it is entertaining if you take it purely as a fictional tv show. Don't go comparing it to real-life – ER doctors don't normally perform open-heart surgery without so much as a mask on. And just because an army doctor did well on tour doesn't mean anybody would let them do field surgery at the side of Texan road.
If you're tired or mildly hungover and just want to lay on the sofa all day then Night Shift is excellent to stick on the tv. It doesn't require any real thought and will wash over you as contemplate whether you should have a nap or not.