The Mob Doctor “Family Secrets” Review

The Mob Doctor (FOX) Family Secrets Episode 2

Sometimes, shows get better once you get past the pilot, and I actually hoped that would happen for The Mob Doctor. But that didn’t happen.

It stayed mostly the same. Some could say it got a little worse. I think if the writing wasn’t clear enough on the wall concerning the life of the show, this episode should have made it completely plain. Basically, all the stuff we’re supposed to care about doesn’t really have much behind it for us to care about. All of the scenes in each act just sit, begging you to take them seriously. Anyway, on with the review.

Grace is in another bind with the mob–this time she has to help a mobster who is close to renal failure. Of course, the mobster is so notorious that he can’t be seen in public, so he can’t just be admitted into the hospital. Grace gets the mobster to give her a urine sample in an empty water bottle so she can take it back to the hospital and have her sidekick, nurse Rosa “Ro” Quintero run tests for her.  Rosa tells her that her mystery patient is in some dire straits, so we get to the point of the show where we’re supposed to be compassionate for Grace and put ourselves in her position. She decides to break major protocol and admit the mobster into the room of a recently-deceased patient.Rosa’s trust in Grace is a little nutty, even though she does feel odd about some of Grace’s actions. Grace tells her she wouldn’t do these shady things if she didn’t have to. As a doctor to the mob, she shouldn’t be opening her mouth–saying this is way too much information and should get her in trouble.

Grace using a dead man’s room is shady on tons of levels, as its obvious the man’s death obviously hadn’t been logged into the system. In real life, I would hope that a hospital would take care of a dead patient as soon as possible, seeing how he’s hooked to all the machines that should produce alarms if something’s going wrong. However, according to The Boston Globe, patient alarms can go unheard, which is quite dangerous. This sad fact about hospitals makes Grace’s actions even colder, since she’s playing on the hospital’s sometimes callous nature.

I can’t say what I’d do if I was faced with Grace’s situation, but I would think that the mob would have underground illegal doctor’s and dentist’s offices swarming with black market medical equipment and doctors who have gone rogue. I would think the mob would take their sick to those places and not even fool with people like Grace. At the very least, if they wanted to fool with people like Grace, they could smuggle her to those underground offices and make her do what she needs to do to save their kind.

Anyway, she is able to run various tests on the man without anyone questioning her as to why she’s treating an undocumented patient. This should be the very moment when her boss, Dr. Flanigan, gets on her case about not completing her rounds due to taking care of what is supposed to be a dead man. Eventually, he does do this, but it’s several scenes too late, when orderly/undercover mobster Franco (James Carpinello) lies and says, in so many words, that Grace is treating his sick relative and if he has a problem with it, he should just stick it where the sun don’t shine. Somehow, this gets Flanigan off Grace’s back. How, I don’t know, because having Franco basically admit that Grace is going rogue by working on someone who wasn’t registered seems like it would put Flanigan firmly on Grace’s case. But whatever, right? Grace has to get her mob work done somehow.

To make a long story short, the mobster is saved by Grace; we come to find out that he was only sick due to his wife slowly poisoning him. Of course, this means that later, we see the wife rolled into the emergency room, dead from the same poison she gave her husband. The woman’s ring finger is cut off and Grace seems to realize again that the mob is full of dangerous people.

Other things to talk about:

  • Grace’s soon-to-be-ex boyfriend Brett helps a bride-to-be with a kidney tumor that makes her freak out at intervals. If a real kidney condition can cause random freak outs, let me know in the comments section, since I’m no trained doctor. But what I’m getting at is that this part seemed House-esque in terms of the outlandish illness. This plotline shows one of the biggest flaw this show has, which is not knowing what type of show it wants to be.
  • Grace and Franco being friendly and slightly flirty with each other alludes to the triangle the show seems desperate to set up. This is why I said Brett is going to be Grace’s ex soon. I don’t get why Franco is being played so sympathetically. He’s part of the mob, for goodness’ sake! I know mobsters are still people, but even still, they should seem dangerous at some point! Franco never seems dangerous; he just seems like the quintessential “bad boy” who can have his edges rounded out by “the right woman.” Ugh. By the way, Grace’s mom sussing out Brett is a non-scene. It didn’t add anything to the show, despite it wanting to set up how confused Grace is becoming as to what she wants in a relationship.
  • Also the mob itself is a bit weak. Nothing’s threatening about any of them, including Grace’s confidante Constantine. One thing I forgot to address in my “Pilot” review is how inexplicable it is for Constantine to get back in the mob game for seemingly no reason. What’s he getting out of mob life now? It’s not like he’s got any fortune to protect now that he’s “reformed!” What exactly are these deals he’s cutting, and how do they help him?
  • Grace’s brother is a prick. Grace is right to call him a deadbeat, because he attempts to go back to college before storming out and then decides to take out his frustration on Grace, who does have a job and is still trying to do something with her life. This argument between them was probably the most realistic moment of the show, even if it didn’t really go anywhere.

I don’t care about anything. That’s the most frustrating thing. I don’t particularly care about the bride-to-be missing her wedding day or her husband-to-be getting whiny over her panic attack. I don’t care about the supposed suspense there is in Grace’s deadbeat brother finding out about Grace’s double life and asking to become part of the mob. I certainly don’t care about Grace’s supposed debt to the mob (which should be nonexistent now that Constantine killed the mobster who was after Grace and excused her from the crime scene) and I especially don’t care about Grace suddenly having questions about who killed her father and who her father really was. I thought she hated him and thought of his death as a relief. When did this sudden sympathy for her dad come up?

By the way, I thought it was completely understood that Constantine killed her father! Why is the identity of her father’s killer suddenly a huge over-arching mystery? And did I miss what the “family secrets” were? (Sound off in the comments section if you can tell me what they were.)

Anyway, stay tuned for another rip-roaring adventure where Grace has to save yet another mobster by breaking rules and somehow not getting fired!