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Scott D. Pierce: ABC adds fake cops, real docs

Published: Thursday, July 30 2015 10:16 a.m. MDT

Dr. Jon Dr. Jon "JD" Daniel, chief resident in cardiothoracic surgery at Brigham and Women's Hospital, operates with ABC producer-videographer Gena Konstantinakos standing over his shoulder. (Donna Svennevik, ABC)

The two shows ABC is premiering on Thursday are nothing if not a study in contrasts.

"Rookie Blue" is a run-of-the mill, fictional cop show that wasn't good enough for ABC to risk running during the regular season.

"Boston Med" is an extraordinary, true-life medical drama that was too good for ABC to risk running during the regular season.

ROOKIE BLUE (Thursday, 8 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4) hauls out pretty much every cop-show cliché in the book. As a matter of fact, it looks like it was stitched together from pieces of old TV shows.

Sort of a cop-show Frankenstein, only way more attractive. Because all five of the rookie cops in this show are, of course, TV attractive.

Rookie cop Andy McNally (Missy Peregrym) takes down a suspect (Ben Bass). (Steve Wilkie, ABC) Rookie cop Andy McNally (Missy Peregrym) takes down a suspect (Ben Bass). (Steve Wilkie, ABC)

Andy McNally (Missy Peregrym, "Reaper"), the daughter of a cop, is at the center of the five new police officers — who, predictably, have to deal with hazing, condescending partners and a complete lack of experience.

Andy's friends include Traci (Enuka Okuma), the street-smart woman who's hiding a tender heart and a young son; Dov (Gregory Smith, "Everwood"), the thrill-seeker who takes too many chances; Chris (Travis Milne), the by-the-book straight arrow; and Gail (Charlotte Sullivan), the overly ambitious climber who'll step on anyone to get ahead.

In Thursday's premiere, all the rookie cops make mistakes. Andy makes a big one, which ruins an investigation and threatens her career.

You don't think she's going to fired in the first episode, do you? Do you think she'll find a way to redeem herself?

No surprises here.

BOSTON MED (Thursday, 9 p.m., ABC/Ch. 4) is a new series that's not altogether new. It comes to us from the producers of "Hopkins," and the format is the same.

Cameras follow real-life doctors, nurses, patients and family members at three Boston hospitals — Massachusetts General Hospital, Brigham and Women's Hospital, and Children's Hospital.

We're there as the doctors make life-and-death decisions. We see them agonize over those decisions. We see them have to choose between their jobs and their personal lives.

We see their patients put an amazing amount of trust in them.

In Thursday's premiere, one doctor tries to pull off a tricky double-lung transplant. Another doctor — an expert in facial reconstruction — tries to pull off the nation's second face transplant.

And another doctor — in her fourth and final year as a resident in an emergency medicine training program — questions if she's cut out for the job.

It's amazing stuff. Totally engaging. And completely worth watching.

e-mail: pierce@desnews.com

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