The Jay Report

I have a confession to make…I have an addiction. My name is Jay…and I am an entertainment junkie. (Cue to the calm and communal “Hi, Jay!”) It is common knowledge among my friends and family that I indeed enjoy television and frequent the AMC movie arena practically every chance I get.

Does that make me a bad person? I never thought so. However, it does make my opinion on the entertainment industry count. Such is the case with ABC’s medical drama “Private Practice” which is slated to return October 1. Ready for another “Jay Report?” Lord knows I am…

The Good: A spin-off of the popular television series “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Private Practice” was created by Golden Globe winning screenwriter, Shonda Rhimes. The show debuted on Sept.26, 2007 and featured the beautiful Kate Walsh as Dr. Addison Montgomery, a – all together now, “Private Practice” fans! – world class neonatal surgeon! Montgomery moved from gloomy Seattle to sunny California and joined a group of doctors that include: the handsome Taye Diggs and four time Tony Award winner Audra McDonald. When it premiered, the show beat out its competitor, NBC’s revamped “Bionic Woman,” and became one of the best new shows of the fall. But then tragedy struck…

The Bad: The 2007 Writers Guild of America strike resulted in “Private Practice’s” slated 23 episodes getting cut down to a measly nine. The whole thing is pretty tragic considering “Private Practice” was just beginning to find its footing and several storylines were really beginning to heat up.

The Ugly: Once the strike ended, ABC executives opted to delay the show’s return until the fall of 2008. It’s been practically ten months since fans have seen any new episodes and that may not be a good thing. Will viewers want to tune in when the show returns in two weeks?

Final Take: While “Private Practice” features a talented cast, beautiful locations and solid writing, luring viewers back may prove to be a real challenge after the ten month absence. Storylines weren’t exactly able to reach their climaxes and some viewers may be lost in the mix when the second season debuts. In the meantime, fans can catch up on the first season with its new DVD release. I’d recommend it. After all, who wants to return to sunny California while still in the dark?