First look: NBC’s Do No Harm – a Jeckyll & Hyde drama starring Steven Pasquale
Coming up on January 31 is NBC’s latest dark drama series Do No Harm. It’s a modern take on the Jeckyll and Hyde tale, with the lead character Jason Cole (Steven Pasquale) being a neurosurgeon who suffers Dissociative Identity Disorder. After five years of taking an experimental drug to suppress his violent alter ego, Jason starts to develop a resistance to the drug, allowing his other side “Ian Price” to show through. And…Ian’s not too pleased about having been suppressed for years!
It’s hard to know what to make of Do No Harm, since NBC’s recently cancelled Awake had similar themes (especially in the way Jason Issacs’ character woke up in a different reality every time he slept).
If there’s one saving grace, it’s that Ian Price – the sociopathic alter-ego – seems to have a real sadistic sense of humour. In one scene, Jason wakes up in the aftermath of what can only be described as an orgy, and discovers the words “Happy Birthday” written on his wrists. In another preview for the show, Price blows all of Jason’s salary on an expensive sports cars. So we kind of like him already.
And though Steven Pasquale teases that Price is hell bent on revenge, we also see the character give a pretty hilarious smackdown on a wife beater that presumably Jason Cole has encountered at work:
The big question for Do No Harm is how it will fill out the drama. Judging by the remainder of the casting, most of the series is set in a hospital, so we’re kind of expecting it to have a procedural element. As well as that, Steven Pasquale has said that his “Mr Hyde” will be trying to destroy his personal and professional lives. Rounding out the remainder of the cast are Alana De La Garza (“Law & Order”), Michael Esper (A Beautiful Mind), Ruta Gedmintas (“The Borgias”), and Phylicia Rashad (“The Cosby Show”).
We’re particularly interested in one aspect of the series: the fact that Jason Cole switches to Ian Price at exactly 8:25 each night and becomes himself again at 8:25 the next morning. In Awake, Jason Isaac’s character did a similar thing, but the being constantly awake took its toll on the character. Will the same thing happen to Cole in Do No Harm?
The other major question is: why 8:25? It seems like a very specific time. And an exact period of twelve hours. That doesn’t sound like a neurological condition (I’m happy to be proved wrong though – brain surgeons, please comment). Have a look at the show’s preview video and tell us what you think:
Don’t forget – the Do No Harm season premiere airs on January 31, 2013 on NBC.