'Hart of Dixie', the new show on the CW, sees Rachel Bilson as doctor Zoe Hart, who is invited to Bluebell, Alabama to co-run a doctors practice by Dr Harley Wilkes at her graduation (and by postcard ever since), but declined until after being rejected from her fellowship in New York. In order to be accepted, she must spend a year in a practice and she hopes coming to Bluebell will allow her to aspire her dreams of becoming a cardio thoracic surgeon.
Upon arriving in Bluebell, she is met with friendly allies: the mayor Lavon Hayes, her bad-boy neighbour Wade and town lawyer George. Unfortunately, she is also met with some not so friendly figures. Brick Breeland co-owns the practice and he does not take to her New York ways of handling things, trying to push her out from the start so he could own the whole practice. His daughter, Lemon, who is George's fiancee, also does not like Zoe and thinks she's trying to ruin everything for her.
Despite trying to help the patients, Zoe often gets into trouble by misdiagnosis and carelessness, seeing patients as 'puzzles' opposed to 'people'. As Zoe is about to quit and go back to New York, she discovers that she is needed by a pregnant young girl who trusts her, and discovering that Dr Harley Wilkes was her real father, she is determined to stay and protect his legacy.
The simple set up of the plot makes this show quite intriguing and easy to get into. However, the set up that she's only staying for a year or that she's trying to protect her father's practice could mean that the show runs out of fresh ideas quickly as they cannot drag her failures and her constant 'bag packing and being ready to leave' out too long.
Whilst the medical side of things is pretty typical of any medical show (ER etc), the setting of Bluebell Alabama is a beautiful contrast to what we're used to. The autumn colours that fill the screen warm us as we watch and really invites you into a world that seems slightly unreal and detached from our own.
From the same producer (Josh Schwartz) as 'The OC', who teams up with Rachel Bilson for the second time, there are some aspects which are similar to the former show which is to like. The humour is pretty similar and the drama aspect is also well paced. Josh also claims that he will attempt to use 'Hart of Dixie' to showcase up and coming musical acts much like how he did in 'The OC' with live bands.
Rachel Bilson's character is therefore very much like her character (Summer) in 'The OC'. The way she talks and the way she acts is extremely likeable and no matter what she does, you're drawn to be on her side. Both characters are fun, quirky and sassy and as Summer is one of my fav characters from 'The OC', she makes a great transfer to 'Hart of Dixie'. However, there is still something uncomfortable about her being a doctor and it's hard to imagine her becoming a surgeon.
That said, she shines in the role and the styling is impeccable. The support cast also provides variation and I like the clarity of their intentions.
'Hart of Dixie' is a funny drama (with some medical aspects) which is sure to warm your television screen if not your heart. Though a bit of a one-woman show, there is something to like in it that many 'OC' fans will find familiar and enjoy.