Season finale: Scrubs


Scrubs holds an odd place in my heart. It’s not as funny as it used to be, but I keep watching it because I’m weirdly like JD (except I’m nicer and more manly) and my wife’s weirdly like Elliott (except she’s nicer and more down to earth). We even look pretty similar to our fictional counterparts.

Anyway (disturbing and uninteresting glimpse into my life aside), Scrubs has gone through various peaks and troughs of quality this season that have tested us. It started off low, picking up mid-season, before sliding back down again to its starting point. Which is a shame, because when it gets right its trademark mix of comedy and the unfortunate realities of medicine, it’s pretty unbeatable.

Problematically though, it’s making the same mistakes it made at the beginning of the season, by making its protagonists cross over from merely misguided fools into plain nasty and selfish people who do frankly unforgivable things. That’s fine in something like Peep Show, which has been like that from the beginning; but Scrubs has always been about pathos and people trying to do the right thing when they don’t know how and when life throws them a wobbly.

It’s hard, however, to keep laughing as we explore that rather shallow ‘comedy’ pit that Zach Braff seems to have created for himself in the show and in his movies (it’s almost a manifesto now), in which he generally treats any woman he comes across extremely badly at the absolute worst times and then acts as though it’s justified in a “being true to myself” kind of way.

Here, in the finale, he has the chance to treat two women extremely badly at the absolute worst times and waddayouknow, goes for the double whammy. Bad Zach.

So brace yourself, gentle reader. There’s a cliffhanger of sorts. You hope bad things won’t happen. There will be tension. Please be funny again next season, Scrubs.

Tension: 6/10


  • Rob Buckley

    I’m Rob Buckley, a journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of although you might have heard me on the podcast Lockdown Land or Radio 5 Live’s Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I’ve edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for TV producers magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it “web site for urban hedonists” The Tribe. Since going freelance, I've contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network, TV Scoop and The Custard TV.

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