The Resident: Matt Czuchry and Moral Dilemmas - Two Fine Reasons to Watch

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On Sunday, January 21, The Resident airs the first of its two-part series premiere on Fox.

When the pilot was initially introduced to critics, the cast was a little bit smaller. It has grown in scope and the artwork for the show now focuses on Matt Czuchry's Dr. Conrad Hawkins just a bit more than Manish Dayal's Dr. Devon Pravesh.

As a fan of both actors (Czuchry from all of his previous roles and Dayal from Halt and Catch Fire), only one of them is given the material on The Resident to make up for lost time, and that's Czuchry.

The Resident Cast

It's not easy make a genre show stand out from other genre shows. We're seeing that now with another Fox show, 9-1-1, as it made a splash in the first responders club by injecting adrenaline into every scene and stepping back a bit from immersing viewers too soon in the interpersonal drama of its characters.

In switching things up, it's one of the top shows of the season and has already earned a second season renewal.

In the case of The Resident, the cast is highly regarded and the action is set in a teaching hospital. What sets is apart from it's on-air competition is the lengths to which the doctors and staff are willing to go to get the job done and/or keep themselves among the top in their profession.

Those two goals would not ordinarily work in conjunction, but with the members of this staff going toe-to-toe daily, it somehow manages to work itself out, morality be damned.

Matt Czuchry as Dr. Conrad Hawkins - The Resident

At the forefront is the top resident, Dr. Hawkins. With this role, Czuchry gets to be and do everything we had hoped Cary Agos would be and do on The Good Wife, but Czuchry never got the opportunity.

Hawkins is the best. He's the most daring. He cares about his patients intensely. He will fight on behalf of them and their medical cases harder than an attorney on behalf of a man facing death row because his patients will not have years of appeals.

He's not perfect. He makes mistakes, mostly in his personal life, and the risks he takes in his professional life cross a line that could lead him past the point of no return.

But when he's fighting a good fight against the Chief of Surgery, who is out only to protect his reputation and his most important patients, Dr. Hawkins does what he has to do.

Bruce Greenwood as Dr. Randolph Bell - The Resident

It's hard seeing Bruce Greenwood as the bad guy, but Dr. Bell is more of a means to an end than a character we want to see more than a few minutes. He uses people and abuses his privileges.

It's not often a smarmy doctor is written into the average medical show, and I can't think of a character such as this since ER and Dr. Romano. Maybe there will be a helicopter accident in Dr. Bell's future.

But if there is a nefarious, if famous, male doctor there is also a somewhat dodgy doc in female form.

Melina Kanakaredes plays Dr. Lane Hunter, whose past is a bit of a mystery.

Melina Kanakaredes as Dr. Lane Hunter - The Resident

It's worrisome she's also one of the "older" characters and somewhat unsettling when it comes to personal relations inside the hospital, as it gives the impression age makes people less amenable to compassion and understanding.

While Bell and Hunter may be good doctors -- Dr. Hunter is on the cutting edge of scientific research in her private clinic -- holding her nose in the air and treating other professionals who surround her as less than does nothing to endear her to us early on.

That's especially true since Emily VanCamp's Nic is the person most haunted by the actions of Dr. Hunter. 

Emily VanCamp as Nicolette Nevin - The Resident

Nic is the glue that ties the hospital together (if you don't mind a cliche). As a nurse, she has the inside scoop on every doctor, patient, and procedure occurring within her realm. 

She also holds the key to the heart of Dr. Hawkins, and it feels as if VanCamp and Czuchry should have been working together before now.

Fans have not been impressed so far given what they've seen in the promos for The Resident of VanCamp's role, but there is little doubt in my mind she will become one of the most important characters on the show if it's given time to air.

Nic also wisely speaks for an against all the doctors when young interns such as Dr. Pravesh arrive in their hallowed halls and want, more than anything, to be assigned to anyone other than Dr. Hawkins.

Manish Dayal as Dr. Devon Pravesh  - The Resident

When someone is as smart and cocksure as Dr. Pravesh, you can expect there to be a bumping of the brains between he and Dr. Hawkins, and it's that kind of relationship that has always worked much better on a medical drama than the mousy and bookish types that have slugged through the halls of Grey's Anatomy.

There is no shortage of intelligent and strong-willed characters full of charisma and confidence working in the hospital on The Resident. Expect a lot more adrenaline and arguments than you will of tears welling out of the eyes of those who don't make the cut.

That doesn't appear to be what The Resident is about. And frankly, I can't imagine it would go over well in any teaching hospital before those particular interns were shown the door.

Shaunette Renée Wilson as Dr. Mina Okafor - The Resident

One of the most interesting characters comes from Shaunette Renee Wilson as Dr. Mina Okafor. Without a doubt the most talented surgeon they have in residence, her career path will be one to watch. 

She butts heads with Dr. Bell whose own career is on a downward spiral due to ailments he's keeping quiet, and she could either be his saving grace or the nail in his coffin. 

It all comes down to how far each of these characters is willing to go to further their careers. What they will do for their patients and what kinds of deals they're willing to make with their souls. 

They may love their work, but they know skills as a physician only get them half the way there. The other half is working the system -- and each other.

At the center of it all is Czuchry. Watching him step up as a lead is incredibly satisfying. He's very comfortable in his own skin and always believable, no matter the material set before him. He shares that quality with Justin Hartley of This Is Us

It's too early to tell if The Resident is going to blow the doors off the medical genre mold, but it's a solid start, a step closer to ER than to Grey's Anatomy, it's looking at the business of doctoring as well as the medicinal side and Czuchry crushes it. 

Will you be tuning in? 

The Resident premieres Sunday, January 21 after the football game on Fox and in its regular time slot on Monday, January 22 at 9/8c.


Editor Rating: 3.5 / 5.0
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Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Broadcast Television Journalists Association (BTJA), enjoys mentoring writers, wine, and passionately discussing the nuances of television. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.

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The Resident Quotes

It's not easy. If it were, everyone would be a doctor because it's the best job in the world, despite everything, because of everything. I'll see you tomorrow.


Conrad: Everything you thought you knew about medicine is wrong. All the rules you followed will break. I have only one rule, it covers everything. I'm never wrong. You do whatever the hell I tell you, no questions asked.
Devon: Do you want me to speak now?
Conrad: That's a question.