I’ve seen all the arguments strewn over my Facebook debating how a show like the Red Band Society is emotionally manipulative. Blogs and articles across the Internet bash the idealistic, naive view this show takes as it romanticizes life in a hospital for teens. If you have to be in a hospital as a teen, you probably won’t make these friendships and love connections that “last for a lifetime” as the tv show suggests. But what I think makes this show worth watching is that it has the potential to reach an audience who would otherwise have no idea or even care about what it’s like to grow up being sick in the hospital. I understand the show has to take liberties to reach that wide fan base, but I hope it gives the people in hospitals a face and story. You define who you are; not your disease, not your illness. You aren’t a patient or a number, you are YOU. And more importantly, you have a story that is worth telling.
Yes, this show will probably be cliche. It’s a tv show, not a documentary so they’re going blur the lines of reality and idealism, but that is what all tv shows are like. I haven’t seen the show yet, but I’m hoping that that people can see this and realize that the people in hospitals aren’t just a statistic or something you learned in science class. I hope this inspires even a few more people to care– a few more nurses, doctors, researchers, parents, or friends who care to find cures, to find treatment plans, and to just be aware of what life is like in someone else’s shoes.