Discuss Mental: Will You Be Sticking Around? - Featured


So...House-Lite (House 2.0? Summer House?) - better known as Mental - made its debut last night on Fox.


Many of you have already made the comparisons to Hugh Laurie's House in earlier discusisons...and its easy to tell why. In Mental, Chris Vance stars as an unorthodox psychiatrist with a no-nosense female boss in a Los Angeles hospital. Are there any doctors that aren't unorthodox and don't work for a no-nonsense, sexy female boss these days (rhetorical question)?


At any rate, was Mental intriguing enough to keep your attention as a summer show? Would you rather just wait for the real thing (House) to return in the Fall?

Comments

23 comments

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May 27, 2009 8:03PM EDT

Mental is an exciting twist on the medical drama. Although it's been compared to House, and I can see the resemblance, it is quite different. Dr. Vance has takes an interest in his patients from the word go. Unlike House, he actually wants to help them get better, there is no ulterior motive other than their health.
From the beginning Mental seems low budget, which Im sure it is, but it works for the show. I recognized several faces from past shows, Marissa Ramirez played on Miracles with Skeet Ulrich and Jacqueline McKenzie appeared in The 4400 on USA.
We don't yet know the exact dynamic the cast will play, but we did learn what makes Dr. Vance such a good psychiatric doctor. It wasn't the story that he told, it was that his sister has a mental illness. That's the kind of relationship to the work that House can't give.
I look forward to next weeks episode, and learning what makes everyone else at the hospital.

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May 27, 2009 10:01PM EDT

I mentioned this in the other topic on this show, but while I'll give it another go for the second episode, I thought the pilot was a complete wash. Usually pilots are designed to reach out and grab you, make you want to stick around for this really interesting show. This one nearly lulled me off to sleep. I'm not impressed.

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May 28, 2009 2:28AM EDT

as tvqueen has pointed out the pilot should have grabbed me and told me this was a great show lets see how it plays out next episode

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May 28, 2009 11:20AM EDT

be patient people... i thought it was great

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May 28, 2009 12:52PM EDT

I have to agree with mama23nluv saying it seems like at least the first episode was low budget, and I found that more distracting than I would expect. But besides that, I think the main difference from House is definitely that Jack cares about the patients as opposed to the detached genius of House. While that's all interesting in theory, the first episode was very slow and dull, and seemed to entirely depend on that first scene of Jack stripping down to relate to the patient grabbing and keeping our interest. I'll give this one another episode or two, but if it doesn't improve a lot, I'll be among those just waiting for House to return.

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May 28, 2009 2:08PM EDT

I'm willing to be patient with this one, as in certain aspects the show try'd its hardest to shine, however it failed to 'wow' me.

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May 29, 2009 12:13PM EDT

maybe it's a weird thing to notice, but it bothered me that dr Gallagher grinned all the time... most of the time it was out of place. i felt like asking the actor to stop smiling...

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May 29, 2009 6:08PM EDT

Ugh no, I like it not. It's a pale, pale imitation of House, mediocre acting, overall "cheap" feel. Nah, I won't be watching it even if it were the one show on during the summer, sorry.

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May 29, 2009 10:07PM EDT

i didn't hate it, didn't love it, i liked it enough to tune in again at least once or twice more to see how it goes along, but for a summer show, yeah i will prolly keep watching. it was pretty good. like most people said, didn't "wow" me, but it caught my attention enough to watch a little more.

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May 30, 2009 12:08PM EDT

I liked it. Saw the similarities with House. But rather than have House's take no prisoners attitude or I don't care how I heal this person, just that I heal them attitude. I think this guy has more a "plays well with others" attitude.
I'll probably stick around for another episode or two because it caught my attention.

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Jun 1, 2009 6:13PM EDT

Perhaps the comparisons people are making are more to do with the proffessions than the characters, to be honest I dont think House could have been a psychologist/psychiatrist (I cant remember which he is) purely because of the nature of the work.That being said, the fact that i cant remember if he was a psychologist or a psychiatrist probably says enough about the show, decent, but forgetable, I'll watch it while its one of the only things on, but once my tv schedule fills up again, I cant see it keeping up.

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Jun 3, 2009 7:55AM EDT

Actually its not so much in just the way the characters are, its more to do with the entire format of the show being like House. The characters are different granted but the show itself seems too familiar. Its like they stuck the House formula here, even the whole tortured soul bit. The two characters deal with their problems differently but that does not make them very different. I agree with kendra that the low budget production values seemed to distract. To be honest a lot of TV shows are on shoe sting budgets but atleast they try to do a better job of masking it. Might watch a couple more episodes but not really expecting much more from this show.

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Jun 3, 2009 11:47AM EDT

I couldn't even get through the first half of the second episode. I don't see this one sticking around, and I really won't miss it at all.

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Jun 3, 2009 8:13PM EDT

First of all it so obviously wants to be like House it's silly. But quite beyond that, it's too easy! What I mean is, it's about mental illness where theories abound about how to treat "disorders" Disorders come and go. It's a field where at one point something is considered a disorder and later it isn't. You can make any "therapy" work on television. Let's just take 'em off the drugs (which I actually agree with but then I have no training). Hey, lets do a three-legged race with the doctors, that 'll cure 'em! That's REVOLUTIONARY! What's next? Let's all sing Kumbya and cure Schizophrenia?
Two reasons why I think it won't last - the subject matter (mental illness and it's treatment) and it doesn't have Hugh Lorie.

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Jun 4, 2009 12:30AM EDT

I think that the show had some great moments like the phone call from his sister and the very beginning when the man was brought in that was pretty funny. The show grabbed my attention at moments and at time it was kinda boring. I think that as the show progresses the writers will learn to fill in the gaps in the show and make it better. I will mostly likely keep watching.

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Jun 4, 2009 12:31AM EDT

In the first episode, I was intrigued...the characters seemed like they could be interesting especially with their interactions with each other. Also, the case they were dealing with seemed very realistic and how everything was handled by the new doctor as compared to the older doctors etc etc...it all seemed realistic.Then...the second episode came along and I was very disappointed.Initially, I thought the weird constant smile was probably coz he was the new guy and trying to be friendly. But now, he smiles when its completely inappropriate. Did anyone notice he was smiling when the pregnant woman realized she wasnt really pregnant?? It was extremely creepy.Also, the case they were dealing with...it was so unrealistic! It just didnt make sense. The way they portrayed the psychotic doctors illusions was terrible. And as mentioned before, it felt...low budget...I felt like the case was so extreme, they needed to wait for us to know the characters and other less extreme situations before they showed us something that crazy.Another thing that bothered me was the phone thing and the envelope with flowers at the end...it was so cheesy and totally predictable. It felt like a ploy to make the character of Jack Gallagher more interesting and deeper than just a guy that has a charming smile he uses to manipulate people into doing what he wants.I never was a house fan coz i felt like every episode was the exact same: Patient is very ill, they try a bunch of things and make him worse, then they find out the real thing and fix him. While the idea of this show with the main character and the other psychologists has a similar dynamic...the show, in my opinion, is not at all like House. BUT, that doesnt mean its a good thing. Its just bad in a different way from House's bad-ness.

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Jun 11, 2009 5:36PM EDT

Psychiatry -> Coool!
That the doctor doesn't stick to the classical stiff and pontificating attitude of the typical psychiatrist -> good.
special effects -> horrible! horrible! (does a tv series need special effects for people to understand people's mental problems? I guess people don't have enough imagination to do so... sad)
that they all are so very young -> pleeease... they don't need to be all 60, but come on! (general problem with medical series I guess...)
So alternative and happy that it is Kumbaya -> I wanted to throw up at the scene with that guy playing the piano and singing in the 2nd chapter.
Too simplistic and superficial. They clearly have no idea at all.
Still, I would love it to work. But either the writers are lobotomized or think that the viewers are (or want to please those viewership)
It is ok if they have to be cheap economically, but then the writing shouldn't be cheap too!
I would love it to work, but the concept and execution should be better thought out.
I'll watch a few more chapters and that's it.
PS: does anybody remember "3 lb"? that was waaay better (but different, it was about neurology, not psychiatry) and was cancelled after 5 or 6 episodes. Why? If the American public didn't like it, I'm sure it would have worked better in Europe.

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Jun 11, 2009 6:46PM EDT

(the 3rd episode was better)

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Jun 26, 2009 2:08AM EDT

Mental is so far from the reality of acute inpatient psych that it is appalling. It gives a totally false picture of how people are admitted to inpatient units and is guaranteed to scare off people who need help! 1)men and women who work in psych make a point of NOT dressing provocatively -- no cleavage allowed because it can and will be misinterpreted. 2)The laws of all States forbid housing children on adult units. 3)where are the R.N.s? They provide most of the patient care, and have most of the patient contact. Docs pop in and out, spend a short time with patients after the intake interview - and ask the R.N.s what the patients are doing. By the way, R.N.s also do a nursing intake interview, run groups, orient patients to the unit and introduce them to other patients. And on psych units R.N.s DO NOT WEAR SCRUBS 4) When the medical resident was dressing Connor's hand he would not be able to exclude the mother. That is against the law with minor children, unless the mother (or father) is a danger to the child at that moment. It is a parental right and responsibility to be present during any treatment of their minor children. Many of the actions of these physicians are both unethical and illegal. SOMEONE NEEDS TO REVIEW THESE SCRIPTS, they are SO off base!

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Jun 26, 2009 4:43PM EDT

Well I'm willing to give Mental the benefit of the doubt and continue watching. Sure, it seems a lot like House, but I'm going to wait and see before I start calling it a "low budget rip-off". I personally think it seems like a great show, and I'm looking forward to the next episode!

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Jun 29, 2009 2:52PM EDT

why did they have to use the top half of his face for the title picture its just like HOUSE only with a zipper! and couldnt they have found a new set designer it looks like HOUSE. but wait there is one really big difference house rides a motorcycle this guy rides a bike.

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Aug 15, 2009 4:27PM EDT

The guy is beyond hot. With his smirky knowing smile. Yum. It's a fun little show. I'll watch it next season if it's allowed to return.

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Aug 18, 2009 11:54AM EDT

I agree that the Pilot was not as good as I would have expected. Initially, I only watched this show because there were no other favorites on at the time. I grew to enjoy the cast and thought that the season progressed as it went on. A House rip-off??? I don't think so. I like the thought of watching different kinds of serious medical shows that take different angles. Not like ER, Grays Anatomy, or Hawthorne! Sorry if you are fans of those, but they have too much soap in them for me. Even Nip/Tuck which used to be a favorite of mine went too soapy. I ended up liking Mental over-all but I don't think they left room for a come-back. It ended the way I thought it should an I think we should move on from there.

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