Hart of Dixie is one of the new CW shows premiering next week. It’s sort of been flying under the radar, at least when it comes to online marketing. My first reaction when I sat down to watch the pilot was “OMG Rachel Bilson is going back to TV.” Either I live in cave or there literally has been no marketing for this TV show. I, for one, am a fan of Bilson, so I was suddenly eager to watch this show. While it begins with a rough start and sort of unlikable lead, Hart of Dixie manages to display some promise.
Hart of Dixie is about Zoe Hart, a doctor from New York City. When she loses a fellowship that would help advance her career as a heart surgeon, she is told to practice general medicine for year before re-applying. With no other offers in New York, she decides to take a job at a family practice in a very small town in Alabama. A true urbanite, Zoe has a rough time transitioning into rural life, especially when the other doctor she shares her practice with isn’t all that welcoming.
Hart of Dixie is hardly original. There’s a ton of clichéd notions of the South displayed, and certain elements of it are from a former CW show, Everwood. It also manages to have a One Tree Hill vibe. The show overall has a lot of flaws, but I still found it enjoyable. Bilson’s character starts off a bit unlikable. She’s very career-oriented and selfish. When she doesn’t get chosen for the fellowship, it’s a wake-up call. Once she heads down to Alabama, her stoic exterior softens a bit, and she becomes more and more likable. What I always liked about Bilson is that she can play girl that doesn’t get pushed around easily and isn’t a bitch. Bilson’s Zoe is like that.
Much of the pilot is focused on Zoe, but we’re introduced to several supporting characters. First is George, the small town lawyer, who is instantly established as “the love interest.” George is sweet, kind, and seems to be interested in Zoe as well. There’s the medical practice’s receptionist, who gives Zoe the 411 on the town and warns her about some of the society people. We then meet Lemon (played by Jaime King) who is the society princess of the town. She gives a very cool unwelcome to Zoe, while managing to keep a smile on her face the whole time. She’s a rather clichéd villain/mean girl. I can’t see her being too creative with any kind of scheming plots, but who knows?
More characters are introduced, but I’ll let you watch the show to discover them yourself. I do think it’s worth giving this show a shot. At this point, I’m not sure if it will last longer than a season; it will take me a couple more episodes to determine that. So for now, I remain “in sort of like” with Hart of Dixie and Bilson is the main reason for that.
Hart of Dixie premieres Monday, September 26th, at 9/8c after Gossip Girl on the CW. If you would like to catch the pilot a little earlier, it is currently free to download off iTunes.