Do not resuscitate: Why ‘The Mob Doctor’ died (and should stay dead)

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Despite decent acting and an incredibly charismatic lead actress, the freshman drama "The Mob Doctor" will end after airing just 13 episodes. "The Mob Doctor" starred Jordana Spiro as a young surgeon who split her time between working at a busy hospital and running personal errands for the mob. The final episode is slated to air on Jan. 7, with one episode being burned off on New Year's Eve, when no one is likely to watch it.

While the show had some solid elements, "The Mob Doctor" failed to find an audience in its time slot. Its unique blend of medical drama and mob storylines just didn't click. Here are four very good reasons that "The Mob Doctor" failed on Fox and shouldn't get a second chance on another network.

1. The mob stories were boring

The idea of combining gripping medical drama with pulse-pounding mob action sounded great on paper. However, the execution left a lot to be desired. The main issue: the mob storyline revolved almost entirely around video poker machines. Sure, there were some shoot 'em up scenes and revenge plots, but the gaming machines were at the center of it all. What a snoozefest.

2. The "twists" were introduced too late

The show simply didn't have many mysteries or surprises. The storytelling on "The Mob Doctor" was pretty straightforward, with no "Oh my gosh!" moments of revelation at the end of the episodes. One thing the show could have done to draw viewers in would have been to introduce the "twists" earlier in the season. For example, the revelation that Franco was working for the feds while pretending to work for the mob should have been revealed in the first or second episode. This would have made fans more interested in the actions of this character and provided more tension early on, when the show could have built a bigger audience.

3. The show told too many stories

There's nothing more satisfying than seeing a TV show with a large, balanced ensemble cast. However, while the cast of "The Mob Doctor" was large, it was too hard for viewers to know which stories were the most important to focus on. Between all the cases at the hospital, the machinations of Constantine's empire, Moretti's band of upstart mobsters, Grace's family drama, and Franco's double agent status, it was hard to get invested in the characters; each only got a little screen time in each episode and little character development as a result.

4. The show was a hospital drama, and viewers have had their fill

As discussed in this article, the root cause behind the failure of "The Mob Doctor" may simply be viewer fatigue. After decades of great hospital dramas, is there anything new that the genre can provide viewers? Game shows, soap operas, and western dramas have all sort of phased out of popularity, and hospital dramas may be the next genre of TV show to become passé.
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