Monday, February 7, 2011

Such is the way of the world

Hello, I hope that the second month of the new year is off to a good start. It has been two and a half months since I have been in my favorite place, the Amazon jungle. So, because I have been missing the vibrant green and unbearable humidity I looked for solace in ABC's new show, Off the Map. It is about three American doctors who go to the Amazon to practice medicine. As an avid and semi-fanatic watcher of Grey's Anatomy, I had high expectations for this show by the same creator. This was the first mistake.

The series starts with a cab labeled "jungle taxi," pulling into the clinic. One, there aren't any taxis in the jungle. Two, if there were the side door would not have English writing on it. But this is only the first annoyance. The three new doctors who knew they were going to Latin America don't speak Spanish but believe that they will save everybody. The doctors use coconuts for IVs. Now, I don't know if this is possible but I can just imagine what Americans will now think about medicine in South America. And most annoying of all the female characters were very short shorts and tank tops. They would all have malaria and sunburns in an instant.

It's a weird feeling to see and hear incorrect things about a place you have lived in. When I was in the jungle, two times and in three different places, my experience was very different. Indigenous people weren't injured from hangliding or falling into a river only to be hit by a falling boulder. I know that television shows are never very realistic but this is just perpetuating stereotypes that people have about natives.

So to conclude, don't believe everything you see on television, especially when it is a medical drama based in the Amazon jungle. Oh and by the way, the show is filmed in Hawaii. It makes a lot of sense to me too.

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