Well, that’s one way to end a show’s very first season. New Amsterdam made a name for itself over the course this first outing, which is a very difficult task to accomplish. There is a long list of medical dramas that never made it past the premiere season including the Grey’s Anatomy spin-off Off The Map, which aired back in 2011, or ABC’s Black Box, which aired for one season in 2014. These shows are just two of many, but the point is it’s not easy to succeed in today’s day and age, especially with medical dramas.
It’s an oversaturated genre, so the fact that New Amsterdam saw so much success and received critical acclaim is saying a lot, and we certainly look forward to the second season later this year. The season one finale picks up from right where it left off – Bloom showing up at Max’s house to find Max covered in Georgia’s blood. Now, we’ve seen dramatic and near-death situations on medical dramas before, but there is something about Ryan Eggold’s performance as Max in the season one finale that really takes a hold on your heart. The devastation and fear over Georgia’s deteriorating condition feel too real, and we have to say kudos to the cast for bringing such a critical situation to life.
New Amsterdam excels at balancing multiple storylines in a way that other shows simply cannot. At the center of the series is Max’s character, but the supporting characters add their own allure and appeal to the series. Take Iggy and Dr. Kapoor, for example: they’ve both had very in-depth stories during the first season, and in the season one finale, they join forces to treat a patient with severe PTSD. The entire situation prompts Iggy to use unconventional methods to treat the patient – specifically, giving them ecstasy. Keep in mind that such situations haven’t really been depicted on medical dramas before, at least not in this manner – it’s obviously controversial since it involves an illegal drug, but does have real-life scientific backing. Leave it up to New Amsterdam to kick it up a notch and do things differently.
The friendship between Iggy and Kapoor is one of the best things about New Amsterdam, and I’m hard pressed to think of any best friend duos as wonderful as them. They always bring out the best in one another, providing support and comfort when things get out of control for either of them, they’re by each other’s sides. This was certainly the case in the season one finale, and I hope that this friendship stays strong as the next season begins.
Now, getting into the heart of ‘This Is Not The End’ – Georgia giving birth. As we find out at the top of the hour, Georgia is losing profuse amounts of blood, and her chances of survival seem slim to none. It’s terrifying and not exactly the ending we wanted to arrive at but it is where the season one finale takes us. It’s a bold move on their part because following the dramatic cliffhanger tropes doesn’t always end well, but New Amsterdam lucks out here because they manage to pull it off effortlessly.
Luckily for Max and Georgia, Bloom coincidentally shows up to talk to Max about quitting, but ends up helping them out. It was a great way to bring this character back into the mix, especially given that she had one foot out the door. Having to jump in and do her thing may be just the thing to reignite her passion for medicine, but we’ll have to wait until next season to find out.
Everything seems to be coming together as we approach the end of the episode, but things are never quite what they seem. Georgia is saved, the baby is safely delivered, and an ambulance shows up with Sharpe bringing all the reinforcements they need. But this is New Amsterdam, and if we’ve learned anything over the first season, things never stay quiet for too long. What happens next is a very risky move to make when a show has just wrapped up its first season, but it somehow seems to work out in New Amsterdam’s favor, something that may not work out so well for other medical dramas, unless you’re Grey’s Anatomy.
If you weren’t paying close attention you may have missed a major detail in the final moments of the season one finale. Remember the meth-head lawyer that was in and out of the episode, who we didn’t pay much attention to? Well, lo and behold, New Amsterdam pulled a fast one on us and made him the reason that things ended in a frightening tragedy. This tragedy comes in the form of this lawyer running away from the ER, stealing an ambulance, and then crashing into the ambulance that Max and co. are inside of – I told you it was a bold move on New Amsterdam’s part. It could have worked completely against them, but once again the show proves it can and will always be able to go up against any other show out there.
When the episode ends, we’re not sure who all makes it to see another day, apart from Max and baby Luna. Based on what the showrunners have said, there is one major character death which will reveal itself when the second season begins, but that’s about all we know. Shows that end on cliffhangers often have to deal with fan disapproval because many believe it is a cheap trick to lure fans back for the next season. But you don’t get that sentiment from New Amsterdam. Instead, it’s a very emotional ending that leaves us concerned and worried about the future of all these characters. They have made such a special place in our hearts and to lose them in any capacity would be rough and too much to handle. Many haven’t felt as invested in characters since the likes of Grey’s Anatomy, so it’s certainly nice to feel that way about a new show.
Season two has a lot of questions to answer for the curious, nervous fans out there, and we can only hope that New Amsterdam lives up to the reputation it worked so hard on building in its first season. Until next season, folks.