“Transplant”, a new medical drama series, hits the small screen on Universal TV (DStv channel 117) on Monday, November 30.
Much of the storyline takes place in the Emergency Department of York Memorial, one of the best hospitals in Toronto.
Below is an introduction to the well-etched characters, ahead of the show airing next week.
Dr. Bashir “Bash” Hamed (Hamza Haq)
A doctor with brilliant skills in emergency medicine, Bash fled his native Syria two years ago to come to Canada with his younger sister Amira. Bash tried desperately to get a job at a hospital but discovered it’s nearly impossible for foreign-trained doctors to establish themselves in a new country. However, against these odds, Bash gets his second chance in the emergency department of Toronto’s York Memorial Hospital, where he must repeat his residency. A man of action, if he can help he does. Guarded yet honest, he connects easily with patients and colleagues from all walks of life. He’s the kind of guy you share all your secrets with, only to realize you don’t know a single thing about him. He’s a hero and a force of nature but his talent and flaws come from the same place: though gifted with natural instincts, he acts impulsively and always puts himself second.
As Bash pushes forward, it becomes clear that he’s doing so to escape a very difficult past. A resident at the hospital, Mags puts enormous pressure on herself to go the extra mile. She prioritizes work before everything else, and since her residency begun has barely seen her friends or family. Never wanting to be seen as fragile – or as someone who can’t ‘cut it’ – Mags pushes herself to the brink. She’s a perfectionist, a trait that constantly clashes with the frenzied nature of the ER, and she’s also highly empathetic. Her collection of contrasts makes her ripe for burnout. When Bash is introduced late into the residency program, his illogical arrival throws Mags for a loop. She lives by rules, and he disregards them.
Chief of Emergency Medicine, he can be a difficult boss. Elusive and inscrutable, he believes young doctors must be tested in order to prove they won’t buckle under pressure. When he suffers a near-fatal injury and Bash saves his life in daring form, Jed finds a protégé whose skills reignite his passion for the job.
Dr. Theo Hunter (Jim Watson)
Theo is in the last few months of his fellowship in pediatric emergency medicine. A small-town kid, Theo’s father was a Baptist minister. Married with two young children, he’s a devoted family man who commutes from Toronto to his hometown of Sudbury where his wife and daughters still live as much as possible. Funny with a laidback charm, Theo connects with Bash early on. The two grow to become good friends, with Bash unintentionally becoming a catalyst for Theo, as his turbulent but open-ended life causes Theo to realize he’s only ever made the “safe” choices with his.
Dr. Jane Curtis (Ayisha Issa)
Jane chose a surgical residency because she prefers her patient’s unconscious. Not much for small talk, she’s not overly close with her peers in the ER. Her brutal honesty and deadpan wit can offend, but she’s skilled in the OR, driven to prove herself to her (mostly male) surgery cohorts, and become one of the hospital’s elite surgeons. Beneath her warrior’s facade is a vulnerable soul.
Claire Malone (Torri Higginson)
Claire is the Head ER Nurse and she has a quick sense of humour. She’s seen it all and can’t be pushed around – even by Jed. In fact, they both have a history as gatekeepers to the ER in their own ways and are quick to call each other out on their BS. This includes his rash decision to hire Bash, which has Claire wondering whether the accident had lingering effects on his judgement.
Amira Hamed (Sirena Gulamgaus)
Amira is a headstrong 12-year-old who has seen more than most girls her age. She is determined to get her brother to stop seeing her as the meek little sister he needs to protect. As their lives get harder to manage with Bash balancing his sister’s needs with those of his consuming job, Amira begins to resent how Bash won’t trust her with the truth until it blows up around them.
Transplant launches on Monday, November 30 at 8pm on Universal TV (DStv channel 117) with a double bill.