Are you in need of another Tom Ellis fix after finishing Lucifer? No worries! I got you covered. There are many Lucifans out there who most likely finished watching the entire series of ‘Lucifer’ whose final season premiered on Netflix back on September 10th. If you’re looking to watch other works from the delightfully talented Tom Ellis, I highly recommend checking out this gem of a series called Rush. Don’t worry, while the series has been out for quite a bit, I won’t post any spoilers.
Before Tom donned his wings on Netflix’s hit show Lucifer, he was actually parading around California as a doctor on the short lived series called Rush, which aired back in the summer of 2014 on USA Network. This would be Tom’s first leading role in the US after having starred in the UK’s wonderfully delightful hit sitcom Miranda (if you haven’t seen this one either I also highly recommend it). So, why Rush you may ask? Let me plead my case here. For starters, I do want to let you know up front that the show unfortunately leaves off on a huge cliffhanger, so if you aren’t willing to watch based on this, that is absolutely understandable. For me, the journey that leaves us here though is worth a watch because of the show’s storytelling and adrenaline pumping character and story beats that keep you up to speed on the day to day life of our protagonist Doctor William Rush. The season has 10 episodes total, averaging about 40 minutes or so per ep that cultivate into a wonderful story arc that races to the finish line at the end. What we get is an intriguing character study with great 3 dimensional characters all around, and an interesting non linear story.
So, here’s the basic premise. Doctor William Rush is a talented and hard working doctor who works ‘under the table’ with high end clients that are willing to pay big money for his medical services. Rush finds himself dealing with shady characters from time to time since this is sort of a backdoor way of him making money and putting his skills to work after being fired by the medical board for recklessness. He is a hardcore alcohol and drug abuser which led him down this path, and guess who was the man that got him fired from the hospital? His own father. This was the added salt to his wounds. After that occurred, his ego deflated. Rush is forced many a times to confront his own demons on multiple occasions, questioning all his choices that has led him down this road and locking in his own fate with his decisions. He once seemingly had it all, and lost everything. He’s now trying hard to work his way back up to where he once was, but stumbling multiple times throughout the journey. Is he a perfect character? Absolutely not. He is deeply flawed, but we still root for him to get better and make the right choices. The entire season shows us the crazy risks he’s willing to take while dealing with his clients while also juggling his deep rooted issues towards his failures that always seem to weigh down on him and hold him back. He is vain, he is an ass to most people, but beneath all that, he is a forlorn man wistfully searching for something always out of reach.
Tom Ellis shines through, giving the character charm and charisma that makes us want to see his character succeed at every turn. He’s also surrounded by a great cast as well! We have Larenz Tate who plays Doctor Alex Burke, Rush’s best friend. Then you have Sarah Habel who plays Rush’s assistant, Eve. They too have their own story branches that tie in very well into Rush’s. They all try to support him as best they could, offering positive advice all the while dealing with their own issues in their lives. We also have Odette Annable who plays Rush’s love interest Sarah, arguably one of the most important characters in the show and one of the main driving forces for Rush wanting to sober up, and be a better man.
In short, you get strong performances from a great cast. There may be some strong medical violence here and there since it’s a doctor show afterall, so if you can’t stomach these, turn your head away. For having only one season, a lot happens all throughout each episode that shakes the status quo constantly and I think that gives it such a fresh feel and keeps the audience well engaged. The real bummer here is that the ending may feel beyond hopeful, and what’s worse is that we will never know what the ending was truly meant to be had it carried on for another season(Unless you can get somebody who worked on the show to whisper the ending in my ear of course). This was a fantastic role for Tom who was the perfect choice to helm another series as the lead. Had it not been for this show’s cancellation, he may have never been cast as Lucifer. Also, as an added note, I think most Lucifans out there will find very striking similarities between the character Rush and Lucifer. Both drive a top down sports car, love singing, have major daddy issues, womanizer, love dressing in suits, and both struggle with their inner doubts. I will say though that Rush is less charming and loving than the Lucifer character. He is meant to be a crude, rough and cold shouldered, grounded type of character. Oh, also, Tom does have an American accent in this one so there’s that.
If you haven’t at this point watched, I definitely recommend checking out Rush. You can find it streaming on Amazon Prime.