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Series / The Night Shift

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Main cast of season 2 (from left to right): Topher, Paul, Drew, Krista, TC, Jordan, Ragosa, Kenny

The Night Shift is an American TV show that premiered on NBC in the summer of 2014. Largely panned by critics, particularly for its ridiculous promotional posters, it nevertheless obtained decent ratings, and returned for a second season in February 2015 and season three premiered in June 2016. The series centers around emergency room staff (many of whom are military veterans) working the night shift at San Antonio Memorial.

The series was canceled in October 13, 2017, after four seasons.

Tropes used by the series:

  • Aborted Arc:
    • Ragosa and Landry's budding romance subplot is never touched upon after season 1, due to Landry's character getting written off the show and Ragosa disappearing after season 2.
    • Nick Woods, who served with TC and received Thad's heart after his death, is in need of a new heart transplant after he gets shot. TC gets the family of a braindead jumper to agree to a direct donation, but he miraculously starts breathing again. Topher says that he'll help TC get Nick another heart, but that plot point is never brought up after season 1.
    • The fallout of Annie's suicide in season 4 will never be shown due to the show's cancellation.
  • Accidental Adultery: TC had no idea that Amira has a husband back in London when he started sleeping with her.
  • Affectionate Nickname: Jordan and Topher sometimes call TC "Tee" for short.
  • The Alcoholic: Scott, formerly. He's a Recovered Addict for a good part of the show, but relapses after he hits Malik, who ends up paralyzed, with his car.
  • Amicable Exes: Jordan and Scott during season 2 after she breaks up with him and gets back together with TC.
    • Then Jordan and TC after they break up in the season 2 finale.
  • Anachronism Stew: TC is said to have been kicked out of the army around the time Donald Rumsfeld was Secretary of Defense, yet flashbacks show him and Topher wearing Multi-Cam uniforms that hadn't been issued yet.
  • Artistic License – Medicine: Par on the course for a medical drama.
    • Gastric bypass surgery is used interchangeably with gastric lap band surgery in the show, even though they are two different operations in real life.
  • Artistic License – Military:
    • TC is shown serving in the same unit as his brother. This is prohibited to lower the possibility of a family losing all their children at once.
    • TC is shown carrying a weapon and participating in raids. Doctors are noncombatants under the Geneva Convention and aren't supposed to fight if at all possible.
    • One episode involves the hospital staff trying to treat a patient with radiation poisoning, and get medication from the military. The medication is said to be only available at Fort Hoodnote , a two hour drive from San Antonio. Apparently the writers forgot about Fort Sam Houston, located in San Antonio, which is the Army’s medical headquarters.
  • Bait-and-Switch: It's implied that Amira has a drug addiction with her taking pills from the medicine cabinet and shooting up some unknown substance between her toes. Turns out, she has MS.
  • The Beard: Krista is this to Drew for a bit during season 1.
  • Billy Needs an Organ: Brianna needs a lung transplant.
  • Blackmail: TC gets Dr. Kaminsky to perform surgery on Kaylee by threatening to tell his wife about him fooling around with his assistant.
  • Born During a Storm: Topher's pregnant wife Janet and their daughter are stranded by the side of the road. Janet's water has already broken, so Topher deserts the hospital to deliver the baby in the car. They travel to the hospital to deliver the second baby.
    • Drew, with the help of Rick and Lily, performs an emergency c-section on a pregnant woman mid-flight because a storm is preventing the plane from landing. Drew's aunt was also born during a snowstorm, according to his mom.
  • Break-Up/Make-Up Scenario:
    • TC and Jordan in season 2, only to break up again after she miscarries in the season finale.
    • Drew and Rick, also in season 2. They get married in the season finale.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Chavez is kind of strange in his constant yoga/zen spiel and his offbeat sense of humor, but he's a heck of a surgeon.
  • Butt-Monkey: Paul is the subject of many, many pranks throughout the series. Ragosa gets some of this in season 2 after he becomes a PA.
  • Career-Ending Injury:
    • Kenny was going to play football in college until he fractured his back in his freshman year and uses this to connect with a friend of his nephew whose SIS from an earlier concussion will keep him from ever playing another game.
    • Paul injures his hand in the season 2 finale, and his career as a surgeon would have ended if not for his dad finding a risky surgery that could help him regain motor function.
  • Combat Medic: TC.
  • Convenient Miscarriage: Jordan in the last episode of season 2. It leads to her and TC breaking up again.
  • CPR: Clean, Pretty, Reliable: Averted, for the most part, given the show primarily takes place in the trauma department of an emergency room. Still happens from time to time, though.
  • Deadly Prank: Downplayed. The groom's friends in 'Second Chances' decide to shave off his beloved beard as a Practical Joke while he's unconscious, revealing tattoos of a swastika and other Nazi imagery underneath. While the groom isn't physically injured, his relationships with his friends and fiancee are severely damaged.
  • Determined Doctor: TC gives a blood transfusion to Hector, who he believes is a human-trafficking coyote at the time.
  • Domestic Abuse: Gwen's ex-husband used to beat her "like a drum", and she still has the scars from it. She connects with a patient's mother whose husband hit her so hard she has vertigo and helps get him arrested.
  • Driven to Suicide: TC's sister-in-law Annie Callahan, widow of his brother Thad. In season 4, She jumps off a bridge with a bag of rocks at her back.
  • Embarrassing First Name: Drew's full first name is actually Andrew, which he hates.
  • Embarrassing Tattoo: The groom in 'Second Chances' has Nazi imagery tattooed on his face, which he hides with his beard until his friends shave it off as a prank.
  • The Food Poisoning Incident: Played for Drama in season 4. Every passenger on Drew, Rick, and Lily's flight contracts ciguatera poisoning due to contaminated ice and one person dies on the plane.
  • Fourth-Date Marriage: Kenny Fournette and Bella Cummings. She first appears in the sixth episode of season 4. They get engaged in episode 10, the series finale.
  • Friend to All Children: Paul, which is why he ends up going into pediatrics.
  • Get a Room!: Said by Topher to TC and Jordan after the hospital staff walk in on them making out.
    • Then said by Jordan to Shannon and Paul after she sees them kissing on a bench.
  • Happily Adopted: Brianna, after Drew and Rick adopt her in season 3. Also, Scott.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: TC and Topher, to the point where Topher's first call is to TC when his wife is stuck giving birth in a car in a storm and needs help when the second twin is breech (turned around). TC's the one who gets the second baby out and is the first one to hold her aside from Topher and Janet.
    Topher: I love you, brother.
    TC: Right back at you, buddy.
  • Hospital Hottie: Most of the characters.
  • Human Traffickers: TC, Jordan, and Paul find a crashed truck filled with human trafficking victims and the coyote that kidnapped them, Ana, pretending to be a victim. She's wanted in 4 states for trafficking and murder.
  • In-Series Nickname: TC and Drew.
  • I Am Not My Father: Paul Cummings is the son of a prestigious neurosurgeon, but doesn't want to be the same kind of doctor his father is, as he thinks cares more for money than his patients. He refuses doing an internship with him, but his father's company ends up buying the E.R. in season 3's finale.
  • Incompatible Orientation: Krista comes onto Drew, who finally has to tell her he's gay when she tries to kiss him. They become good friends.
  • Last-Name Basis: Ragosa is rarely referred to by his first name on the show.
  • Love at First Sight: Downplayed, TC is attracted to Jordan from the moment they meet.
  • Love Triangle: TC/Jordan/Scott in season one.
    • Kenny/Krista/Joey in season two, at least until Joey leaves.
  • Manly Gay: Drew, who shocks many of his colleagues when he comes out. His boyfriend Rick also qualifies. Both are/were in the military.
  • Mauve Shirt: Dwayne the MRI technician, who appeared in a few episodes prior to be killed in "Blood Brothers."
  • Mr. Fanservice: Kenny and TC get more than their fair share of shirtless scenes.
    • Also lampshaded by Jordan:
    Jordan: Do you just look for opportunities to take your shirt off?
  • No, You: TC's response to the above:
    TC: I remember when you used to look for opportunities to for me to take my shirt off.
  • Office Romance: Where do we begin?
    • Jordan and Scott in season 1.
    • TC and Jordan, Krista and Kenny, Joey and Krista, and Kenny and Gwen in season 2.
    • Shannon and Paul in season 3.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: TC. His actual first name has yet to be revealed.
    • It was later revealed to be Thomas Charles.
    • Drew, whose first name is Andrew, is this as well.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Eoin Macken's American accent gets a little shaky at times and comes out sounding very Irish.
  • Put on a Bus: At least one per season.
    • Season 2: Landry de la Cruz doesn't return for the season. Joey also leaves mid-season.
    • Season 3: Krista and Ragosa don't return for the season. EMT Gwen Gaskin leaves to study law at Georgetown early in the season.
    • Season 4: Topher
      • Bus Crash: As the staff requests the return of Topher, they receive a report that he and his daughter Lynn died in a car accident.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Gwen Gaskin is given this treatment in her first appearance on the first episode of season 2.
  • Roadside Surgery: On several occasions.
  • Screaming Birth: Janet in Storm Watch.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: TC, who clearly has PTSD and finally has a breakdown in the first season finale. Topher shows symptoms of it as well.
  • Sex with the Ex:
    • Jordan cheats on Scott with TC in season 1.
    • Downplayed in Season 3 when Scott kisses Jordan while he's in a relationship with Annie.
  • Split Personality: One of the Patients Of The Week is a child who has DID.
  • Take This Job and Shove It: Ragosa in the second season premiere, as he decides to quit his administrative job with a spectacularly pissy speech to pursue his dream of becoming a doctor.
  • Therapy Is for the Weak: Averted in season two. After starting therapy for his PTSD, TC brings up how great therapy is on multiple occasions.
  • To Be Lawful or Good: Topher struggled with this retroactively after a dry-drowning patient reminded him of Nadim, a friend he had in Afghanistan who was tortured for information about the Taliban. Topher had the job of keeping him alive for the torturers, and after Nadim died he didn't even know if they got the information they needed, which leads to a breakdown in the hospital and Topher wondering if he did the right thing.
  • Transparent Closet: Drew thought he was doing a good job of staying in the closet. It eventually turns into great big open secret before he becomes more open about his sexuality.
  • Veteran Instructor: Rick gets the opportunity to be one in late season 2. He doesn't take the job because he would have to move to South Carolina, away from Drew.
  • Weight Woe: Played for Drama. A Patient of the Week shoves a fork down her throat due to her eating disorder, and Krista reveals that she knew the cause because she had had similar struggles in the past.