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Mercy Point

As Dr. Halyen Breslauer (Maria Del Mar), the no-nonsense director of medicine explains, Mercy Point is "not some low-orbit HMO," but rather a 23rd century medical facility located at the far reaches of a newly discovered galaxy. It is the result of an inter-species effort to treat humans and aliens as they continue to push the envelope of space travel. It's the first stop for anything coming into the system and the last stop for anything leaving.

With:
Dr. Grote Maxwell.....Joe Morton Dr. Haylen Breslauer.....Maria Del Mar Dr. Dru Breslauer.....Alexandra Wilson Dr. Caleb "C.J." Jurado.....Brian McNamara ANI (Android Nursing Interface).....Julia Pennington Dr. Rema Cook.....Gay Thomas Dr. Batung.....Jordan Lund Even if every Trek convention and "X-Files" chat room were siphoned at 9 p.m. on Tuesday nights, "Mercy Point" would still have an uphill battle. Sure to be dubbed " 'ER' in space," this ambitious sci-fi drama is not without its merits. Writer Trey Callaway ("I Still Know What You Did Last Summer") takes the high-pressure world of emergency medicine and gives it a futuristic twist complete with impressive special effects and a top-notch cast.

As Dr. Halyen Breslauer (Maria Del Mar), the no-nonsense director of medicine explains, Mercy Point is “not some low-orbit HMO,” but rather a 23rd century medical facility located at the far reaches of a newly discovered galaxy. It is the result of an inter-species effort to treat humans and aliens as they continue to push the envelope of space travel. It’s the first stop for anything coming into the system and the last stop for anything leaving.

Dr. Maxwell (Joe Morton), primary alien physiologist, is scheduled for transfer, but can’t find the time to leave between crises. Alien physiology is an emerging science, and working this station provides a thrill and a challenge for its young, hot-shot staff which includes a heartthrob doctor who makes spaceship calls (Brian McNamara), a resident with an attitude problem (Alexandra Wilson), a dedicated doctor who valiantly fights for patient rights (Gay Thomas) and a cyborg nurse with a unique bedside manner (Julia Pennington).

Sci-fi’s inherent problems are the loss of real drama and the rules are being drawn as you go. At “Mercy Point,” patients literally lose their heads and show up in the next episode. “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” which never pulled the sci-fi card in favor of solid acting and creative, but plausible, stories within its own mythology, retained its dramatic integrity. If “Mercy Point” can stick to that acumen, it could deliver the goods. Michael Katleman’s direction is crisp and tech credits are excellent.

Mercy Point

(DRAMA/SCIENCE-FICTION SERIES; UPN; TUES. OCT. 6, 9 P.M.)

Production: Filmed in Vancouver, Canada, by Mandalay Television in association with Columbia TriStar Television. Executive producers, Joe Voci, Scott Sanders; producer, Deborah Starr Seibel; director, Michael Katleman; writer, Trey Callaway; production designer, Graeme Murray; director of photography, Joel Ransom.

Crew: Editor, Adam Wolfe; music, Jon Ehrlich; sound, Patricio Liebenson; casting, Susan Booker.

With: Dr. Grote Maxwell.....Joe Morton Dr. Haylen Breslauer.....Maria Del Mar Dr. Dru Breslauer.....Alexandra Wilson Dr. Caleb "C.J." Jurado.....Brian McNamara ANI (Android Nursing Interface).....Julia Pennington Dr. Rema Cook.....Gay Thomas Dr. Batung.....Jordan Lund Even if every Trek convention and "X-Files" chat room were siphoned at 9 p.m. on Tuesday nights, "Mercy Point" would still have an uphill battle. Sure to be dubbed " 'ER' in space," this ambitious sci-fi drama is not without its merits. Writer Trey Callaway ("I Still Know What You Did Last Summer") takes the high-pressure world of emergency medicine and gives it a futuristic twist complete with impressive special effects and a top-notch cast.

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