Based on a friend’s recommendation, my wife and I rented a disk from the first season of the television serious Everwood, and we liked it so much we purchased the set. The title is based on the name of the fictitious Colorado town where the story develops. The premise is that a talented New York doctor — among the finest brain surgeons in the world — loses his wife and, in his grief, resettles his family (he has a young daughter and teenage boy) in Everwood, a town in the mountains a tolerable drive away from Denver.
The central character of the show, Dr. Andrew Brown, portrayed by a wonderful Treat Williams, is a glowing figure. Obviously he suffers from the loss of his wife, and he fights with his son and faces various other problems. But he reveals magnificent force of character and an underlying benevolence. The writing of the show is both sweet and moving, despite a few oblique religious themes and the fact that Brown works without compensation for reasons that are not entirely convincing.
The show treads lightly into politics, and it does so with particular poignancy in the twelfth episode of the first season. When an elderly florist dies, the town discovers that she was growing marijuana in the back room. A debate about medical marijuana erupts. Even though the setting of the debate is artificial — the town government holds a public meeting to decide the fate of the florist’s marijuana, which is not how things work in real-world Colorado — the discussion is thoughtful and rounded. Ultimately the show leans toward toleration. Yet none of this seems like a political sermon; it is part of a thoughtful story that contains another significant plot development. In the funniest line of the show, a daughter tells her father (something like), “I thought marijuana was only supposed to make you paranoid after you smoke it.”
But I don’t wish to scare away opponents of medical marijuana; I love the show even though it presents some ideas with which I disagree, and I think you will enjoy it, too.