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Why Scrubs Fans Think The Show Stands Above Other Dramedies

NBC's (now ABC's) hospital procedural dramedy series "Scrubs" followed the medical careers of JD (Zach Braff), Turk (Donald Faison), and Elliot (Sarah Chalke) as they transform from terrified, stressed-out interns to terrified, stressed-out doctors. Along the way, they experienced love, guidance, and an inexplicably aggressive janitor. The series must've made some sense because the series garnered nine seasons across two networks and currently sits with a solid 83% positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

In truth, "Scrubs" had a nearly unbreakable grip on the early 2000s, with fans relentlessly quoting everything from the philosophical nuggets of wisdom that JD ended each episode with — and to be fair, he had some good ones — to the lyrics of "Guy Love" from that time a patient heard everything in a musical format. While those two examples might seem like incongruous, polar opposites, well, that was kind of the point of "Scrubs." The show balanced the heavy topic matter of facing mortality in the medical field with the blatant silliness of a naïve, carefree protagonist. That's what made it so memorable, according to those who still remember it.

Scrubs balanced the highs and lows in a unique way

In a 2019 post on the show's Subreddit, S-a_m said, "Scrubs does what no other show has ever done successfully. Within all the cheesy conversations and goofy comedy is an amazing plot hiding behind the cheese. I saw another fan say that within one episode you can start out laughing out loud and end it with tears in your eyes and I couldn't agree more. Scrubs is the best show." In the comments, another user added that "Scrubs" handled character growth in a way they felt was both genuine and rare, which made the series connect with audiences. 

Considering how the series ended nearly 15 years ago and it's still being discussed in such a way, "Scrubs" must have done something right, and the ideas put forward by S-a_m are as sound as any. In a 2020 interview with BBC, Zach Braff suggested that the show's staying power was buoyed by how well it depicted the goings-on inside of a hospital. "[So] I definitely think Scrubs still holds up. For the simple fact that there are still people in the medical profession who're going through the same things." He did, however, go on to say that much of the humor severely dates the production, especially in terms of how it handled social topics.