The “New Breakfast Club,” Red Band Society, Is Based on Creator’s 3-Year-Old Brother in Coma

Red Band Society ArtFOX

The most promising and inspiring new show coming to TV this fall is about sick kids in a hospital. No, really.

Fox’s Red Band Society took center stage today at the TCA Press Tour and we have to admit, we are more excited for this series than any other show coming out this fall.

Not only does it feature a stellar cast (Octavia Spencer, Dave Annable, and a handful of breakout stars), but the premise, which centers around teens inside the pediatric ward of a hospital, has the exact opposite effect of what you might assume: It makes you feel like living every single moment of your life to the fullest. In the current landscape of so many thoroughly depressing TV shows, Red Band is a lightning bolt of fresh air.

READ: Breaking news from TCA!

Creator Margaret Nagle revealed  that the show, which is narrated by a kid in a coma named Charlie (Griffin Gluck), was actually inspired by her brother Charlie’s real-life story: He was in a coma for about a year when he was 3 years old, and later told her he remembered smells and sounds and “experienced life around him” while lying comatose in the hospital bed.

“I shared a room with him growing up, and my brother is hilarious,” Nagle told reporters, adding that the show’s dark humor will derive from that, and the Red Band version of Charlie will meet a similarly hopeful fate by end of season one, when the show’s narration will switch to another character. “I think there’s a lot to look forward to.”

Us, too.

READ: Here’s the full 2014 Fall TV Schedule

“What we are doing with this show is saying it isn’t taboo, being sick,” star Octavia Spencer explained. “You’re still normal, it’s just a different normal. We have met some of these kids and they are wise beyond their years because they are young and they are having to deal with that kind of diversity at the same time.”

The show is being tagged as something of a “new Breakfast Club,” and Nagle says it’s a welcome comparison.

In fact, she’s trying to get one of the stars of Breakfast Club to play the show’s pathologist. (It’s a male star, and our money’s on Judd Nelson.)

Don’t you forget about this show. (Sorry. We had to.)

PHOTOS: 2014 Fall TV Preview


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