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Just For Fun: Who Are Your Favorite TV Plastic Surgeons?6 min read

Favorite Plastic Surgeon
Picture of Caroline Hedges

Caroline Hedges

Caroline Hedges is a critically acclaimed researcher, writer and serial entrepreneur.
With a knack for making the obscure plain, she is able to distill her research
in writing both fun and engaging posts.

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I love watching television shows and movies. There is something liberating about stepping out of your own world for a few hours and imagining you are living the high life in Beverly Hills or curing the life-threatening illnesses of everyday Americans. Now more than ever, I think we all want to escape from our reality of self-isolation and social distancing.

My favorite shows are hospital based dramas. I have followed the lives of ER doctors, gifted but grumpy doctors, surgeons who could have been pin-up calendar models, and fictional characters that I wish were my people. There have been tears and laughter, and I am grateful to the wonderful actors and writers who have kept my obsession alive all these years. Here is my homage to some of my favorite plastic surgery characters and reality TV stars.

I salute the real doctors and nurses working so hard on the front lines to look after those affected by the pandemic. They are risking their health everyday to look after others. I am staying home for them and all the vulnerable. I hope you are doing the same.

Favorite Plastic Surgeon Number 1:
Dr. McSteamy, Grey's Anatomy

Grey’s Anatomy has everything – hot, capable doctors, heart-wrenching storylines, fantastic acting and a soundtrack that always has me reaching for the tissues. Sixteen seasons in and they have had two plastic surgeons as main characters. Dr. Mark Sloan (a.k.a. Dr. McSteamy) is the original.

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Unlike his best friend counterpart (Dr. McDreamy), McSteamy was a man who loved women, sex, and living life with no relationship complications. Thankfully, his character arc moves him away from these not so great qualities to someone who loves deeply, but can’t find the words and actions to show it. And his decision making outside of surgery is terrible. Ultimately, he finds the love of his life but not necessarily the happy ending you would think.

Favorite Plastic Surgeon Number 2:
Dr. Christian Troy, Nip/Tuck.

Nip/Tuck had a love/hate relationship with its viewers and critics. Many people in the entertainment industry praised it’s raw, graphic content and it’s storylines that went beyond the celebrity face lifts that were happening so much in real life at the time. Plastic surgeons, however, were definitely in the ‘hate’ camp. They denounced the show as sensationalism and shallow and said that it didn’t address that plastic surgery is about more than facelifts and tummy tucks.

Dr. Christian Troy was a flawed character, whose morals were definitely in the gray area. But the series creator Ryan Murphy (Glee, American Horror Story) wanted Troy to be more than what we first saw and as the series advanced we saw his vulnerable side and his traumatic past. It’s what made me and thousands of viewers love him.

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Favorite Plastic Surgeon Number 3:
Dr. Robert Caldwell, St. Elsewhere

St. Elsewhere is an old show from the 1980s, but I had to mention it as it had so many fantastic characters and kickstarted the careers of many amazing actors – like Denzel Washington. Dr Robert ‘Bobby’ Caldwell appeared on the show in season two and was again a plastic surgeon known for enjoying time with the ladies and living life to the full. But he did care about his patients, and his many storylines showed his talents as a surgeon. Mark Harmon, who played Caldwell, was voted ‘Sexiest Man Alive‘ in 1986 due to this role.

A controversial exit story line followed and Harmon went on to bigger things and is now best known for being the star of NCIS.,

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SIDE NOTE: I really wanted to add a FEMALE plastic surgeon into this mix but I couldn't remember any from the many TV shows I have watched. Alas, a search didn't pull any up either. I hope the 2020s become the era of the female TV plastic surgeon.

Favorite Plastic Surgeon Number 4:
Dr. Jackson Avery, Grey's Anatomy.

Dr. Jackson and Dr. McSteamy were regularly seen together on screen. Both liked female company and were confidant in their abilities, but Jackson had that sincere, sweet-act going for him that gruff McSteamy couldn’t match. By the time we said goodbye to McSteamy, Jackson was already stepping up to the superhero surgeon moments.

And Dr. Jackson Avery is still going strong: Head of Plastics and rolling through many of the female characters in Grey’s Anatomy and the spin-off show “Station 19.” Will he ever settle down?

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Favorite Plastic Surgeons 5&6:
Dr. Terry Dubrow and Dr. Paul Nassif, Botched.

Where do people who have had plastic surgeries gone seriously wrong go? To E! and their show “Botched.” Both stars of the show – Dr. Dubrow and Dr. Nassif – are qualified, experienced plastic surgeons who have practices in the wealthy districts of California – Beverly Hills and Orange County.

When not tending to the housewives of California, they co-host “Botched” and help out the less privileged members of society. Generally the patients that come on the show have had surgery that has enhanced them in ways they weren’t expecting, resulting in unflattering lumps and caricature features.

What I like about these guys is their ability to have fun and be sympathetic at the same time. They strive to stay professional regardless of what comes through their door but sometimes, their facial expressions give them away. Priceless moments.

And Finally Our Favorite Non-TV Plastic Surgeon: Dr. Phillip Chang, Aesthetica

He may not be a TV star; but to his many patients, Dr. Phillip Chang is just as heroic. Reading through the many reviews they have left, Dr, Chang is a caring, empathic surgeon, who puts the emotional well-being of patients top of his care priorities alongside their aesthetic and physical needs. He advocates for natural enhancements that provide subtle but clear improvements to the patients beauty.


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