What's Worth Watching: Band of Sisters

Aubry D'Arminio
Todd Anthony/BBC

The Crimson Field

The Crimson Field, "Episode 1" (Sunday, June 21, 10/9c, PBS, check local listings.)

British World War I medical drama The Crimson Field is corny. And fake: The men and women are very clean for doctors, soldiers, and nurses living near the French Front circa 1915. It's also manipulative: The first battle-warn soldier you see is young, blond, gorgeous, and dead. But like 1919 had the Treaty of Versailles, this M*A*S*H for the Good War generation has its good parts. Oona Chaplin (Game of Thrones' Mrs Rob Stark) deftly alternates between cold and pained as the mysterious Kitty Trevelyan, the most prominent (and beautiful) of three inexperienced nurses newly arrived from England. If Kitty is so green, what's with the been-there-seen-that death stare? And how'd she get so good at hospital corners? Alice St. Clair (Kate Middleton from Hallmark Channel's William & Katherine) is heartwarmingly silly as country girl Flora, the cohort Kitty likes. And Marianne Oldham knows how to temper straight-laced with vulnerability as Rose, the nurse Kitty hates. Obviously, these girls are going to be great friends some day, or one of them is going to step on a landmine, or both. Why not watch?