The Patients of Dr. García

The Patients of Dr. García

An espionage tale between two Spanish friends spanning four decades, two continents, and multiple fake identities

7.0

TV Show

Spain
Spanish
Drama
2023
Eva Llorach, Javier Rey, Raúl Jiménez

TLDR

Oh, to have a ride-or-die bromance like Garcia and Arroyo…

What it's about

In the middle of the Spanish Civil War, young idealistic doctor Guillermo García (Javier Rey) saves and hides a wounded spy Manuel Arroyo (Tamar Novas), leading him to infiltrate a clandestine network of escape routes for European fascists.

The take

Less medical drama and more spy bromance, The Patients of Dr. Garcia is a new perspective on World War II Spain. Starting from the Spanish Civil War, the country is torn between the Republicans (“Reds”) and the fascist-aligned Nationalists. The titular doctor, a liberal Republican, hides the wounded spy Arroyo in his quarters, much to the disapproval of Garcia’s Falangist lover. Arroyo later pays back this favor by forging a fake identity for Garcia, but invites him to his mission to infiltrate Nazi escape routes. The overall plot, with its steady pace, political details and ever changing forged identities, can feel overwhelming, especially for those unfamiliar with Spanish history. However, the stunning cinematography, divine sets, and unexpected plot twists make the espionage series compelling to watch.

What stands out

The main espionage plot – infiltrating Nazi escape routes – doesn’t start immediately. Instead, the first few episodes are dedicated to the Spanish Civil War, where Dr. Garcia and Arroyo meet. Understandably, the series needs some time to develop the main friendship, as well as the historical events behind them, but as the series spans four decades, two continents, and multiple fake identities, the show sacrifices some emotional weight to too much exposition. It’s still an interesting watch for historical drama fans, though some may need to google some details.

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