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HomeNewsGrey's Anatomy's Most Enduring Character Is a Real-Life Scrub Nurse

Grey’s Anatomy’s Most Enduring Character Is a Real-Life Scrub Nurse

BokHee, the longest-lasting supporting character of the cast of Grey’s Anatomy, is played by an actual scrub nurse who certainly takes her role seriously. Actor Kathy C. An, also known as BokHee An, portrayed BokHee on both Grey’s Anatomy and its six-season spinoff Private Practice. She has garnered a massive following among Grey’s Anatomy fans, and for good reason — she is undeniably one of the most dedicated actors on the show.

Designated as a “protect-at-all-costs” character by fans, Grey’s Anatomy‘s BokHee has appeared in every season to date. She has very few speaking lines throughout the series, usually being spoken to by other characters rather than driving the narrative herself. She didn’t actually talk until Season 10 when she recommended a bypass surgery for Alex’s father in “Get Up, Stand Up.” She spoke again in Season 15’s “I Want a New Drug,” praising Ellen Pompeo’s Meredith Grey as “Wonder Woman.” Aside from these two instances, BokHee largely communicates through facial expressions and reactions, often telling the main characters what they need to hear without saying a word.

BokHee An Is a Special Part of Grey’s Anatomy

BokHee An Is Played By Medical Professional Kathy C. An

  • Bokhee is one of only a handful of characters to appear in all nineteen seasons of Grey’s Anatomy so far.
  • By the end of Season 19, Kathy C. An had appeared in 265 episodes of Grey’s Anatomy and one episode of the spinoff series Private Practice.
  • Bokhee makes her first appearance in Season 1, Episode 1 of Grey’s Anatomy, “A Hard Day’s Night.”

Kathy C. An worked asa scrub nursein Los Angeles for 56 years before retiring in 2015. Before her retirement, actor Giacomo Gianniotto — who played Andrew DeLuca from Season 11 through Season 17 — watched a surgery in which An assisted to prepare for his part. Though it is yet unconfirmed, it’s quite possible Gianniotto is not the only member of the Grey’s Anatomy crew that has shadowed An in the decade she worked on Grey’s Anatomy and was assisting in surgeries in Los Angeles. After all, many cast and crew members regularly watch real-life surgeries in the Los Angeles area to prepare for specific episodes and scenes that include those surgeries.

BokHee An adds to the authenticity of Grey’s Anatomy just by being onscreen. Whether viewers consciously realize it, they can catch small details and tell whether they’re fake. This is why Tom Cruise hangs out on actual airplanes when doing his stunts and CGI car chases aren’t as appealing in action movies. An actor can train to play a nurse for as long as they want, but it’s near-impossible to replicate the simple, natural, swift hand movements that only an experienced nurse has. BokHee is the only Grey’s Anatomy cast member outside the show to have a medical career. Behind the camera, however, there are a few more medical professionals who help add to the show’s authenticity.

Grey’s Anatomy Has an Astounding Level of Realism

Grey’s Anatomy Is More Focused On Actual Medical Practices Than Other Shows

Grey’s Anatomy may not be viewers’ first idea regarding a strictly realistic procedural series, but it is far more realistic than audiences give it credit for. While the Shonda Rhimes-created show makes the occasional suspension of reality for storytelling, Grey’s Anatomy isconsistently accurate,according to most medical professionals. Executive producers Zoanne Clack and Fred Einesman, both doctors, play a huge role in the fact-checking process. Many other real-life doctors and medical professionals are also brought on to advise and fact-check the work, often adding medical text to the scripts wherever the writer’s room puts “medical medical.”

Given her surgical background, having Kathy C. An star on Grey’s Anatomy as a recurring character is a testament to the show’s incredible attention to detail. Not only does it add to the medical drama’s nuance, but it also makes BokHee an even more lovable character. Though it’s unlikely BokHee will ever get her own Grey’s Anatomy episode, knowing this information about Kathy C. An makes her appearances all the more entertaining. Even with her generally limited storyline in the series, BokHee’s presence greatly elevates Grey’s Anatomy, injecting a sense of realism into the series that other procedurals often lack.

Grey’s Anatomy’s Realism Elevates It Beyond Other Series

Grey’s Anatomy Is The Longest-Running American Medical Drama

Grey’s Anatomy may not be strictly realistic in every regard, but its attempts to remain somewhat consistent with actual medical practices help it stand out from other medical dramas. The series understandably has to heighten some of its medical aspects to keep viewers engaged, but it at least makes an effort not to take things too far. In part, this has helped Grey’s Anatomy remain popular for two decades.

While other medical procedural series like Chicago Med and New Amsterdam have found their audiences, no series of their genre holds a candle to the popularity of Grey’s Anatomy. The series has transcended multiple decades with its high-stakes drama and memorable storylines, consistently drawing a passionate fanbase to each and every season. The series has even been able to weather the usually crippling loss of a beloved lead, suggesting that it is nowhere near its end.

For all of the extra work that must be done behind the scenes, the attention to detail in Grey’s Anatomy‘s medical scenes greatly improves the overall series. Real-life professionals like Kathy C. An help keep the seriesgrounded in actual medical science, even if the personal relationships and storylines sometimes exit the realm of believability. So long as the series works to maintain a certain level of realism, it can expect to continue to enjoy a high level of popularity among audiences, even as it continues its twentieth season.

Grey’s Anatomy is available to stream on Netflix and Hulu.

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