B Positive

B Positive is an American television sitcom created by Marco Pennette, who also executive produces alongside Chuck Lorre for Warner Bros. Television. The multi-camera series premiered on CBS on November 5, 2020 as a Thursday night entry in the 2020–21 television season.[1][2][3]

B Positive
B Positive Title Card.png
GenreSitcom
Created by
Starring
Theme music composerChuck Lorre and Keb' Mo'
ComposerDennis C. Brown and Grant Geissman
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes17
Production
Executive producers
Producers
  • Peter Chakos
  • Kristy Cecil
  • Robinson Green
  • Jessica Kravitz
CinematographyGary Baum
EditorPeter Chakos
Camera setupMulti-camera
Running time19–22 minutes
Production companies
DistributorWarner Bros. Television Distribution
Release
Original networkCBS
Picture format1080i (HDTV)
Original releaseNovember 5, 2020 (2020-11-05) –
present (present)

PremiseEdit

The series is about a therapist and newly divorced father with B-positive blood who needs a kidney donor. When he's unable to find a donor within his family, a woman from his past offers him one of hers.

The series is based around the true story of series creator Marco Pennette, who received a kidney transplant in 2013.[4]

CastEdit

MainEdit

  • Thomas Middleditch as Drew,[5] a divorced father and therapist in need of a kidney transplant and a social life.
  • Annaleigh Ashford as Gina,[5] a former acquaintance of Drew's from high school who works as a bus driver for a senior center. She becomes Drew's kidney donor as her blood is an incredibly rare match for his.
  • Kether Donohue as Gabby,[5] a party girl and Gina's best friend who juggles multiple jobs.
  • Sara Rue as Julia,[5] Drew's ex-wife, a realtor who aspires to climb the social ladder; her frustrations with trying to get Drew to embrace her interests more led to her having an affair that resulted in their split.
  • Izzy G as Maddie, Drew and Julia's daughter.
  • Terrence Terrell as Eli, a retired football player with an upbeat personality whom Drew meets during dialysis treatment.

RecurringEdit

  • Linda Lavin as Norma, one of the senior citizens with whom Gina works at a local retirement home. She has a maternal, nurturing relationship with Gina, but she can be fairly randy, irresponsible, and demanding. Part of her close bond with Gina stems from the sad fact that Norma and her daughter (who hasn't been seen on the show) are estranged from each other.
  • Briga Heelan as Samantha, an uptight, intense millennial in Drew's dialysis group who does not suffer fools. She is angry about her illness and often takes it out on those around her, but she is ultimately a good-hearted person. She is trying not to let dialysis get in the way of her climbing the corporate ladder. She tells her colleagues that her mother has cancer in order to have an excuse to leave work for dialysis appointments, revealing that if her workmates knew about her kidney failure, it would kill her career "faster than being pregnant."
  • David Anthony Higgins as Jerry, a divorced dentist who has been in dialysis for over a year, convinced he'll never find a donor. He does get a donor, but his body ends up rejecting the donated kidney. He always sees the glass half-empty.
  • Darryl Stephens as Gideon, an empathetic gay nurse who works at the dialysis center. He cares deeply about the people to whom he gives treatment, often getting involved in their personal lives. There is a recurring theme of Gideon referring to himself in the third-person.
  • Bernie Kopell as Mr. Knudsen, one of the senior citizens at the retirement home where Gina works.
  • Jason Kravits as Dr. Baskin, Drew's nephrologist.
  • Adam Chambers as Paul, one of Gina's friends

Guest starringEdit

EpisodesEdit

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateProd.
code
U.S viewers
(millions)
1"Pilot"James BurrowsMarco PennetteNovember 5, 2020 (2020-11-05)T11.101375.14[6]
Drew, a therapist who recently separated from his wife Julia, discovers that he is in the early stages of renal failure; if he does not get a kidney transplant soon, his condition will become terminal. At a wedding, he runs into Gina, a girl he once knew back in high school, who offers to give him her kidney on the spot. Drew turns her down, but when all of his other attempts to find a donor fail, he reluctantly turns to Gina when he learns her blood type is compatible with his. Gina is given strict instructions to not consume alcohol or drugs for three months before the transplant, but Drew finds her strung out in her apartment and believes she was never serious about helping him. After learning that it would take ten years to get another kidney—time he doesn't have—Drew ambushes Gina at work and successfully begs her to give him a second chance.
2"Die Alysis"James BurrowsTeleplay by : Chuck Lorre & Marco Pennette & Greg Malins & Darrin Bragg
Story by : Chuck Lorre & Marco Pennette & Heide Perlman
November 12, 2020 (2020-11-12)T12.168024.90[7]
Drew learns from his doctor that his condition has gotten worse, requiring him to undergo weekly dialysis treatments. At the dialysis clinic, he meets fellow patients Eli, Sam, and Jerry. Gina gets in trouble with some loan sharks she borrowed money from, and runs out on Drew when they meet for coffee. He considers dropping her as his donor, but the other dialysis patients convince him that he's very lucky to have found a match. Instead, Drew comes up with a solution: ask Gina to move in with him. She refuses, not wanting to lose her "independence", but when the gangsters trash her apartment, she accepts his offer.
3"Foreign Bodies"James BurrowsTeleplay by : Alexa Junge & Preston Walker
Story by : Marco Pennette
November 19, 2020 (2020-11-19)T12.168035.20[8]
When Julia visits, Gina tells her that she's Drew's kidney donor, not knowing that Drew hadn't told his ex yet. This forces Drew to also tell Maddie about his condition. Meanwhile, Drew tries to get used to having Gina in the house with all her quirks, including her befriending and bringing home a huge dog. He gradually accepts that Gina is more than just his donor and makes an effort to bond with her. Gina sneaks into Maddie's room and helps her deal with her fear that her father might die.
4"Joint Pain"Richie KeenTeleplay by : Dan O'Shannon & Nicholas Fascitelli
Story by : Bob Daily
December 3, 2020 (2020-12-03)T12.168055.29[9]
Bitter over his divorce and tired of feeling like a pushover, Drew gets Gina to provide him with weed to smoke. The experience inspires him to break into Julia's house so he can steal a ceramic owl that represents one of his few happy memories of their marriage. Julia catches him, but finds she is turned on by his assertiveness and they have sex. Despite Drew telling his friends at the clinic that the whole thing was a one-off, he and Julia start meeting secretly to sleep together.
5"High Risk Factor"Richie KeenTeleplay by : Michelle Nader & Marco Pennette
Story by : Carol Leifer
December 17, 2020 (2020-12-17)T12.168044.60[10]
Tensions flare when Drew's controlling nature clashes with Gina's desire to live her life; Gina is annoyed that Drew insists on tracking her every move and calling her constantly. Drew defends himself by saying he's only looking out for his donor, but even Maddie tells him he needs to back off. Julia tries to get Gina to stop risking her health, but instead gets persuaded to go skydiving with her, something she never got to do while married to Drew. Drew finally accepts that he can only trust Gina to keep herself safe.
6"Open Heart Surgery"Scott EllisTeleplay by : Bob Daily & Darrin Bragg
Story by : Michelle Nader
January 21, 2021 (2021-01-21)T12.168065.05[11]
Drew is thrilled when he and Gina receive a scheduling notice for her pre-kidney donation psychological evaluation, a critical step on the road to his transplant. But after Gina finds out an ex-boyfriend is getting engaged, she freaks out and Drew in turn panics because this happens right as she's about to do the eval. Things eventually turn out OK, and Gina even inspires Drew to act somewhat less like a grumpy young-old man.
7"Phantom Limb"Scott EllisTeleplay by : Jim Patterson & Alexa Junge & Heide Perlman
Story by : Dan O'Shannon & Bob Daily & Michelle Nader
February 11, 2021 (2021-02-11)T12.168075.17[12]
Drew's response to two shots of bad news (he has to start a strict diet and exercise program after he faints during dialysis, and he is forced to miss his daughter's National Soccer tournament because there isn't any dialysis center he can get to in Ohio) is to gorge himself with junk food and then pick a fight with Gina when she tries to help him get back on track. He later makes amends by standing up on Gina's behalf to her sister, who thinks Gina agreed to the kidney transplant for stupid and selfish reasons.
8"Integration Therapy"Scott EllisTeleplay by : Bob Daily & Dan O'Shannon & Carol Leifer
Story by : Alexa Junge & Jim Patterson & Heide Perlman
February 18, 2021 (2021-02-18)T12.168085.10[13]
Drew is dining alone at a restaurant when Julia walks in, and he soon realizes that all of their "couple friends" remained friends with her and have no interest in him. Gina prompts him to have a party for the dialysis group that weekend to show he can be sociable. The party initially is carried by Gina, but when she has to leave, Drew manages to bond with the group. Gina is hurt when Drew talks about friends always drifting apart, thinking it suggests the two of them will not remain friends after the transplant. However, Drew buys Gina a car after learning her motorcycle cannot be repaired, and sets up a schedule of "payments" that will force them to stay in touch for decades to come.
9"B Negative"Scott EllisTeleplay by : Carol Leifer & Heide Perlman & Greg Malins
Story by : Marco Pennette & Dan O'Shannon & Darrin Bragg
February 25, 2021 (2021-02-25)T12.168095.19[14]
Jerry gets the call that he's a match for his kidney transplant, and the group is excited for their friend as well as imagining what it will be like when they get their own new kidneys. Drew even makes long-postponed plans to take his daughter to Iceland. However, when Jerry's body rejects his transplant, everyone is devastated, and Drew only gives Jerry a don't-give-up pep talk to set up his admission to Gina that he was lying and the fact that he stops going to dialysis and heads to the airport. Elsewhere, Gina and Norma run into conflict when Gina decides she'd like a more important job to give meaning to her life, and a hurt Norma takes it personally.
10"B Negative Part 2"Richie KeenTeleplay by : Marco Pennette & Bob Daily & Michelle Nader
Story by : Alexa Junge & Nicholas Fascitelli & Preston Walker
March 4, 2021 (2021-03-04)T12.168105.06[15]
While Drew's cliffhanging airport goodbye last week ends up being him sending his daughter and ex-wife on an all-expenses paid trip to Iceland and he returns home, he remains depressed over Jerry's transplant failure and turns to drinking Gina's homebrewed beer and asking her for drugs. After taking an unidentified tablet, Drew vanishes and Gina and the dialysis group go to find him, eventually seeing him passed out on someone's lawn. Drew learns his "drug-induced visions" were caused by uremia after he missed dialysis, and he decides he will get back in the fight. Jerry returns to dialysis and is cheered by a video of Drew's goofy antics.
11"Recessive Gina"Richie KeenTeleplay by : Alexa Junge & Dan O'Shannon & Heide Perlman
Story by : Marco Pennette & Bob Daily & Michelle Nader
March 11, 2021 (2021-03-11)T12.168114.95[16]
Drew finds out that Gina needs her father's medical records to see if she's more likely to have serious issues with the kidney transplant. Gina initially says it doesn't matter because her father is dead and she doesn't want to talk to her stepmother, but she changes her mind when Drew tells her he's going to cancel the transplant out of concern for her. Gina takes Drew and Norma (who is sad because she and her daughter can't get along well) to Philadelphia to get the records, and fills them in about her sad childhood while admitting her father is alive and she hasn't seen him for 20 years. She later finds out her father actually died last year, but she gets the medical information and a box of memories that allows her to have a tearful but hope-inducing goodbye to her late dad.
12"Canine Extraction"Phill LewisTeleplay by : Jamie Rhonheimer & Jessica Kravitz & Carol Leifer
Story by : Chuck Lorre & Jim Patterson & Dan O'Shannon
April 1, 2021 (2021-04-01)T12.168123.85[17]
The combination of Gina finding out that Cannoli the dog's owner is coming back to the U.S. and Drew being treated distantly by daughter Maddie leads to the two of them switching roles: Gina busts Maddie for drinking beer and tells Drew, while Drew horrifies Gina when he "dog-naps" Cannoli. Eventually, Drew realizes he's projecting his feelings of Maddie growing up and away from him, and she tells her dad she still loves him.
13"Inflammatory Response"Scott EllisTeleplay by : Jim Patterson & Dan O'Shannon & Alexa Junge
Story by : Jamie Rhonheimer & Jessica Kravitz & Heide Perlman
April 8, 2021 (2021-04-08)T12.168133.80[18]
Norma moves into Drew's house after she accidentally sets her room on fire at the retirement home. Also, a romance heats up between Gina and Eli. Drew is strongly against it because he thinks it will affect his friendship with Eli. Out of respect for Drew, Gina agrees to not act on her feelings for Eli, but ultimately does.
14"Love Life Support"Scott EllisTeleplay by : Heide Perlman & Jamie Rhonheimer & Nicholas Fascitelli
Story by : Marco Pennette & Michelle Nader & Bob Daily
April 15, 2021 (2021-04-15)T12.168144.08[19]
Convinced that Gina is different than other women he's dated, Eli asks her to go to Las Vegas with him. Gina is game, until she learns that Eli is taking her as his date to a family wedding. She panics by inviting over an old boyfriend, but stops short of sleeping with him. Meanwhile, Drew goes overboard trying to act like he's happy for Gina and Eli, but Norma sees through it.
15"Miss Diagnosis"Richie KeenTeleplay by : Nicholas Fascitelli & Jamie Rhonheimer & Preston Walker
Story by : Darrin Bragg & Alexa Junge & Carol Liefer
April 22, 2021 (2021-04-22)T12.168153.90[20]
Drew meets a woman named Adriana (Rosa Salazar) in the hospital vending area outside the dialysis room. After the two have a great first date, Drew decides to tell Adriana about his kidney failure. He is surprised and dejected when Adriana later tells him via text that they shouldn't pursue a relationship. Drew soon sees Adriana in their initial meeting spot, and she tells him she has cancer. Drew says he doesn't care, and the two agree to another date. Meanwhile, Eli prepares to audition for a local sportscaster job with Gina's help, but after the audition, the station informs him they are choosing someone else. Eli then confesses to Gina that he really needed the job, because he's broke.
16"A Cute Asphyxiation"Richie KeenTeleplay by : Bob Daily & Jessica Kravitz & John "Jack" O'Brien
Story by : Jim Patterson & Heide Perlman & Dan O'Shannon
April 29, 2021 (2021-04-29)T12.168164.03[21]
Drew and Gina's nascent relationships with cancer patient Adriana and dialysis squad member Eli each hit some snags. Drew runs into turbulence when his efforts to help care for Adriana after her latest chemo treatments are met with her ordering him to go away, and Eli is angry when Gina clues Drew in about Eli's financial woes (this leads to the dialysis group making a nice gesture to buy Eli's eBay-listed Super Bowl ring and give it back to him, which in turns makes Eli feel even worse). Adriana later apologizes to Drew and they get their romance going again, while Eli thanks Gina for her help and tells her he's starting a Seahawks-focused podcast. Elsewhere, Norma wants Gina to come with her on a cruise to Italy, but Gina helps Norma reach out to and successfully invite Norma's own daughter so they can reconcile before it's too late. Before hearing that Eli wants his Super Bowl ring back, Jerry tries to score in a bar by flashing the ring -- with no takers.
17"Transplanticipation"Richie KeenTeleplay by : Dan O'Shannon & Carol Liefer & Jessica Kravitz
Story by : Jamie Rhonheimer & Alexa Junge & Aaron Huffines
May 6, 2021 (2021-05-06)T12.168174.13[22]
Drew and Gina are called into the office of Drew's nephrologist and are worried it's bad news, but it's actually the best possible news: their blood tests have led to a green light for the kidney transplant and it'll happen as soon as the schedule has an opening. Gina makes plans for the future that involve moving back in with old roomie and party warrior Gabby, but she later realizes during a low-key birthday dinner with Gideon that she doesn't really want to be that person anymore. Gideon relates how he's thinking he should give up on his acting dream now that he's 35, but Gina tells him he'll be a success in whatever he wants to do and sings him "Happy Birthday". Drew can't wait to share his good news with Adriana, but she stuns him when she says that her cancer has spread and she's going to stop treatment. Drew initially pisses her off by pushing her not to quit fighting and later makes amends by getting a huge assist from Gina in getting Adriana into a cancer-fighting trial program in Switzerland. In order to support her, Drew passes on a surprise opening in the next week to have the transplant done sooner and instead tells Adriana he will go with her overseas and come back to the U.S. himself to get his new kidney. Also, the dialysis group gets a new member, a social influencer who is very Samantha-like in her lack of tact.
18"Life Expectancy"[23]Richie KeenTeleplay by : Jim Patterson & Marco Pennette & Chuck Lorre
Story by : Jamie Rhonheimer & Jessica Kravitz & Eric Wen
May 13, 2021 (2021-05-13)TBATBD

ProductionEdit

DevelopmentEdit

The series was among the 14 pilots ordered by CBS in February 2020 and was fast tracked to series the following March, as the pilot had already been completed before production at Warner Bros. Television was suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[24] The pilot was the only pilot completed for the 2020–21 television season for any of the broadcast networks in advance of the upfronts. On May 8, 2020, CBS picked up the series,[1] and CTV followed soon after, picking up the series on June 23, 2020.[25] On October 26, 2020, Jim Patterson joined the series as an executive producer and co-showrunner.[26] The series premiered on November 5, 2020.[3][27] On December 21, 2020, CBS gave the series a five-episode back order, making the total number of episodes ordered to 18.[28]

CastingEdit

On February 19, 2020, it was announced that Annaleigh Ashford had been cast in the pilot.[29] On March 2, 2020, it was announced that Kether Donohue and Sara Rue had joined the cast.[30] The following day, it was announced that Thomas Middleditch had joined the cast in the lead role.[31] Alongside the series picked up announcement, it was reported that Kamryn Kunody was cast in a starring role.[1][32] On August 11, 2020, Maggie Elizabeth Jones joined the cast in a recasting, replacing Kunody.[33] On September 25, 2020, Terrence Terrell was cast as a series regular.[34] On October 12, 2020, Izzy G was cast to replace Jones in a second recasting while Linda Lavin, Briga Heelan, Darryl Stephens, Bernie Kopell, and David Anthony Higgins were cast in recurring roles and Darien Sills-Evans was cast to guest star.[35]

FilmingEdit

Production for the first season concluded on April 16, 2021.[36]

ReceptionEdit

Critical responseEdit

On Rotten Tomatoes, the series holds an approval rating of 87% with an average rating of 6.12/10, based on 15 reviews. The website's critical consensus states, "B Positive's familiar sitcom trappings are elevated by its charming cast—especially the weird and winsome comedic stylings of Tony winner Annaleigh Ashford."[37] On Metacritic, it has a weighted average score of 62 out of 100, based on 14 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[38]

RatingsEdit

Viewership and ratings per episode of B Positive
No. Title Air date Rating
(18–49)
Viewers
(millions)
DVR
(18–49)
DVR viewers
(millions)
Total
(18–49)
Total viewers
(millions)
1 "Pilot" November 5, 2020 0.6 5.14[6] 0.2 1.09 0.8 6.23[39]
2 "Die Alysis" November 12, 2020 0.5 4.90[7] 0.2 1.13 0.7 6.03[40]
3 "Foreign Bodies" November 19, 2020 0.6 5.20[8] N/A N/A N/A N/A
4 "Joint Pain" December 3, 2020 0.6 5.29[9] N/A 0.90 N/A 6.20[41]
5 "High Risk Factor" December 17, 2020 0.5 4.60[10] N/A N/A N/A N/A
6 "Open Heart Surgery" January 21, 2021 0.7 5.05[11] N/A N/A N/A N/A
7 "Phantom Limb" February 11, 2021 0.7 5.17[12] N/A 0.92 N/A 6.09[42]
8 "Integration Therapy" February 18, 2021 0.6 5.10[13] N/A 0.88 N/A 5.99[43]
9 "B Negative" February 25, 2021 0.7 5.19[14] N/A 0.95 N/A 6.13[44]
10 "B Negative Part 2" March 4, 2021 0.7 5.06[15] N/A 0.86 N/A 5.92[45]
11 "Recessive Gina" March 11, 2021 0.6 4.95[16] N/A 1.03 N/A 5.99[46]
12 "Canine Extraction" April 1, 2021 0.4 3.85[17] N/A N/A N/A N/A
13 "Inflammatory Response" April 8, 2021 0.5 3.80[18] 0.2 1.17 0.7 4.97[47]
14 "Love Life Support" April 15, 2021 0.5 4.08[19] N/A N/A N/A N/A
15 "Miss Diagnosis" April 22, 2021 0.5 3.90[20] 0.2 1.06 0.7 4.96[48]
16 "A Cute Asphyxiation" April 29, 2021 0.4 4.03[21] TBD TBD TBD TBD
17 "Transplanticipation" May 6, 2021 0.5 4.13[22] TBD TBD TBD TBD

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c Andreeva, Nellie (May 8, 2020). "Dramas 'The Equalizer' With Queen Latifah & 'Clarice', Chuck Lorre Comedy 'B Positive' Picked Up To Series By CBS". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved May 26, 2020.
  2. ^ Porter, Rick (March 2, 2020). "Kether Donohue, Sara Rue Join Chuck Lorre Comedy 'B Positive' at CBS". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 24, 2020.
  3. ^ a b Andreeva, Nellie; Petski, Denise (October 13, 2020). "CBS Sets Premiere Dates For 10 Scripted Series Including 'NCIS' Trio, 'Young Sheldon' & 'S.W.A.T'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved October 13, 2020.
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