The Knick: Hotties and Graphic Surgery


“You think Clive Owen is hot! You should watch The Knick!” said Trystan cheerfully.

“Okay, I’ll try to get around to it!” said Kendra, unsuspecting the horrors that awaited her.

Months passed, then one day Kendra said to herself, “It’s Clive Owen, and Trystan wants me to — how bad can it be? And it’s for Frock Flicks!” And so she pushed play.

Cut to 10 minutes later, Kendra is on the couch with her shirt over her head, refusing to watch a VERY graphic C-section. 20 minutes later, and Kendra again has her shirt over her head, refusing to watch a VERY graphic bowel surgery. I believe “gritty” and “realistic” would be the correct descriptive words.

THE KNICK: Andre Holland, Michael Angarano, Clive Owen, Louis Butelli, Eve Hewson, Eric Johnson. photo: Mary Cybulski /HBO

This is tame, in comparison.

TV STILL FOR TV -- DO NOT PURGE -- The Knick HBO -- episode 6 -- Pictured: Eve Hewson, Clive Owen, Michael Angarano, Zuzanna Szadkowski Photo: Mary Cybulski/Cinemax

A walk in the park, really!

In between GRAPHIC SURGERY, you’ve got:

Clive Owen. Hot, although I'm not positive if he's a bowler hat kind of guy.

Clive Owen. Hot, although I’m not positive if he’s a bowler hat kind of guy.


The naive young nurse, straight outta West Virginia.

The naive young nurse, straight outta West Virginia.


Who apparently gets to get out of her uniform in future episodes.


And shoot up Clive Owen’s character with cocaine in his MOST OBVIOUS VEIN. Take a guess. Yes, that one.


And the new doctor, who initially is rejected due to his ethnicity.

And the new doctor, who initially is rejected due to his ethnicity, but is here to LEARN, baby.


THE KNICK - Season 1 - 2014 - HBO/Cinemax

The hospital’s wealthy benefactress.


Who apparently gets to get gussied up in episode 4.


And who has spiffy hats and nicely tailored Edwardian outfits.

Episode 2 Sky Atlantic Juliet Rylance as Cornelia Robertson ©HBO Enterprises

And apparently wears a corset.

I don’t know, kids. If you need me to watch more, I will. But I may need a teddy bear or something next time.

Do you need me to watch more of The Knick (2014-)? Have you watched it beyond episode 1, and does it get less gore-y, or are the costumes SO GOOD that I should saddle up?


About the author



Kendra has been a fixture in the online costuming world since the late 1990s. Her website, Démodé Couture, is one of the most well-known online resources for historical costumers. In the summer of 2014, she published a book on 18th-century wig and hair styling. Kendra is a librarian at a university, specializing in history and fashion. She’s also an academic, with several articles on fashion history published in research journals.

One Response

  1. SaraV

    You need to watch. The costumes are astounding. There is a scene in which Cordelia is getting dressed for “work” (she actually works at the hospital, and it shows her maids literally encrusting her with layers of clothing and underwear and then the decorative touches and it reminds one of nothing else but squires helping their knight get into his armor.

    It can be rather gory though – it’s safe to assume that whenever they are in the operating theater, the blood will pour.