updated 12/26/2005 AT 01:00 AM EST
•originally published 12/26/2005 AT 01:00 AM EST
What's the secret behind the success of the season's hottest new show? Let's look at how each character operates
DR. GEORGE O'MALLEY/T.R. KNIGHT
An unintentional snoop, he catches every sidelong glance, stolen kiss and tension-filled elevator ride.
DR. ALEX KAREV/JUSTIN CHAMBERS
His swagger is infectious—he even started a mini outbreak of syphilis.
DR. IZZIE STEVENS/KATHERINE HEIGL
Those years as a lingerie model sure do come in handy in the coed locker room.
THE CHIEF/JAMES PICKENS
The gruff but benevolent ruler of the hospital, he's worked his way to the top through blood, sweat and hiding from his wife.
DR. CRISTINA YANG/SANDRA OH
Blunt in manner, sharp in tongue, she's abrasive but she's also a hoot.
DR. PRESTON BURKE/ISAIAH WASHINGTON
As masterful in surgery as he is in the bedroom. Pius, he can cook!
DR. MEREDITH GREY/ELLEN POMPEO
Good doctors are supposed to keep their distance. Not this one—she embraces her work completely—a lover of medicine and Dr. McDreamy.
DR. MIRANDA BAILEY/CHANDRA WILSON
Known as "The Nazi" for her tough tactics, this chief resident manages the intern drama and keeps it out of the O.R.
DR. DEREK "McDREAMY" SHEPHERD/PATRICK DEMPSEY
Under that lustrous, dark mane lies a man torn—a brain surgeon who can't make up his mind between his wife and his intern.
THE TV COOK
Recipe for a Really Sweet Year:
•Mix four shows on the Food Network—including 30-Minute Meals—with five best-selling cookbooks.
•Turn up the heat with the November launch of Every Day with Rachael Ray magazine and a talk show slated for next fall, produced by Oprah's production company.
•Blend in a September wedding to lawyer John Cusimano.
•Maintain bubbly, homespun sassiness throughout. "I live exactly the same way now as I did," says Ray. "I just have better shoes."
Fall Out Boy
PERCEPTION: Since "Sugar, We're Going Down" sent the Chicago foursome up the charts, they're living the high life.
REALITY: "We're four totally awkward, nerdy guys," says singer Pete Stump, "with the coolest job in the universe."
•THE OVERNIGHT SENSATION
No. of films in '05: 5.
Oscar buzz for: Crash and Hustle & Flow. What He says: "I became an actor this year, part of the craft."
THE REALITY SHOW
Behold the power of raging hormones! The frisky cast of the MTV reality show captivated a nation with their round-robin romances and still found time to do some serious networking: LC's getting her own spinoff show, The Hills, Talan (a.k.a. Kimberly Stewart's split-second fiancé) is cutting an album, Kristin signed on to appear in the thriller 88 Minutes with Al Pacino, and Jason has been spotted hobnobbing with the likes of Paris Hilton at L.A. parties. This is what it means to be young, rich and constantly trailed by a camera.
THE RISING STAR
Signs you could be Hollywood's new It girl:
1. You do it all: Horror (Red Eye), comedy (Wedding Crashers), romance (The Notebook).
2. You're said to be dating a costar (The Notebook's Ryan Gosling).
3. You're likened to a screen queen: "She hates being compared," said Wedding Crashers director David Dobkin, "but I often said to her, 'You can be Julia Roberts.' "
•THE LATE-NIGHT HOST
How he keeps The Colbert Report fake: "Go with your gut. Facts can be misleading."
On fame: "I can't go anywhere without being chased by teenage girls—they think I'm Raven-Symoné."
•THE R&B SINGER
Up for eight Grammys, he says, "I've toured the world, made a lot of people happy."
•THE GOLF PHENOM
The 16-year-old's accomplishments in 2005:
•Earned approximately $10 million with Sony and Nike.
•Came this close to making the cut on the PGA men's tour.
•Scrubbed toilet. "I'm still responsible for cleaning my bathroom," she says.