March 16, 2021

ER 8.6, Supplies and Demands: My Two Dads

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , at 5:03 pm by Jenn

Seriously, guys, send Rachel back now

Summary: Benton is playing basketball with Reese at Jackie’s house before heading off to work. Jackie is surprised that Roger is going to be picking Reese up that afternoon for a family party. She says the cousin having the party isn’t Reese’s “real” cousin. Jackie, shush. Benton shuts her down, but Jackie argues that Reese must be confused to still have Roger in his life when they’re not really family anymore. Benton says he’s just giving Roger time to adjust to the changes – something Jackie should understand. She doesn’t appreciate that.

While driving to work, Elizabeth talks to someone on the phone in an attempt to help a patient she operated on. Rachel got her precious cell phone, and in exchange, she’ll be watching her baby sister that afternoon. Mark notices glitter on her cheek and asks if she’s starting a trend. Apparently it’s already a trend. Mark drops Elizabeth off before taking Rachel to school a little late. Rachel asks to be dropped off a few blocks away so no one sees her father’s minivan.

Susan has dragged Carter to a yoga class in hopes of helping him deal with the pain in his back. They talk through the whole thing, which I think is a no-no. He tells her that Millicent’s lab work has all come back fine, so aside from her fainting spell, she seems to be healthy. Susan asks about Carter and Abby, noting that there seems to be something going on there. He says they’re just friends. Susan thinks he doesn’t want to be Abby’s rebound after her breakup with Luka. Carter tries to hold a pose but ultimately falls over, taking Susan down with him.

The two head to County after the class, arriving just as a call comes in about an apartment fire. Supplies are moving around slowly since the person delivering them around the hospital is new. That person turns out to be Nicole, who of course got the job thanks to Luka. Abby is less than thrilled to have to see both her ex and his crush all day.

The patient Elizabeth was trying to help over the phone is Mrs. Wilson, the woman Elizabeth operated on in the previous episode. Elizabeth has to spend the day being shadowed by Carmen from County’s infection-control department. Mrs. Wilson’s daughter, April, doesn’t want her mother to keep suffering if it’s her time to go. Elizabeth promises to keep working on Mrs. Wilson, but a nurse notes that she has a DNR. April knows that her mother wouldn’t want to be placed on a machine, so she resists Elizabeth’s plans to help her. Elizabeth wants to proceed anyway.

Victims of the apartment fire start coming in, along with a firefighter who hurt his ankle. Luka and Abby tend to him as he semi-flirts with Abby. Mark examines a little girl while Carter treats her mother next door. Elizabeth comes to see if she needs surgery, and Carmen calls her out for starting to use her stethoscope without cleaning it after using it on another patient.

Once they’ve finished with the patient, Mark asks Elizabeth how Mrs. Wilson is. Elizabeth tells Carmen she wants some privacy while she talks to her husband, but Carmen has to watch Elizabeth at all times. Despite her annoyance with Carmen, Elizabeth is taking the situation very seriously and is desperate not to lose another patient. Mark reminds her that she can’t save everyone. Elizabeth would settle for just not killing everyone.

Abby tries to examine a man who insists on seeing a doctor. Abby promises she won’t be shocked by whatever he did to himself with scissors. She is, though. I’m going to go with…home circumcision. Susan examines a college student named Laura who first thought she had a bad hangover but now thinks it’s something else. Susan guesses she has the flu, which matches Stanley the med student’s diagnosis. Susan goes to talk to Stanley but instead tries to ease Carter’s back pain. She tells Stanley she agrees with his diagnosis for Laura, but he needs to sign up for patients so they don’t get seen twice.

Luka tries to explain the Nicole situation to Abby, who says it’s none of her business. Then she makes it her business anyway, commenting that Luka seems to be going out on a limb for her. Luka says he just got a friend a job; they’re not dating. Abby guesses that he’s also let her move in with him. He says he’s just trying to help her, but Abby notes that he doesn’t have to help everyone. Hmm, maybe Mark should repeat what he said about doctors not being able to save everyone.

Carter has overheard part of the conversation and asks Abby what her problem is with the situation. She tells him Luka has a new project. And no, she doesn’t care. Not at all. The percentage that Abby cares about this is 0.00. Mrs. Wilson is still declining, and when Elizabeth tries again to stabilize her, Benton reminds her that Mrs. Wilson has a DNR. Elizabeth just wants to use machines to support Mrs. Wilson until she can figure out what’s wrong with her. Benton tells the nurses to stop treating her. When Elizabeth grabs paddles to shock Mrs. Wilson, Benton tells her to look at April, who’s watching.

Abby checks on the flirty firefighter, who’s definitely interested in her, then goes with Benton to deal with the scissors guy, Rick. Indeed, he tried to circumcise himself. Since he got halfway through, Benton offers to either finish the job or just sew him up. Rick wants to ask his girlfriend her opinion first – she’s the reason he wanted this in the first place. She said she was a neat freak and didn’t want to date a guy with foreskin. As they leave the room, Abby asks Benton if she should call for a psych consult. “Nah, I just think he’s stupid,” Benton replies.

Luka tends to a guy named Wes who has a protein deficiency that keeps him from clotting. He’s supposed to get regular treatment, but he hasn’t been able to get to a hospital for it recently. He asks about food at the hospital, so Nicole offers to get him a sandwich. Susan tries to make small talk with Abby, admitting that Carter said she and Luka just broke up. Abby doesn’t really want to talk about her personal life, but at least she’s stopped resenting Susan for asking her to do tasks that are, you know, her job.

Mrs. Wilson has died, and Elizabeth asks a pathologist, Dr. Upton, to check her body for signs of infection. Dr. Upton tells Elizabeth that she disagrees with what others are saying about her. Implying that becoming a mother has affected Elizabeth’s work is “sexist crap.” Elizabeth notes that they live in a man’s world, so they have to put up with that. “Not until they perfect cloning,” Dr. Upton replies. That’s the spirit!

Rick’s girlfriend, Sara, has arrived, and she, like Benton, thinks he’s an idiot for trying to circumcise himself. She doesn’t care if he finishes the procedure or just gets sewn up. She pulls Abby out of the room and confides that she pretended she didn’t want to date a guy with foreskin because she needed an excuse to dump him. Oh, honey. Rick is going to send you his medical bills.

Paramedics bring in a college student named Andy who was unresponsive when his roommate tried to wake up him. The roommate tells Susan they went to a party the night before, and when they went to bed, Andy said he felt sick and had a stiff neck. Abby notices spots on Andy’s hands, leading Susan to realize that he has meningococcemia. Since it’s contagious, everyone will need to wear masks and gowns while treating him. They’ll also need to inform his college in case other students have been exposed.

Abby grabs Carter to help Susan out with the sudden emergency. Carter has finally given in to Stanley’s offers and let him try acupuncture on Carter’s back, so he’ll have to get the needles removed first. Susan realizes that Laura goes to the same school as Andy, so she may have meningococcemia, too. Laura was already discharged, so someone will have to find her and bring her back to the hospital for testing. Susan goes on the hunt, learning from Frank that Laura was looking for orange juice, so he sent her to the cafeteria.

Thanks to Nicole’s incompetence, Abby can’t find the supplies she needs. Carter gets impatient since Nicole can’t identify the tools he needs, but Luka tells him to go easy on her, since it’s her first day. Carter’s like, “I have a dying college student here, but yeah, we’ll wait a few minutes while Nicole digs through a box of supplies.” Laura’s not in the cafeteria, so Susan has to run around the hospital for a little while. She finally spots Laura leaving through the ambulance bay. Susan’s able to call outside to her and get her to stay put.

On his way to the OR, Benton takes a phone call from Roger, who’s complaining about Jackie. Benton tells Elizabeth that Roger is his new shadow. Elizabeth suggests that they introduce him to her shadow, Carmen. She apologizes for continuing to try to save Mrs. Wilson even after Benton told her she shouldn’t. He lets it go, knowing she’s stressed about becoming a mother. Elizabeth takes a little offense to that, but Benton adds that having Carmen watching her every move can’t help. Elizabeth asks if he’s ever seen her screw up. Benton thinks she’s just in a slump right now and shouldn’t doubt her skills. If he or Reese ever needed surgery, he’d come to Elizabeth.

Carter and Abby struggle to stabilize Andy, who must have a fast-moving strain of meningococcemia. Susan performs a spinal tap on Laura, who reveals that she kissed Andy at the party the night before, so…no contact tracing needed there. Next door, Andy flatlines, and Carter shakes his head to let Susan know through the window that he’s not going to make it. Stanley notices spots on Laura’s feet, which means she’s getting worse.

Luka goes back to Wes, who tested positive for opiates. He blames the pain from his condition, but Luka guesses he uses heroin, which isn’t exactly prescribed for pain. He thinks Wes uses the permanent catheter port in his chest to shoot drugs (also not exactly prescribed behavior). Luka tries to talk to Wes about rehab, but Wes isn’t interested and wants to leave. Luka still has to finish treating the cut on Wes’ hand, and Nicole is just now bringing his sandwich, so Wes decides to stay a little longer. Nicole points out to Luka that removing Wes’ port won’t stop him from using drugs.

Susan tries to reach Laura’s parents as Carter joins her to put her on a ventilator. Susan can’t believe she misdiagnosed Laura, but Carter thinks it was reasonable of her to think Laura just had the flu. They’ve already contacted Laura and Andy’s college, and all the students in their dorm will get antibiotics to try to head off any infections. County staff who worked on either patient will also need preventive meds.

The firefighter flirts with Abby again, then asks her out for coffee. She tells him she’s not available. He guesses she’s seeing someone, but Abby says she’s not sure. Hey, Abby? Yeah, hi. You’re not. You broke up with Luka, and Carter is totally interested in Susan now, so you’re single. Go out with the firefighter.

In case Elizabeth’s day wasn’t already bad enough, she has to operate with Dale. Ugh, this guy. Carmen is overly vigilant, and Elizabeth finally tells her to get out, since she’s driving everyone crazy. Carmen won’t leave, since she’s just doing her job, so Elizabeth threatens to call security. “Catfight pending,” Dale says. SHUT UP, DALE. Elizabeth gets summoned to Romano’s office, and she tells Carmen not to follow her.

Frank has two messages for Benton from Jackie and Roger. He thinks they’re feuding. Benton says to let them, refusing to take the messages. Abby urges Sara to break up with Rick directly, since her indirect method obviously didn’t work. Benton tells them that Rick will be fine, and when he learns of Sara’s failed breakup attempt, he tells her to go finish the task right now. Abby argues that she should wait a few weeks. She once accidentally killed a boyfriend’s cat, then stayed with him for two more weeks. This should be worth at least three.

Romano has brought in a new investigator, Dr. Bain from the county health department. Nothing turned up in Elizabeth’s cultures, and Carmen doesn’t have a problem with her practices, but there has to be something going on that has led to so many of Elizabeth’s patients dying. Bain invites Elizabeth to come clean about anything she might need to come clean about, because she could be facing a criminal investigation.

Bain continues that all of Elizabeth’s patients were elderly and in marginal health. All of them died of post-op sepsis while under Elizabeth’s care. One’s family specifically asked Elizabeth to euthanize her. In a nutshell, Bain thinks Elizabeth might see herself as an angel of mercy, ending sick people’s lives so they don’t have to suffer. Romano immediately comes to Elizabeth’s defense and tells Bain the discussion is over.

Nicole is done with her shift and waiting for Luka. She tells Abby that she always wanted to be a nurse. The nurses were very kind to her at the hospital where her mother died. Luka can’t find Wes, and Nicole guesses that he left so Luka wouldn’t remove his port. Luka asks if she told Wes he was going to remove it, either purposely or accidentally letting Wes know he should take off.

At home, Elizabeth is greeted by loud music and a crying baby. Rachel’s on the phone and ignoring her sister. Elizabeth asks her to be more responsible and less self-centered. Rachel says that if Elizabeth is so worried about Ella, she should quit her job and stay home with her. The two fight over who gets to give orders and who has to obey rules in the house until Rachel storms out. Listen, Elizabeth, send her back to St. Louis now. Save yourself a lot of pain in the future.

Back at County, Susan is staying late, since she wants to be nearby when they determine Laura’s condition. Roger shows up to pick a fight with Benton – he was late picking Reese up, so Jackie wouldn’t let Roger take him. Benton says they need to rethink Roger’s visitation. Roger blames Jackie, and Benton reminds him that Jackie is Reese’s aunt. Roger replies that he’s Reese’s father.

Benton doesn’t like that, and he tells Roger it’s time for him to let go of his stepson. Reese only has one father, Benton. Roger announces that they both know that’s not true: Carla told him that Benton isn’t Reese’s biological father. Benton warns him to shut up. Roger accuses Benton of thinking he’s more important to Reese than Roger is. Benton tells him to stay away from him, Reese, and Jackie.

Carter and Abby go for a walk by the water, and she mentions that the firefighter asked her out. Carter seems supportive of any decisions she makes to date guys other than him. Abby has learned a lesson from Sara about not being direct and admits that she turned down the firefighter because she was waiting to see if things developed with her and Carter. Carter notes that she didn’t do much to move things forward between them.

She reminds him that he gave her an ultimatum. It wasn’t really an ultimatum, though – he just said he couldn’t keep being her friend if she was only going to talk about her relationship problems. Abby thinks that breaking up with Luka was a good indication that she was ready to be with Carter. He asks why she cares so much about what Luka thinks if they’re really over. Abby says they have a history after a year together. If Carter wants someone without a history, he’ll have to find a virgin. Carter replies that he can just settle for a girlfriend who isn’t so hung up on someone else. She tells him he doesn’t have to settle for anything.

Mark didn’t seem to deal with a lot of traumas at work today, but at home, he’s putting out fires left and right. He’s letting Rachel spend some time at Andrew’s so she and Elizabeth can cool off. Now he’s trying to reassure Elizabeth that she has nothing to worry about in any investigation that might take place. She admits that she feels guilty for her patients’ deaths and for taking it out on Rachel.

Mark thinks she was justified in being mad at Rachel for not doing what she said she would do. Elizabeth is worried that she can’t balance motherhood and work. Mark comforts her, promising that they’ll get through everything they’re facing. They have each other and their kids – that’s a lot. At County, Laura regains consciousness, making Susan hopeful that she’ll be okay.

Thoughts: Benton’s attitude while examining Rick is so funny. He stays completely professional, but when he first looks at the damage, he glances at Abby like he’s thinking, “Did you see this? Is he serious with this?” You can see he’s deducting points from Rick’s IQ through the whole scene.

I looked up Wes’ deficiency, which it turns out is a form of hemophilia. I don’t know why the show didn’t just say that. Anyway, it’s also called Christmas disease, after the first person diagnosed with it. What a horribly misnamed disease. “Ooh, Christmas disease – does that mean I get extra presents?” No, it means you’re at increased risk of bleeding to death. Fa la la la la la la I’m so sorry.

I want a spin-off starring Dr. Upton.

Rejoice with me, friends, because we’re almost done with Dale. He’s only in one more episode after this.

Brace yourself: I’m going to say something nice about Romano. He’s definitely a judgmental jerk, and it’s clear he thinks he’s better than all of his colleagues, but when Elizabeth’s ethics are called into question, he has her back. He knows she’s good at her job and that she has integrity. As annoying as he is, he recognizes his colleagues’ accomplishments and talents.

1 Comment »

  1. Nick Rivers said,

    The whole Roger thing is kind of baffling to me. Isn’t it considered a good thing for a young black child to have two strong black male father figures/role models in his life who both have his best interests at heart? They both love the kid. Why is Jackie being such a shrew about Roger’s involvement? Is it just because he was married to Reese’s mother? The possessiveness she’s showing is stupid and uncharacteristic especially after she was waffling on Reese’s care recently (understandably so, but still — if someone else steps up to the plate, maybe don’t shit all over that once you feel more back to yourself). This storyline annoys me upon this rewatch and I think it’s because I can understand more of Roger’s perspective; this is his last link to his dead wife and he’s clearly grown close to the child. I get that it’ll take an adjustment, but Jackie sticking her nose in the mess is not helpful for Reese AT ALL let alone anyone else. I know this plays out in the courts later on but right now it’s aggravating as hell. How many times has Peter been late to pick up Reese from Jackie’s and she lets that shit slide, but Roger’s late once and she throws a shitfit?

    I wish they hadn’t chosen such an effective teenage actress for Rachel. I think I would have tolerated the brattiness better from Yvonne Zima, quite frankly, so it’s too bad they switched the actress up. She’s pretty obnoxious, but the character’s supposed to be, so, good job. And New Rachel suddenly has naturally curly blonde hair like her stepmother instead of the stick-straight dark brown hair she did for years previous just like her mother… that would have been an easy fix, guys.

    It would have been a good educational opportunity for Susan (or more appropriately Carter) to show Stanley how he missed the meningococcemia diagnosis, which is actually kind of surprising considering he was doing a very thorough history, and Laura was a college student. Seems like that would have been one of the first things you think of with college kids and parties and dorms… or at least meningitis would come to mind.

    Every time I see that pathologist Dr. Upton I think of the “Susie” episode of Seinfeld because she was Peggy/the germophobe in that one! Look how far she’s come. “At its core, this is a Susie-and-Elaine problem that requires a Susie-and-Elaine solution! And, who better to do that than… Elaine and Susie! Susie and Elaine!”

    Julie Delpy got some more interesting things to do in this episode and I’m glad she got Abby to soften a little bit with her story about her dying mother and the kind nurses who helped her. But man, having her move in with Luka, girl slow down! I like that Carter straight up called Abby out on still being hung up on Luka. I could see it if she was just being a caring friend but you can tell the Nicole situation actually bothers her. And maybe I need to watch the breakup scene again, but it felt like she wasn’t the one who really broke up with Luka; it seemed more that he dumped her after he got sick and tired of her shit and she kind of defiantly walked away as well. I’m glad Carter didn’t give in on this just because Abby felt jealous about Nicole and Susan.

    LOL’d for real at “Fa la la la la la la I’m so sorry.”

    I agree with you about Romano. When it comes to Elizabeth, he will always stand up for her and believes in her. I honestly think he’d do the same for Peter, but it’s not quite the same… maybe because he never crushed on Peter, but who knows.

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