November 1, 2022

ER 12.3, Man With No Name: Nursing a Grudge

Posted in TV tagged , , , at 5:05 pm by Jenn

I wouldn’t mess with any one of these people

Summary: Luka’s asleep – drink! He fell asleep watching TV after a night of drinking and smoking. Oh, no, Luka, not nicotine! He wakes up when his housekeeper shows up. He tells her that Sam, who hired her, moved out. She disapproves of his messy living conditions. What’s Spanish for “bachelor pad”?

At County, Morris tries to wrangle a kid dressed as a Power Ranger while Weaver leads a tour for a couple of grant officers. They’re thinking about doing a pilot study at the hospital. Morris complains to her about Eve Peyton, the new nurse manager, who’s slowing things down in the ER. Abby clarifies that she’s just holding a staff meeting. Morris says they’re only allowed to do that if he gives them permission. Wow, Morris, how does your head fit through the door?

Weaver tells Abby the rumors she’s heard are semi-true – Susan is shopping around for a tenured position somewhere else. What they don’t mention is that the last time we saw her, in “Cañon City,” was her last official episode. Pratt joins Abby in telling Morris to chill about the nurses having a meeting. Morris goes to pull Sam out, but she ignores him, then tells him to shut up. Eve calls him out for interrupting and questions the treatment he wanted Sam to administer. In about 15 seconds, she proves to know more than Morris.

Luka arrives late for a shift as Weaver is wrapping up with the grant officers. While she’s berating him, they hear yelling. A man with horrible burned skin runs into the ambulance bay, asking for help. Morris has changed his tune about the nurses, telling Abby and Pratt that they’re “autonomous professionals” and are allowed to have a meeting whenever they want. Pratt guesses that Eve read him the riot act. “It was all a blur,” Morris says.

Weaver and Luka bring in the burned patient, pulling in Sam and Inez to help them. That means Sam and Luka will be working together, which should be lots of fun for everyone around them. Neela takes Frank’s picture at the admit desk, explaining to Pratt that she’s putting together a care package for Gallant. She invites him to come up with something to put in. Frank, for example, has put in a porn movie. Neela takes it back out.

K.J.’s still volunteering at the hospital and still unhappy about it. Olivia comes by to see Pratt after visiting a gang member who was stabbed. They have lunch plans, so I guess they’re officially dating. She mentions that she saw Charlie last week and he mentioned that he’d come by County. Pratt says he wasn’t there long, and they don’t have much to talk about.

The burned man (who’s the titular man with no name, so I’ll use the name of the actor playing him, Raphael) tells Inez that he doesn’t know what happened to him. Eve oversees her and Sam’s work, but Luka doesn’t appreciate her taking on a leadership role in the middle of a trauma, especially one he should be running. Weaver wisely pulls Eve out of the room.

Penny’s back for another trauma rotation, and Abby suggests that Neela help her with her patient, a man dressed in a bodysuit decorated with human anatomy. Heh, it’s a body bodysuit. He slipped and fell while doing an educational performance at a school. (His song about the reproductive system is called “Ova Here, Ova There.” I love it.) He knows more about anatomy than Penny does, and he complains that she doesn’t know how to do her job even though she has pictures to let her know what’s where. Neela points out that they’re not all accurate – for example, he doesn’t have any genitalia.

Abby puts up a hand at the last minute as Neela takes her picture for Gallant’s care package. Neela made him a mix CD but is hesitant to include it. Apparently Gallant likes Barry Manilow. Okay, let’s keep all the male staff members from finding out about that – Gallant will never hear the end of it. She has some other options and is probably overthinking this.

Raphael has been intubated, and since he didn’t identify himself and doesn’t have anything on him to identify him, the police aren’t able to contact his family. Luka and Sam are a little awkward around each other but keep things civil. She asks him to keep his plans with Alex for that weekend; it’ll be good for all of them. Luka wants them to move slowly and not make any final decisions about their relationship just yet. Sam tells him they’ve been pretending and she doesn’t want to do that anymore. After Abby sends Sam off to do something, Luka angrily punches the cage around the med lock-up where they’ve been talking.

Inez and Abby try to restrain a drunk, combative 16-year-old named Erik who thinks he’s smarter than them because he got a 2200 on his SAT and they work for the County. Yeah, but they don’t have to have a Foley catheter inserted in them because they just wet themselves, so I think they’re doing better than you, budy. Abby chats with Luka, amazed that Raphael was able to walk up to the hospital after suffering such severe burns. He joins Sam to treat an 11-year-old named Robbie who crashed his motorized scooter. Eve steps in to help but Luka turns her down. Then he hands the case off to Pratt.

Robbie crashed because a roller-blader named Stephanie ran into him after getting dizzy. Abby notices a burn on her stomach and guesses it came from Robbie’s scooter’s tailpipe. Luka thinks Stephanie is bleeding internally. Morris takes her date, Lou, off to fix up a cut. He left his shoes at the place where they rented the blades, so he’s still wearing the wheels. Inez asks Abby what Morris does, and Abby replies that he’s chief resident. “No, seriously,” Inez says. Heh.

Pratt has trouble intubating Robbie, so he tells Sam to get a fiberoptic scope set up. Dubenko comes to the ER to examine Stephanie and complains that Luka called him in before it was necessary. Something else is making him grumpy, but it doesn’t stop him from teaching his favorite student, Abby. They determine that Stephanie has anemia, not internal bleeding, so her case isn’t surgical. He tells Luka to use his medical skills next time before he calls a surgeon. Oh, no, Luka was too proactive in making sure a woman didn’t bleed to death! What a horrible doctor he is!

Eve has questions for Sam, not about Robbie or her work but about Luka. Sam tries to get him to come back to Robbie’s trauma room, but he’s a little busy taking care of Stephanie. He asks Stephanie if there’s anything in her medical history they should know. She mentions testing positive for BRCA1, a genetic mutation that increases your chances for breast and ovarian cancer, but she doesn’t have any tumors.

Eve bugs Sam about how long it’ll be before Luka comes back to Robbie. Sam manages not to reply that she’s not his personal assistant and doesn’t read minds. Eve goes to Stephanie’s trauma room to bring Luka over to Robbie, since he needs a doctor with more experience than Pratt. Luka thinks he’ll do fine with Robbie, but Eve insists that he switch cases. As Abby asks Stephanie questions to determine if something has made her sick, Eve grabs some equipment to take to Robbie’s trauma room. Luka calls her Ms. Peyton, but Eve says she has a Ph.D., so he should actually call her Doctor.

Stephanie finally reveals to Abby that she’s been doing experimental treatments in Mexico to try to prevent her from developing cancer. Abby realizes that the treatments gave her lead poisoning. Stephanie didn’t say anything sooner because she was afraid of what would happen to her medical coverage. Luka finally goes to Robbie’s trauma room, where Eve is showing Pratt how to do a difficult intubation. She sharply advises Luka to train the residents better on these kinds of procedures (and also stop thinking that nurses aren’t as competent as doctors).

Sam’s impressed with Eve already, but Eve is wary of Sam – she’s figured out that she has a history with Luka. Sam promises that it won’t be an issue. Pratt hopes he didn’t screw up too badly with Robbie, since he told Luka he could handle the intubation. Malik and Inez complain to Sam about Eve (Malik says that if he weren’t a feminist, he would call her a b%$@#) and her micromanagement. “Beware the blood countess,” Frank says.

Pratt has had the brilliant idea of sending Gallant a pizza. While I’m sure he would love a classic Chicago-style pie, he probably wouldn’t find it edible after it spent a week in transit. K.J. suggests looking into flash-freezing. Pratt plans to come up with another idea. Gallant will at least get a picture of the pizza. I guess this is an it’s-the-thought-that-counts situation.

Morris chats with Lou about his relationship with Stephanie. They met at a Jewish speed-dating event. Morris isn’t Jewish but he once had a crush on a girl who was, so he spent a lot of time in a synagogue. Lou has only been on a few dates with Stephanie but he really likes her. Robbie is brought back to the ER for more help with his breathing. Eve helps Luka and Pratt with him while lecturing Luka for not prioritizing the more critical patient earlier. She thinks he ditched Robbie because he didn’t want to work with Sam.

Neela’s still trying to figure out what to send Gallant. She wrote him a poem (on scented paper!), but the only compliment Abby can think to give it is, “It rhymes.” She tells Neela that men at war have “certain needs,” and Neela should meet her in the family room in ten minutes. Looks like Frank’s porn is going to get some equally naked company!

Eve again bugs Luka about the Sam situation, but he says it’s not a problem. However, he also says they’re still a couple, which…come on, buddy. You’re not. Eve says she’ll back off and just focus on how the nurses are best put to use in the ER. Luka accepts this and drops his prickliness. In the family room, Abby takes boudoir photos of Neela. Morris hears through the window when Abby tells Neela to take her bra off, and he stands on a chair to try to see through a high window. The Power Ranger shoots him with a Nerf gun and he falls off.

Abby goes back to Stephanie, who should recover from her lead poisoning. Abby suggests that she talk to a real doctor about her BRCA1. Stephanie already did, after her mother died of cancer. She’s not interested in having her breasts or ovaries removed as a preventive measure. She wants a husband and kids, and what guy would want her if she lost her breasts? Plus, she’d still have a 10 percent chance of getting cancer, and she’d lose months to recovery with no guarantees. It’s like picking between poisons.

Robbie’s father arrives and thinks that Luka wants to take him into a private room for a talk because Robbie died. He runs through the ER, calling for his son. Robbie’s not dead, but he does have swelling in his brain and he’s hooked up to a bunch of machinery. His mother apologizes for letting him ride the scooter without a helmet. His father attacks her and Luka has to wrestle him to the ground until security can restrain him.

Weaver stitches up a cut on Luka’s brow, telling him that until they can replace Carter and Susan, she’ll be taking shifts. Luka asks a cop for an update on Raphael, who still hasn’t been able to tell anyone his name. Pratt catches Frank eating Gallant’s pizza, and Frank tells him to send one from a place that does overnight shipments. To Iraq? Morris offers to take more photos for Neela if she wants. She and I both tell him to shut up. He tries to pull rank, demanding to know and see what she and Abby were doing in the family room on the clock. Neela shows him a picture of a gross abscess instead. Ha!

Abby has talked Stephanie into consulting with an oncologist, though Stephanie is sure she already knows what they’ll say. She doesn’t want to give up pieces of her body. Abby notes that if she gets cancer, she won’t be able to get the things she wants. Stephanie asks what Abby would do in her position. Abby says that life sometimes changes when we don’t want it to, and she hopes she would be brave enough to change, too. As she’s leaving the floor, she spots Dubenko getting an exam from an oncologist.

Luka admits to Sam that he shouldn’t have left Robbie. He did it for the wrong reason. He suggests that they try again tomorrow for a peaceful working relationship. Eve hears the tail-end of their conversation, and after Luka leaves, she questions Sam about their relationship. Sam says they’re done, but Eve doesn’t think that’ll ever truly be the case. She doesn’t want them working together, so Sam’s schedule will have to change. If she doesn’t agree, she’ll get transferred to another part of the hospital.

Neela takes Gallant’s care package home, where Ray is “having a sleepover.” At least one of them is getting some. Abby stops by Ike Ryan’s on her way home to pick up a takeout order and finds Luka moping at the bar. She tells him about Stephanie, who’s at a point in her life where she worries that she’ll never have the things she wants. Abby feels bad for her. Luka asks if she misses drinking. “You’d be a terrible sponsor,” she teases. She suggests that he cut himself off since he’s had plenty of beer.

Neela tries to write a letter to Gallant while Ray and his overnight guest have sex in the next room. The guest is extremely loud. Poor Neela. Abby takes Luka home, where he lights a cigarette and says he can’t stop thinking about Raphael. His body was so damaged but he was desperate to live. Abby notes that he survived. Luka wonders if anyone would know who he was if he were in Raphael’s position. She thinks she would.

Abby looks around at the mess, for once the together, stable person. Luka falls asleep and she leaves him in front of another movie. It’s High Plains Drifter, starring Clint Eastwood as a man known only as the Stranger. A character says someone named Sam is right, and another asks what happens after their impending showdown. “Then you live with it,” the Stranger replies.

Thoughts: Eve is played by Kristen Johnston.

I’m disappointed that Sherry Stringfield (Susan) doesn’t get a proper second send-off. Fortunately, we do see her again later in the series.

I love how Inez seems a little timid at first, but then when she has to deal with Erik, a flicker of feistiness comes out.

Enjoy those sexy photos of Neela with pictures of babies and animals in the background, Gallant! Maybe the family room wasn’t the best choice of setting.

It’s probably bad that I didn’t notice that Ray hadn’t been in the episode yet until he popped up six minutes from the end.

’00s music alert: Cable Car” by the Fray

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