December 10, 2019

ER 5.6, Stuck on You: You Can’t Spell “Dr. John Carter” Without “Don’t Care”

Posted in TV tagged , , , at 5:04 pm by Jenn

Say goodbye to that thing on Carter’s face

Summary: Doug has been up all night doing paperwork like a responsible doctor. He tells Carol he now knows how she felt when she opened the clinic. He wonders if they’re both nuts for taking on ambitious projects, but Carol thinks it’s worth it. Lucy goes by Carter’s dorm room, which is about to be his ex-room – the events of the Halloween party have gotten him fired. Lucy’s worried about where he’ll live now. She accidentally wakes up Roxanne, who’s glad her boyfriend will soon be living someplace where Lucy can’t interrupt them.

Mark does a paramedic ride-along, acting as a go-between for them and County’s nurses. As they’re finishing up their shift, they hear gunshots. They pull over in the pouring rain, planning to wait for police backup in case there’s still a shooter around, but Mark wants to go check out the scene right away. As more shots are fired somewhere nearby, Mark finds a man lying in the street. He was beaten up, not shot, but he still needs immediate treatment. A paramedic helps Mark intubate the man, then take him to the ambulance. The paramedic decides not to be on shift the next time Mark wants to do a ride-along.

They deliver the patient to the hospital, where Morales calls Mark a cowboy and says he pulled a crazy stunt. Weaver tells Mark that Litvak turned down the job of chief – he used the offer to negotiate a bigger salary at his current hospital. Mark tells her that she’s the only other candidate on the search committee’s short list. Roxanne accompanies Carter to work, looking at apartment listings so he can find a new place to live.

Mark’s patient, Kevin, says that he was with a john when they were robbed. The john pulled a gun and tried to chase off the robbers, who I guess attacked Kevin. Since Mark saved his life, Kevin thinks he owes him a wish, like this is I Dream of Jeannie. Kevin is 16 and homeless, having been kicked out by his father after being caught having sex with his gymnastics coach. Kevin prostitutes to make money and isn’t sure if he has HIV.

Lynette has organized a BP screening at the clinic and expects a lot of senior citizens if the rain ever stops. She screens a grumpy man named Stan, who should be a little more grateful for the free healthcare. Carol gives Doug a lab coat to honor his new position, and he rewards her with a quickie in an exam room. I guess Doug’s new responsibilities haven’t matured him that much after all.

Benton comes to the ER to consult on one of Carter’s patients. Carter remarks that he must have driven Benton crazy when he was a student. He gets it now that he has his own annoying student. Benton says he never gave Carter a second thought. Med students don’t know anything; residents are supposed to teach them, not befriend them. So Carter goes to teach Lucy, being condescending like only Carter can.

Kevin is surprised to learn that he’s HIV-negative. Mark suggests that he start getting his life together so he stays negative. When Mark agrees to have someone take him to have a shower, Kevin invites him to join in. Mark politely but coolly declines. Elizabeth has managed to get Anspaugh to agree to let her work with Benton instead of Dale. Benton admits that he doesn’t feel comfortable being his girlfriend’s boss. Elizabeth thinks it’ll be fine, but when Benton hedges, she tells him she’ll stick with Dale.

Sometime later, Weaver runs into Benton and Reese at the coffee cart outside (AKA the roach coach). She notices Reese’s hearing aids, learning for the first time that he has a hearing problem. They talk about cochlear implants, which Weaver doesn’t seem to be a fan of. She suggests that Benton talk to a doctor named Lisa Parks who knows about all the latest technology for deaf patients.

Carol calls Doug from the clinic so they can flirt from across the ER while he’s at the admit desk. Can these two keep it in their pants for five minutes? Stan interrupts to complain that he was told to come back tomorrow to get his blood sugar checked. Carol checks with Lynette, who says he has lots of complaints. Carol agrees to take care of Stan, which Lynette warns will take all afternoon.

Jeanie’s tending to a preteen named Kate who hurt her arm, though her story of what happened doesn’t match up with her father’s. Jeanie asks Yosh to check Kate’s previous medical records. Kevin may have a blood clot in his leg, which he’s had before because of a protein deficiency. Mark is frustrated that Kevin didn’t disclose his full medical history and hasn’t been taking the blood thinner he needs to treat his disease. Kevin doesn’t see that as a possibility when he lives on the streets.

Lynette is amused that Carol is still dealing with Stan. His home health-care aide quit and he has no family in the area, so they consider finding him a temporary nursing-home placement until they can get him a new home aide. Stan refuses. He can’t be too sick, since he ordered Chinese food to be delivered to him in the clinic. For some reason, Carol agrees to pay for it.

Lucy, like Elizabeth, is looking for a change in supervisors, though she tells Carter it’s because she thinks she would learn better from a variety of teachers. I don’t think that’s going to happen. She takes Carter to a preteen named Brad who has cancer and doesn’t feel well. Carter tells her they need to treat him, not feel bad for him. Carter, your Benton is showing.

He sees that Brad is a candidate for an experimental therapy, but his mother says their insurance won’t cover the hospitalization it would require. Carter says they could admit him for antibiotics if he’s sick enough. Lucy says they could possibly slip him the experimental treatment while he’s already in the hospital. Inside voice, Lucy. Mark asks Carol for help finding a shelter for Kevin. She teases that everyone’s calling him for a hero for running into the street to save Kevin. Mark complains that he’s annoying.

Jeanie pulls Kate’s father, Mr. Preston, aside to ask about the previous injuries Kate has sustained. He admits that she didn’t injure her arm falling off her bike, like they claimed. She was riding a unicycle backwards while playing the violin. She was trying to break a Guinness World Record. Every time she’s injured herself in the past, she was trying to break a different record. After her mother died, she and Mr. Preston looked for something they could do together. They got hooked on breaking records.

Benton goes to meet Lisa, who has a family practice, though Weaver made Benton think she was a head and neck surgeon. It turns out Weaver recommended her because she’s deaf. Benton is thrown for a loop and does the classic I-must-speak-louder-when-talking-to-a-deaf-person thing. No, sweetie – she can read your lips, and she has an interpreter.

Benton, Lisa, and the interpreter go out for coffee to discuss Reese’s options for functioning in a hearing world. Lisa notes that she functions pretty well without a cochlear implant. Benton doesn’t want Reese to have to depend on other people, like Lisa depends on an interpreter.

Lisa guesses that Benton doesn’t know any other deaf people and hasn’t considered that being deaf might not be completely horrible. He can never know what it’s like to be deaf just like Lisa can never know what it’s like to be black. Benton says he doesn’t look at being black as a burden. Lisa’s like, “Exactly.” She thinks Benton will rob Reese of his identity if Benton tries to ignore his deafness. Benton says he’s just trying to fix a medical problem.

Mr. Preston passes the time waiting in the ER by juggling. Jeanie asks Kate about her injuries, which she says are just a side effect of trying to break records. She and her dad always take the proper precautions. She shows Jeanie a copy of a Guinness Book, which features a picture of her and her father breaking a record for a three-legged marathon.

Carol prescribes Accutane for a patient’s acne, but she’ll also have to take birth-control pills, since Accutane can cause birth defects. The patient says she promised her mom she’d stay abstinent, so it’s not an issue. Carol insists on the birth control anyway, but the patient doesn’t think her mom would be okay with that. In that case, she can’t have the Accutane. Lynette disapproves of Carol’s policy.

Mark gives Kevin some info on his protein deficiency and a list of homeless shelters he can check out. Kevin is cynical about his chances of having a meaningful life. Mark sharply asks if he’d rather die on the streets. Kevin flirts with him again, and Mark asks if Kevin can only relate to him by treating him like a customer.

Carol’s patient gave in, so she asks Lynette to write her a prescription for birth control. Lynette still disapproves of Carol’s policy; she should believe a patient who says she’s going to stay abstinent. Carol, a white nurse, undermined a choice made by her patient, a black teen. Carol gets defensive, but Lynette points out that she doesn’t know the patient or her mother.

Brad’s labwork shows he’s not sick enough to be admitted for antibiotics, but Carter thinks he can justify admitting him for dehydration after he vomits. Lucy volunteers to start his IV, but Carter doesn’t want her doing one on a sick kid. Carol asks Doug for a birth-control prescription, since Lynette wouldn’t give her one, and we learn that Carol has gone off her own contraceptives.

Mark tells Anspaugh that Weaver knows County’s ER better than any outside candidate they might bring in as chief. Anspaugh agrees, but the search committee wants someone with a great reputation who can bring in research grants. He cautions Mark not to tell Weaver that she was the committee’s second choice after Litvak, since it would just disappoint her more.

Paramedics bring in two brothers, Marcus and Eddie, who crashed their van and spilled carpet cement everywhere. They’re now stuck together in a semi-permanent hug. Mark and Weaver examine them and find blood – Eddie was impaled by some sort of sharp tool. Now the doctors have to deal with two patients who are attached to each other without letting either of them move too much.

Elizabeth, Carter, and Lucy come along to help, and Weaver permits Lucy to do an intubation, ignoring Carter’s reservations. He walks her through it and she performs it perfectly. Eddie starts declining and needs to be shocked, but he’s still attached to Marcus. Also attached: Carter’s beard, which has stuck to the cement. Mark helps pull the two brothers apart, and Weaver is able to shock Eddie without zapping anyone else. Mark gives Lucy a pair of scissors so she can cut Carter free of Marcus.

Jeanie and Yosh look up various records while keeping an eye on Mr. Preston. He’s been juggling for three hours, but he has a way to go before breaking the 11-hour record. Jerry ruins it by walking into Mr. Preston while carrying a bunch of boxes. Mark chats with a cop named Reggie Moore who has a warrant to arrest Kevin for violating his parole. Mark won’t turn him over before he’s medically cleared. He thinks Kevin deserves a second chance. Reggie won’t back down, saying that if he doesn’t arrest Kevin, someone else will.

Kate’s ready to be discharged, but she’s disappointed that her injured arm will prevent her from participating in any really physical record-breaking attempts for a few weeks. Mr. Preston suggests that they go to the waterfront to watch one happening tonight. Carter (now with a big hairless spot in his beard) gets Brad the experimental treatment, telling Lucy that he bent the truth a little to get around the insurance company’s restrictions. Brad’s mother overhears and worries that her insurance company will find out Carter lied to them and drop Brad.

Mark warns Kevin that Reggie wants to arrest him, then sneaks him out of the hospital so he can run away. Aww, Mark found a way to treat his patient and feel bad for him! Take that, Carter! Benton complains to Weaver that Lisa said Reese needs to spend time with other deaf kids instead of just his father. Weaver says she thought it would do Benton good to see how much Lisa has achieved. Benton says he doesn’t want his son to live with a defect that can be fixed. Weaver objects to the word “defect.”

Carol finally sees Stan out, having taken Lynette’s advice to understand their patients’ families and communities. She called a member of Stan’s temple who’s agreed to stay with Stan until he can find a new health aide. It’s a great idea, but the temple member is someone Stan hates. A for effort, Carol.

Lucy finds Carter shaving off the rest of his beard, hallelujah. He tells her that Brad’s mother took him home instead of risking the wrath of the insurance company. Carter clearly blames Lucy for the fact that Brad’s mother overheard them; she shouldn’t have been digging into something that was none of her business. Without the experimental treatment, Brad will die. And I guess it’s all Lucy’s fault, huh?

Mark breaks it to Weaver that the search committee is going to keep looking for a new chief. He doesn’t agree with their decision. Though Weaver is still in the running, it’s pretty clear they won’t pick her, so she doesn’t want to stay in the candidate pool. She’s also not interested in continuing to be the interim chief.

Benton lets Marcus know that Eddie’s going to be okay. Marcus credits Elizabeth with saving Eddie, since she separated the brothers just in time. Benton’s impressed with her work and tells her he’ll take her on as his intern after all. While she’ll have to do some of his scut work, he’ll let her have some of her own patients, which means much more independence than Dale gave her.

Doug is still doing a lot of administrative stuff. This is thrilling TV. Mark apologizes to the paramedics from his ride-along for breaking protocol earlier. They invite him to a poker game with some other paramedics. Jeanie takes Kate’s place with Mr. Preston in a trampoline-jumping record-breaking attempt.

A clean-shaven Carter goes to see a room he’d like to rent and is surprised to learn that it’s in Weaver’s brownstone. She was hesitant about renting to a colleague, but she’s tipsy enough to keep an open mind. She invites him in, asking if he did something to his hair. Doug calls Carol, who’s relaxing in a bubble bath, then surprises her by showing up at the house. He decided to take the night off from all his extra work so they can skip the phone sex and have the real thing.

Thoughts: Stan is played by the late Harvey Korman. Reggie is played by Cress Williams. Brad is played by Aldis Hodge.

The beard is dead, long live the beard! I hope Noah Wyle grew it for a role, because there’s no other excuse for it.

Please tell me a three-legged marathon isn’t a full marathon.

December 7, 2019

My So-Called Life 15, So-Called Angels: Homeless for the Holidays

Posted in TV tagged , at 1:29 pm by Jenn

All I want for Christmas is to give Rickie a hug

Summary: Rickie is crying and spitting blood in the snow, his face cut and bruised. He limps down a sidewalk somewhere downtown while a teen girl plays “Silent Night” on a guitar. At the Chases’, Angela’s playing the same song on the piano. Danielle complains that she’s not getting a new bike for Christmas, though Angela got one when she was Danielle’s age. Her parents really don’t care. Patty stresses about Christmas cards while Graham decorates for Christmas.

Angela asks why the family never goes to church. Her parents don’t have a good answer. She asks if they believe in God. Patty and Graham try to figure out what to say, noting that they come from different religious backgrounds. Danielle wants to shelve the religion conversation, since it’s Christmas.

At school, the choir sings “Away in a Manger” in the hallway. Rayanne thinks people are going cuckoo for Christmas, which isn’t a huge deal to her and her mother. The girls are shocked at the sight of Rickie’s bruises, which he says he sustained when he slipped on his way to catch a bus. Angela is skeptical, but Rayanne says Rickie gets beaten up a lot and doesn’t like talking about it.

The girls spot Sharon hanging up fliers for a teen helpline. Rayanne doesn’t think depressed teens will feel any better after talking to Sharon. Sharon snarks back at her, so Rayanne scatters her fliers. Sharon asks Brian to help hand out fliers, reminding him that he signed up to help. Now he wants to back out.

At the Chases’, Patty tells Graham that Brian’s parents went on a cruise, leaving him alone for ten days, including Christmas. Graham notes that the Krakows are Jewish, so it’s not as big a deal as it would be for a gentile family. He asks what Patty wants for Christmas, and she says she wants him to come to church with her and the girls on Christmas Eve. He’s not on board with that.

While taking out the trash, Angela finds Rickie lurking in the backyard. He says he was at Brian’s and wanted to stop by to see Angela. Before that, he was at Rayanne’s. He appreciates how cozy and friendly the house is, especially since Graham’s been trying out new recipes, so it smells homey. Angela takes him to the kitchen for dinner.

Graham and Patty come home from Christmas shopping and pull Angela out of the kitchen to ask what happened to Rickie. They think it’s too late for someone to be over, but Angela says she doesn’t think he has anywhere else to go. Graham suspects that he ran away. Angela asks if he can stay the night, but Patty doesn’t want to get in the middle of Rickie’s family issues. While the Chases are discussing the best thing to do, Rickie leaves.

He goes back downtown, running into Jordan, who offers him a ride. “There’s No Place Like Home for the Holidays” is playing, adding insult to injury. Jordan senses that Rickie doesn’t want to go home and says he knows a place Rickie can stay. His father used to be abusive, so he can sense that Rickie’s going through the same thing. Jordan finally fought back, and his father backed off. Rickie offers to light a candle for Jordan on Christmas Eve, but Jordan doubts that will change anything. The guitar player is still lurking.

Patty’s worried that she and Graham were wrong not to let Rickie stay. They don’t know anything about him and have never met his family, so how can they know what his situation is? Graham thinks he makes Patty uncomfortable. If Brian came by with bruises, Patty would welcome him to stay. Patty notes that she’s known Brian since he was five, so it’s different. Graham wonders if that should matter.

At school the next day, Angela worries about Rickie, who hasn’t shown up yet. Rayanne says he probably went to stay with his cousin. Angela needs to stop thinking she’s responsible for the whole world. Brian complains to Sharon that people are making too big a deal out of Christmas. Sharon and her cute ornament-shaped earrings tell him that this is the time of year teens need their helpline the most. The stress gives them “actual symptoms of depression, or whatever. Like, total hopelessness and despair.” She begs him to work the helpline on Christmas Eve, since he’s the only one who doesn’t have plans.

In the bathroom, Sharon complains to Rayanne that Brian screwed her over. Rayanne isn’t surprised. Sharon asks if Rayanne actually knows Brian that well, and Rayanne mentions that they slept together once. Sharon recognizes that she’s made too many commitments and promises for the holidays. She also acknowledges that Rayanne’s a good listener. Rayanne credits all the years she’s spent listening to her mother’s problems. Now, though, Amber has an annoying boyfriend, and Rayanne would like to keep her distance. Sharon has a suggestion for where she can spend Christmas.

Angela slips a note into Rickie’s locker, then hears guitar music. She follows it to the band room and meets the guitar player, who says she hangs out there sometimes. When she was in school, she never attended, but now that she’s not in school, she spends a lot of time there. Angela says she loved the song the girl was playing. The girl says she’ll probably be working on it forever. She laments having to go back outside, since she can never get warm. Her worn shoes are to blame; someone stole the better pair she had while she was sleeping.

The girl knows who Angela is and knows she’s friends with Rickie. She tells Angela not to worry about him; she’s been looking out for him. When the bell rings, the girl leaves and Angela runs after her but loses her in the busy hallway. She runs into Jordan, who didn’t see the guitar player. Jordan mentions that he took Rickie to an old warehouse, where he might still be staying. He offers to show Angela where it is.

Brian helps Graham get a Christmas tree into the Chases’ house, but he can’t wrangle an invitation to help with any other Christmas activities. Jordan takes Angela to the warehouse, which some homeless people have turned into a makeshift home. Most of them are young. The guitar player is there, playing the same song Angela heard her playing at school. It’s about being alone and cold and trying to break through the loneliness because someone wants to love you. She shows Angela where Rickie’s sleeping, just one of the dozen homeless people finding warmth in an abandoned building.

Angela asks Rickie why he can’t go home. She orders him to come home with her, but Rickie refuses to sponge off of people who don’t even want him there. She tells him he can’t stay there – tomorrow’s Christmas Eve. Rickie says he’ll spend it with his cousins. He tells her to go home, since she doesn’t belong there. Angela says he doesn’t, either. Rickie won’t tell her what’s going on, saying that the best way for her to help him is to leave him alone.

Angela goes back to the guitar player, who’s now asleep. She takes off her boots and swaps them with the guitar player’s, leaving her the better pair. She goes home to her nicely decorated house, where Danielle lets her put the angel on the top of the tree. Angela assures her parents that Rickie’s okay. Brian’s still there and asks if he really is okay. Graham and Patty eavesdrop as Angela tells Brian that Rickie ran away from an abusive home and is now sleeping in a warehouse with other homeless teens.

Angela’s shocked/offended that Brian didn’t know about the city’s homeless-teen population. He snaps that she seems to consider herself an expert on the situation after going to one warehouse. Angela says the people there are normal, just like them. When she talks to the guitar player, she forgets that there’s anything different between them.

Patty feels horrible about Rickie’s circumstances…no, wait, she feels horrible that Angela went to the warehouse and could have put herself in danger. She thinks they need to do the right thing now. Graham agrees – but first, dinner. The next day, they go to the police to talk about the warehouse and helping Rickie. The officer they talk to is more interested in the warehouse than helping anyone. Graham wonders if they’ve made the right decision.

Patty asks what will happen next. The officer says it depends on whether Rickie is “a runaway or a throwaway.” Patty sees posters for missing children and imagines them and their parents asking for help. One of the posters is of the guitar player. The officer thanks the Chases for being good citizens and advises them to keep their own children close.

At home, Angela’s setting up for a nice Christmas Eve dinner, plus a surprise: She wants to invite Rickie and the guitar player over. Patty orders her to never go back to the warehouse. Angela’s mad that her parents eavesdropped and then went to the police. She wants to warn the teens at the warehouse. Patty tells her this is a serious situation, but Angela gets that. She thinks that the guitar player could easily be her. Patty sharply disagrees.

Later that night, Patty tries to wrap presents but is distracted by the fight with Angela. She says it was the kind of fight that’s so bad, it seems like the fight is having you. She asks Graham to talk to her. He says Angela went for a walk, so of course Patty guesses she’s at the warehouse. The police are already there. Patty heads off to find Angela, leaving as Brian comes by to attempt to spend the holiday with nice people. He watches A Christmas Carol by himself and pulls a helpline flier out of his pocket.

Sharon’s there with Rayanne, who’s actually excited to lend a hand. Brian calls in, saying his name is Steve, but Rayanne recognizes his voice. “Steve” says that his parents suggested he spend Christmas in Denver with his sister, but he wanted to stay home. He thought he would enjoy having peace and quiet while he studied for the PSAT. Now he feels lonely. He’s at his neighbors’ house because he couldn’t take any more of it.

Rayanne covers the phone to tell Sharon that Brian’s crying. Sharon offers to get a supervisor, but Rayanne thinks she can take care of things. She calls herself Jade and turns the call into a sex chat. Okay, Sharon, take the phone away from him. Brian decides this is getting too hot and heavy and says he should get off. Dirty! “Jade” points out that at least he’s not sad anymore.

Patty goes downtown to look for the warehouse but instead sees the guitar player, whom she recognizes from her poster. Angela calls home to tell Graham where she is – not the police station but a church basement. The kids from the warehouse are there, too. So it looks like Graham will be going to church on Christmas Eve after all.

Patty wanders around, looking for Angela, and thinks she’s found her when she sees her boots. Of course, they’re on the guitar player, who says she’s no different from Angela. She had a mom and clean sheets once, too. She invites Patty to ask why she left home. The guitar player says she and her mother had a fight, the kind that seems like it’s having you. Patty asks how she died. The guitar player says she froze. Then she disappears.

Hearing “O Holy Night,” Patty goes into a church, where Rickie’s lighting a candle and praying. He tries to hold it together, but when she embraces him, he cries. They sit in the sanctuary and listen to the music until Angela finds them there. Eventually Graham, Brian, and Danielle join them for the rest of the service. Four women sing about feeling like going home.

At the helpline, Sharon and Rayanne are having a great time together. Jordan spends the evening alone, possibly at the warehouse. After the service, the guitar player watches the Chases, Rickie, and Brian leave the church together, then flies off. Because she was an angel. Yeah, of course.

Thoughts: The guitar player is played by ’90s musician Juliana Hatfield. Anyone remember her? Anyone? No? Okay.

Let’s talk about how much the school sucks if no one ever noticed or did anything about Rickie’s clearly abusive home.

I guess it would have been too easy for Brian to invite Rickie to stay with him, which would have solved both of their problems.

Patty: “You will not believe what Bernice and Bob Krakow did.” Graham: “Oh, I know. But just that once, to make Brian.” GRAHAM! Rayanne would be proud. Also, if Brian has a sister, then it was twice.

December 3, 2019

ER 5.5, Masquerade: The Scariest Thing This Halloween Is the Stupidity of the Future Doctors of America

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , , at 4:51 pm by Jenn

Peter Benton (can ya dig it?)

Summary: It’s Halloween, and Jerry’s plotting something. He stashes something behind a Dumpster in the ambulance bay, then tries to pretend he didn’t. Mark and Chuny meet an ambulance bringing in a woman named Coco who’s babbling. She claims to be pregnant, but the paramedics don’t think she is. Jerry calls someone to report that their plan is in motion.

Weaver tells Lydia that the night shift isn’t wearing costumes this year, since they might scare the patients. I don’t think Lydia’s French-maid costume will scare anyone, except maybe a patient who thinks he or she is being treated by an actual maid instead of a certified nurse. Weaver suggests festive pins instead. She thanks Randi for reading her memo about costumes, but Randi, who’s wearing a suit not unlike one Weaver might wear, has dressed up as “a total stiff.”

Yosh sends Doug to the new pediatric area of the ER, telling him there’s a child with puncture wounds. It’s just a prank organized by Carol, who wants to kiss her boyfriend with vampire fangs. He’s not amused, which is pretty interesting since, as Carol points out, he’s pulled plenty of pranks in the past. He wants to be more serious now that he’s an attending. He’s also asserting some power by insisting on signing off on all pediatric patients. That means he’ll be looking over Mark and Weaver’s shoulders.

Mark asks Carol to help him with Coco, who continues to claim to be nine months pregnant without any evidence. Mark asks for a tox screen and psych consult. Elizabeth has dressed up as a milkmaid, I guess, because she loves Halloween. Benton teases her for thinking that Halloween involves romantic hayrides. After all, they’re in Chicago. He says he has something against costumes. Elizabeth is sure that when he was a kid, there was someone he wanted to be. Benton claims there wasn’t. Dale ruins Elizabeth’s bad mood by giving her annoying work to do.

Weaver brushes off a man who comes to the ER looking for Mark; she’s busy trying to get a computer to work. Lily brings a wheelchair and some medical supplies into the ER, saying she found them in the ambulance bay. Jerry offers to take care of putting it away, then takes it right back outside. Carter arrives with Roxanne, who’s going to a teamster party that night, which gives her an excuse not to help Carter chaperone a dorm party. Lucy catches them as they’re about to make out, and she doesn’t get the hint that Carter wants her to go away. He gives her a fake arm so she can practice inserting IVs.

Weaver gives Carter a bunch of files so he can present a case at a conference the next day. She notes that it would be good experience for someone who eventually wants to be chief resident. Paramedics bring in a drunk man named Joe who claims he wants to quit drinking. Carter tells Lucy to set him up for detox.

Mark meets up with the man who was looking for him, Dan Litvak, a potential new chief for County. Weaver recognizes his name and beats herself up for not being more polite to him earlier. Doug gets a real patient, a kid named Jared who had an allergic reaction to his clown makeup. That means he’ll have to skip trick-or-treating. Jeanie promises to find him something fun around there instead. “Fun stuff around here sucks,” Jared declares, possibly making George Clooney break character and laugh.

Mark checks in on Coco, who would like to know where her baby is. He tells Carol to give her Haldol, an antipsychotic. Weaver finds an excuse to talk to Mark so she can wrangle an introduction to Litvak. She pretends not to know who he is or why he’s there. She learns that he’s there for his second interview, and the search committee plans to vote tonight on who to hire. Weaver didn’t think the vote was until next week. Litvak isn’t very impressed with his supposed competition for the job.

Lucy does well with the fake arm, so Carter agrees to let her try an IV on a real patient. She’s apologetic for not being truthful with him before, but he admits that he wasn’t supervising her closely enough. They head off to take care of Joe, but he’s fled the hospital. Lucy hopefully asks if anyone else needs an IV.

As Elizabeth tries to guess who Benton wanted to be as a kid, they meet up with Reese, who’s come by for a visit. He’s adorably dressed as a bee. Carla says they just came from a party at Jackie and Walt’s, and she was unable to convince Walt to put on one of his ’70s “supa-dupa-fly” costumes and come with them. Elizabeth makes sure to get a picture of Reese with his parents.

Thanks to the Haldol, Coco is now coherent, but she still says she’s pregnant. Carol tells her she’s not, but Mark realizes they didn’t get a pregnancy test, so it’s possible she is. Coco tells them she has schizophrenia and stopped taking her medication when she found out she was pregnant. The Haldol could leave the baby with malformed limbs.

Benton and Weaver work on a trauma patient together, debating whether a sternal saw should be used in the ER or just the OR. She thinks his preferred way of doing things is too slow. Mark confirms that Coco’s pregnant, but they don’t know if the Haldol affected the fetus. Coco wonders if she’s really up for carrying the pregnancy to term, since it means staying off her meds. Mark thinks she should wait a little while before she makes a decision.

Later, Mark tells Carol that he thinks Coco might terminate the pregnancy. Carol notes that that would get him off the hook for possibly harming the baby. She invites him to get a drink after work, but he has plans to meet up with Jen for some kind of talk. Carter tells Lucy that she can leave early, since everything in the ER is under control. She heads off to get ready for the party he’s chaperoning.

Joe is brought back in, repentant over leaving earlier. He says again that he wants to quit drinking and make a fresh start. The drink he left the hospital to have will be his last. Mark says he’ll get Joe a detox bed if he promises not to run off again. He’s decided to believe Joe when he says he’ll stay; he was a cynic with Coco, and look how that turned out. Carol decides to get some extra insurance by taking Joe’s clothes.

Weaver tries to examine a little girl named Amanda who won’t stop screaming. Doug steps in to come up with a way to test her without using needles. Benton, Elizabeth, and Jeanie tend to a preteen named Barbie Klingman who was in a car accident. She has an abdominal bruise from her seatbelt, which may mean she has a bowel injury that will require exploratory surgery.

Litvak observes as Doug and Weaver keep tending to Amanda, using a pad that gives her a painkiller without an injection. Weaver, never Doug’s biggest fan, is very pleased with the method. Litvak is familiar with it, as his hospital participated in some trials. Lucy’s one of only a few people at the dorm party, so Carter feels comfortable going off to do some work for his presentation. Lucy offers to be in charge while he’s gone, as if the three med students there need a chaperone.

Benton, Romano, and Dale operate on Barbie, who still has glitter on her face from her princess costume. Romano makes some Benton-seriously-report-him-to-HR comments about how Benton and Elizabeth should check into a jungle-themed hotel room for the night. The surgeons find a couple of masses in Barbie’s abdomen that appear to be abnormal lymph nodes. Instead of letting Elizabeth scrub in, Dale sends her to pathology to get the masses tested.

Jeanie tries to get Doug to realize that he can’t see every pediatric patient on his own, so he needs to send some to the regular ER. Rachel comes by to hang out in the lounge while Mark and Jen talk. She mentions that she and Jen are moving to St. Louis, which is news to her father. Elizabeth returns to the OR with results from the biopsy of the masses. They’re testicles.

Carter returns to the dorm, where the party has really gotten going. Maybe a little too much. For example, the med students have set some furniture on fire and are in the process of throwing it out a window. These people are studying to be doctors. Pray you never get sick. Lucy’s been drinking, so she’s not much of a chaperone. Carter gives the fire-starters a fire extinguisher, then declares the party over. A tipsy Lucy doesn’t get why and asks if they were too loud. “No, the furniture was too on fire,” Carter replies.

Mark complains to Carol that once again, Jen has made a major life decision and he’s the last to know. Carol laments that it’s right on the heels of Mark getting to spend extra time with Rachel. Mark was able to convince the necessary people to give Joe a detox bed, but he’s taken off again. Mark is having a really bad night.

Elizabeth sits with Dale as he tells the Klingmans (Klingmen?) that Barbie is biologically male, but her anatomy didn’t develop properly, making her appear female. She’ll need estrogen to continue life as a girl. They had to remove the testicles because other people with her condition have developed malignancies. Elizabeth tells the Klingmans that Barbie’s genetics don’t matter; she was raised as a girl, so she’s a girl. However, her male anatomy means she’ll never have children.

Elizabeth says they’ll get the Klingmans in touch with a genetic counselor to figure out how and when to give Barbie the news. As they leave, Dale compliments Elizabeth on her skills at speaking with patients’ family members. Just when it looks like he might not be a 100% horrible person, he cracks that the Klingmans will have to change Barbie’s name to Ken. IT’S CALLED INTERSEX, DOCTOR. Look it up.

Lucy and some fellow med students keep drinking in their lounge, complaining about the horrible assignments they’ve been given by their residents. Lucy uses the fake arm to hold a shot for her. At County, Weaver tells Romano how important it is for the ER staff to be able to use a sternal saw in traumas. Romano doesn’t think it would get enough use or would fit within the standard of care. Weaver says the current standard of care is poor anyway. Romano advises her to do a study and enlists Benton to work on it with her. Benton doesn’t support the idea, but Romano thinks Weaver’s proposal will fail anyway, so it doesn’t matter.

Elizabeth’s good mood from earlier is faltering, and she’s not sure she’ll be up to a date with Benton after they’re off work. He calls Walt to ask for help in turning things around. Mark goes to Doc Magoo’s with Jen and Rachel so they can talk about how Jen is moving to another state and hasn’t said anything yet. Mark surprises her by not fighting her decision to move. They can’t both spend every day with Rachel, and he accepts that. Spending extra time with her over the summer helped him see that he and Jen need to think about her more than themselves.

Barbie wakes up after surgery and laments not being able to go trick-or-treating. She at least had fun making her costume with her mother. Elizabeth finds her tiara and puts it on her. Lucy, Bernard, and a third student are now pretty drunk, and think their fourth friend, Willie, has passed out from overindulging. They pull the prank on him where you put shaving cream on someone’s hand and then tickle his nose with a feather. Willie doesn’t regain consciousness, making Lucy realize that something’s really wrong. She sends the guys to call 911 while she gets Carter.

Carter determines that Willie’s not breathing, so he gives Willie CPR. His reward is vomit in his mouth. As an ambulance arrives, Lucy realizes that Willie took liquid ecstasy. Another student says a classmate, Branch, also took some, so Lucy rushes off to check on him. Mark settles a sports bet with Officer Al, then learns that Joe has turned up at a liquor store. Mark offers to call off the bet if Al will get Joe and bring him back to the ER.

Lucy and Carter find Branch passed out in a bathroom and give him CPR together. Benton checks on Elizabeth, who’s working late with Dale (though he calls her a “great little intern”). Benton pulls rank and tells Dale to let her leave already. Elizabeth is back to being excited about Halloween and wants to put her costume back on before she and Benton go out. She’s also still trying to guess his childhood dream job.

Al brings in Joe…only he’s not Joe. He’s Lloyd, Jerry’s cousin, and has used the hospital supplies Jerry took for him to enter a costume contest. He’s proud to have won an honorable mention. Weaver compliments Doug on all his work over the day, then gives him charts for all the patients the other doctors saw, since he said he wanted to sign off on all of them. Suddenly Weaver likes this new process. Carter and Lucy accompany Branch and Willie to the hospital, but since Lucy’s been drinking, Carter won’t let her assist.

Elizabeth exits the hospital to find Benton in one of Walt’s “supa-dupa-fly” suits, leaning against a vintage card. He’s filled the backseat with hay and gotten his nephew, Peanut, to take them for a hayride. Music comes on, and Benton notes that Elizabeth never figured out who he wanted to be as a kid. She recognizes the song as the theme from Shaft.

Weaver gives Jerry a bill for all the supplies he borrowed for Lloyd. He doesn’t have the money, so he’ll get some of it taken out of his paycheck for the next ten weeks. Mark tells Weaver that the search committee voted to hire Litvak as the new chief. He has a huge ego, so he wasn’t Mark’s first choice. He admits that he voted for Weaver. Jerry has a question about his paycheck garnishments, but now that Weaver won’t be in charge anymore, she decides to tear up the bill. She puts on some devil horns as she leaves for the night.

Carol stays late with Doug as he unloads some supplies in his new workspace. He gets her back for her earlier prank by pretending to cut himself with a box cutter. Carter meets up with Lucy back at the dorm after determining that Branch and Willie will be fine. Lucy says she didn’t know they were doing drugs, but Carter blasts her for not being better at being in charge. Lucy notes that she wasn’t responsible for policing everyone – he was supposed to be in charge. Carter chastises her for not being more mature. You were supposed to be in charge, Carter! Gaaaah!

And now, my favorite Benton/Elizabeth moment ever: As Peanut drives them around Chicago, Benton leans back coolly, channeling Richard Roundtree. Elizabeth sings along with the song and he teases her about not having rhythm. She cracks herself up by playing air tambourine badly enough that Benton has to ask what she’s doing.

Thoughts: You still can’t convince me that Benton was ever actually a child. He’s like Chidi from The Good Place – a 40-year-old in a child’s body.

Parents, don’t name your kid Barbie. She’ll never be able to escape “where’s Ken?” jokes. Also, don’t name your child Branch. That’s just mean.

Bravo to Kellie Martin for doing all the party scenes on skates, since Lucy was dressed as a roller-skating ’50s waitress.

November 30, 2019

My So-Called Life 14, On the Wagon: I Wanna Be Sedated

Posted in TV tagged , at 1:19 pm by Jenn

I have absolutely no words

Summary: Rayanne has been sober for 33 days, but she doesn’t seem to care. Angela voices over that she and Jordan are over, but still friendly. She hopes he’s about to tell her he still wants her and can’t go another moment without her. Instead, he starts complaining about Tino.

Mrs. K has told Rayanne that she has an oral fixation (which explains why she’s always eating lollipops), and Rayanne has a theory that it stems from not being breastfed by Amber. She’s done with sessions with Mrs. K, who’s worried that she doesn’t have a support system in place. Rayanne has felt distant from her friends, especially Angela, since her overdose. Rayanne says Angela’s just been busy with Jordan. Everything’s fine.

Rickie mocks an AA pamphlet Mrs. K gave Rayanne, though Rayanne has said she likes Mrs. K. Now she’s changed her mind, saying Mrs. K is too sensitive. She also thinks Angela’s the one who needs therapy. Jordan tells Angela that Tino quit the band, possibly taking the name Frozen Embryos with him.

Rayanne joins the two of them under the bleachers, so Jordan dismisses himself. Angela tells her about Tino quitting the band, which Rayanne has somehow not yet heard from Tino himself. Angela invites her to come over after school so they can regain some of the time they’ve lost while Angela was hanging out with Jordan so much.

Rayanne makes it to the Chases’ house before Angela and passes the time cooking something with Graham. Patty comes home and tries to treat Rayanne like any other friend of Angela’s. She’s happy to hear that Rayanne’s been sober for over a month. When Danielle arrives, Rayanne watches the three Chases acting like a happy family together. Patty invites Rayanne to stay for dinner, but Rayanne says her mom is cooking. Patty notes that Rayanne never thanked her for saving her life.

At home, Rayanne watches Sesame Street while Amber makes herself a margarita instead of cooking dinner for her daughter. Rayanne’s especially hungry because she missed lunch to have a session with Mrs. K. Amber has either forgotten about her sessions or never listened when Rayanne told her about them. Rayanne complains that she never gets a real meal, then complains that Angela ditched her at her own house.

Amber thinks Rayanne must have done something to make Angela mad at her. She thinks Rayanne can hang out with Angela while she’s with Jordan. Amber gets excited when she finds leftover Chinese food in the fridge, because now Rayanne can have her desired “real meal” without Amber having to cook anything. She tells Rayanne that Angela is a special kind of friend she needs to hold on to.

Jordan is still complaining to Angela about Tino. This should be enough to end her crush on him, right? Rayanne joins them in Jordan’s car, pretending she’s totally fine with Angela ditching her the previous day. Angela tells her that the Tino-less band has a gig lined up next week, but they need a lead singer. Jordan wants to mope alone, so he kicks the girls out of his car.

Rayanne realizes that she should be the band’s new lead singer. Angela doesn’t think it seems realistic. Rayanne notes that a month of sobriety doesn’t, either, but she accomplished that. Now she’ll have a good reason to hang out with Angela while she’s with Jordan. She begs Angela to present the idea to him.

Danielle has a boyfriend! Or at least she did. Now they’re “keeping it loose.” Patty wonders how much of her daughters’ lives she’s not aware of. Angela says that Rayanne has also complained about missing time with her. She and Patty are on different pages about whether Rayanne is still seeing a counselor or whether she’s done. Jordan comes by to give Angela a ride to school, and Patty asks if she’s ever going to get to meet him. Angela says Graham did, which should be good enough. She doesn’t think it matters anyway, since they broke up. Patty gets glummer when Danielle won’t talk about her boyfriend.

Jordan is STILL complaining about Tino. Angela asks about the possibility of Frozen Embryos having a female lead singer, like maybe, hypothetically, Rayanne. Jordan thinks that’s a ridiculous idea. Rayanne asks Rickie if he’s heard anything about being asked to join the band. Rickie tries to gently bring up the possibility that they won’t want her. Rayanne thinks her cuteness, singing voice, and tendency toward exhibitionism will be enough to convince them.

She wonders if Rickie thinks she’ll fall off the wagon. He says Angela gave him the impression they don’t want a female lead singer. Brian overhears and asks what Rayanne did. Rickie says she hasn’t done anything yet, but in the past, when she’s been excited about something like this, it’s led to disaster.

Sharon catches Rayanne singing to herself in the bathroom and compliments her voice. Rayanne pretends not to care about her opinion, then asks if she’s good enough to perform in front of people. Sharon suggests that she change her wardrobe. Rayanne tries to run the Angela situation by her, wondering why Angela wouldn’t put in a good word for her with the band. She realizes that Angela might be worried that Rayanne will make a fool of herself.

Rayanne goes to a Frozen Embryos practice, where things are falling apart without Tino in charge. The band members are so busy fighting that they don’t even notice Rayanne. Jordan calls Angela at home to tell her that Rayanne showed up at practice. Patty takes the phone from Danielle, telling her to respect Angela’s privacy, then listens in herself. Jordan says Rayanne’s acting like she’s high. Angela says she has nothing to do with Rayanne inviting herself there. Jordan mentions that they’re all just sitting around, drinking beer.

Graham catches Patty eavesdropping and hisses at her to stop. Angela tries to keep Jordan on the phone, pleased that this is the first time he’s called her, but Jordan has more important things to worry about. Graham chastises Patty for listening in, though he’s pretty amused about it. She complains that that was the only way she could find out what’s going on in Angela’s life.

She adds that Jordan was the caller, and he reported that Rayanne’s drinking. She’s worried, but Graham thinks Angela’s lack of concern means everything’s okay. Patty has a feeling it’s not and wonders if she should talk to Amber. Later, Patty lies awake, trying to convince herself that everything’s fine. She doesn’t get why you can’t speak to other parents honestly about their children. Graham says that no one wants to be accused of not being a good parent. Every family’s business is their own.

Patty doesn’t think it would be that big of a deal to tell a parent that you’re a little concerned about his or her child. Graham notes that she wouldn’t take that kind of conversation well. Patty agrees, thinking that talking to Amber about Rayanne would just make things worse. She suggests having sex to distract herself from obsessing over the situation.

At school, Angela tells Jordan again that she had no idea Rayanne was going to crash the practice. She doesn’t want him to feel pressured to let her into the band. But the drummer, who’s Rayanne’s new boy toy, has made the decision for the group and brought in Rayanne as the new lead singer. Now Rayanne has a new guy to spend time with instead of Angela.

Guess who didn’t stop obsessing after all? Patty, who calls Amber to talk about Rayanne. Amber says she just had a dream about herself, Rayanne, Angela, and Jordan. She laughs at Patty’s claim that Angela and Jordan are over. Patty asks how Rayanne is, and Amber jokes that she’s no fun anymore since she’s on the wagon. Patty asks if she’s sure that Rayanne’s sober. Amber says she’s as sure as Patty is that Angela and Jordan are just friends.

At the next band practice, Rayanne doesn’t even get a chance to sing “I Wanna Be Sedated” before the other band members can’t get it together. At school, Jordan tells Rayanne that their audition at some club is that night. They still need to come up with a name. Rayanne says they’re not ready for an audition. Jordan tells her to just wear something tight. She wanted a chance and she got it. Now she needs to not screw up.

Rayanne borrows some clothes from Angela, who isn’t sure she can come to the audition. Rayanne tells her there will be plenty of people there, since Rickie invited half the school. Then she realizes the band never told her what they’ll be singing. She runs for some of the Chases’ booze and Angela scrambles to keep her from drinking. Rayanne laughs her off, just joking. At home, she gets ready for the audition, practicing with Amber. She’s nervous but knows she’s going to have an amazing night.

Patty tells Graham about her brief conversation with Amber, thinking Amber blew her off to get off the phone. Angela tries to passive-aggressively get her parents to let her go to the audition by saying she doesn’t even really want to go, but she feels like she needs to support Rayanne. She admits that things have been weird between them since Rayanne’s OD. She basically blurts out everything she’s been dealing with the past few weeks, then hugs Patty and thanks her for listening. Graham teases that Angela will ignore her for another month to make up for that. Patty notices the booze Rayanne poured but didn’t drink.

Brian shows up to the audition, reminding Rickie that he begged Brian to come. Rickie admits that he invited a bunch of people because he was afraid there wouldn’t be an audience. His voice is raspy, something that happens whenever he gets nervous. He prays before the audition, which is part of an open-mic night. The band still doesn’t have a name, so Jordan tells the MC that they’re between names. She misinterprets this, announcing them as Between Names.

The band starts playing, but Rayanne freezes up. When she finally starts singing, she’s not her best and can’t keep the rhythm. The audience is completely unimpressed and starts leaving. Rayanne runs off, but the band keeps playing, so Jordan steps in to sing. Rickie and Brian chase after Rayanne, who says that everyone – including them – must have known she would screw up. Rickie knows that Rayanne’s distress could lead to something bad.

He calls Angela, who’s at home, and Patty takes the phone, sensing that something’s up with Rayanne. The next morning, Patty goes to Rayanne and Amber’s place, where Amber starts babbling about the two of them, Rayanne, Angela, and Rickie maybe being part of the same karass, a group of people who get entwined in each other’s lives. Patty announces that Rayanne has been drinking again. Amber insists that she hasn’t, claiming she knows her daughter well enough to know she’s still sober.

Patty tells Amber that Rayanne is missing. She knows it’s not her place to tell Amber how to parent Rayanne, but Patty can’t stand by and watch Rayanne’s life fall apart. But Rayanne seems just fine – she’s at home, she’s sober, and she spent the previous night eating cookie dough with her mother. She even wants to go to school. Amber tells Patty that she’s a good mother, so Patty can stop looking down on her.

Patty gives Rayanne a ride to school in a weak attempt to smooth things over. Rayanne tells her that while she poured the drink at the Chases’, she didn’t drink it. She promises that she’s been completely sober since her OD. Patty asks why she stopped seeing Mrs. K, and why she didn’t tell Patty she’d stopped. Rayanne says she wanted to seem okay so Patty would approve of her staying friends with Angela. Patty gets that Angela means a lot to Rayanne. She says that they’re in the same karass, so Rayanne can call her Patty instead of Mrs. Chase. Rayanne thanks her for the ride and for saving her life.

She tracks down Rickie, who’s furious with her for disappearing the night before and making him worry. He was terrified that she had started drinking or using again and would end up dead. Angela finds Rayanne on some fire escape or something (I don’t know) and tells her how scared she and Rickie were. She thinks Rayanne’s mad that she didn’t come to the club. Rayanne admits that she made a fool out of herself at the club, which Angela has seen many times. She knew Angela wouldn’t come.

Rayanne says she’s tired of seeing the looks Angela and Rickie give her. They obviously think she’s going to lose control at any moment. She knows Angela thinks she’s too messed up for them to continue being friends. Angela promises that’s not true. Nothing’s changed. Angela voices over that they both know that’s not completely true. Rayanne misses when Angela would come to her for advice, before her whole life became about Jordan. Angela says she should have come to the club to be there for her friend.

Rickie joins them and Rayanne apologizes for the night before. Later, the three friends go to a James Dean movie and talk about guys they like. Rayanne has a thing for Latinos, like Andy Garcia and Luis on Sesame Street. She admits that she still watches the show every day. Rayanne turns the theme song into a kind of lounge performance, entertaining everyone in line for the movie. Angela and Rickie are happy…until Rayanne grabs someone’s beer bottle and takes a drink.

Thoughts: This episode was directed by Jeff Perry (Mr. K).

Remember when we all had landlines with multiple extensions and you could listen in on other people’s calls? Cell phones really cut down on siblings eavesdropping on each other.

Between Names actually isn’t a horrible name for a band. I’ve heard much worse.

November 26, 2019

ER 5.4, Vanishing Act: Lucy, You Got Some ‘Splaining to Do

Posted in TV tagged , , , , at 5:02 pm by Jenn

They never warned Mark about this sort of stuff in med school

Summary: Mark is doing a paramedic ridealong with Doris and Morales, accompanying them to the site of a one-car crash. The driver is unconscious and has a very protective, angry German shepherd. Mark distracts the dog while the paramedics try to assess the patient. Mark ends up with dog bites and a tetanus booster. Plus, Weaver teases that if he ends up with rabies, it’s possible no one will notice. She’s trying to have a more casual attitude about not being immediately chosen as the permanent ER chief.

Doug has come in on his day off to get set up for the next day, when the pediatric ER will officially open. Carol tells him that now that he’s an attending, he’ll have to chip in with the other attendings for the nurses’ nights out. I’m sure he’ll love paying for his girlfriend to hang out with people who aren’t him. Doug overhears Carol talking to Lynette about birth control options for a clinic patient, and he recommends a diaphragm, since they work really well. Carol says he might want to rethink that – she’s three days late.

Randi compliments Weaver’s power suit, which she’s wearing for her interview for ER chief. Randi guesses that she copied her whole outfit from a Cosmo article. Elizabeth is back to being an intern and is about to learn which resident she’ll be working with. She guesses she’ll be sidelined to a consultant role. Benton waits until they’re in an elevator to put Reese’s hearing aids on him, making Elizabeth think that he’s delaying telling anyone. Benton says he just ran out of time.

Lucy presents a patient to Carter, a magician who screwed up a trick and inhaled flash powder. He won’t tell them what’s in it, since it’s a trade secret, but Lucy looked it up on the Internet. The magician does a magic trick with a cigarette, and Carter tries to match him by making a blood-gas kit appear out of thin air. The magician impresses Lucy by putting something in her pocket without her knowing. He says it’s not about what people see.

Carol and Doug quietly discuss her possible pregnancy, though she’s pretty sure it’s not a big deal, since she doesn’t feel pregnant. Doug notes that she’s never been pregnant before, so how would she know what it feels like? He goes off to help Jeanie with a patient, but the pediatric ER exam room isn’t ready yet. Lucy and Carter have been using it to stash a corpse, since no one has come from the morgue yet to get it. Chuny asks if the corpse, who she calls Prince Albert, really has a diamond penis piercing she’s heard rumors about. Carter offers to let her look, but Chuny says she’s seen one before.

Elizabeth has the horrible luck of being assigned to Dale Edson. He plans to treat her like he would any other intern, which means giving her all the work he doesn’t want to do. If she finishes in time, she can scrub in to help with surgery (you know, her actual job). On the elevator with Albert, Lucy almost takes a peek to see if the diamond is real. She gets distracted when she leaves to help an elderly man in the hallway. By the time she gets back to the elevator, the doors have closed.

Paramedics bring in a stabbing victim named Bo, who’s accompanied by a cop who’s trying to find out who attacked Bo. The cop thinks Bo will leave the hospital and go seek revenge on his own, but Carol doesn’t want to let the cop stick around and hammer him with questions. Lucy waits for the elevator, but when it returns, Albert is no longer on board.

Mark’s in trouble with some parents whose daughters attended a sleepover at his place. He showed the girls Romeo + Juliet without realizing that it’s PG-13. He tries to get Elizabeth to do a surgical consult, but she’s too busy doing Dale’s scut work to help. She mentions that Dana is undergoing her amputation later that day, and Doug runs off. Mark gets Elizabeth to do his consult, but Dale takes over and sends her to do more boring stuff.

Lucy runs around looking for Albert, then pretends everything’s fine when Carter asks her to see an actual patient. Randi alerts her to the presence of a man looking for Carter. He’s Albert’s brother, Naughton, and he wants to pick up Albert’s personal effects, including some jewelry. Lucy tells him Albert is definitely, no doubt, positively in the morgue. She promises to find him and bring him back up for Naughton.

Doug visits Dana, who reluctantly agreed to the amputation, though she appreciates that Doug helped her get a say in the matter. Mr. Ellis is annoyed to see Doug near his daughter after being told to keep his distance. Lucy goes to the morgue and questions the transport dispatcher, Tony, about Albert’s body. He’s apathetic about his job and gets defensive when he thinks Lucy’s mad that he took too long to get Albert’s body. He makes her panic by pulling a prank to make her think the body was incinerated. Tony says the body was stashed in a closet in the ICU.

Bo wants to leave, but Carol tries to get him to stick around and finish getting stitched up. Then she asks Lynette to call Bo’s mother to come get him. Bo’s 18, but Carol thinks he’ll bolt, so she wants his mother there to stop him. Mark hands a patient off to Jeanie, a man named Mr. Lipson who has minor injuries from a car accident. She notices that his eyes are yellow and guesses he has problems with his liver. He had a transplant a few years ago, and there may be a problem now.

A patient’s mother tries to talk to Jeanie, but she only speaks Spanish and Jeanie can’t understand her. The woman’s cousin, Luisa, hands over the woman’s insurance card, but Jeanie notes that the name on the card is Rosa, while the woman was introduced as Carmen. Jeanie guesses that the card is really Luisa’s, and they’re trying to cover for the fact that Carmen’s son, Angel, isn’t documented. She tells the women that County treats all patients whether or not they have insurance or documentation.

Lucy and Tony go to the ICU to retrieve the body…which isn’t Albert’s. Doug tells Romano that he wants to put Dana on some sort of pain medication that will help rewire her nerves. Doing so would mean pushing back her amputation a few days. Doug doesn’t think Dana’s psychologically ready for the amputation, so this could give her some more time to adjust. Romano doubts that just a few days will make a difference. He tells Dale to let Elizabeth scrub in on the procedure they’re about to do. He and Doug fight about Dana, but Doug ignores him.

Lynette tries to keep Bo in the ER, but his mother hasn’t arrived yet, so he sees no reason to stay. Lynette knows he wants to run off to retaliate against the person who stabbed him. Carol wants to put him on a psych hold, but Lynette’s plan is to sedate him until his mother arrives. Carol overrules her, planning to handle things on her own. Hey, guys, why not just call the cop who was investigating? Carol puts security outside Bo’s room, then tells him they’re waiting for his mom to come.

Romano, Benton, Elizabeth, and Dale operate together, so that room must be all kinds of tense. Dale calls Elizabeth “Lizzie,” and she asks not to be called that. He notes that Romano calls her that. Benton quizzes Dale on some anatomy, then asks Elizabeth to correct him when he answers incorrectly. It’s Romano and Dale vs. Benton and Elizabeth, at least until Dale picks on Elizabeth for something and Romano defends her. However, he then sends her out of the OR to take care of Mark’s patient.

Mark introduces Doug and Weaver to a chief candidate who’s dressed similarly to Weaver. Weaver realizes she’ll need to change up her look to stand out. Jeanie wants Lipson to undergo a liver biopsy to make sure there are no complications from his transplant. He tells her he missed a few checkups, so he hasn’t heard from his regular doctor if there was anything abnormal. He admits that she suspected there was a problem, but he didn’t want to hear the news. Jeanie points out that he can have another transplant if this one has failed.

Kayson tells Jeanie that he examined Angel, who will probably need heart surgery. Carmen is extremely grateful to Jeanie for helping her son. Elizabeth finishes up with Mark’s patient but isn’t allowed to admit him. He tells Jeanie he ran a blood-alcohol test on Lipson as part of his trauma panel, and his level came back .04. Drinking after a liver transplant is a big no-no.

Lucy is no longer panicking over Albert, and is also still pretending everything is okay around Carter. The magician offers her free tickets to his show and does a magic trick with her beeper. She starts to ask him if he’s seen a body, then changes her mind. Lucy spots Naughton and runs away, right into Carol, whose help she needs with an IV. Carol is fed up with Lucy’s incompetence and threatens to tell Carter about her shortcomings if she doesn’t do it first.

Bo has taken off, since the security guard didn’t have permission to keep him there (though Bo didn’t know that). Doug gives Dana the medication Romano said not to, having somehow gotten her parents to agree. Romano is understandably ticked and tells Doug to play John Wayne in the ER, not the surgical floor. All doctors think they’re right; that doesn’t make Doug special. Romano also guesses that Doug gave Dana food, which would have delayed the surgery anyway, and used that window to convince her parents to follow his protocol.

Lucy tries to insert an IV on a little girl, but fails. When she goes to get a small needle, she runs into an impatient Naughton. Just as she’s about to admit that she lost Albert’s body, she spots an arm hanging out from under a sheet on a gurney in the hallway. She pulls off the sheet and reveals Albert like a magic trick. Naughton can’t believe he walked right by him (probably because a workman put some stuff on top of him, so it didn’t look like a gurney at all).

Carol goes looking for a pregnancy test, which is somehow hard to find in the ER. Weaver got a scarf at the gift shop, but Randi disapproves of the way she’s tied it. She advises Weaver to take off her earrings, since they’re throwing her whole outfit off-balance. Doug asks Carol to help Lucy with her IV, since the patient is so young. Carter comes over to defend Lucy’s IV skills, and Doug says he’s setting a new policy with pediatric patients.

Jeanie finds Lipson getting dressed to leave and confronts him for drinking. He claims he only drank once, but Jeanie knows he’s been back on the transplant list for two months. Lipson said he drank to celebrate that his son passed the bar exam. He knew he was rejecting his first transplant, so what’s the harm? He begs Jeanie not to tell UNOS, the transplant service, because drinking will keep him off the list. Without a new liver, Lipson only has about six months to live.

Jerry comes in for his shift and mentions that Randi’s halter top is a little inappropriate for her job. She’s only wearing it because she loaned Weaver her leather jacket for her interview. It looks weird. Mark, Anspaugh, and Kayson all compliment Weaver on her interview, and Mark even says he likes her jacket. Kayson then goes back to the ER to tell Carmen that he can’t operate on Angel because he’s uninsured. His care will cost too much. Jeanie points out that, even though he’s been stable in the ER, he could drop dead once he leaves. Kayson says that a lot of people could drop dead. Let’s hope he’s the first.

Hey, guess who’s back? Bo! He has gunshot wounds this time, plus an angry Carol tending to him and an incompetent Lucy trying to get his blood gas. Carol takes over for her, so Carter tells Lucy to insert an IV. Lucy quietly tells him she can’t – she’s never started one and doesn’t know how. She walks out while the other doctors try to save the patient.

Romano checks in with Elizabeth, who says her first day back as an intern went as she expected. Romano’s impressed that she survived working with Dale. Dale told her to wear a short lab coat, since she’s an intern, but Romano says she can wear a long one. Once Bo has been stabilized, Carol chastises Doris and Morales for not calling ahead about bringing him in. Mark does his liaison thing, siding with Carol while also admitting that they should have been better prepared. Since they treated the patient, they should just move on.

Benton takes Reese to a session with the audiologist, who tells Benton that Reese will have to work hard to develop his language skills. Benton tries to participate with a stuffed animal but feels foolish. The audiologist tells him he needs to step up and come more than twice a week. Lynette tells Carol that even if they’d been able to keep Bo in the ER earlier, he still would have gone out and gotten revenge later.

Lipson leaves without any indication of whether or not Jeanie ratted him out to UNOS. She asks Doug if she can be his full-time physician’s assistant in the pediatric ER. She’s good with kids, and no doubt she won’t come across one who wants her to do something unethical. Doug is on board with the idea but doesn’t think he has any pull with Anspaugh. Thanks to Scott, Jeanie does. And then we get our answer about Lispon, as Jeanie calls UNOS.

Carter finds Lucy on the roof, where she’s moping about being bad at her job. She feels horrible and says she thought she could learn on her own. Carter notes that she put patients in danger, and the number one rule in the ER is that it’s not about the doctors. If Lucy ever lies to him again, she’ll be taken off his rotation.

Doug meets Carol at her house and sees that she’s drinking – she won’t need the pregnancy test he bought her, since she started her period. She jokes that he can save the test for the next time (though she’s not really joking). Doug says they dodged a bullet, and Carol pretends she agrees. They both know how much having a baby would change their lives, but neither is sure if they mean it in a bad way.

Thoughts: Freaking A, Carol, you don’t just casually tell your boyfriend AT WORK that you might be pregnant!

Oh, hey, it’s Kayson. Go crash on a mysterious island with a polar bear, you jerk.

Of course Carter blames Lucy for not being better at something he never taught her to do. Yeah, I know she never told him and she passed off others’ work as hers, but as her teacher, Carter really should have known her skill level.

November 23, 2019

My So-Called Life 13, Pressure: Angela Is a Virgin Who Can’t Drive

Posted in TV tagged , , at 1:28 pm by Jenn

The perfect place to talk about sex: your parents’ bed

Summary: Jordan is letting Angela drive his beloved car, and it’s not going well. They make out instead. He wants to know how long they’ll be sticking to kissing before they move on to other things. He’s willing to go for it right there in the car, but Angela thinks some more thought should go into it. Does he expect to have sex in her room while her parents are asleep? Plus, she needs to get to class.

Inside the school, Rayanne and Rickie are gossiping about a classmate’s nose stud. The classmate, Cynthia, used to date Jordan, or at least just hook up with him. Rayanne and Rickie think Angela is a major improvement. She’s a little shaken by the thought of Jordan having lots of sex with someone else, which makes Rayanne and Rickie realize that she and Jordan haven’t gotten to that point yet.

Angela voices over that she still hasn’t wrapped her mind around the fact that people have sex. Now everything seems pornographic. For example, she thinks about her teachers having sex, maybe with each other. At home, Patty’s sick but in denial about it. She and Graham are going to have dinner with Hallie and her fiancé, Brad. Angela comes home just as dinner is served but says she’s not hungry. Danielle stresses about having to get a flu shot.

Patty complains that Angela will get hungry later and will try to get Graham to make her something. Angela overhears and yells into the dining room that that won’t happen. Patty yells back that they’re not running a restaurant. Danielle talks about flu shots again, but her parents ignore her. Patty wants to meet Jordan, as she’s interested in where he and Angela hang out, and other things they may or may not have done. Patty says they need to be firm and consistent with the teens. They practice by being firm and consistent with Danielle needing a flu shot. She asks if Jordan and Angela are engaging in foreplay.

Angela’s making a snack later that night when Jordan comes by for a visit. It’s every teen girl’s dream come true – her crush or boyfriend showing up unexpectedly for some alone time. Jordan notes that Angela talked about having sex in her room, which she points out was a joke. He tells her Tino found a way into a vacant house, so they can always go there sometime. She asks if they’ll be breaking and entering before sex, but he says they’ll just be entering. Dirty!

Patty comes downstairs and busts Angela for not having dinner with the family. Jordan’s still in the kitchen, eating Angela’s snack. Patty tells Angela to finish up whatever she’s nibbling on. Heh. She adds that she and Graham still want to meet Jordan. After she goes upstairs, Jordan teases Angela that her mom says she likes him. They confirm plans to meet up at the vacant house on Friday night for…more nibbling.

The next day (I guess), Sharon comes over to return a dish her mom borrowed from Patty. The girls make small talk without the awkwardness that’s been between them recently. They discuss Sharon’s breakup with Kyle, which she says is due to giving up beliefs for him. Angela guesses that means she didn’t want to have sex with him. She’s wrong – Sharon and Kyle did it “constantly.” She dumped him because he was a butthead.

Patty takes Angela and Danielle to get flu shots, and Angela takes advantage of the opportunity to ask her doctor about sex. For a research project. For school. She wants to know statistics. Her doctor just tells her to use protection. Angela doesn’t seem to get how weird it is to talk about this stuff in a pediatrician’s exam room, which has wallpaper aimed toward children.

Hallie and Brad show up for dinner a week early, so Graham calls Patty at work to tell her she needs to come home fast. Hallie and Brad end up helping Graham cook while waiting for her. They reveal that they’ve been talking about Hallie hiring Graham to be the chef at the restaurant she wants to open. Graham thinks it’s just a pipe dream, but Hallie seems serious.

Jordan arrives to get Angela (for the “party” they’re going to), and Graham is thrilled to finally get to meet him. Cue awkward conversation with Graham, Hallie, and Brad. Graham describes him to Angela as “fun.” She wants to put off her date with Jordan, since Patty isn’t there and hasn’t met him yet. If Graham doesn’t want her to go, she’ll understand. He assures her it’s fine.

Angela and Jordan sneak into the vacant house, which is full of other horny teens. I think I saw a horror movie that started like this. Jordan’s ex, Cynthia, is there. There are no empty bedrooms, so Angela and Jordan will have to wait. Angela compares it to waiting to get her flu shot, but this time she doesn’t have a flu shot. Also, this time Rayanne’s there. She’s excited for Angela but on her way out with Tino. Jordan finds an empty room, but Angela uses Rayanne as an excuse not to use it. She lies that Rayanne looked like she was stoned, so Angela should go with her and make sure she’s okay.

When Patty finally gets home, Graham and Hallie are discussing the restaurant again. She learns that Jordan came by and asks what he’s like. Hallie says he’s gorgeous, but Graham doesn’t really know what to say about him. Hallie compares him to a stray puppy. After Hallie and Brad leaves, Patty and Graham agree that Brad is…well, a Brad, but Patty liked Hallie. She asks about the restaurant idea, noting that it’s one of the riskiest businesses to start. Graham says he’s not going along with Hallie’s idea, so it doesn’t matter.

At school on Monday, Sharon and Rayanne have a summit meeting in the bathroom. Sharon heard that Angela left the house because she got sick (a reaction to her flu shot). Rayanne knows she chickened out of having sex, so now Jordan’s mad. Rayanne doesn’t think it’s that big a deal; it’s over in three seconds anyway. She talks about intimacy with two other girls who will now go to class turned on.

After school, Sharon goes to Angela’s with a video her parents have about intimacy and sensuality. Sharon asks if Angela and Jordan have ever had sex. Angela voices over that there’s a line dividing virgins from girls who’ve had sex. The two of them are now on opposite sides of the line. Sharon invites Angela to ask any questions she wants. Angela asks about protection, which Sharon orders Angela to insist on if she has sex with Jordan.

Angela wants to know how Sharon decided she was ready. Sharon says it just happened all of a sudden. After that, she felt like Kyle expected her to keep having sex – she couldn’t go back. Her feelings on the topic didn’t matter anymore. Angela asks if Sharon felt different after her first time. Sharon says she looked at herself in the mirror to see if she looked different. Angela says she doesn’t. Sharon encourages her to talk to Jordan instead of shutting people out like she usually does.

Graham comes upstairs looking for some shoes, and the girls rush to get the video out of the VCR in his and Patty’s room. It ends up on the floor, so Angela gently nudges it under the bed. Graham seems clueless. Angela walks Sharon out, and Brian sees them chatting like their friendship has been repaired. Angela starts to ask to borrow his bike, then stops herself, knowing she needs to stop asking him for things. Of course, it’s Brian, so he gives her the bike.

Graham, of course, finds the video under the bed and is watching it when Patty gets home. He thinks it’s hers, and she wants them to spice up their “routine” and “mechanical” sex life. Patty’s feelings are hurt, but he says he’s just joking. She says she hasn’t been able to tell lately when he’s joking and when he’s serious. Does he really not want to open a restaurant with Hallie? He says again that he doesn’t. They fight over whether the hypothetical restaurant would be successful. The two storm off, leaving their bed empty while a couple on the video gets closer by talking about everything in their lives.

Angela goes to see Jordan to apologize for Friday night. She uses the excuse of the flu shot, but Jordan knows she’s lying – he knows from Tino that Rayanne hasn’t used drugs since her overdose. He says that no matter what Angela thinks about him, he never lied. He regrets letting her drive his car.

Angela says part of her does want to have sex with him. Jordan tells her this is why he didn’t want to get involved with her in the first place. She yells that he must have just been looking for sex. Jordan says it’s expected – it’s what you’re supposed to do, “unless you’re…abnormal.” Well, that was the wrong thing to say, so now he’s definitely not getting any.

Sometime later, Angela goes to her parents’ room to retrieve the video. Graham catches her but lets her go when she says she doesn’t want to talk about it. The video ends up in Brian and Rickie’s hands when Angela leaves her backpack on the bus and the driver gives it to Brian. The boys watch it, and Brian tells Rickie that his parents have a vibrator. Brian, here’s an acronym that will become popular in a few years: TMI.

In the bathroom, Rickie tells Angela about the tape, calling bull when she says it’s Sharon’s. She laments that she had someone to be with, and now she’s lost him. The whole relationship sucked. She wishes she’d had sex with Jordan – it seems so simple.

Rickie says that maybe it shouldn’t be. Even if he met the perfect person, sex should be “like a miracle. Like seeing a comet, or just feeling like you’re seeing one. Seeing the other person’s perfectness, or something.” If you have sex before you’re ready, you won’t see that. Cynthia emerges from a stall and tells Rickie his words were beautiful. It’s exactly like he described. She wants to ask Angela a question, even though they don’t know each other: Did she ever work at Big Guy Burger?

Patty comes home from work earlier than usual, wanting to spend some time with Graham. They apologize to each other for their recent arguments, and Graham says he’s really not going to go into business with Hallie; it’s too risky. Patty wants him to do it if he wants, but Graham says he already has everything he wants. Really? Even Danielle? Huh. He amends that to say that no one has everything they want. But he and Patty have each other, and that’s good for him.

The two of them decide to put what they saw on the sex video to use. The phone rings while they’re making out, and Graham wonders if Hallie’s calling. Guess what? He does want to go into business with her! He knows they could fail, but what if they don’t? Patty promises that she has faith in him, and no matter what happens, things will work out. The mood has been ruined, though, so no sex right now.

Brian comes by to give Angela her backpack and get his bike. Danielle tells him the bike is at Jordan’s. Brian yells at Angela for that, then chastises her for not yelling back. She doesn’t mention the breakup, just that she’s sad about boys. They all only seem to care about sex. “Not all boys,” Brian says, because of course. Graham, who was napping on the couch, wakes up and hears the two teens talk about sex. Angela admits that she thinks about it.

Jordan comes by with the bike, so Patty gets a good look at him as she’s leaving the house. Amazingly, she doesn’t say anything to him. Brian comes out and says the bike is his, but Jordan can leave it at the Chases’ in case Angela needs it again. He lies that he’s not sure if Angela’s home.

Jordan goes to the house, inviting himself inside, and Angela wonders if there’s going to be an official proclamation of breakup. She says it’s like when he let her drive the car. She felt powerful, but also scared. She wasn’t ready for that much freedom. Jordan says he won’t hold it against her or say anything bad about her if her name ever comes up.

Angela says that sex is a big deal – it changes your life. Life is a circle, and sex and death are similar. Well, sort of. She’s thought about having sex with Jordan, but not about killing him. Jordan stops her babbling and says that at least Angela got to practice driving. He warns her not to take her turns too wide. He’s sure she won’t.

Angela voices over that sometimes someone will say something small that fits into an empty place in your heart. Tearing up, she approaches Jordan and tells him she’ll miss how soft his hair is. She’s ready to officially end the relationship. Jordan leans in for a goodbye kiss, then leaves the house. Graham is still secretly on the couch.

Angela takes Brian’s bike for a ride, voicing over that people always say you should be yourself, as if that’s a definite thing. But sometimes she’ll have a moment when being herself at a specific point in her life is enough. She rides with her hands in the air, feeling free.

Thoughts: If Angela wants to put off having sex, constantly wearing overalls is definitely a solid strategy.

Yes, I would definitely hire a chef who’s still taking cooking classes and has no restaurant experience. That sounds like a recipe for success.

13 episodes in and we still haven’t seen the Chases’ cat. Maybe it’s hanging out with Tino.

November 19, 2019

ER 5.3, They Treat Horses, Don’t They?: In Case You Didn’t Know, Insurance Companies Are Awful

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , at 4:58 pm by Jenn

I mean…just…sigh

Summary: The ER is being painted, and for some reason, the painters are starting in the copy room. Weaver disapproves. Mark tries to make conversation with Rachel, who’s showing signs of the teenager she’ll later become. She makes bare-minimum conversation with her father, then gushes to her mother when she calls. Weaver learns that her title has changed from acting chief to interim chief. Anspaugh tells her they’re forming a committee to look for a permanent chief. She gives him an evaluation she did of Doug.

Carter has gone from living in a mansion to living in an okay apartment to living in a dorm and having to share a bathroom with a bunch of guys. Poor Carter, slumming it with the middle class. Having to fix a clogged toilet and losing your toothbrush down it in the process isn’t fun, but his beard may be worse. When he gets to work, Randi says he’s starting to look “mythic.”

Weaver asks Mark if he thinks “interim chief” sounds better than “acting chief.” He tells her Anspaugh asked him to serve on the committee to find a replacement. She hopes he can remain unbiased since she’s one of the candidates. He decides to pass on the opportunity. Jeanie returns from a music camp in the wilderness and meets Lynette. She isn’t working until noon, so she volunteers to help out at the clinic. Her first patient is a boy who has roundworms, which is definitely worse than losing your toothbrush while unclogging a toilet.

Benton meets with a doctor who confirms the audiologist’s findings: Reese has hearing loss. Benton has looked into cochlear implants, but the doctor isn’t a fan, since they require destroying the patient’s residual hearing. Plus, Reese isn’t a candidate right now. He should use hearing aids right now and get into speech therapy. Benton asks about sign language, but the doctor thinks that will just limit him.

Doug wants to take Carol and Mark to lunch, but he won’t tell them what the special occasion is. A painter finds some papers in the copier and gives them to Jerry, who sees Doug’s name on them and tells Randi to put them in his box. Roxanne comes by to talk to a nurse about insurance and asks Carter to examine her healing toe. He’s a little more interested in her than he was the last time he saw her.

It’s Elizabeth’s last day as a fellow before becoming an intern again. Benton is distracted as they scrub in together, and she’s worried that he thinks she made the wrong choice. He says he just can’t imagine being an intern again. Anspaugh lets Benton know that the patient they were about to operate on just died.

Mark, Lucy, and Carol get a patient named Rodney who took a carving knife to the forehead. He’s drunk and combative, so Lucy helps tie restraints around his arms. She doesn’t tie hers properly, so he flails and sends her flying. Carol is quickly getting fed up with the inept student. Doug’s new patient is a 15-year-old named Dana who broke her leg while playing soccer. However, she didn’t fall or have a collision, which means she probably has a tumor.

Doug finds the papers in his box and is confused about why they’re there. Benton fights with someone with his insurance company in his attempts to get hearing aids for Reese. Dwight tells Mark that a call came in about a hostage situation and shootout; he’s welcome to tag along with the paramedics if he’d like. Mark is hesitant but decides to accept.

Lucy uses Rodney’s unconscious body to practice inserting an IV. She fails and Malik has to redo it. She admits to Carter that she asked him for help, which Carter encourages her to do, since they can teach her a lot. Mark and Dwight meet up with a bomb squad, since the person who took hostages has explosives. He’s also been taken down by the cops and needs medical attention. Dwight is up for the job, but the guy running the show wants Mark to go since he’s a doctor.

Doug tells Jeanie, who was helping him with Dana, that she may have Ewing’s sarcoma. He gives Jeanie the chance to bow out and see other patients, but Jeanie wants to stay on the case. Paramedics bring in an elderly woman named Emily whose neighbor found her unconscious. Carter stabilizes her, telling the neighbor that it’s not clear if she’ll live. The neighbor doesn’t care about Emily, per se; she just wants to know if her apartment will become available, since her sister’s looking for a place.

Doug and Jeanie tell Dana’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Ellis, that she may have cancer. Dana hasn’t been told anything yet. Mark works with a bomb squad guy, Clark, to try to treat the bomber without, you know, blowing anything up. (Clark calls the bomber Boris; I have no idea if that’s actually his name, but I’ll go with it.) Back at County, Benton tells Carla what he’s learned about Reese’s hearing. She thinks everything will turn out fine. Benton’s insurance is awful, especially for a doctor, and he doesn’t have much in the bank, but Carla can chip in. Elizabeth spots the three of them together.

A woman named Margo introduces herself to Carter as a representative from Emily’s HMO. She reveals that Emily has a DNR, so all the work Carter did to stabilize her was for nothing. Margo won’t approve her admission to the hospital; she can’t justify spending money on a woman who shouldn’t be alive. Carter argues that she’s on a ventilator, so she has to be admitted. Margo disagrees.

Mark and Dwight bring in Boris after he’s been separated from the explosives. Benton helps tend to him in the ER and discovers a box that might be a detonator. Clark says that as long as they don’t mess with it, it should be fine. Good thing Clark is here to reassure the staff. Hey, everyone! It “should be fine”! A guy from the bomb squad says so!

Boris has wrapped chicken wire around himself and the detonator, which will have to removed in the OR. Jeanie pours saline on it, which shorts out the electricity. Clark yells that everyone has about five seconds to get out. As the others run for cover, Benton stays behind, counting. He cuts out the detonator, tosses it in the corner, and covers himself. After it goes off, he checks out the minimal damage, then goes right back to work.

Having run out of time to go out for lunch because of Mark’s heroics, Doug buys pizza for him and Carol. Before he tells them why he wanted to have the meal together, he gives a dramatic reading of the papers in the copier – it’s his evaluation from Weaver. Shockingly, it’s negative. Doug then announces that the evaluation doesn’t matter. A friend on a committee told him he’s already been approved to become a pediatric ER attending. Carol’s thrilled, and though Mark had doubts, he’s happy for his friend.

Weaver interrupts the celebration to tell Mark that Rachel’s there. Somehow, she came across a horse with colic and promised its owner or handler or whoever that Mark can help. Mark points out that he’s a people doctor, not a veterinarian, but there are no vets close by who can help. Mark is obviously going to help Cherry Blossom, because how else will he get his daughter to pay attention to him again?

Roxanne is still hanging around the hospital, and when she spots Carter again, she asks to get together sometime to talk about…investing. Sexy. She gives him a free guest pass to a health club and tells him she’s there every night around 7. Woo-hoo, Carter’s gonna sauna and talk about interest rates! At least it’s better than fighting 30 guys for a shower.

Weaver treats a man who’s having trouble breathing. They paralyze him to intubate him, but they don’t have a big enough blade for the procedure. Randi may have a solution, since she’s gotten her hands on the knife extracted from Rodney’s forehead and would like to keep it. Mark goes in to help Weaver, who feels like she’s being pushed aside. Then she learns from a painter that the copy room’s being painted because it’s being turned into an exam room for the new pediatric attending.

Carter tries to get Weaver’s advice on Emily, but Weaver’s not in the mood. She tells him that if he wants to be chief resident, he needs to start making big decisions on his own. Elizabeth tracks down Benton, thinking he’s going back to Carla, and asks him to let her know if she’s about to be dumped. He assures her that that’s not what’s going on. He snaps that he’s not avoiding her, then reveals that he’s dealing with Reese’s hearing problems. He didn’t want to tell her because it’s private.

So…Mark treats the horse. Jerry reluctantly helps give Cherry Blossom an enema, not wanting to get too close to his hindquarters. Doug visits Dana, who’s heard that she needs to see an oncologist and is smart enough to know what oncologists treat. She overheard him talking to her parents and mentioning possible amputation. Doug tells her that the doctor will go over all her options, but Dana just wants a straight answer.

He tells her that amputation may be her best option. Dana’s adamantly opposed to that, though her survival isn’t guaranteed either way. Doug says that if she were his daughter, he’d opt for amputation. Dana asks if the doctor amputates even if she says she doesn’t want that. He tells her they’ll go over all the facts and options before any decisions are made.

Carter calls the person who holds Emily’s power of attorney; he has more than 700 clients and hasn’t met any of them. Yet he’s allowed to make their medical decisions. Carter fills Mark in, trying to figure out what he should do. Mark reminds him that Emily has a DNR, so they need to let her go. Carter goes back to her trauma room and starts the steps to do so. When he takes her off the ventilator, she starts breathing on her own. Jerry goes out to check on Cherry Blossom, who hasn’t shown signs of the enema working yet. He helps get Cherry Blossom out of his trailer so he can walk around a little. As a result, he gets crapped on. Womp womp.

Weaver pulls Mark into the lounge to ask if he knew that Doug got the attending position. She’s annoyed that no one kept her in the loop. Mark tells her to accept it and move on. Weaver’s annoyed that Mark told her he didn’t support Doug getting the position, then celebrated when he got it. Mark says they have to live with the hospital’s decision. He thinks she’s really just mad that she hasn’t been made the permanent chief. She needs to decide if she wants to be a doctor or an administrator.

On her way out for the day, Lucy stops by to see Carter, who’s sitting with Emily. She’s now declining again, and Lucy’s surprised that Carter doesn’t do anything to save her. He tells her this is what Emily wanted, and she’s not suffering. As soon as she’s died, Carter starts signing the charts Lucy needs him to sign.

The Ellises are upset that Doug talked to Dana about her treatment. While he told her that amputation is her best chance at survival, he also offered some alternative treatments. Doug says he wants her accept that amputation might be what’s best for her, rather than being forced to comply with a treatment she doesn’t want. Mr. Ellis say it’s their decision, not Dana’s. He tells Doug to stay away from her. Doug says Dana needs to feel like her parents are on her side, not working against her.

Mark has changed his mind and wants to be on the search committee to find a new chief after all. Roxanne helps Carter hook up a new sound system in his room, then slow dances with him. And…that’s it? That’s the end? Whatever.

Thoughts: Clark is played by Dean Norris. Dana is played by Ashley Johnson. Mrs. Ellis is played by Ann Gillespie.

Benton with the bomb has to be his coolest moment in the whole series.

Do you think Carter and Benton ever talked about how they both like jazz? …Yeah, probably not.

November 16, 2019

My So-Called Life 12, Self-Esteem: Everyone Deserves Better

Posted in TV tagged , , at 1:20 pm by Jenn

Ouch, this is painful

Summary: Angela voices over that some places at school seem reserved for certain people. She passes a classroom where Sharon is telling some friends that she regrets breaking up with Kyle before midterms. Angela voices over that there are lines that aren’t supposed to be crossed. There’s a spot in the boiler room where people only go for one reason…and now Angela’s there with Jordan, for that reason: making out. Look who got her guy!

Angela’s missing her (optional) geometry review for this, and she gets busted by her teacher, Ms. Lerner, who’s showing around yet another new English teacher. Ms. Lerner warns that she might not pass her midterm. Another teacher, Ms. Chavatal, pops in and says that Angela has low self-esteem. She introduces herself to the new English teacher, Mr. Katimski. The women think he’s a catch. I don’t see it.

Neither does Rickie, who’s in Mr. Katimski’s class. His classmates make fun of his real name, Enrique, and he tries to play along. After class, he complains to Rayanne about the classmates and Mr. Katimski. He does an impression of Mr. K, then realizes he’s standing right in front of him.

Later, Rickie tells Rayanne that instead of getting in trouble, Rickie got an invitation to join the drama club. He thinks he might consider it, if he was really bored, but not if Mr. K is in charge. The topic of conversation turns to Angela, who’s currently making out with Jordan again. Rickie thinks it’s romantic that they’re together. Rayanne is skeptical that it’ll last.

Patty comes home from work and finds Graham studying terms for his new cooking class. He’s worried that he won’t measure up to his classmates. Danielle spots an unfamiliar word and asks what “mediocrity” means. Hey, Danielle, next ask what “irony” means. Angela comes home in a great mood, which, of course, confuses her parents.

Angela goes upstairs to supposedly study for geometry, but instead she reminisces about making out with Jordan. She voices over that they barely talked during all that kissing, so when they did speak, it was meaningful. Like when she finds a leaf in his hair, and when he wonders whose stomach is grumbling. Jordan’s friend Shane comes looking for him, so Jordan hushes Angela and asks her to keep their trysts there secret. He’ll tell Shane he was there with a girl, but not who the girl is. Always the sign of a healthy relationship.

Back in school, Angela voices over that her life has become divided into two sections: kissing and not kissing. When she’s not kissing, she’s thinking about kissing. She’s missing all the geometry review sessions and is trying to be invisible in class. It’s easy, since the boys are much braver about answering questions and possibly being wrong. Angela gets a 59 and a “see me” on a quiz, which means she can’t stay invisible any longer.

Two of Angela’s classmates chat about their grades; the guy isn’t doing much better than Angela, but the girl, Abyssinia, got a 98. However, she tells the guy that she only got a 60 and will have to attend a review. The guy, Troy, offers to help her, since he got a 66. Wow, they’re somehow managing to reenact a plot from Mean Girls years before the movie even came out! Ms. Lerner chastises Angela for doing poorly in class and reminds her about the review sessions.

Angela hangs out with Rayanne after school and asks her not to tell anyone about her makeout sessions with Jordan. Rayanne notes that Angela’s letting Jordan control her. Angela points out that Rayanne pushed her to do stuff like this; now that she is, Rayanne’s criticizing her. Rayanne has made out with tons of guys and none of them control her. Rayanne says it’s because she leaves her emotions out of it. She’s the type of person who can handle the boiler room – Angela isn’t.

Patty is seeing Chuck out of the Chases’ house as Rayanne leaves for the night. Chuck notices a squeaky floorboard and asks where Graham is, obviously wanting to know why Graham isn’t keeping up with house repairs. Patty says he’s at a cooking class, a big step for his new life goals. She’s very supportive of this turning point of his. Chuck tells her they’re throwing away money; Graham needs a headhunter so he can get a job and stop living off the money Patty’s making. Chuck thinks she deserves better.

Graham chats with a classmate, Hallie, while they wait for their teacher to arrive. She jokes that it’s like they’re in a Twilight Zone episode – they thought they were there for a cooking class, but they’re forced to make awkward conversation instead. Or maybe they’re in a human-behavior experiment to see how long they get along before they turn on each other. Hallie tries to bond with everyone, but no one wants to play along.

After class, Graham tells Patty that the whole thing was strange. He looks through the fridge for spicy mustard (which Rayanne would say means something about sex). Patty thinks Graham hated the class, so they should use the tuition money to hire a headhunter instead. Graham says that’s not what he meant. Later, in bed, he tells Patty that the teacher never showed up. The weirdness was Hallie being loud and annoying. However, she did discover that their teacher was absent because of food poisoning, and she got him to reschedule the class.

Shane catches up with Jordan as he’s on his way to meet Angela in their makeout spot. There’s a band playing that weekend, Buffalo Tom, and Jordan agrees to go see them with Shane. Angela’s very happy to ditch her studying to be with Jordan, who says he’s happy to see her. She tries to fish for an invitation to see Buffalo Tom with Jordan, but he doesn’t extend one.

Sharon runs into Rayanne in the bathroom and asks if she’s ever been to any classes. That’s a great questions, Sharon. She wants to know what’s going on with Angela and Jordan. Sharon can’t ask Angela herself, since Angela will think Sharon’s checking up on her. Sharon worries that Angela will end up getting hurt. Rayanne feels the same way.

Angela catches them together, and Sharon asks why she keeps skipping geometry review. Angela wonders why Sharon and Rayanne are suddenly talking about her. She preemptively refuses to talk to Sharon about Jordan. Sharon says that Jordan’s keeping Angela a secret, at least according to Rayanne. Rayanne says she only chats with Sharon because they care about Angela. She compares this to Angela’s concern over Rayanne’s drinking and drug use. Sharon agrees that the situations are connected – it’s about self-respect.

The girls question why Jordan would keep his relationship with Angela a secret. Does he think he’s cooler than her? That she’s not good enough? Angela says they’re just not like Sharon and Kyle, and don’t have to walk around holding hands all the time. Rayanne asks why that’s considered intimate anyway, since hands aren’t an erogenous zone. (She mispronounces “erogenous” and Sharon corrects her.)

Angela says that obviously Jordan does want to be seen with her, since he invited her to see Buffalo Tom with him. She just can’t go because of her geometry studying. Sharon says she might go – she’s been good long enough and has the right to screw up her midterms. Rayanne thinks she has an obligation to.

Ms. Lerner tries to strike up a conversation with Mr. K about how frustrating it is that some of her students aren’t doing well. Mr. K gets distracted when he sees Rickie and Rayanne walking by, and he invites Rayanne to join the drama club. She briefly considers it, if there’s a chance she’ll be able to play hooky from something else, but Mr. K doesn’t think that’ll happen.

He keeps calling Rickie “Enrique,” which Rickie says no one calls him. Mr. K thinks it’s a waste to have a name like Enrique and not use it. Since his name is Richard, he’s technically an Enrique, too. Rickie corrects that his Spanish name would be Ricardo. He’s short with Mr. K and makes it clear that he doesn’t want to join the drama club. Ms. Chavatal comes by Mr. K’s room and finds Ms. Lerner beating herself up for making a fool of herself in front of Mr. K.

Rickie and Brian complain to each other about their respective problems, not really listening to each other. Rickie’s annoyed with Mr. K, and Brian’s frustrated that Angela wants him to put his own life on hold to help her with geometry. Of course, it’s Brian, so no matter what he’s supposed to be doing, he’ll probably go by the Chases’ anyway and help Angela out.

Hallie starts chatting with Graham in class, but this time he’s less annoyed by her. She thinks their teacher, a famous chef, is drunk. She threatens to make a fuss if he doesn’t get it together. They deserve better. When Graham gets home, he tries to tell Patty about the class, but she has questions that take him out of his narrative. She’s made some curtains and asks him not to seem so surprised that she was able to sew them. Graham agrees with Hallie that the teacher was drunk.

Angela goes to the Buffalo Tom concert with Rayanne and Sharon, the latter of whom says she should be home studying for midterms instead. Brian chooses that night to go see Angela, and learns from Danielle that she’s at the concert. Angela can’t find Jordan, so she’s ready to leave. Rayanne spots him just as Shane sees her and “that weird girl she always hangs out with.” Jordan ignores Angela, who tells her friends that she doesn’t think he saw her. He’s “busy,” so she’s not going to bother him.

Rayanne and Sharon wonder why Jordan is ignoring Angela when he (supposedly) asked her to meet him there. They urge her to approach him, so she does, but Jordan is cold to her. Sharon and Rayanne are almost as upset about that as Angela is. While Sharon follows Angela as she mopes away, Rayanne confronts Jordan for being a jerk to a girl he clearly likes. She warns that Angela won’t wait around forever.

Back at home, Angela voices over that there’s something about Sunday night that makes you suicidal, especially after you’ve been embarrassed by your sort-of boyfriend and you have a midterm you’re not ready for the next day. Plus, Brian has her textbook and Danielle is done with her juvenile homework. She shows off her report on crustaceans to Patty, who gushes over it.

Graham’s at another cooking class, which appears to be delayed again. Hallie has a question for him about risotto. Patty asks Angela if she feels ready for her geometry midterm. Angela says yes, but she’s going to call Brian for a study session. Patty says she’s glad Angela is staying on top of her math, since Patty was always bad at it and worried she would pass that badness down to her daughters.

Brian comes over and snaps at Angela for interrupting his own studying to ask for help with her own. She expresses regret but needs help anyway. Brian yells that he’s up to calculus, and is under a ton of pressure to always get good grades. “You have the option of insanity,” he tells her. His own inability to go crazy makes him crazy. As Graham comes home, Brian decides he needs to leave.

Graham tells Patty that his teacher has gone to rehab. She worries that he’s going to stay in the class just to spite her, since it was her idea. She’s learned her lesson; he should just quit the class. Graham says that, actually, he’s going to be teaching the class. Um, what? As he was telling Hallie why the risotto she tried to make for her fiancé didn’t turn out well, other classmates started asking questions. One said that Graham was easier to follow than the teacher, so the classmates asked him to take over. Graham is a little upset that Patty’s so surprised at his success.

Jordan leaves Angela a note in her locker asking to meet him in the boiler room. Knowing it’s a bad idea, Angela goes anyway, and they make out without discussing what happened at the concert. In fact, they start making out without even saying anything. Angela complains that Jordan is the way he is. He doesn’t know what she means. “Like how you are,” she says.

Jordan tells Angela she can leave if she’s not happy, so she starts to go. She stops and asks him to admit “that all of this happened.” She wants him to admit that he has feelings, and that he’s wrong for the way he’s been treating her. Also, he spelled her name wrong in the note he left her.

Mr. K bores an English class with a sonnet (“My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun…”). Jordan is, for once, listening, and probably picturing the same person Brian is. Mr. K asks who Shakespeare is describing in the poem. She’s not the most beautiful girl in the world, but he loves her anyway. Jordan gets it, so Mr. K asks why Shakespeare is in love with the subject of the poem. Brian says she’s not just a fantasy. She has flaws and is real.

Angela cuts English to cram for her geometry midterm in the bathroom, praying that God will help her pass. Abyssinia is also there, and both consider skipping the test, since they’re going to flunk anyway. Angela knows Jordan is the reason for her laziness in studying. The two girls end up studying together, and by the time they need to make up their minds about the test, they decide to go ahead and give it a shot. But! Sharon bursts in and announces that the copier ate the test, so it’s been postponed until the next day. Angela says she’ll go to the final review session, but Abyssinia thinks she’s ready without it.

Mr. K flags down Rickie in the hallway, and Rickie says he’s absolutely, positively not going to join the drama club. He’s not the sort of person who joins things. Mr. K thinks he’s hesitant because it’s not cool. He just wants Rickie to fulfill his potential. It’s like Mr. K is a track coach, and Rickie can run really fast, so Mr. K needs him on his team.

Rickie yells at Mr. K to stop calling him Enrique. Mr. K says he also hated his name in high school. Rickie denies that he hates his. Mr. K is happy to hear that – no one should hate who they are. After Mr. K leaves, Rickie puts his name on the sign-up list for the drama club. Rayanne sees it and grins – he signed himself Enrique instead of Rickie.

Brian watches Angela as she chats with her friends, then sees Jordan watching her as well. As Buffalo Tom plays over the scene (“I held her hand too tight… I’m not a thoughtless guy…”), Jordan approaches Angela in the busy hallway and asks if they can go somewhere. He takes her hand on their way to make out. Sharon calls after Angela not to forget her geometry review, but Rayanne says it’s too late – she’s already forgotten about it.

Thoughts: Mr. K is played by Jeff Perry.

Abyssinia’s full name is Abyssinia Churchill, which sounds like a character from The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.

What do you think Sharon normally does for fun? Do you think she ever actually has fun?

November 12, 2019

ER 5.2, Split Second: Waaaay Too Much Talk About People’s Lower Halves

Posted in TV tagged , , , at 5:09 pm by Jenn

Thanks for showing up and doing nothing, Rach

Summary: Two students (one of them is Bernard) wake Carter at 2:45 a.m. so he can let them into the dorm room they’re locked out of. Carter probably regrets taking a job as an RA. Benton is also up late/early, and eager to finish up a date with Elizabeth. There’s already another man in her apartment, but Benton quickly learns that he’s no competition – he’s Elizabeth’s father, Charles. Carter is woken again with a complaint about an overflowing toilet.

Lucy’s at work early, checking to make sure she didn’t lose track of anything the day before. Jerry teases that she’s the favorite of all the med students, since she was able to insert an IV on her first day. Doug pulls her away to help him examine a baby. He manages to keep the joy out of his voice when he informs Weaver that his probation is over, so she won’t have to look over his shoulder anymore.

Carter’s just going back to bed when his father calls. Millicent told him that Carter’s living in a slum, which Carter says is a huge exaggeration. He admits that County might not be able to pay him this year, but his RA role is “practically a faculty position.” He feels good about being able to pay his own way for the first time in his life.

Carol comes back from a meeting in a great mood – thanks to some support from Mark, she’s been approved to hire an RN to work at her clinic. Connie is teaching Mark to answer radio calls from paramedics; he’s considering taking the EMS liaison job he was told about. By the time he gets all the steps right, the paramedics have already arrived and can tell him everything in person.

Elizabeth, Benton, and Charles go to Doc Magoo’s for breakfast, discussing Charles’ offer to let Elizabeth join his practice in England. They spot Romano in the restaurant, which will make it hard for Elizabeth to keep trying to avoid him like she’s been trying to. Charles thinks she should join him for a high-tech operation and impress him. Maybe he’ll regret not renewing her fellowship. When Romano comes over, Charles is icy to him. Elizabeth says she’ll do the procedure – and instead of assisting Romano, he’ll be assisting her. Charles invites himself to observe.

Lucy thinks her and Doug’s patient needs to have metabolic tests done, but Doug thinks they can determine his condition better by just cooling down the room. He tells Lucy she had the right instincts, but he has a hunch that the boy has no sweat glands. Jerry tells Benton that Carla called to say she may not make it to an appointment for Reese to have his hearing checked.

Lucy brings Carter coffee and tells him she signed him up for a couple of possibly interesting cases. She’s already taken the patients’ histories and reviewed their previous charts. She wants to put herself in a good position for her eventual residency. She figures Carter’s been looking toward becoming chief resident since he was an intern. Carter pretends she’s right. Jerry tells Lucy not to call him Dr. Carter – he’s “just Carter.”

Carol thinks hiring a nurse for the clinic will be fun. She’s impressed that Mark has already mastered answering radio calls. Paramedic Doris has brought in a teen gangbanger who attacked her when he thought she was going to take his gun. Mark takes her away to examine the cut on her forehead. The teen, B.G., recognizes a patient in the next room as his friend Toine, who was also shot. Toine is somehow not completely embarrassed that his wound is in his butt.

Carter and Lucy go hunting for a case they can help with, but Carter thinks B.G. and Toine are stable enough not to need their help. Mark asks Doris some questions about paramedic procedures and mentions that he might become the liaison. She tells him she’s been a paramedic for seven years, and they’ve said the whole time that they need more EMTs. Instead, they get their budget cut.

Weaver tells Doug that his probation is, indeed, over, so he’s free. She says she was assigned to babysit him and didn’t actually enjoy it. Doug doubts that. She tells him people keep calling to ask for ultra-rapid detox since they know it worked for Josh. Mark talks to Weaver about the coordination position, which she thinks is a good idea. He heads off to attend a soccer game Rachel’s playing in.

Carter tells Weaver that he put in a salary request because his financial situation has changed. She’s already approved the request and is glad he’s trying to look professional. People who practice medicine just as a hobby look like dilettantes. Carter says that not worrying about money will help him achieve his goal of becoming chief resident. Weaver thinks he has a good chance since his med student is performing so well, which means he’s a good teacher.

While Jerry struggles to make the ER an acceptable temperature (the D-plot of the episode), Benton wraps up surgery with Anspaugh. He mentions taking Reese to an audiology exam to follow up on some hearing problems he had before. Benton thinks they were do to fluid in his ears after an infection. Anspaugh notes that a medicine sometimes given to preemies can cause damage to their hearing. Benton tries not to worry.

Elizabeth examines Toine, who needs surgery. B.G. and his girlfriend, Elan, make obnoxious comments, and when B.G. picks on Yosh, he’s dead to me. Weaver tells B.G. to be more supportive of Toine. That won’t happen after B.G. and Elan hear that Toine will need a colostomy bag after his operation. A girl named Moselle shows up to see Toine, and she and Elan get into a fight. B.G. taunts Toine for getting shot in the butt because he was running away from gunfire.

Weaver tells Elizabeth that she’s sorry Elizabeth will have to find work somewhere else. She’s heard about foreign doctors starting over as interns, an idea neither of them finds appealing. Weaver breaks up a fight between Elan and Moselle, kicking them out of the hospital. Carol and Elizabeth are both impressed. As Carol deals with a guy named Savage who thinks he can smoke in a hospital, Weaver tells Jerry to call someone who can send them some parkas.

Mark cheers Rachel on at her game, trying to out-yell the sexist father of another player. As Rachel blocks a goal, she falls and hits her head on the metal holding up the net. We get a dramatic zoom in on Mark’s face, but Rachel seems okay. The sexist dad’s son apologizes for kicking too hard, and the sexist dad is nice enough to offer up an (empty) first-aid kid and some ice.

Savage tries to light up again in his exam room, like this is the ’50s or something. Elan goes from visitor to patient when her fight with Moselle ends with Elan being stabbed. Benton checks Reese’s chart in the neonatal ICU, where he runs into Tabash, the doctor who took care of Reese. Tabash says his hearing was normal both before and after he was given the medication that could have affected it.

Carter takes charge tending to Elan and tells Lucy to draw her blood. Her hemoglobin comes back much lower than it was before, and Carol realizes that the machine wasn’t calibrated properly. As everyone else worries that Elan is less stable than they thought, Carol reruns the test and gives the new reading, which is fine.

After the trauma, Lucy beats herself up for not doing the procedure properly. Carol says she won’t cover for her again. If she doesn’t know something, she needs to ask. Everyone knows that she’s still learning. Lucy laments that med students get judged on everything from their first day. Carol notes that they have to be, since they’re doing life-saving procedures. Lucy needs to stop worrying about being perfect.

Carter interrupts to tell them that a guy just came in with an intestinal perforation from a carrot. Lucy naïvely asks how he swallowed a whole carrot. Carter and Carol have a good laugh at her expense when she figures out what really happened. After Lucy leaves, Carter tells Carol that he really lucked out getting her as a student. Carol says she’s good, but she’s still a beginner, so she needs more guidance. Carter thinks Lucy’s a natural and Carol’s just jealous.

Carol spots Savage smoking in his exam room and confiscates his cigarettes. He should probably be smarter about his behavior, since the exams he needs done are on his lower half, and the last person you want messing around down there is an angry nurse. Elizabeth does her operation with Romano and a voice-activated robot. Everyone’s impressed except, possibly, Romano.

Weaver pulls Doug out of an exam room to deal with someone who’s insistent on seeing him. Doug mentions to the patient’s mother that she may need an endoscopy, which Weaver thinks he only mentioned to get a reaction out of her, since it’s an invasive procedure. Carol asks Lucy to insert Savage’s IV, saying he’s the perfect patient for her since he doesn’t seem to feel anything.

The man insistent on seeing Doug is an addict who wants ultra-rapid detox. Weaver told him that Doug is the only one who could help him, though Doug says he doesn’t treat adults. He tells Weaver she’s made her point. She thinks he should write a journal article to spread the word further. They bicker for a while until a teenage karate student is brought in after being injured in class.

Jerry introduces Carol to Savage’s private-duty nurse, who reveals that he didn’t actually need treatment. He enjoys having certain procedures done, especially by nurses. Carol realizes she sent Lucy in to do his IV, so she rushes to get Lucy away from the weird man who should be in the turkey file. She calls for a psych consult, realizing that the private-duty nurse isn’t actually a nurse. Carol suggests that she undergo a psych consult, too.

Paramedic Dwight chats with Mark about how unprepared regular people are for medical emergencies. Mark mentions that there was no first aid available in the park during Rachel’s game. The injury the karate student suffered was one that could only cause damage during a specific split second. The fire truck Dwight was on didn’t have an automatic defibrillator, one thing that can easily be changed.

Reese undergoes his test, which shows that he has hearing loss. Romano praises Elizabeth for her work in the OR and says it made him rethink revoking her fellowship. Unfortunately, the money is no longer available for her position. Doug teases Lucy about the carrot thing, so word of her naïvety has spread. They discover that the patient he was examining when Weaver interrupted him caught an STD from her mother while in the birth canal.

As Elizabeth and Romano operate on Toine, Romano mentions the job offer Charles extended to her. He says he could never work with someone in his family. “Robert, you can’t work with anyone,” Elizabeth points out. Lucy goes with Doug to tell their patient’s mother about her condition. Doug questions the mother about STDs, then says she should have had a C-section so she wouldn’t infect her daughter. The mother puts an end to the lecture by announcing that her daughter is adopted.

The audiologist tells Benton that Reese’s hearing loss is considered severe. Benton thinks she’s jumping to conclusions after just one test. The audiologist says he’s in the range that can be aided with hearing aids. He could eventually learn to talk, too. Benton is annoyed because two weeks ago, a doctor said Reese was fine. He wants to talk to the doctor.

Weaver hears that Doug is talking to Babcock and wonders why. Carol coolly tells her to talk to Doug himself if she wants to know details. Jerry boasts that he’s finally gotten the temperature in the ER right. Weaver and Lucy disagree. Carter and Jerry continue teasing Lucy by presenting her with a carrot.

Carol meets Lynette Evans, a nurse Anspaugh thinks would be a good fit for the clinic. Carol was told she could have an RN, but Lynette would be a better choice, since, as a nurse practitioner, she can write prescriptions. She even used to run her own clinic. As B.G. gets ready to leave, rudely saying goodbye to the staff, Lynette stops him and makes him show some manners. Carol quickly offers her the job at the clinic.

Doug asks Babcock if he knows how Josh is doing after the ultra-rapid detox. His mom hasn’t brought him back for a follow-up, and though Doug thinks that’s a bad sign, Babcock says she might have just moved out of state to be closer to family. Doug worries that Josh’s mom will press charges. A teen Doug previously treated recognizes him, and Doug chats with Babcock about how his pain is being managed. Babcock says they have to figure out what kind of pain he’s having.

At Elizabeth’s apartment, she tells Charles that she’s turning down his job offer. Operating on Toine, as low-tech and un-fancy as it was, has made her decide she can handle going back to the basics and being an intern again. Charles guesses that she really just wants to stay in Chicago to be near Benton. Elizabeth would never make a decision based on a man, but…she can’t deny that that was a factor. After a year as an intern again, Elizabeth will have a license to practice in the U.S. Charles thinks that, instead of giving up, she’s fighting for what she wants.

Benton puts on some music at home, hoping Reese will be able to hear it. No matter how loud he turns up the volume, Reese doesn’t respond to it.

Thoughts: Lynette is played by Penny Johnson Jerald. Elan is played by Taraji P. Henson, just four episodes after she played a different character.

Doug vs. Weaver is so annoying. We get it, they don’t like each other! Let’s move on.

Here’s an idea so crazy is just might work: Don’t let your med student do a procedure until you’ve seen for yourself that she can do it successfully.

November 9, 2019

My So-Called Life 11, Life of Brian: Whatever Happens, Happens

Posted in TV tagged , , at 1:09 pm by Jenn

She deserves better

Summary: Angela voices over – no, wait! Brian voices over, as his mother calls through the house for him, that his mom is a behavioral psychologist and his father is a Freudian psychiatrist. Oh, that poor, poor kid. They disagree over whether he’s currently in latency. Brian tells us they actually disagree on everything. He’s using a telescope to spy on Angela through her window, thinking that she and her family are really normal.

Patty, Graham, and Danielle are in the basement, getting ready for Graham to embark on a project: wallpapering the bedroom. They’ve had the wallpaper for years and have never put it up. Graham wants something to keep him busy, now that he’s unemployed. Patty tries to get enthusiastic.

At school, Brian takes pictures and voices over that he joined yearbook to watch life without being part of it. However, this means he’s never in the picture. Guys, I don’t think he just means that literally. Sharon introduces him to a new student, Delia, who already seems to have a crush on him. Brian gives her the bare minimum of conversation. After Delia leaves, Sharon urges Brian to ask her to the World Happiness dance that’s coming up. She’s helping to organize it and wants to see more school spirit. Sharon tells Brian that Delia works at Big Guy Burger, so he can always run into her there.

Rayanne complains about the World Happiness dance, which Angela and Rickie agree must have been Sharon’s idea. Angela wants to go, thinking it would be fun in an “obvious” way. Rayanne tells her Jordan won’t be there, but Angela can always let Brian ask her. Angela doesn’t like the idea of having to hang out with him. A guy comes into the classroom where they’re talking and asks if a teacher is around. Rayanne sends him away, but first he compliments Rickie’s vest.

At home, Brian voices over about fisherman, who wait patiently for a tug on their line, then don’t panic when it comes. He’s semi-interested in Delia (whose last name, coincidentally, is Fisher), but he’s still constantly thinking about Angela. He wants to stop being her puppet. He promises he’ll never again show up at the Chases’ door with a dumb excuse to see her.

Cut to Brian showing up at the Chases’ door with a dumb excuse to see Angela. She’s not home, so Brian makes small talk with Graham, then helps him put up the wallpaper. He’s curious as to why Graham isn’t going to work anymore. Graham says he’s working on plans so he doesn’t blindly jump into his next job. It’s like wallpaper – you have to pick the right pattern because you’ll have to live with it for a long time.

Brian asks how he might go about picking a particular pattern. He knows he really likes one, but he’s not sure the other is right for him. However, the great one is out of his price range. Should he settle for the second, or wait until the first is cheaper? Graham says it depends how badly Brian needs wallpaper. Brian says he needs it badly, so Graham thinks he has his answer.

Brian goes to Big Guy Burger and sees that Delia is cheery and friendly to everyone. He guesses she comes from a small town where everyone’s nice and smiles at each other for no reason – the kind of town he hates. Brian tells Delia he stopped by because he was in the neighborhood. As he leaves with his food – which he immediately throws out, since he didn’t actually want it – he voices over that nothing ever happens in his life.

Delia follows Brian out and apologizes for not having much of a conversation with him; she was trying to stick to her regular script. She offers him a sip of her drink, and their hands touch when he takes the cup from her. There’s a car alarm going off in the background, and Brian voices over that it’s suddenly the best sound he’s ever heard. The two share a smile as Delia goes back inside. Brian isn’t so down on his life anymore.

At school, things aren’t so great for Sharon and Kyle. She’s waiting for him to ask her to the dance, which he’s dragging his feet on. She tells him she’s under a lot of pressure and doesn’t want to have to worry that she’ll be dateless at the dance she organized. Kyle asks her unenthusiastically, and Sharon warns him not to screw things up.

Brian voices over that he knows he needs to ask Delia to the dance, so he counts to three to psych himself up. Just as he gets to 3, the bell rings. He can’t force himself to speak to her, so he just leaves for class. He runs into Rickie, who’s not going to the dance, and says he’s probably not going, either. Rayanne snags Rickie as she leaves a session with the guidance counselor and tells him that she fake-cried when asked if she was going to the dance. But she hasn’t had a drink or taken any drugs in ten days.

Rickie tells Rayanne he’s thinking of asking some girl to the dance. He can’t keep his eyes off of Corey, the boy who complimented his vest, so Rayanne tells Rickie to ask him instead. Rickie can’t find the courage to do that, so Rayanne says she’ll take care of it. Rickie warns her not to say a word to Corey.

Patty oversees Graham’s wallpaper hanging, cautioning him to line it up correctly. She notices a bubble, which Graham says he can’t get rid of; it’ll be there forever and outlive them all. Patty gives him a continuing-ed brochure she picked up at a college while dropping off a print job. She’s circled some cooking classes, since they’ve talked about him becoming a chef. They can’t afford a culinary institute, so this is a good plan B.

Angela spots Jordan on her way out of school and tries to make small talk. She thinks people obsess over stupid things to keep themselves from thinking about important stuff. Like, for example, the dance. As if it’ll actually make the world happier. Jordan hasn’t heard about the dance, despite all the posters advertising it. Angela passive-aggressively angles for an invitation, but Jordan has a philosophy about not making plans. That just leads to obligations. He just likes to let things happen naturally – “whatever happens, happens.” Jordan starts to drive off without her, so Angela pretends she needed to go back inside anyway.

Brian finds Delia in a classroom but chickens out before approaching her. She spots him, so he comes in and pretends he’s been busy all day. He helps her with whatever she’s working on, and their close proximity gives him an erection – his first from “actual physical contact.” Angela walks by the room and pauses for a moment, probably confused as to why Brian’s hanging out with a girl.

Brian goes back to the Chases’ for more wallpaper assistance/advice from Graham. He reveals that he’s chosen his “wallpaper,” and he thought it was what he wanted, but the other wallpaper still makes him happy. Graham finally tells him he knows they’re not talking about actual wallpaper. Wait…they’re not??

Patty comes in and asks Graham if he had a chance to look at the courses. He only has a day left to register, so Graham casually says he’ll wait until the next semester. Patty notes that some big-time chefs are teaching, like one who Graham is pretty sure is dead. She thought Graham was planning on doing this now. Graham, like Jordan, would rather let whatever happens happen.

After school the next day (I guess), Delia asks Brian if he’s thought about going to the dance. She needs to set her work schedule, so if she’s going to go, she needs to decide pretty quickly. Rickie’s still keeping an eye on Corey, so Angela tells him that Rayanne said he has a crush. She can obviously relate to having feelings for someone you don’t have a chance with.

As Brian puts forth some sort of debate-style offer to go to the dance with Delia, Rickie tells Angela that they should go to the dance together. They’re happy to not attend alone. But Corey approaches and says that Rayanne has already invited him to go with her and Rickie. Angela says she’ll tag along, but Rickie doesn’t want it to look like a double date. However, if she doesn’t come, it might look obvious what Rayanne’s trying to do.

Angela says she’ll bow out, then immediately goes to Brian. She figures out that he already invited Delia to the dance, though Brian brushes it off like it’s not a big deal. Angela tells him about Rayanne’s matchmaking scheme, then babbles as Brian realizes what she’s about to do. She tells him it would be “convenient” for the two of them to go to the dance together – just to drive there together, not go as dates, since he’s already going with Delia. Brian stays calm as he agrees.

Rickie interrupts while Rayanne’s flirting with a guy (“can he excuse us?” Hee!) so he can confront her about the Corey setup. He’s annoyed that she meddled after he told her not to. He’s also annoyed that Corey painted Rayanne’s shoes with colorful stripes. Rickie says he’s overlooked Rayanne’s crazy plans in the past, and he’s willing to overlook this one, but she’d better keep her mouth shut while they’re at the dance.

Rayanne says she’s not going, since she’s not ready to attend a school function. “Who cares about your stupid drinking problem?” Rickie exclaims. “This is my life!” She tells him she’ll call Corey and explain everything. It’ll all be fine. “Fine” for two guys to go to a school dance together in 1994? Sure.

Brian thinks for a while in his room, then goes to see Delia. He tells her he forgot about a previous commitment. He voices over that he regrets backing out of the date, but that doesn’t stop him. Delia guesses that he already made plans with another girl. She tells him that the timing of the plans shouldn’t matter – he should go with whoever he wants to go with. She just wants him to be honest. So Brian is, telling her he’d rather go with the other girl. Delia cries and tells him to go away.

Patty has gone behind Graham’s back and enrolled him in cooking classes. She pretends it’s because he was busy with the wallpaper and didn’t have time. She also knows he can have trouble focusing. Graham is mad about her meddling. It’s not just that he likes to cook – it’s the one thing he’s good at. Brian shows up, dressed for the dance, which surprises the Chases. They think Brian and Angela are going as a group with Delia. Brian lies that she had a family emergency and can’t go.

Later, Patty tries to apologize to Graham, who’s transformed the bedroom with the wallpaper. She notes that that’s something else he’s good at. They laugh over Angela’s discomfort when she found out Delia wasn’t coming, which leaves her alone with Brian. They think it’s funny that Angela’s going to have a bad time. Patty semi-apologizes for nagging Graham and says she’ll get him out of the classes. He tells her not to. He needs to see if that probably-not-dead chef is still good at it.

People seem to be having a good time at the dance, so Sharon should be pleased. Rickie and Corey are sitting in the stands, having a great conversation. Corey asks where Rayanne is – she never called to explain the setup. He’s disappointed that she’s not coming, since he wanted to ask her how she likes her sneakers. Rickie says she’s “changeable.” Corey says he had a picture of how things would be, and they’ve turned out differently.

Brian tries to make himself start a conversation with Angela, apparently not getting that she would clearly rather be with anyone else. He goes to get her a drink, and Rickie asks if he can hang out with Brian and Angela. Brian tries to be gently as he says they’d like time alone. When he goes back to Angela, she asks what they were talking about. She’s upset when Brian says he told Rickie to keep his distance so they could have privacy. Angela has no idea why they would want privacy. What does Brian think is happening?

Brian says they might want to dance, which Angela thinks is a ridiculous idea. He says they should just see how things progress. He doesn’t even believe in making plans – “whatever happens, happens.” Angela says that’s the dumbest thing she’s ever heard. They both see Delia talking to Rickie, which alerts Angela to the fact that Brian lied about her not coming to the dance. She calls him heartless and says he doesn’t understand people.

Angela starts to leave, then stops when she sees Jordan at the dance with his friends. Brian thinks it’s ironic that Angela would call him heartless when she’s the same way. As Jordan sees that Angela has spotted him, Brian approaches Delia and apologizes for being…well, heartless. Sharon and Kyle join them, and Sharon says she’s glad Delia came even without a date, because there are tons of cute guys for her to meet.

Angela joins Rickie outside and learns that Rayanne didn’t explain things to Corey. Killing her would only solve half of Rickie’s problems. The other half is that Rickie feels like he doesn’t belong anywhere or with anyone. Angela gives him a comforting hug. Jordan and his friends pass him as they leave for more interesting places, and Rickie tells Angela it’s okay if she wants to go talk to him.

Brian starts to come outside but goes back in when he sees Angela and Jordan together. Jordan does what he does best, leaning over Angela as if he wants to kiss her. He asks her why she likes this. She doesn’t know what he means. “Like how you are,” he replies. Angela still doesn’t know what he means, but he goes off with his friends without explaining.

Back in the gym, Delia and Rickie find themselves standing near each other, so he invites her to dance. It’s awkward at first, but then Rickie just goes for it, dancing like he doesn’t care what anyone thinks of him. His enthusiasm is contagious, and Delia joins in. Even Kyle’s impressed. Brian just watches from a distance as the girl he could have had fun with has fun with someone else.

Angela finally goes back in and apologizes to Brian for ruining his night. All he can think about is how great her hair smells. They both say school dances are dumb, so it doesn’t matter. She asks him to dance, but he says, “Not with you.” He backtracks, saying he doesn’t care about dancing that much. Angela says she doesn’t, either. So they just stand and watch while the rest of their classmates enjoy their lives.

Thoughts: Delia is awesome and Brian sucks for hurting her.

It’s 1994, girls. Time to grow backbones and ask boys out yourselves.

Delia manages to adorably combine two major ’90s trends with a plaid scrunchy.

’90s music alert: “What Is Love?” by Haddaway

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