Last week, we saw Charlie contemplate the possibility of never waking up, Alex forgetting about Charlie during a party at her place, the reattachment of a man’s hands, Maggie saving a man who was wrongly diagnosed, and Alex fighting for her chance to be in the major surgery of the episode (proving herself to Dana).
First Medical Case:
A man comes into the ER from a car accident with an imbedded object in his abdomen, yet without any morphine, he isn’t complaining from pain, and he doesn’t remember his name. I love seeing Alex and Joel in surgery mode instead of worrying about drama or talking to patients, and when they get into this mode together, it’s even better. They seem to make a great team, supportive and helpful to each other. As they are describing what they will do in surgery, he quickly pulls out the rebar stuck into his side, causing him to pass out from the injuries he cannot feel. After they repair everything and he wakes up later, he still isn’t feeling any pain, and he’s still happy-go-lucky. In his personal belongings, they find a business card to The Great Randall, a hypnotist. Alex decides to call Gavin in to discuss hypnosis and see if he can break the trance this John Doe (or Mr. Happy, as they call him) is under, but it doesn’t work.
Upon Randall’s arrival at the hospital, he is able to quickly wake the man up, causing him immense pain without morphine. Chester, Mr. Happy, was under this hypnosis because he has had pain in his side for years and no doctors have been able to help him. When Alex comes back to check on Chester, he’s gotten worse – this time with blisters over his skin from being in the sun. After hearing everybody say Chester is a vampire, Alex remembers learning about the Vampire Disease (porphyria) in med school, and she solves the mystery after testing for it. Although she has solved it, she isn’t able to cure it, leaving Chester without any solution. As Charlie says, is it really any better? I’d say that if you can limit the symptoms then yes, it is better, and Alex is giving Chester the ability to do that.
Second Medical Case:
A woman, Heather, comes in as she is unable to move her neck, claiming to have been pushed down the stairs by her mother. After Maggie goes to check up on this woman, she starts to notice some of the strange things this woman has said and calls to confer with Gavin. After hearing of her noticeable symptom (nonsensical rhyming), he immediately knows what it could be and how to help. The mother has shown up to comfort her daughter, saying she didn’t push Heather down the stairs but that Heather creates conspiracies all the time. The mother doesn’t even want to consider other medications and treatments for her daughter’s illness because she doesn’t believe Heather can get better. The look on Gavin’s face, probably much like mine, showed such a disappointment at this attitude. The mother has given up on her daughter, with no chance to give her a better life.
Gavin comes back after Heather has been put on her medication again and discusses with her the option to try talk therapy and to change up her meds to hopefully help her, and after he fixes her neck she is such a happy, giggly, friendly girl. I can tell that if they made her a recurring patient that sees Gavin all the time, I would like her.
As Randall gets to the hospital to assist Alex with one of her patients, he notices Charlie, as well. This is an interesting development in the coma-life that Charlie is in. Unfortunately, Randall doesn’t want anything to do with him because he’s been called crazy before. Charlie’s quick explanation that he wants her to know it’s okay, that he wants to be a father, makes Randall rethink his refusal. I’m happy that Charlie is so enthusiastic about this news, and the emotion on his face really made it believable.
Randall comes across Alex while he’s talking with Charlie, and he tries to get her to believe him, but she finds it difficult. With her scientific, medical background, I’m almost surprised she sat down to talk with him. She begins to believe him and talks to Charlie, but then Randall asks her for money to tell her what Charlie says to her, so she leaves. I really can’t believe how awful this guy is. It just shows how admirable of a guy Charlie is, though. He doesn’t yell and scream at Randall as many people would; he just quietly admonishes Randall and then runs off toward Alex.
Alex realizes her period is late, making her concerned that she may be pregnant, while Charlie watches on, incapable of doing anything to comfort her. While not wanting to take the test and with everything going on in her life, Alex still wants the child. We see a scene of Charlie and Melanda pacing as Alex takes the test, and I think it really sums everything up: Alex would have so much support if she were pregnant. We find out Alex isn’t pregnant, though, and the pain on Charlie’s face is so present and upsetting. Although it would have been just another issue they’d have to work around, I sort of really wish that she was pregnant (and he would quickly wake up because of it).
Joel catches up with Maggie, who seems too cool toward him. Something is definitely wrong because she doesn’t seem interested in the fact that Joel called her the other night (and she didn’t answer), and she isn’t her usual over-bubbly self, so what’s wrong? After half the episode, we’re suddenly seeing Maggie and Joel hooking up in an unused hospital room when Joel suddenly jumps up, asking her what’s wrong. What’s somewhat surprising is Maggie’s immediate honest answer to why she’s upset. I like that this show has adults that are acting like adults instead of silly teenagers who want to hide their complaints and mope about them instead. Finally, it comes out that she doesn’t like him only calling her for sex, and I knew him forgetting her for last week’s major surgery would hurt him later on.
As I have been saying for the past few episodes, Maggie has been trying to push their relationship to be more than just friends with benefits while Joel is completely not noticing what is going on. I also expected that it would blow up around them, but of course, they don’t have a blow out because they’re mature adults. He had said he wasn’t up for a relationship when they started, and he reiterates it now. Maggie doesn’t get angry because it is exactly what he had told her, and she ends their benefits. She seems to have a glint in her eye like she is up to something, though. Is she taking away the sex and wondering if he’ll come back with a better offer? Her unspoken plan seems to work perfectly, with him coming to her at the end of the episode saying he wants to try out being exclusive with her. My former opinion of them seems to evaporate immediately. Maybe if they’re exclusive and not just having sex, I’ll see them as something good.
More of My Thoughts:
Taylor’s comment on my last review about Charlie’s role in the show (will he ever wake up?) definitely got me thinking. I’ve been wondering this since the show started, and with the events in this episode, it seems like a good enough time to discuss it. Quite simply, I don’t think Charlie will wake up in this first season. Once he wakes up, this show will have lost its unique take on the hospital drama. Having somebody who is able to talk to the dead and the coma patients is something none of the other shows can do. We see insights that influence the way we feel about all the characters because we see sides of the story that the doctors don’t. Although I don’t know how much longer keeping Charlie in a coma will continue to be interesting and pertinent to the story, I don’t expect they will take him out for the next few episodes because of the dynamic it brings to the show.
I love that Gavin was involved so heavily in this episode. I really like him because he seems like such a kind person. If I were ever needing to go to a psychiatrist, I would definitely want somebody like him, who cares for his patients so much. I’m really hopefully that he’ll make some good progression with Heather’s condition, and we can see a larger role for him in the future. I understand it’s difficult to include all characters in every episode because there are so many, but they should definitely think about keeping Gavin around.
When Joel goes to Alex for questions about Maggie, it’s sweet. I’m glad that they’re friendly and able to talk about stuff like they do. They really are quite supportive of each other – more than just in surgery. The honesty they have during their conversations is so refreshing in a TV drama. But then there’s all the flirty cute talk between them that I just die for. I don’t know what to do about my feelings for them. I prefer Alex/Charlie to Alex/Joel, but there’s something about Alex/Joel. Maybe it’s just that he’s present, rather than in a coma. After Alex weighs in on Joel being a good guy but scared of commitment, she looks all shy, like she’s said too much or something. I really want to know more about their past relationship!
My favourite parts of every episode are quickly becoming the flashbacks to Charlie and Alex’s relationship. I like that we get to see cute moments of them together so we have a reason to want Charlie to wake up and a reason to like the Alex/Charlie relationship. You can tell that even through the short moments of them on screen together, they have a presence, something that could really fuel a big TV romance.
Check out the preview for next week’s episode, “Consenting Adults,” airing on July 19, 2012.
– Charlie’s ex-wife is back in town, causing drama for Alex and possibly some tension between Alex and Charlie.
– Gavin confronts Joel about something…possibly Maggie? It will be interesting to see how the Maggie/Joel relationship is going and whether Gavin has finally told her how he feels.
– Alex promises that a surgery will be simple, but when the patient goes into a coma instead of waking up, everybody is angry with Alex.
– In the trailer, we see Charlie and Alex’s patient kiss. I find it rather unlikely that Charlie would be cheating on Alex, but we’ll have to wait and see.
What did you think of the episode?