“Emily Owens, M.D.” recap (Ep. 10): “The Experiment”


After getting this glorious photo text from Tyra during the putting together of the bookcase, Emily feels encouraged and runs out to get some more beer. When she returns, Will has fallen asleep. Which is swell, because everyone knows that when you have a crush on someone, the absolute best way to get over it is to watch them sleep.

I guess you’re OK this way.

Unlike Tyra and Hot Molly, though, things aren’t as chummy with Bandari and her husband. We cut to their bedroom once again, where they are continuing the unhappy conversation from the elevator, and where, more importantly, Bandari is buttoning up her shirt.


Their dialogue after this is rather typical: He wants a separation. She says, you don’t get to decide that. He says, I don’t have a choice. She says, I’ll change. He says, you’ve been saying that for years. She says, you know what you signed up for when you married me. Also, if I wasn’t a woman, I wouldn’t have to apologize for my career! etc., etc. Except it’s still sad because Bandari’s eyes look so vulnerable and pleading and half of you agrees with her: she DOES have to stay late at work all the time, because people ARE dying, and she IS the best, so she HAS to be there!

Love me anyway.

This episode also introduced us to a new bro in the Denver hospital scene, a handsome and charming guy who was apparently an intern with Micah back in the day, who’s been MIA for a year. Word on the street is that he made a medical mistake, had a huge blowup with Bandari about it, got suspended, and then never came back. But now he’s here, and is meeting with the chief to try to get his job back. Bandari’s status: unimpressed.

But look at this face! How could you say no to me?

It seems strange to introduce a new character at this point in the game, but in the defense of the writers, they did write these episodes before they knew the show was getting the axe. Micah defends his friend to Bandari as they scrub down after a surgery, and she appears to possibly listen, the way she does when someone actually speaks honestly with her.

Since finding out that Bandari’s husband actually exists via Emily’s first-hand knowledge, people have also been gossiping about her and saying mean things and I just want them to leave her alone! She says that she doesn’t take anything personally; Micah makes the point that continuing to hold out against the bro seems to prove the opposite. Although I would argue that it depends on how bad the dude screwed up.

But during this conversation, she also asks Micah to cover some of her shifts in the upcoming month so she and her husband can take a trip. So maybe this means that the separation is temporarily delayed, and things might be looking up.

The new bro then shows up as Bandari is walking to her car after her shift, to make one last plea. Already softened from Micah, she asks him some medical questions and, as everyone in medical shows always magically can, he answers everything flawlessly. She says, fine, sure, you’re in. As she starts to get into her car, he then says, “And what about that other thing that happened right before I left?” She looks back, replies, “I’m married. It was a mistake.” And gets into her car, gives a half-regretful, half-pining stare into the distance.

I don’t like this one bit. It adds some more drama, of course, and explains the introduction of bro into the storyline. But I don’t like to think of Bandari as an adulterer, in addition to this just continuing to affirm the tired storyline of everyone in hospitals sleeping/cheating with each other. I like to think of her struggles with her husband as genuine, that she’s simply a complex woman who’s good at her job but who still needs to be loved in her own way. This just doesn’t seem to fit into her character, at least the character that I’ve become close with in my brain. But this could just be me.

But hey, back to those patients I mentioned ages ago! Not surprisingly, Diabetic Psychic does develop a more serious heart condition within 24 hours and needs to be rushed into open heart surgery. She almost dies but then doesn’t so everybody’s sort of right and science and psychic-cards can all hold hands and hug! We’ve also learned that she has sort of a crappy hotshot lawyer son, but don’t worry, Emily obviously brings him and his mom closer together at the end.

In Cystic Fibrosis Boy news, while he’s gotten his new pair of lungs, they also discovered in surgery that he has cancer. Yeah. Talk about a bummer. So before he can have any time at all to celebrate, you know, being able to breathe, he has to decide whether to undergo chemo. His parents, who have been very, “Our son’s a fighter! He was supposed to die when he was six months old!” rah rah the whole time, believe, of course, that he can fight this, too. But he tells Emily, maybe I’m tired of fighting. Maybe I just want to learn how to surf.

After hearing this, Cassandra decides she has to sit down and talk to the well-meaning parents, to explain that medical procedures helped save her brother for a little while, but in the end, she bets he probably just would have wanted to see some national parks instead of more hospitals before he died. The parents take this to heart, and revive their plans to travel to Hawaii instead of fighting cancer. Cassandra is being a Good Person here, and real character development looks good on her.

See? I can care.

We end the episode with believing that Emily might finally, finally be seeing the light in Micah’s eyes as they glance at each other across the hall, before Will sends her a message to meet him on the roof. This guy, he ruins everything. In the wintery air, he asks her to not mention that he crashed on her couch the other night, because during the Peanuts Guy date, Cassandra got the crazy notion that he might be jealous, and he doesn’t want to fan the flames. Emily’s brain starts exploding: Cassandra thinks he’s jealous! Cassandra knows everything about men! HE LIKES ME!

No! Emily, stop this!

So while Emily’s story is still stuck in this rut, we actually saw quite a bit of development for all of our other female characters this episode, making it one of my favorite yet. What did you all think?

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