The Good Doctor: Season 3, Episode 7 “SFAD” – Recap, Review (with Spoilers)

Morgan notes it has been a hell of a day.
57.34% (1)

As Morgan continues to push Claire back to being her old self, Shaun, Dr. Melendez, and Dr. Glassman continue to struggle with the expectations of the partners.


Network
ABC
Director(s) Alrick Riley
Writer(s) Jessica Grasl
Air Date 11/11/2019
Introduced This Episode
Tara Haley Ramm
Charlie Kiefer O’Reilly

Recap

Down In The Clinic: Debbie, Dr. Glassman

Let’s recall that the last time the clinic was in place, it failed. Part of the reason was it being a money pit, but maybe mismanagement was also an issue? For example, Dr. Glassman, since he likes to give a personal touch, doesn’t really adhere to a schedule, and when it comes to software, he’d rather stick to what’s comfortable than what is fast and has features which could make him productive. This makes Debbie troublesome for him.

For one, she doesn’t really discuss changes, she just does them. Also, she is very patient first, so she has the gal to kick out Dr. Lim so a child with an ear infection can be seen. This, for Dr. Glassman, is a bit much and with him pushing the idea Debbie is support staff, not running the place, she quits.

Thus leading to Dr. Glassman apologizing and trying to figure out a way their personalities can mesh better when it comes to the clinic.

Comment Down Below
  1. Considering their issues with communication, and preparation, do you think the show may ever flirt with the idea of these two divorcing?

Paging The Old Claire: Charlie, Morgan, Claire

Charlie (Kiefer O'Reilly) in the car with Morgan and Claire.
Charlie (Kiefer O’Reilly)

Morgan continues trying to push Claire to snap out of her funk and seek something, or someone, out beyond a drink and a man for the night. Especially since she is losing one of her selling features as a doctor. Charlie, a kid who will soon lose his sense of sight, Claire is assigned to get him to open up. You know, make sure, despite the façade he puts on, is he actually okay. She avoids doing so.

Due to that, Morgan steps up and continues to take on more and more of Claire’s traits by showing Charlie the kind of empathy he needs. Which, granted, may go a little bit far, since she shows her breasts to him, since she couldn’t get him into a strip club, to see them at least once. But, going that far really pushes you to see and understand Morgan is changing.

However, she isn’t alone, and that scares Morgan. Claire seems to be settling into this new attitude, and considering how she feels old Claire gave away pieces of herself, possibly getting little in return, this new Claire could be permanent.

Comment Down Below
  1. Besides the death of her mother, what do you think are some of the other reasons Claire seems to no longer want to be the persona we once knew?

Just Wanting Someone To Be There: Tara, Shaun, Lea, Carly, Dr. Melendez, Dr. Lim

Lea is back, and, like most people in Shaun’s inner circle, her role is helping him understand Carly. Specifically understanding Carly possibly just needing to feel missed or wanted. A lesson which, compared to the many others, is left of a muddy hill for Shaun to climb.

But, when it comes to Dr. Lim and Dr. Melendez? Things are different. You see, with Dr. Melendez losing a patient, his brain tries to justify what happened by sharing the blame. He pushes this narrative that if Dr. Lim and him weren’t dating, she’d have said no, and he wouldn’t have a death on his conscious. Dr. Lim rejects this idea.

In fact, while it seems Dr. Lim has the hang of her position, there is a need to question if, between Dr. Melendez and Dr. Andrews, whether the way they talk to her is based on her being a woman, their familiarity with her, or that just being how someone would speak to their chief? It’s hard to say. However, it does seem Dr. Lim may have to learn to create better boundaries to manage these relationships.

 

Review

Highlights

Quality Guest Stars

Tara (Haley Ramm) looking out a window.
Tara (Haley Ramm)

While it doesn’t happen every episode, occasionally we’ll get guest stars who put on a show and become more than fodder for the growth or lesson a lead needs. Tara, while she can be seen as someone used to get Shaun to open up about his parents and learn how to communicate as Carly needs, came off as her own person. Someone who, when she walks out of the hospital, won’t just disappear. Ramm presented the type of personality and oomph which has made her the saving grace of Light As A Feather and a stand out throughout most of her filmography.

Then with O’Reilly, generally speaking, most patients don’t leave the hospital, or rather we don’t see them outside of the hospital, so Morgan and Claire taking him on a road trip was different. It also allowed us to see their shifting dynamic as Claire started to tap into acting as we’d expect Morgan to, and Morgan acting as we’d expect Claire. And while O’Reilly was in the middle of that, he also carved himself a piece of the show’s history for he gets to be that signpost for the turning point. Since, at this point, it is hard to imagine, whenever Morgan switches partners and likely ends up with Shaun, her being as she was before.

As for Claire? Who knows at this point?

On The Fence

Seeking Progress On Claire Evolving Or Recovering

Claire sitting at a bar alone.

There is always that conflict between wanting realism with characters yet not wanting them to prolong getting themselves together. But the problem with Claire, if not the show, is there isn’t enough time and effort to show what she is going through. Outside of her treating patients different, we don’t know what Claire is doing. We can assume she is drinking more, sleeping around, and maybe doing more beyond that, but “assume” is the keyword there. And without seeing her outside life, all we get is Claire being snippy with Morgan or patients.

That is why Morgan having her seen outside the hospital, be it with Charlie or at the bar, feels like something that should happen more often. After all, at this point, those two should be beyond co-workers but actually be friends. Now, I’ll admit, it seems Claire isn’t keen on being Morgan’s friend, but considering her talking about giving pieces away and implying she hasn’t gotten much back, Morgan’s consistency is refuting that day in and day out.

Debbie & Dr. Glassman

Debbie saying she quits.

I’m beginning to come to the conclusion that relationships on this show are more so made to be functional than any sense of the word romantic. Shaun dating Carly? It is for the sake of representation and Shaun’s growth as a character. It isn’t about you getting butterflies. Dr. Lim and Dr. Melendez? Their relationship is about showing you how difficult it would be to date your boss in a medical setting and the conflicts which would arise. Then with Dr. Glassman and Debbie? Honestly? It seems that, with Shaun not using Dr. Glassman as a crutch anymore, Debbie is made to liven up Dr. Glassman. Hence why nearly every episode is her ruffling his feathers, and never them being peaceful and happy. All she ever does is challenge his way of living and leaving you wondering whether their relationship wasn’t just rushed on camera but when written as well.

 

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7 COMMENTS

  1. “The old Claire gave away pieces of herself and got little in return”. Why she felt that way made me think, and I came up with a few answers. First, there was her best friend we saw in season 1(?) who was dying of cancer and wanted Claire to date her husband. I’m sure Claire gave everything she had to that friend so her last days were as good as possible, just to watch her die. Then there is Dr. Coyle. Claire filed a harassment complaint against him, but didn’t he get reassigned yet promoted? Not exactly what she meant, but Claire still most likely found it very discouraging. Then there is all the time and effort the old Claire put into helping Shaun with everything from his love life to his medical career. And yet when Shaun was naming his friends to Tara, I kept waiting for him to say Claire’s name, but he didn’t. Talk about getting little in return! Shaun doesn’t even consider Claire as one of his friends! I’m sure there are more examples I’m not thinking of, but that’s what I came up with. Also, it’s been interesting seeing Morgan and Claire switch personalities, but I still hold out hope for the old Claire to somehow come back.

    Just like in last week’s review, you hit it right on the nose with everything you wrote about Dr. Glassman and Debbie. The West Wing reboot cannot come too soon! The writers finally stopped showing Park’s boring personal life. Now we need them to do the same with Dr. Glassman and Debbie’s. Then we can have that extra time for Claire and Morgan or Drs. Lim and Melendez. (I promise this will be the last time I will write how much I want Dr. Glassman and Debbie to go away, unless it is Dr. Glassman supporting Shaun like he used to. 🙂

    • In Shaun’s defense, friendship on this show is a tricky word. Especially since it isn’t like in season 1 when Claire and Jared took Shaun to go have a drink. While involved in Shaun’s personal life because he asks questions, and there is a curiosity there, I don’t think either side makes an effort to see each other outside of work. Plus, considering Shaun didn’t know if Carly was his girlfriend until she said so, that is something else to consider.

      • “The old Claire gave away pieces of herself and got little in return”. Why she felt that way made me think, and I came up with a few answers. First, there was her best friend we saw in season 1(?) who was dying of cancer and wanted Claire to date her husband. I’m sure Claire gave everything she had to that friend so her last days were as good as possible, just to watch her die. Then there is Dr. Coyle. Claire filed a harassment complaint against him, but didn’t he get reassigned yet promoted? Not exactly what she meant, but Claire still most likely found it very discouraging. Then there is all the time and effort the old Claire put into helping Shaun with everything from his love life to his medical career. And yet when Shaun was naming his friends to Tara, I kept waiting for him to say Claire’s name, but he didn’t. Talk about getting little in return! Shaun doesn’t even consider Claire as one of his friends! I’m sure there are more examples I’m not thinking of, but that’s what I came up with. Also, it’s been interesting seeing Morgan and Claire switch personalities, but I still hold out hope for the old Claire to somehow come back.

        Just like in last week’s review, you hit it right on the nose with everything you wrote about Dr. Glassman and Debbie. The West Wing reboot cannot come too soon! The writers finally stopped showing Park’s boring personal life. Now we need them to do the same with Dr. Glassman and Debbie’s. Then we can have that extra time for Claire and Morgan or Drs. Lim and Melendez. O.k., I promise this will be the last time I will write how much I want Dr. Glassman and Debbie to go away, unless it is Dr. Glassman supporting Shaun like he used to.

      • I’m having a little trouble replying to your comment. The first time I clicked on “Reply” under your comment, my original post came up. I thought I did something wrong, so I totally got out of your website and then got back in and clicked back into this review. When I clicked on “Reply” under your comment again, my original comment came up in the blank comment box again. I clicked on the blue “Reply” button hoping to get rid of it. It posted my original comment again, this time under yours. But then when I clicked on “Reply” under your comment again, the box where I could type my reply was finally blank. This has never happened before.

        Now onto my reply to your comment. I just wanted to say that I see what you are saying, and from Shaun’s point of view, I can now understand why he did not name Claire as one of his friends. But I do still think Claire feels Shaun is one (but just one) of the examples of where she gave away pieces of herself got nothing in return. Shaun’s autism doesn’t lend itself to giving back, showing gratefulness, etc.

        • I’ll look into it. Things sometimes get a bit kooky on the back end due to software and plugin updates. There are many days I’m just trying to fix one thing without breaking another.

          In terms of Claire, I think there is a need to ask is Shaun considered a friend since she chose for him to be or because of convenience? If not, combining the two, there aren’t a whole lot of options due to her lifestyle, and he is one of the few who isn’t her boss who she gets along with? Oh, and, unlike Morgan, doesn’t push her in ways that make her uncomfortable.

          • The “Reply” box is empty just as it should be this time. Yay! The software problems must drive you nuts! I’m impressed that you can fix these things!! I’m so technologically inept I’m happy if I’m able to send an email properly 🙂 !

            You make a good point about the lack of options for friends for Claire, and at work it seemed like she was friends with Shaun because he was the most convenient and easiest person to get along with (that wasn’t her boss). And now the new Claire resents Shaun a little bit and doesn’t want to deal with his drama anymore.

            • I’d also add, after Carly pushed back against her being in her and Shaun’s business, that is another factor. She doesn’t want Carly in her face and seeing Shaun in a relationship might remind her how lonely she is considering she can snag someone for a night but nothing long term.

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