As Dr. Andrews handles the post-Salen transition, Shaun finds himself forced to deal with a precocious 10-year-old whose barrage of questions forces him to open up about feelings he seldom speaks on.


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As Dr. Andrews handles the post-Salen transition, Shaun finds himself forced to deal with a precocious 10-year-old whose barrage of questions forces him to open up about feelings he seldom speaks on.


Aired 3/21/2022
Network ABC
Directed By Mina Shum
Written By David Renaud, Jessica Grasl
Introduced This Episode
Isla                Isla Rose Hall

Recap

For Us To Move Forward, There Needs to Be A Reconciliation Of Facts – Dr. Lim, Dr. Andrews, Dr. Glassman

With Salen gone, Dr. Andrews reigns supreme, and with that, he rehires Dr. Lim as Chief of Surgery and notes to Dr. Glassman the clinic will be closing, but he can have a job as a neurosurgeon. This doesn’t lead to warm and fuzzy feelings as Dr. Lim still has bones to pick with both gentlemen. With Dr. Glassman, she still isn’t over how he just up and left everyone when Salen came on board and how disposable everyone else is compared to Shaun. Who, based on her experience, is the only one he may actually give a damn about.

As for Dr. Andrews? You know both Dr. Lim and Dr. Glassman have a bone to pick with him. Dr. Lim still isn’t over him siding with Salen until the last minute, or him acting like such a savior after moving on up to president again in the most opportunistic way. Then, with Dr. Glassman? Since the beginning, he has made it clear that he doesn’t like how Dr. Andrews’ ambition will allow him to align, screw over, and outright trample whoever he sees fit.

Dr. Andrews making it clear the death of the baby did affect him

But what really grinds his gears is the clinic closing, to which he tries to bargain for, but with Dr. Andrews basically trying to save the hospital from Dr. Glassman’s years of mismanagement, keeping the clinic open is hard to do. Yet, all three eventually realize that if the hospital is to stay open, they have to work towards healing old wounds. So for Dr. Andrews, he admits he was disturbed by the loss of the baby and was blinded by Salen’s ways due to his feelings for her and the belief she would better the hospital. And while Dr. Glassman doesn’t necessarily apologize, it seems Dr. Lim lets go enough of her ill feelings to drink with the two men and prep for what’s next.

I Don’t Know What’s Next For Me – Morgan, Alex, Dr. Andrews, Dr. Glassman

The clinic shutting down complicates things for Morgan. Assumingly, her hands are still in a state where she can’t be a surgeon, and Dr. Glassman hasn’t forgotten she tried to take over his clinic from right under him. But, with confessing to Nira what she did, Morgan’s conscious is clear. Granted, the confession made them lose the contract that was keeping the clinic’s doors open, but Morgan isn’t one to take a loss and wail over it.

To the shock of Alex, Morgan begins volunteering at a local nursing home, and through that she discovers how government insurance payments could be lucrative enough to keep the clinic open. Which she approaches Dr. Andrews about, who is intrigued, especially since Morgan is humble enough to recognize that it would be best for Dr. Glassman to lead for now. But, she does note she will be ready someday. It’s just, like him, she needs to balance out her ambitions with her morals since they often set that aside for the desire to conquer anything and everything for a goal is a bad habit.

From The Mouth Of Babes – Shaun, Lea, Jordan, Isla

Isla (Isla Rose Hall) having one of her many conversations with Dr. Murphy
Isla (Isla Rose Hall)

Shaun and Lea, whose relationship is rekindled, have decided to just enjoy the period between simply dating and committing to marriage. At least until a patient named Isla gets stuck with Shaun, as her parents get potentially life-threatening operations. Her asking questions about Shaun’s life and relationships pushes Shaun way past his comfort zone as he is not accustomed to dealing with patients, children especially, at this level.

Previously, Shaun could push them off on Claire or, as he tries to this episode, Jordan, but Isla bonds with Shaun seemingly because he is honest and doesn’t try to placate her. And in some ways, being able to speak open and honest with a patient is a breath of fresh air to Shaun, since Isla doesn’t criticize him once for what he says or how he says it. She just takes a healthy curiosity about his life, and as she opens up about why her parents got into an accident and how she blames herself, Shaun brings up how Steve died and how he shares part of the blame for that. Yet, he also notes Steve’s personal responsibility that caused him to break his neck, and maybe, that makes Isla feel better.

And overall, it seems, despite his initial hesitation, Shaun may have found a renewed interest in having a child or simply opening up to someone. For he even briefly talks about losing his child due to a blood clot in the umbilical cord. Also, with Isla’s poking and prodding, Shaun comes to realize living in the moment is more of a Lea thing, and that he doesn’t like the idea of a long engagement. Never mind, while he thought symbols weren’t important, Isla opens up his mind to the idea they are. It’s just Shaun hasn’t gotten to experience much in the way of notable symbolism, hence him not seeing the value. So, inspired by the ring Isla’s dad gave to her, he makes one to propose to Lea, leaving us with a cute moment.

Things To Note

Question(s) Left Unanswered

  1. So, should we blame all of the hospital’s money issues on Dr. Glassman? Also, how bad did it get?
  2. Did anyone else think the old guy could have been Morgan’s illusive grandpa who we saw once or twice at least two to three seasons ago?
  3. Do doctors still drink in the office?
  4. Does anyone else wonder why the hospital board has yet to make an appearance ever since Allegra disappeared? All these changes and decisions made, yet we don’t have a single representative known by name?
  5. Did Dr. Glassman and Morgan reconcile off-screen because she was a last-minute addition to the anti-Salen gang, and it feels like something he would need to address?

What Could Happen Next

  1. Shaun wanting to have a kid, and either naming them after Isla or Steve
  2. Andrews trying to get back to being married to his job, but the loneliness having him put himself out there again (hopefully without Dr. Lim in his sights)
  3. Morgan and Alex getting married

Review

Highlights

What Isla Brought Out Of Shaun

Let’s not pretend Shaun doesn’t still have issues with everyone treating him as they do due to his autism. Yes, there have been apologies and explanations, maybe even further understandings on Shaun’s part, but it is a reoccurring issue, deeply rooted, that isn’t going to go away due to a handful of conversations. At least, unless Shaun goes to therapy and takes it seriously.

Shaun taking note that his life hasn't been all bad

And I think Isla definitely showed therapy might be what Shaun needs. Yes, he has dealt with his brother’s death in the most logical way he could, alongside accepting he wasn’t loved by his parents. Also, the death of his child he can talk about and more. But, when have you seen Shaun open up like that to anyone? To delve into his pain, show empathy, even hug someone without protest?

Don’t get me wrong, the Shaun from season 1 episode 1 and the Shaun we have now are two very different people. However, there is always the need to question if the person we see has truly evolved or adapted to avoid negative stimuli? Has Shaun really learned how to show empathy towards a patient, or after the whole Salen saga, is he just more aware than ever of how people react to him?

It could be a little bit of column a and column b, if not with Isla seeking to understand and know Shaun, not just get a service from him, she could be an anomaly. But with seeing how he interacts with Isla, and how Shaun goes to everyone with his problems, it might be time for him to seek out a neutral third party and not pressure his colleagues with his emotional labor.

Morgan and Alex’s Friendship

I may never see these two kissing and think, “How cute!” But I will admit, I like that Alex acts as Morgan’s moral compass. It might be the one thing she has on Dr. Andrews who, without his wife, or seemingly any friends who could rein him in, allows her to flourish. Whether it is revealing to Nira the truth about her procedure or even inspiring her to volunteer with the elderly, Alex brings out the best in Morgan.

Now, sadly, it doesn’t seem like she pushes him to be more than he is, so I guess the reciprocity is just the company and excitement she brings, but no relationship is perfect. Also, someone has to be the boring, I mean grounded one, in any relationship.

The Show Not Dwelling On Dr. Lim’s Battle Wounds

Honestly, Dr. Lim has a rightful bone to pick with everyone damn near. Dr. Glassman for only showing up when it comes to Shaun, damn the rest of the people who worked with him long before Shaun was ushered into the hospital. Never mind eventually becoming protected from damn near everyone, even to the point of Dr. Andrews giving up his dream job for him. Then with Dr. Andrews, him literally sleeping with the enemy and trying to seem like a hero just because he broke the spell at the last minute.

Heck, you could even bring up Shaun not joining the fight and deciding he’d rather quit than step up. Add in Morgan doing as Andrews did to profit as much as possible from Salen before she left, and you can see a laundry list of grievances. Yet, it seems for the hospital she fought for, she may not forget, but she is at least willing to forgive, or just move on, with a recognition that everyone was being selfish in their own way, including her. It’s just her selfishness perhaps had a more positive potential outcome for others as she pursued releasing herself from her part in losing a baby.

Dr. Andrews, Dr. Glassman, Dr. Lim making peace and drinking together

Isn’t that part of the reason the writers had Shaun speak about accepting his part in the death of his brother Steve while also taking note that part of the situation was out of his hands and he couldn’t accept the blame for everything? From what I gather, Dr. Lim wanted to hold everyone accountable and felt the only way she could hold herself accountable was through what Dr. Andrews called a “suicide mission.” One that was wholly about her feeling better about what happened, by saying she did something and didn’t just let it go.

Pushing You To Understand Why Dr. Andrews Allowed Himself to Be Blind For So Long

Look at it this way, of every doctor on this show, Dr. Andrews is the only one who fell the hardest from his peak. Dr. Andrews rose to president of the hospital, lost his job, and had to work his way back up. Dr. Andrews struggled to have kids that he wanted, lost his wife, and while he found women to take up time with, he didn’t find one until Salen, who understood and fostered his ambition.

Now, you could say his ambition blinded him to her faults, but the same could be said about many current and past relationships on this show. In moments of displeasure with Morgan, Alex is quick to bring up her faults and then romanticize them when they are in a good place. Shaun clearly has many insecurities regarding Lea but will bury them as soon as he finds a reason justifiable enough to set aside her flaws or the negative feelings she inspires.

So why couldn’t Dr. Andrews do the same? Was he not deserving of someone who matched him, pushed him, encouraged him, and even could help him to be who he wanted to be? Dr. Andrews isn’t like Alex, who is fine being average, not making much in the way of waves, and just doing his job and collecting his check. Like Morgan, like Shaun, Dr. Andrews wants to learn, excel, get that high from a good diagnosis, procedure, and a healthy patient. But also, he is human. He wants someone to come home to, a family, friends and wants to be with someone who makes him feel secure with who he is and accepts that person isn’t always loveable but will try to be for that individual as much as they can.

And with that in mind, I feel Dr. Andrews deserves some grace.

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Dr. Andrews prepping for a new chapter in his life, and at the hospital
The Good Doctor: Season 5/ Episode 11 “The Family” – Recap/ Review (with Spoilers)
Overall
As the show cleans up all ill feelings in a post-Salen world, it seems The Good Doctor is giving us a slight break before the hospital's financial woes and other drama, come sweeping in.
Highlights
Pushing You To Understand Why Dr. Andrews Allowed Himself to Be Blind For So Long
The Show Not Dwelling On Dr. Lim's Battle Wounds
Morgan and Alex's Friendship
What Isla Brought Out Of Shaun
Disputable
85

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One Comment

  1. I didn’t realize I was so far behind, having just watched this episode tonight! 🙁

    This will be a short note because I agree with everything you wrote!! It was such an interesting episode, in a good way, because the writers took the time to explore the grudges and disagreements and fallout from Salen’s departure. I also thought exploring why Dr. Andrews stayed with Salen for so long was well done! And for the first time I didn’t get nauseated or annoyed at Morgan and Alex together!

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