Another inoffensive episode of ER has come and gone. Wasn’t bad, but won’t leave a mark for long. At least this episode had a common theme that ran through almost all of the storylines family.
The ending of the episode could have been a touching, warm family scene. However, it was ruined as it was telegraphed from the beginning of the episode. As soon as Gates was on the phone with the clinic, complaining that the results never arrived, it was obvious that they were delivered but hidden by Sarah. The only real question remaining was whether she’s hiding the envelope because she’s too scared to open it and find the results or whether she already knows the results (Which can’t be good, otherwise she wouldn’t hide them). It was also obvious that Tony’s dad was gonna mess up, since we haven’t seen him in a long time and that kind of character usually only shows up to cause trouble. The ending, with Tony sending away his dad, a “real” relative, but contemplating keeping Sarah, who isn’t, could have been really good if it wasn’t that expected. But still, it wasn’t badly done (Despite the fact that I wouldn’t mind seeing them all go away).
Gates view about family could have been influenced by the case he’s been working on with Kovac. Their patient, who died of a heart attack, was taking care of his father they each only had each other to rely on. Not only that, but the father seems to be senile. Seeing the bond between father and son possibly made him realize it’s better to hold on to the good relationship he has with Sarah rather than the crappy one with his dad.
Gates is also involved with Pratt’s family. Pratt’s brother wants to be an EMT. Even though it’s not the most “gay friendly” environment, that’s something he wants to do, before a career in plastic surgery. Pratt has no choice but ask Gates for help, as he’s “one of the guys” and can make things easier for Chaz. Gates doesn’t know yet he’s gay, and I doubt he will, considering Greg already told Chaz it’s strictly “Don’t ask don’t tell”.
One of the highlights of this week’s episode, “Family Business”, came in the form of a guest appearance by Ken Davitian. If that name doesn’t say much to you, perhaps you’ll know who he is if I call him Azamat Bagatov the character he played on last year’s hit movie Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan. Yes, that was him, the guy who was wrestling naked in a hotel room with Sacha baron Cohen. On ER he played an Armenian florist who crashed his car in the ambulance bay, as he brings in a sick kid. It wouldn’t leave a long lasting impression, but it was nice to see him.
And the same can be said about the entire episode. It was nice, but won’t leave any long lasting impression. As I’ve said in the past, ER just isn’t exciting any more. It can have nice episodes, but not memorable ones. I can still remember episodes like “Hell and High Water” from 10 years ago, but if you ask me what happened three months ago, I’ll go blank. But I’ll still take episodes like this one, who at least aren’t bad, over some of the really boring and terrible ones we’ve seen lately.
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