No TV doctor should ever promise that a patient is in good hands.
Invariably, something comes up that’s beyond the doctor’s control, leading to heartbreaking outcomes and extra drama.
Marcel’s dilemma on Chicago Med Season 8 Episode 6 illustrated this nicely. As soon as he told Will he’d take great care of Maria, I knew something was going to happen that shouldn’t.
Will was right that Marcel shouldn’t have left the OR before the procedure was complete, but he was wrong about why Marcel did.
Despite Marcel’s claim at the end that fame had gone to his head, that didn’t seem to be the issue. Marcel wanted to finish closing before he moved on to the next patient, but that Gaffney PR guy wouldn’t accept that.
Marcel could have stood his ground; it didn’t seem quite to fit his character that he gave in so easily. So maybe, in that sense, the fame had gotten to his head.
On the other hand, he might have thought that the Lieutenant Governor would leave the hospital altogether if she didn’t get seen immediately. If her condition was severe, that could have been disastrous.
Will: You left before the surgery was completed?
Marcel: No. The repair was complete.
Will: Obviously, it wasn’t. You should have taken care of her. She should have been your priority.
Chicago Med skipped over the surgery Marcel performed for the woman. She didn’t appear on-screen, so viewers were left without any idea of what the rush was about, and there’s no way to tell whether this Lieutenant Governor was an entitled brat or panicking about a severe health issue.
It also struck me as strange, and not particularly realistic, that Marcel left Kai alone in the OR. Kai is a resident — doesn’t he need to be supervised by an attending at all times?
At least Kai wasn’t obnoxious, for once. If he stays like this, he may grow into a likable character.
Marcel’s quick capitulation to the PR guy contradicted his earlier feelings about his newfound fame.
Reporter: People are calling you a hero, but is that how you would characterize yourself?
Jack: You know he gerry-rigged a lung transplant just days after the incident? Confident, creative. Future of medicine, this guy.
Marcel didn’t feel comfortable with the reporters calling him a hero, so much so that he couldn’t speak when asked about it, and Jack needed to jump in to sing Marcel’s praises.
There wasn’t any evidence throughout the hour that Marcel had lost his humility or gotten overly caught up in his fame. Thankfully, Will realized his error and apologized.
It’s far beyond time for WIll and Marcel to put aside their rivalry; let’s hope they can develop a better working relationship now.
Although Maria asked for Will to treat her, he shouldn’t have been her primary doctor. He was too close to her.
Will: Where’s Maria?
Marcel: Team just took her to pre-op.
Will: I’ve been thinking about it. We should hold off on surgery. I want to pitch her the stent one more time.
Marcel: Come on, Will, we both know that’s not a long-term solution.
Will: But given her age and livelihood, we shouldn’t be so eager to flay her arm. Risk rehab, extensive nerve injury. No, no. Her hands are her life and we shouldn’t take that from her.
Marcel: All the more reason to do the vascular repair. Deal with the pseudo-aneurysm with a stitch and keep her off anti-platelets. Besides, she’s already consented.
Will: That’s because she saw you on TV! She’s starstruck being treated by the hotshot doctor from the news.
Marcel: You called me, remember?
Will: You don’t think all that influenced her decision?
Marcel: I don’t know, but I think maybe your connection with the patient is influencing yours.
He wanted her to have a stent even though he’d correctly assessed she needed surgery, and that was a purely selfish decision.
Will claimed to be worried that Maria only wanted to be treated by the celebrity doctor from the news, but that was nonsensical. Among other things, he knew she needed surgery and that Marcel was the best surgeon in the hospital.
His concern was Maria’s desire to get back to work and his fear that she’d lose her ability to use her hands. And that came from their personal relationship.
Asher’s patient and her ectopic pregnancy went in a different direction than I expected. There have been a ton of stories in the news about women suffering and dying because doctors are afraid of violating restrictive abortion laws by performing necessary procedures; I thought this story would tie into that somehow.
The woman wasn’t expecting to need an abortion, so she wouldn’t have come from out of state, but I expected there to be protesters or negative publicity.
Instead, we got a story about Asher and Archer performing the surgery without the benefit of monitors to help guide them, thanks to the lack of fiber optic cables.
This unexpected direction was refreshing; while reproductive rights are extremely important, there have been a lot of stories about them on medical and legal dramas.
Besides, by making this ectopic pregnancy completely non-political, Chicago Med demonstrated that it was a health issue. That was a more powerful message than any ripped-from-the-headlines storyline could have sent.
The OR scene was unnecessarily gory. I’m all for some realism, but it was too much!
Other than that, this story was handled well.
Archer’s idea for performing the surgery laparoscopically was a good one that Asher should have agreed to in the first place. Things got a bit hairy when Archer experienced too much pain to conduct the surgery himself; thank goodness he could guide Asher through it.
What’s up with Archer popping pain pills? I hope we’re going to go in another non-stereotypical direction here, rather than Archer becoming addicted to drugs and recovering addict Asher being the one to save him.
Contrary to what Chicago Med Season 8 Episode 6 spoilers suggested, Vanessa and Maggie didn’t butt heads over Samir’s care. They both knew something was going on with him and were eager to figure it out.
If anything, they made a great team, which made Vanessa’s decision to leave Med as sad as it was surprising.
Vanessa and Maggie had a hard time finding a proper balance after Maggie realized that Vanessa was her biological daughter. But they’d gotten there now, for the most part.
Maggie needed to get over herself regarding the illegal drug situation. Vanessa wasn’t defending Will; she was telling the truth when she admitted she had convinced Will to go along with this rather than the other way around.
Vanessa’s always been a bit of a risk-taker, and this isn’t the first time she’s gotten her hands on illegal drugs. Maggie got her clean after she became addicted to amphetamines and even helped fake her drug test so she wouldn’t lose her job because of her mistakes in this area!
It shouldn’t be a stretch for Maggie to believe that Vanessa contacted her old dealer to get drugs for a patient that weren’t available through legitimate channels. Maggie was in denial, which probably contributed to Vanessa’s decision to leave Med.
Charles and Choi’s case raised an interesting question: how much of Penelope’s mental distress resulted from her physical illness?
Bell’s Palsy made it harder for Penelope to deal with the baby crying, but her main issue was her fear of the violent fantasy she had about throwing her son against the wall.
It’s impossible to know whether she would have had those thoughts if her condition didn’t make the baby’s cries nearly unbearable to listen to, but she was scared enough of them to almost surrender her baby.
The old Choi would have called DFCS right away despite Charles and Sharon’s concerns. Thank goodness Choi has grown past that because that would have been a tragic overreaction in this case.
Penelope needed to talk to another mother so she wouldn’t feel alone. Sharon’s explanation of her own experiences raising babies was beautifully done.
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Don’t forget you can watch Chicago Med online whenever you’d like.
Chicago Med airs on NBC on Wednesdays at 8 PM EST / PST.
Jack Ori is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. His debut young adult novel, Reinventing Hannah, is available on Amazon. Follow him on Twitter.