TV Review: ER Episode 12.07

Thursday, November 10, 2005

From NBC: Neela (Parminder Nagra) gets all dolled up for Gallant's homecoming (Sharif Atkins) and her co-workers seem to take notice but, her plans change when she receives a call from Iraq. Meanwhile, Abby (Maura Tierney) is caught in the middle between Kovac (Goran Visnjic) and Clemente (John Leguizamo) when they disagree on how to save a patients life. When a cop and a little girl become victims of a shoot out, Neela is plagued with the decision of whether or not she should save the shooters life. Also starring Laura Innes, Mekhi Phifer, Linda Cardellini, Shane West and Kristen Johnston.

My Rating:

Okay I have to admit early on during this episode titled 'The Human Shield,' I felt a bit ho hum - another episode that promises to be huge, but doesn't follow through. Yes, we had a lot going on in the ER. All with the victim's of just one event, but the previews for this episode promised something huge for this episode. I didn't really get into things until the girl started to fail. To me it felt a bit like let's have all this stuff happen to this poor little girl and then send her on her way. We know that doesn't end up being the case, and the result here is completely heart breaking. We see here how a difference in treatment can end up in the life or death of a patient. When one course of treatment is taken over another, it costs this young girl her life.

Let's go back a bit though and tell this story. A man has kidnapped a young girl. This man may be familiar to some because the actor is C. Thomas Howell, another well-known actor. They find him and the girl, and a gun battle ensues. She is shot, and he is also injured. A cop is also shot in the battle. They are all taken to the ER. However, before they all arrive at the ER, we see Eve and Clemente talking about some new items being introduced in the ER to make things run smoother. Are Clemente and Eve working well together? Wow, I never would have imagined the two most overbearing of characters getting along.

Abby and Luka start to work on the little girl that is brought in. She's a kidnapping victim that has been missing for several months. There is also sign on sexual trauma, which is also heartbreaking to see in a child so young. The way her kidnapper was trying to make it sound, the little girl was in love with him, but this is surely not the case. Luka moves to work with the kidnapper with Neela, leaving Abby to work on the little girl. Pratt and Ray are working on the cop that was shot.

When Dubenko and Clemente come down to look at the little girl, this is when things get stressful. We have Abby and Luka going with one course of treatment. Clemente suggests another, and Dubenko ends up backing him up. This just signs this little girl's death warrant. Clemente never even notices something important during the little girl's ultrasound. Not only does this little girl die, but also it appears an earlier patient of Clemente's also stops breathing.

As for the kidnapper, Luka, Dubenko and Neela need to operate on him in the ER in order to keep him alive. Luka makes a speech about them keeping him alive so he can pay his time for what he has done to the little girl in jail. They need to crack him open in the ER with Neela assisting. Nice move right before her surgery elective gets underway. The man does bleed all over their floor, but it looks like he makes it through. The little girl we know isn't as lucky.

This heartbreaking case isn't all that is happening in the ER tonight though. We have other happenings as well. One of which is the addition of John Stamos to the cast for a couple of episodes, the first of which aired tonight. Rumor had it over the summer, he was up for the new attending role. We might not have seen John Leguizamo, but Stamos in this role if his show Jake in Progress hadn't been picked up for a mid-season replacement. Tonight, Stamos comes in as a paramedic that brings in the little girl. His eye catches Neela, and he does ask her out, but she says no.

In fact, Neela's mind is all on the return of Gallant. He was supposed to return on leave, but she is called about half way through the episode from Iraq. She has her hands quite busy when the call comes through, so she has to call them back. Turns out there was an event with mass casualties, and Gallant was sent there instead of on his leave. We do know he is alive, but does this foreshadow a future event? Will Gallant return? Or will Neela be left to look for someone new? What about her and Ray? I've caught a bit of a vibe there, and there is also the paramedic, but we know that role isn't a permanent one. We'll have to wait and see what happens.

Neela's romantic life isn't the one featured on this episode. Last week, we had Ray find out the girl he had been sleeping with was only fourteen years old. This week, her father comes to the ER wanting to know why Neela treated his daughter. As Neela and Ray are leaving the ER, the father approaches them and he beats up Ray. Apparently, he knows what Ray did with his daughter. Could there be more repercussions in the future because of this?

That isn't it folks! We also have what looks to be the return of Abby and Luka. After the day is over, Abby ends up at Luka's, and she has a bit of a breakdown. This is where we see Luka go up to her and kiss her. A sad scene. The overall episode was just heartbreaking, and another good episode for ER. Even if it did start a bit slow for me, this was an excellent episode that used the whole cast to their finest. We even saw Weaver briefly, very briefly. Kerry is getting less and less time on the show these days.

We see her when Luka approaches her about the head of ER position that Susan vacated. He isn't one that is usually for administration, but if he doesn't do something the position will go to Clemente, and that might be detrimental to the ER with Clemente's current record there. Next week's episode looks to be huge, and I can't wait. The previews hint at someone dying, and I really hope that doesn't happen.


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