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The Resident - Nightmares - Review: "Halloween Special"

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With Halloween right around the corner, “The Resident” played their hand at a Halloween Special, and they managed it quite well, with just the right amount of spookiness. There were costumes, candy, booze, and frightening knife yielding monsters. With “Nightmares” we also slowly continued to learn more about the characters’ past, and their lives outside the hospital.

“Nightmares” focused on three main storylines that only slightly intertwined. At the hospital, with the majority of the staff attending Mina’s party, and Irving trying to find his way in, Devon is in charge of the ER. Halloween is busy night for the emergency room, as could be expected, and the only help he has is one of the med students he had chaperoned in the past. Being in charge of the ER means that Devon loses his cool attitude, which he didn’t have much of to begin with. He’s stressed, and it brought me back to season 1 Devon, the one I didn’t care for. I’m going to assume it was a one-time stress induced deal because I’m appreciating his character more and more in the show’s second season. Also, there was no Julian this week, and this made Devon’s storyline a lot more enjoyable. That’s a huge plus.

Devon keeps finding Clyde in different positions. Halloween means tricks, it’s in the slogan, but Devon doesn’t appreciate Mason’s pranks. Even AJ laughs it off, and if there is someone you would assume to be more uptight, it would be him. Maybe that’s just me. I mean, who would have thought AJ would have a better sense of humour than Devon? He redeems himself when he lets Mason in on Frank’s cardiac arrest. The boys work together to get their patient stable enough to go to the operating room.

“I know what I did well.” -AJ

When the amputated leg joins the arm at Chastain, AJ comes to the conclusion that they will be short on surgeons, so he calls in Mina, taking her away from her party. The operating room is filled with four capable surgeons: The Raptor, Vass, Bell and Mina. The foursome worked together on the father of three, putting him back together. It was nice seeing them work together, nice to see them do medicine together, without the politics or relationship drama. I really want to see more of that. We even got to see some beatboxing heart palping. How cool was that?

We also learned a little tidbit of information on Vass’ personal life. She has two grown children, and a grandchild. This was news to Devon and AJ, I laughed at their reaction. I wish we could have seen Bell’s reaction to it given their peculiar relationship. He was busy elsewhere though; his secretary played matchmaker and sent him on a blind date with his mother. It’s been showcased a lot in the past few episodes, Bell is lonely, and this episode only continued to put emphasis on that. It’s hard to feel bad for him, because he’s not a good person, but this season really has been trying to humanize him more.

Mina gets called away from her exclusive Halloween party leaving Nic in charge. Since we’ve learned a while back that Mina is a surgeon and also a seamstress, it came to no surprise that her costume would be this elaborate. I wish I had this talent. Mina gives Nic and Jessi an “A-” and a “B-” respectively, for their homemade costumes, but grants them passage.

Since Conrad won’t take the night off, Nic, looking stunning as Cleopatra, brings her sister along. For a big portion of the night, she’s regretting that choice. She’s on high stress sister sitting duty, and she’s not letting herself have any fun.

“You can have the weight of the world on your shoulders at Chastain, but not at my apartment, not tonight.” -Mina

I thought Ivring to be really funny in this episode. He’s often the comical relief in the episodes, when he is included, and in this episode his role was well played out. When Nic finally lets Irving in, he is grateful to be involved in the party epic, but Nic doesn’t share his enthusiasm. She wants to find Jessi who is only a couple of weeks sober, clean since we saw her relapse in the end of the first season.

In “Run Doctor, Run,” there were several hints at Nic’s troubled past that was never really delved into. In this episode, they seemed to flirt with the idea of giving more details on this part of her life, but didn’t quite get there. I thought this was a missed occasion. There were references to her mother, but the way Jessi talks about her makes me think she is dead, and that there is more story there. Is that a fact that I simply forgot? Or is this some new insight on their past? There were also great sisterly moments in this episode. I really loved the way her sister stepped up when she realized Nic was having a panic attack.

Conrad stayed at the hospital. It’s Halloween and they’re understaffed, he says, but that’s just an excuse not to take the night off, right? He works the case of a nanny who’s half hallucinating and half having nightmares. Thus, he was confronted with his own nightmare, the day his mother died in front of him as a child. I have a hard time believing that women under 35 are the most commonly misdiagnosed patients. That can’t be true.

Once more, Conrad’s bedside manner is on point and he manages to connect with his patient, literally talking her off of the ledge. One thing I really dislike is how incompetent the show makes out some nurses to be. There was a nurse letting a mentally unstable patient wander off when after giving her a possible diagnosis of schizophrenia. I mean, her “Did I do anything wrong?” Nurses are not clueless. I still have flashbacks to the inappropriate nurses of the pilot’s opening scene.

In the end, they find a biological reason for Lori’s nightmares, she isn’t crazy. What they found in her abdomen was absolutely disgusting. I mean it fits with the Halloween thematic, but don’t watch the show while you’re eating. I had to look away. I’m a lightweight. I was grateful when Nolan told the tech it was enough, and to cover it up the Teratoma.

The relationship between Marshall and Conrad still isn’t rosy and while we can see both men making an effort, Conrad still has his apprehensions about renewing ties with his father. When Marshall misses his appointment with Conrad, the latter gets very suspicious. His father doesn’t miss appointments. He never forgets anything. I’m assuming that has to do with how his father reacted to his mother’s death. There are a lot of pent up feelings there. His father refuses to tell him where he was when he missed their meeting; he doesn’t want a relationship where they share this much. Any theories?

“Dad, help! Please.” –Young Conrad

We got to see a little of why Conrad resents his father in the form of a nightmare. It was a very interesting way to show us a portion of what happened the day his mother died when he was a child. From his dream, it’s easy to see that his father did not react well, he was a scared kid, and his father was not reassuring. They’ll surely dive into that in more detail in the later episodes.

I am still quite bummed that Conrad still doesn’t let Nic in. He’s still very guarded. A few episodes ago, she was having some doubts about their relationship, having doubts about this time being different than the last, when he wouldn’t open up to her. While he was reassuring during that episode, he seemed to have forgotten it here. When he woke up from his nightmare, clearly perplexed, he doesn’t share. I just really want a status quo on this relationship. They really are cute together, but I don’t want any drama. I dream of a show where there is no unnecessary relationship drama. Just open up Conrad...

I give this episode a solid 7.5, because I felt they did a really good job with the Halloween thematic.
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