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New Amsterdam - A Seat at the Table - Review: Full Chemo




As Max (Ryan Eggold) begins his treatment, he realizes that it may slow him down faster than he originally thought. Meanwhile, Reynolds (Jocko Sims) must deal with an incident from his past when a reporter comes to the hospital and Sharpe (Freema Agyeman) and Bloom (Janet Montgomery) continue a contentious conversation.

Also starring Tyler Labine as Dr. Iggy Frome and Anupam Kher as Dr. Vijay Kapoor. Guest starring Lisa O'Hare as Georgia and Margot Bingham as Evie.

THE WOLF IN THE ROOM


Pictured: (l-r) Tyler Labine as Dr. Iggy Frome,
Teddy Cañez as Hector Rivera -- (Photo by: Peter Kramer/NBC)
Iggy has a patient again! Finally. I feel like its been ages since we've seen him with a new psych patient but maybe it was just the hiatus that made it seem that way. Either way, this guy has an imaginary wolf (and I typed this I heard some howling outside my window... creepy) that plagues his daily life in nightmarish hallucinogenic attack scenarios. Iggy's job will be to work out why that is.

With his delusions growing, Iggy talks with the patient's father to get clarity on how they would to proceed on the case. If he has the surgery then part of him could be fundamentally altered. Parts of his personality could change, interests, hobbies, etc. But his dad is willing if it means saving his life. He'd rather lose parts than the whole.

Surgery begins, an awake surgery. And Iggy learns about his creative history from his proud father. They both just hope this surgery doesn't sap away his passion or love of art.

But the surgery does not cure Tony of his
Pictured: Tyler Labine as Dr. Iggy Frome
-- (Photo by: Peter Kramer/NBC)
delusions and he has a particularly violent one not long after waking up. Iggy does some research into a different form of treatment, essentially a farm where Tony would be able to draw and paint and do the things he love without the medical environment hovering over him. Hector has a hard time reconciling this idea but as Iggy points out, the environment and the constant push on Tony to heal could be doing more harm than good. Maybe what he really needs is to embrace these delusions and find a way to control them on his own terms.

KAPOOR'S DEEP POCKETS


Rohan pops up asking his father for money. He gets a chance to meet Ella, a woman who Kapoor recently loaned money too, but he's not as willing to dose out the dollars to his own son. Hmm. Interesting. Well I think he doesn't trust his son again yet and worries where that money is really going to end up, for one.

Pictured: (l-r) Vandit Bhatt as Rohan Kapoor, Anupam Kher
as Dr. Vijay Kapoor -- (Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)
Well that didn't last long! I had a feeling there was a reason this whole Kapoor-saves-Ella's-dog storyline happened, and then Ella being introduced to Rohan. He finds out about his father paying for her dog's surgery, without her even having to ask. This is essentially a slap in the face to Rohan, his dad will invest a woman he barely know's dog but not in his son's future.

Okay this Rohan/Ella/Kapoor has taken a creepy and strange turn. Last week had Iggy thinking Ella was a con-woman and this week has Ella as a potentially romantic pawn between father and son. Rohan is clearly picking up on the vibe his dad has feelings for her (why else would he shell out 2k for a dog) and he's bitter about Kapoor not trusting him so he tries to insinuate himself in Ella's life out of spite. I would expect this kind of behavior from brothers maybe, but from father and son it's more than strange. At the end of the day Kapoor's money is his to do with what he pleases and he and his son have only recently started their relationship up again. I think Rohan was expecting too much to soon and now he's just proving his own immaturity.

Pictured: Janet Montgomery as Dr. Lauren Bloom -- (Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)

COLD TURKEY


Lauren is going to try and go cold turkey off of her pills. I watch a lot of medical dramas. I have never seen a pill popping storyline end well when the character in question goes "cold turkey."

Pictured: Janet Montgomery as Dr. Lauren
Bloom -- (Photo by: Peter Kramer/NBC)
I'm not the only one alarmed by Lauren's extremest decision, Helen is to. She's been secretly monitoring Lauren all day and shows up with a cup of hot medicinal tea in a sweet gesture. But Lauren doesn't see it that way, in fact, she's offended that Helen would watch her like she needs someone keeping tabs on her and storms out of the office at the implication.

Thankfully, Lauren does apologize to Helen and agrees to a dinner invite. But it turns out Helen has ulterior motives and when Lauren spots her going through her purse to see if she has any pills stashed away, it appears their fragile truce has been broken once more.

THE MYSTERIOUS CASE OF ANDY KEENER


A frequent flyer turns up with a swollen knee in Lauren's ED. It's been mandated by Max that he become aware any time one arrives since it means "they're not doing their jobs." And he takes over for her, Earl, the IV bag with a face, in tow.

Pictured: Tyler Labine as Dr. Iggy Frome
 -- (Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)
Andy Keener is costing the hospital millions of dollars every year, how can they fix this? Apparently, they can't. Every test he's had, every therapy session, every exam, breakfast, you name it - has all been warranted according to the staff. There is nothing they can cut corners on. Iggy barely even tries since he only wanted to meet Earl. But clearly the guy has something else going on with him and Max is determined to find out what.

Diagnosis of Andy Keener? Homelessness. Max prescribes him a home. He signs the hospitals name to an apartment for Andy, in the long run it will actually be cheaper than to continue letting him come into the hospital for menial illnesses that could be solved by having a stable living environment. It's not fair to everyone else, as the Dean points out, but it's smart business for them, is Max's rebuttal.

Andy better not have any pets!

Pictured: Ron Rifkin as Dean Peter Fulton
-- (Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)
The apartment is small and nothing fancy but to Andy it's everything and more. He's touched at the gesture and Max is happy to officially welcome him home.

After getting Andy situated, Max doesn't plan to see him again any time soon but he won't have long to wait since Andy winds up back in the hospital not much long after claiming he "hit his head" from a ladder fall. Max sees through this ruse but in his compassionate way, he manages to find Andy a job at the hospital to keep him around the people and the company, and to allow him a chance to start paying off the apartment.

SKELETONS IN FLOYD'S CLOSET


Pictured: (l-r) Jocko Sims as Dr. Floyd Reynolds,
Ryan Eggold as Dr. Max Goodwin
-- (Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)
More publicity for New Amsterdam is on the way, or maybe not. The reporter is a vulture circling the carrion of Floyd's past. Her angle is clearly racist and even if she is just misguided, its offensive and Floyd had every right to end the interview and kick her out. Unfortunately, the mugshot she dug up from a prior arrest won't be so easy to dismiss, especially when he clearly thought it was long dead and buried.

Floyd laments his interview troubles to his medical director. Max is Max, ready to defend his doctor. They'll go "full chemo" on this story and squash it before it takes bloom through the legal process.

The legal team turns out to be Floyd's girlfriend, Evie. As his lawyer, she has everything she needs to destroy this reporter but as his girlfriend she persuades him to own his story for his nephew. He has nothing to be ashamed of.

Pictured: Jocko Sims as Dr. Floyd Reynolds
-- (Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)
I'm glad she does because it gives us an incredible scene and moving performance from Jocko Sims. In it, he details the night Obama won the election and the amount of pride he felt for his country, only to be pulled over and racially profiled by a cop, stripped of his dignity and kept in a holding cell with a mugshot that would go on to haunt him forever.

He then quietly eviscerates this reporter, by simply stating the facts. Acknowledging how she went out of her way to bring down an exemplary black doctor by trying to splash this "catch" into a piece. As Floyd points out, "that says very little about me." But everything about her and her values.

Whoever wrote this scene deserves major credit because it's particularly devastating to hear right now with everything going on in our country at the moment.

Pictured: (l-r) Freema Agyeman as Dr. Helen Sharpe, Ryan Eggold as Dr. Max Goodwin -- (Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)

MAX GOES FULL CHEMO


Max's treatment is finally beginning! But because this is Max Goodwin who cannot conceive of a world where he isn't doing his job to the fullest extent of his abilities, he takes his chemo to-go. As in, he darts around the hospital attached to an IV pole. He wants to do as much as he can until he's incapacitated and tries to make Helen deputy Medical in Chief, though she politely declines. I have a feeling she may end up changing her mind though.

Or maybe not. Helen decides against Max's offer but when his next pick is Lauren, Helen has to take a moment to think it over. She knows about Lauren's pill problem and perhaps letting her become deputy medical director is not in her or the hospital's best interests. Meanwhile, Max is still trying to do chemo-on-the-go but day 2 has hit him hard. He's wearing tie-dye crops to get him through the day and Earl has evolved into something even creepier than just a smiling bag of poison.

Eventually though, chemo takes its toll. Max folds and realizes he needs to take a seat, he has to let himself get better. Helen does ultimately accept his offer to be deputy and he is able to slip into some amazingly fashionable animal slippers and fill the seat at the table where some of the other cancer patients play cards. Of course, Max "finding a seat at the table" is as literal as it is figurative. Not only does he find his place in the cancer ward but he also has to find a way to be vulnerable. To be okay with not being okay. He fears Georgia seeing him sick and the way the staff will look at him when he's sick, but there is a bravery in embracing that, in realizing it is a necessity for him to ever have hopes of being better.

When is it time to face the inevitable? A new episode of New Amsterdam titled "Anima Sola" airs next Tuesday, January 22nd on NBC.

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