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Chicago Med - Be the Change You Want to See - Review

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As the season moves forward, we are learning more about our new cast members and their back-stories, and seeing how they blend into the Med Family. In addition, what we are learning is making for a very exciting season, and definitely helping us fall in love with these new family members swiftly and wholeheartedly.

This week we again follow several patient stories, and see some developments in some of our non-patient storylines that have been keeping us on the edge of our seats. So buckle in for another wild ride folks!

Dr. Scott, his sister Zora and Kevin Atwater

Dylan, Zora and Kevin are playing basketball when they hear gunfire. Kevin and his sister go into the building and a small boy is running out. Kevin follows the boy, and Zora goes upstairs and Dylan follows. They find a boy, Michael, who has been shot in the abdomen. He tells Dylan that he and his friend were playing superheroes and his friend accidentally shot him. Dylan helps treat him and tries to stop the bleeding while Zora calls for an ambulance and he gets him to the ED and up to surgery after promising him that he would see if they could stitch in some superpowers into him too. This sequence of scenes was a special treat to Chi-hards, as we not only got a special Kevin Atwater siting, but we also were once again able to see the amazing compassion and bedside manner that Dr. Scott has with his pediatric patients. We were also treated to a glimpse of the dynamic of what Dylan Scott was like as a police officer and working with other cops.

Dr. Scott keeps asking for updates on the boy throughout the episode, and eventually before the conclusion of the episode, he finds out that the boy survived the surgery and goes up to see him. Dr. Archer tells him if he had not been there, the boy would have surely died and that he saved his life. Go Dr. Scott!! What a welcome addition to the family!

Dr. Marcel, Vanessa and Dr. Charles

In this episode, we first see Vanessa with Dr. Marcel, who is now her new advisor, and she is asking him to review her 10-year plan. Marcel is so surprised that she has things so planned out and she shares that with being adopted and not knowing the past, she spent a lot of time looking backward, and when she knew she was not going to get any answers to that, she decided to focus all her energy looking ahead to know where she was heading. Marcel shares that he always like to go the way the wind took him, which is something we have seen from him in the past few years, and that planning can lead to expectations and disappointment. I also cannot help but wonder though if the death of his daughter and knowing that the future is not guaranteed is not also part of the motivation of why he does not like to think too much about the future. While they are reviewing the plan, one of the nurses comes in and lets Marcel know there is a patient refusing to speak to anyone but a doctor, and he agrees to see the patient and Vanessa asks to join him.

We meet Gina, whose friend has brought her in. It is the first time they have seen each other since the start of COVID and Gina has a huge growth on the side of her neck. Marcel and Vanessa get a biopsy, and the growth is benign but because of the size, and how it is encapsulating the vessels in her chest and neck, they are recommending surgery to remove it. She asks about medications, and they let her know there is a medical option with radioactive iodine but with how far advanced the tumor is, they do not feel it will work, but she insists she wants to try the meds first. Vanessa is very concerned as she and Marcel discuss that the medications would take far too long and likely have little effect, and she is not sure Gina understands how serious this is. Marcel tells Vanessa that they need to page Dr. Charles.

When Dr. Charles goes in to see the patient, she is upset thinking they are trying to say she is crazy to make her have surgery, and so Dr. Charles reassures her that her decisional capacity is not in question, and they just want to understand and try to help with her concerns about the surgery. As she and Dr. Charles talk, it is very clear that she has been caused a great deal of distress by COVID and that she is having a hard time thinking about what the future will be like, and worrying about what this could be. Even when she is coughing up blood, she does not want to go right away for surgery.

They discuss about disassociation with our future selves, and how could they make her future-self more tangible to her, as that would help her. With the help of Dr. Charles, Vanessa, Marcel and Anna’s age filter apps, Dr. Charles presents her with an aged picture of herself and works through talking to her about who that person is and what her hopes are for the future. She talks about her fear about possibly not having a future. Eventually after working through the exercise with them, she agrees to the surgery.

Later, when Vanessa goes in to see Marcel in the Doctors Lounge, he is looking at an aged picture of himself and thinking that perhaps he needs to think a bit more ahead than he has been and where he might want to end up.

Dr. Hammer, Maggie, Goodwin and the Financial Donors

When our episode opens, Dr. Hammer’s mother is sitting in a diner and the server comes up and rudely tells her she needs to order or leave. Stevie enters and sharply says to the server, “How about we try that again and how about a ‘Good Morning, What can I get you’”, and she apologizes and goes to get them coffee. Stevie brings her mother her meds and she and her mother argue as her mother wants money to fix up her van, and Stevie wants the money to go to rent and heat. Her mother says the van has been her home for many a winter and Stevie says that does not make it right. Eventually her mother gets up to leave as the server is returning, and says to them both that she does not want to be somewhere she is not welcome.

I am sure this is weighing heavily on Dr. Hammer’s mind as she arrives at work when Goodwin asks her, and Maggie to help with some VIP’s (the Foster’s) who are on their way in. They are big financial donors, and Stevie shares with Maggie that VIP’s are not usually her thing. When they arrive, Elaine Foster had hurt her ankle rushing into kitchen, as she had smelled something burning. Elaine is lovely but the husband seems a bit off and abrupt. She says her husband Jim has not been himself and wonders if he had COVID since he seems to have lost his sense of smell, but he brushes this off, upset they did not offer to bring him a snack. His wife sends him to the cafeteria, apologizes, and says he has not been himself.

Maggie is surprised because Goodwin is usually such a good judge of character. She goes to xray and while there, he asks Dr. Hammer if she is a runner, makes some inappropriate comments about women’s bodies and grabs her arm, trying to tell her it is a compliment and not letting go when she tells him too. Dr. Hammer pushes him away and he falls.

Dr. Hammer has to go and meet with the hospital attorney and Goodwin, and despite the attorney’s dismay, Goodwin says Stevie will have full support of the hospital if she wants to press charges, but Stevie says she does not. Goodwin asks for permission to speak to Jim Foster, and when they return to the ED, he is furious and says he is pulling his support for the hospital, and Goodwin tries to smooth things over. Elaine says he recently was accused of being inappropriate with a graduate student and this has never happened and she does not know who her husband is any more and he is not the man she married. She apologizes to Dr. Hammer.

Stevie is talking to Goodwin about the situation, you can see the wheels turning, and suddenly she says to Goodwin that they need to get him back right away and that he needs a CT. They find a tumor that is in an area of the brain that would be causing personality changes and disinhibition and it is pressing on the olfactory nerve, which is why he could not smell anything. She has Goodwin share the news as she felt it should come from a friend and he comes clean about what happened, apologizes and is thankful that they caught the tumor when they did.

Dr. Hammer reflects on what happened that day, and she goes to see her mother at the homeless encampment, and tells her she can have the money and it is hers, whether she wants to use it for rent or to fix up her van. She also asks if they can go get some dinner and eat it together, and she does not care if they eat at the restaurant or in her tent there. They get in the car to go get dinner.

I feel like the more we see an exploration of Dr. Hammer’s relationship with her mother, the more we are learning about why she acts and reacts the way she does to others, and it will be exciting to see as more is revealed and perhaps her colleagues learn of her mother’s situation, what the season will bring.

Dr. Scott and Dr. Halstead and a Lupus Patient and Blogger

Dr. Halstead and Dr. Scott greet an ambulance with a patient, Candace Mason, who has been hit by a car. She says that she swore she looked both ways and did not see it. It seems like her only injury is an injured elbow, and suddenly a volunteer recognizes her and tells her she is an angel and that she had heard about her flare up right now and that she is the reason she got tested for Lupus and tells Dr. Halstead and Dr. Scott to take good care of her. When Dr. Halstead and Dr. Scott speak with her, she confirms that they have to keep things confidential, and tells them that she has actually been in remission for 5 years.

As they test her, Dr. Halstead goes into detective mode and checks out her website, and indeed, she has been lying to her followers about her illness. He tells Dr. Scott that she says she is collecting donations for Lupus research and that if she is pocketing those donations it is a crime. When they speak with her, she is concerned because the website was helping people and that telling them the truth would dilute the message, and Will starts to go down the path of discussing that messaging is key when pursuing donations, and Dylan cuts this off. She suddenly gets a bad headache and Dr. Scott orders a CT.

Dr. Scott tells Will that their job is to treat the patient and Will says he is surprised because Dylan was a cop. He replies by saying he is no longer a cop and Will is not one either, and they need to focus on treating Candace, not finding out what she is doing with the donations. I found this interesting as not a few hours before, Zora was telling Scott that he was no longer the police. It feels like depending on the situation, Dylan’s focus is always about what he can do to help people, and personally, I feel this is an extremely appealing side to this character and his story.

Dylan spends some time with Candace and she tells him that she found a community after her diagnosis, and she felt that telling the truth made her seem like she was bragging or that she would become an outsider, and they speak about what it would mean to come clean to them. Dylan tells her that even though she is worried that her message will lose impact if not delivered from the trenches, walking a path that is not hers will have consequences too. Dr. Scott has such a wonderful approach with all of his patients of helping them to identify the best path without trying to tell them what to do, and I hope to see more of him partnered with Dr. Charles this season, who also has a similar way about him.

After Dylan discharges her, she decides it is time and comes clean online to a varied response, and Dylan shows Will. It is at that point that Will reveals that he ran some additional tests and that she actually is no longer in remission, and the inflammation in her optic nerves caused the peripheral loss of vision, which is why she could not see the car and was hit by it. They call her back in and Candace says maybe it is her punishment for crying wolf so long, and that the responses to her post are so angry. Dylan says that she may feel like she lost her tribe, but those in the trenches with her will come around and that she has spoken her truth, which is what matters most.

Dr. Archer vs Dr. Charles

So what about our local villain, Dr. Archer? At the beginning of the episode, Dr. Archer lets the team know that he has implemented a new efficiency program and they should all have their log in credentials and that whomever has the best turnovers will receive a special reward, which includes tickets to a Blackhawks game. This is an especially sad moment, as we all know that many of the staff are displeased with the way that the ED is being run, including Dr. Scott in the last episode, and Dr. Charles, who has expressed this ongoing, and chuckles with Maggie about how he is not a fan of incentive based Medicine following Dr. Archer’s announcement.

So it was quite a glee filled moment when Dr. Charles tells Dr. Archer at the end of the episode that he will not be using the system at all, because in psychiatry they need time to connect and know the patient and it is not a quick 3 minute consult type of medicine. At this point, Dr. Archer states that maybe he has a good point and maybe psychiatry does not belong in the ED, and Dr. Charles laughs. However, it does make one wonder, is Archer trying to get rid of Daniel Charles from the ED part of his master plan? Moreover, what do we think Goodwin will say or think when she hears this?

And for all of those cheering on Dr. Charles in the revolt against Dr. Archer’s drive thru ED, how will we feel if this ends up being something that ends up harming his role in the department. I know that I would be devastated!

Goodwin, Dr. Halstead and Dr. Cooper

We begin the episode with Will approaching Cooper and talking to him about how desperate he is for money, that he lost his shirt in a poker game and he would do anything, and Cooper tells him he would think about it. Throughout the episode, we then continue to see glimpses of the ongoing investigation that Will is assisting with to find out about Dr. Cooper. It seems that Goodwin is receiving some inside information that makes her even more convinced that he is receiving hidden kickbacks through shell companies, but in order for her to have definitive proof to take to his in-laws on the board, she needs Will’s help. Will tells her that he has planted the seed with Cooper about being broke, and at the end of the episode, we see Will being approached by Vasic Labs and he accepts their offer to become a booster of their Vascom product for compensation.

We also get to see a nice dose of our favorite BFFs, Daniel Charles and Sharon Goodwin. Dr. Charles checks in on Goodwin and her stress and diabetes, and she reassures him of all she is doing and he is glad that she has Will’s help to find out the truth about what is going on. For our long time Chicago Med fans, with all the new characters and changes that have been flooding Gaffney this season, it is comforting to see that some things do not change, and that we can still rely on old friends to care and take care of one another.

It seems that we are going to have a very exciting season ahead as we anxiously await the return of Dr. Choi and hope that Dr. Archer does not destroy the Chicago Med ED family. It seems we will see Will follow in his big brothers footsteps as a makeshift detective, watch Marcel mentor the next generation of medical minds, and see the ED colleagues both new and old continue to help patients both physically and mentally in the weeks to come.
What did you think of this episode of Chicago Med? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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