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Scrubs

Scrubs is a comedy about John "J.D." Dorian, a young doctor who begins his first job at Sacred Heart Hospital in California. The show is narrated from JD's perspective as he learns lessons about how to survive in a touch but rewarding career. NBC 2001-08. ABC 2009-10.

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Episode 6 - My Cookie Pants

26 March 2012

Synopsis: Elliott wants her first time (again) with JD to be special and with Carla away she seeks Turk’s advice. The hospital board offer the Chief of Medicine job to Dr Cox and Dr Kelso warns him what a horrible job it is much to Jordan’s anger. JD gets to know Denise better and helps her to see the strengths and weaknesses of her cold approach to patients.

The Good: This is the kind of episode I imagined Scrubs would produce in its final season. Of course I imagined that back in season one when the show was really good, so I hope you can see that for the compliment that it is.

The key to this is that maturity is the moral of the story. When JD runs through the strengths and weaknesses of the people in his life it echoes a terrific reflective speech he gave in the second episode of the show’s existence. That type of insight into the characters personalities is what made the show so engaging. Now with the interns learning these lessons anew, the established characters can start to become the mature adults that they have been struggling to become for eight seasons.

JD and Elliott learning just to be honest and open with one another is a very heart warming end to her neurosis about how being together again should be different. Turk delivering that insight to her makes sense because his relationship with Carla has been solid since season one. The humour is good too with Elliott imagining Carla’s side of a phone conversation in angry neurotic fashion. Then JD’s embarrassment at his own sexual thrusting was a nice natural feeling joke. Even JD’s silly cookie fantasy was based on a fear which turned out to be real (Turk stealing cookies) which makes it easier to enjoy.

Dr Cox finally becoming Chief of Medicine is something which was signposted early on in season one as well. Jordan’s involvement in getting him back on track has deep echoes in the episode My Nightingale (202) where she made it clear that his professional immaturity had been a cause of their marital breakdown. To see him take the job (after learning the obligatory lesson) is pretty satisfying for any viewer who has watched the show develop over the years. If played out properly it could lead to some excellent stories. In the meantime Dr Kelso’s involvement in the plot is ideal. He delivers the truth about the difficulty of the job in that succinct, humorous but convincing way which makes him such a good character. His jokes about having sex with Jordan and a ball of yarn flow nicely out of the plot. Even though both jokes are extremely silly they work because they flow out of the story and characters in such a logical, smooth fashion.

Finally JD and Denise having a heart to heart tied all the stories together neatly and once more made Denise seem like a more real character. By bringing up how uncomfortable she is with her own family it’s much easier to buy her cold behaviour as plausible. The fact that JD can point out his own weakness is good to see, as part of the maturity he now shows. But even better is his referencing of Mr Fremont (who died in the previous episode). It sends the message that actions have consequences on this show and is a simple way of showing Denise how much JD cares and the downside of letting patient suffering rest on your conscience.

The Bad: JD throwing clothes at Elliott is a joke too far. It’s based on you assuming he is whipping his clothes off in anticipation. But jokes based on other silly jokes just don’t land. Ditto Kelso hugging Dr Cox and Jordan which is pretty out of character for him, even as he mellows in retirement.

Comic Highlight: Elliott is so desperate for Turk’s advice that she interrupts an appendectomy demonstration to talk to him. “Carla always says that making love with you is perfect” she says. He grins and turns to the interns and Todd and says “Yeah she did!” Of course Elliott continues “Tell me what makes it so special. She says that you even cry sometimes.” The Todd helpfully chimes in “That’s ok T-Dog, if it doesn’t hurt; you’re not doing it right!”

Diagnosis: Dr Kelso recommending Dr Cox for the job of Chief of Medicine is what this is all about. Despite their years of animosity, Kelso knows that he is the best man for it because he really cares. It’s what Scrubs is all about. The idea that the best doctors are the dedicated and caring ones.

The whole episode is based around that mature sentiment and the jokes flow from it and the well written characters. The producers do an excellent job recapturing the spirit of the early show and wrapping it up with the evolution of their established characters. I am very pleasantly surprised, a fine effort.

('DiggThis)

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