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Chicago Med Review (Caught Between) The Wrecking Ball and The Butterfly Season 8 Episode 2 Chicago Med Review (Caught Between) The Wrecking Ball and The Butterfly Season 8 Episode 2

Chicago Med

Chicago Med Review – Interns and Doctors (8×02)

CHICAGO MED -- "(Caught Between) The Wrecking Ball and The Butterfly" Episode 802 -- Pictured: (l-r) Steven Weber as Dean Archer, Brian Tee as Ethan Choi -- (Photo by: George Burns Jr/NBC)

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After eight seasons, Chicago Med hasn’t run out of creative storyline ideas, and for that, I’m thankful. 

On Chicago Med Season 8 Episode 2,  the hospital’s most stubborn doctors, Halstead and Archer, once again allowed their personal situations and opinions to cloud their judgment and impact patient care. It’s so frustrating that we keep going in circles with these two, but it did seem as though there was a resolution towards the end of the episode. Maybe this is the turning point after all?

Halstead was clinging to what could’ve been with his apartment complex rather than taking the loss as everyone advised him. I believe Hannah Asher’s exact words were that he was enjoying playing the martyr a little too much, and honestly, it’s been a while since anyone has ever been that blunt with him. The truth is, Halstead was simply in denial, but his case of the week, involving a young boy named Henry and his mother, seemed to help him change his mind. 

Unlike Jenny, who turned into a butterfly just like Henry’s chrysalis after she was properly diagnosed with a tumor that was causing her a psychotic break, Halstead’s building did not have a happy ending in sight. It wasn’t an easy fix, and so he needed to be just as brave as Henry and do the right thing—allow the city to drive a wrecking ball right through it. It definitely seems like the series is against giving Halstead any sliver of happiness, but sometimes, I’m fine with it considering he’s so arrogant when it comes to his patients. 

Instead of trying to find a solution to help Jenny the way that Hannah and Dr. Charles did, he immediately wrote her off as insane and kept pressuring Charles to get a court order so he could treat the boy. Yes, Henry’s broken arm needed to be tended to, but without knowing Jenny’s condition, it seemed premature to loop in DCFS. Once they are called, it’s difficult to walk that back. And Henry seemed to truly care about his mother while believing that she would get better in time. 

I’m glad that Hannah didn’t give up even when it seemed as though they exhausted all of their options. She knows just how necessary a proper diagnosis is. And if they had given up, it would’ve torn a family apart and never given Jenny a shot at redemption. 

Similarly, Archer couldn’t compartmentalize his personal feelings when treating Al, a patient he diagnosed with MS a few years ago. Al was adamant about not getting intubated as his biggest fear was living out the rest of his life on the vent. When assured him that he was fine with dying, Arche was triggered. Having just met with his son who was content with staying in prison, Al’s acceptance sounded like he was just giving up. He chose to fight for Al since his son didn’t allow him to fight for him, and when Choi attempted to sway Archer to honor Al’s wishes, he pushed him aside. The ego is so powerful with this one. Whereas Will passes judgment on patients, Archer is stubborn and wants to override their decisions because he knows better or can’t accept the outcome that they already have. Pushing Al to go under sedation sealed his fate with the incubator. It’s an unfortunate turn of events, but at the very least, it helped Archer recognize a core issue within himself so that he could mend his relationship with his son. 

Archer was also pretty rude to the new intern, Zach, and while I understand everyone’s frustration with the younger generation that’s just learning the ropes, if they don’t help them out and teach it to them, who will? 

It was sweet of Choi to extend his help to Zach, who was only behind because of COVID. Since the pandemic, everything was online, which meant he didn’t have a chance to practice medicine in person, which isn’t ideal. Instead of writing him off for his lack of experience, Choi was determined to help Zach excel. We need more people like Choi in this world!

Of course, not all interns are created equal, and Kai came in with an attitude that didn’t sit right with anyone. Who is this man thinking he can get away with talking to Crockett like that? Crockett is one of Med’s best doctors, and Kai would do wise by shutting his mouth and learning a thing or two. I don’t even know how Kai was able to take their patient to get an angio—did he override Crockett?

Kai’s presence is a shake-up for Med as we’ve never had someone with his gusto for being better and right than the tenured staff, and it’s going to be fun to see how he works alongside Crockett now that he’s filed a complaint with HR. Also, HR, really? Oh boy. The man is truly too full of himself. It’s ballsy for a guy who almost killed a patient with his poor decision. Crockett could’ve filed a countercomplaint, but that would be too easy. Instead, he’s going to make sure that Kai learns his lesson and becomes the kind of person that plays nice with others. 

And then there was Maggie’s whole dilemma with Grant. Grant is obviously interested in forming some kind of relationship with her, but she’s also being a little too intense. She’s projecting all her feelings and worries onto the situation instead of just letting it unfold. What if Grant isn’t interested in her? What if he just wants to get to know Vanessa and experience it with Maggie? By not telling Ben the truth about Grant for over a month, Maggie made it worse than it was. Ben wasn’t even phased when she initially told him, but when she started explaining herself, it became obvious that Grant’s presence is bringing up some old feelings, which didn’t sit well with Ben. Maggie would’ve been better off just introducing the two gentlemen to each other and having a big family lunch.

There was a lot of personal growth for each of the characters that was brought to light through the patients they treated making this a highly compelling installment. 

What did you think of the episode?

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Lizzy Buczak is the founder of CraveYouTV. What started off as a silly blog in her sophomore year at Columbia College Chicago turned her passion for watching TV into an opportunity! She has been in charge of CraveYou since 2011, writing reviews and news content for a wide variety of shows. Lizzy is a Music Business and Journalism major who has written for RADIO.COM, TV Fanatic, Time Out Chicago, Innerview, Pop’stache and Family Time.

Chicago Med

Chicago Med Review – Get by with a Little Help From My Friends (912)

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Chicago Med Season 9 Episode saw a lot of people overwhelmed by work and life in general. 

It all started with Sharon Goodwin, who is coming to the realization that her life is going to be a lot different now that Bert is experiencing memory loss. 

The incident that kickstarts everything involves him forgetting to turn the stove off, but as Cruz informs her, it had a good outcome but may be the first of many. As Goodwin’s ex-husband is treated for smoke inhalation, she struggles to figure out how to manage it all. Eventually, when Bert has another meltdown, she realizes that she’s the only person that can calm him down. Even when he’s disoriented, he recognizes her and feels comfort when she’s around, which again, puts an immense burden on her. 

As he pleads for Sharon to take him home, she agrees to be his caregiver, a situation that Dr. Charles informs her cannot be permanent. But it’s easy to see why she feels responsible—this is the man she’s loved her whole life who still needs her. It’s almost like he’s regressed to an infant mentality, not really understanding the what and why behind what’s going on. Bert is doing a fantastic job portraying all of those emotions and vulnerabilities on screen, providing audiences with a heartbreaking look at the disease.  There’s no reasoning with him, all she can do is provide care, though hopefully, not at the expense of her own mental health and sanity. 

Newcomer Jackie, played by La Brea’s Natalie Zea, arrives in the ED for her second shift in a row, when Maggie immediately notices something is off. Jackie isn’t her usual self, and paired with the stress at home and the blood dripping from her arm—a cut she claims to have sustained earlier in the day while leaving the house—there’s definitely room for worry. 

A quick diagnosis from Dr. Charles reveals that the cut may have been self-harm, as he suggests Jackie is distracting herself from the daily pain she witnesses in the burn unit. This is proven to be true after Jackie loses a patient, runs off to the bathroom to cut herself, and then collapses in Maggie’s arms, revealing scars from previous cuts. Intervention becomes necessary at that point, even though to Jackie, it feels like the ultimate betrayal, but eventually, she comes around to see that Maggie was simply acting in her best interest. It’ll be interesting to see if Med finds a permanent place for Zea on the team as I think she’d make a great addition—plus we all know Maggie needs a new friend around. 

Dr. Marcel also wasn’t spared from the harsh realities when his celebration over his young patient Colin’s new liver quickly soured when he realized the child had an infection. While he tried his best to advocate or Colin, knowing that the boy might not live to see another donor match, he ultimately had to make the hard, yet right, call and give up the organ to someone who could survive the surgery. It’s not the outcome anyone wanted, including Colin’s disappointed father (this is why as a doctor, you never make any promises), but due to the illness, he wasn’t strong enough to move forward. The final gut punch was Colin asking if he was going to die, making Crockett question every decision he’s ever made. 

Hannah teamed up with Ripley—while also sealing their romantic fate—to help his childhood friends, Lynne and Sully, welcome their new baby, born prematurely at 30 weeks and not breathing. Thankfully, they were able to save the child, which was comforting considering everything Sully is already going through. They need a shred of happiness. 

Archer also got a little scolding from Sharon, who didn’t take kindly toward his harsh attitude toward the new intern, reminding him that this is a teaching hospital after all. Turns out, when Archer wants to, he can be a great mentor—and that’s something some students need when they are letting their fears and doubts cloud their judgment and get the best of them. None of us are born with the knowledge and skills—it takes patience and practice.

Thankfully, in every situation, the good outweighed the bad as everyone was supported by loved ones—friends, family, and staff who truly cared about their wellbeing. 

What did you think of the episode?

If you are having a mental health, substance use, or suicidal crisis, call 988. 

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Chicago Med

Did Dr. Zola Ahmad Leave ‘Chicago Med’ Already?

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Did Dr. Zola Ahmad Leave 'Chicago Med' Already?

Chicago Med introduced a new third-year resident to the fold in season 9—Zola Ahmad played by The Wilds’ Sophia Ali.

Ahmad’s character was initially described as “impulsive” and a troublemaker who tends to cause “headaches” for her Gaffney Medical fellows, which we saw play out in real-time when her unconventional approaches rubbed Crockett Marcel (Dominic Rains) the wrong way.

Marcel tried to give Ahmad the benefit of the doubt on numerous occasions, and Sharon Goodwin (S. Epatha Merkerson) even acknowledged that she was taking a big chance by hiring her on a prohibitionary basis given her track record with previous hospitals—but ultimately, Ahmad’s behavior and decisions to overstep and not follow protocol got the best of her.

When Ahmad decided to declare a patient—letting the fact that he wasn’t a good man dictate her reasoning—dead prematurely (and then attempted to justify it), nearly killing him, Dr. Archer (Steven Weber) chose to suspend her. It was very obviously a fireable offense, so it’s a good thing that the series writers held her accountable. Plus, it seemed like the perfect chance for a teachable moment and a redemption arc, not to mention, there was definitely some chemistry with Ahmad and Crockett that could’ve been explored down the line. She had potential as a character at Med, if she just reeled it in a little bit—and that would’ve been interesting to explore on a more granular level.

However, by Chicago PD Season 9 Episode 9, it was over for Ahmad. 

Did Dr. Zola Ahmad Leave 'Chicago Med' Already?

CHICAGO MED — “A Penny for your Thoughts, Dollar for your Dreams” Episode 9008 — Pictured: (l-r) Sophia Ali as Dr. Zola Ahmad, Dominic Rains as Dr. Crockett Marcel — (Photo by: George Burns Jr/NBC)

The series seemingly listened to the Chi-Hards fanbase as Ahmad paid the ultimate price for her reckless decision; Goodwin very briefly (and in passing) informed Crockett that Ahmad was let go, something he called a “shame.”

And that was that. There was no further mention of it, nor is there any indication that she’ll return anytime in the future. Her final episode of the season was listed as Chicago Med Season 9 Episode 8—and it seems like she’ll just be a blip on the radar of the show’s long-running tenure. 

It’s a drastic decision for the series, especially after hyping up Ali’s character at the beginning of the season. Why wouldn’t they give her arc a proper conclusion? Many of the complaints from the fan base were that her character was written inconsistently—her intentions were good most of the time, it was the execution that suffered—and crammed into an already shortened season due to COVID, so they weren’t able to build her character up in a way that would’ve given her the necessary nuance; her portrayal was overly negative and it was hard to defend her actions or keep her around when each week, she was pushing buttons and creating unnecessary issues without having the tenure to excuse them or back her up, like her predecessors Will Will (Nick Gehlfuss) and Natalie (Torrey Devitto). When those two acted irrationally back in the day, they had a history with Med and Goodwin that allowed them to stir the pot. 

It seems that the writing was on the wall for Ahmad from the get-go—the lack of good character development in the writing sealed her fate prematurely and gave fans whiplash with her quick arrival and departure. 

Would you like to see her return to the series?

Vanessa Morgan Is Finally Getting the Recognition She Deserves With ‘Wild Cards’

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Chicago Med

Chicago Med Review – I Think There’s Something You’re Not Telling Me (911)

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CHICAGO MED -- "I Think There is Something You're Not Telling Me" Episode 90011

Chicago Med Season 9 Episode 11 was Ripley-heavy, but I doubt most fans minded all that much, especially as he was sidelined last week due to the flu. 

The episode not only saw Ripley catching up with his childhood friend Sully, who previously refused cancer treatment, but we also met Sully’s pregnant girlfriend, Lynne, who also clued in Hannah on Ripley’s difficult childhood—helpful, since he wasn’t forthcoming with any information when she asked. 

His past was also brought up during the deposition with Pavel’s lawyer, who tried to get him to crack while bringing up the personal matter of institutionalization to discredit him. While it certainly struck a chord, Ripley proved that he’s done the work to get through it, though Charles, who feels partially responsible for the situation in Ripley’s past and the lawsuit, took it upon himself to encourage Sharon Goodwin to convince Ripley to settle. 

He figured out that Charles must’ve said something, but it was nice to see him not get upset by the fact either. These two have come quite a long way in their relationship this season, as Charles suggested that his past is his story to tell on his own terms. 

As for Sully, his coughing symptoms only worsened, landing him in the hospital, as Rip nudged his buddy to come clean to the mom of his future child. Sully’s hesitation to seek out treatment also stemmed from his past, noting that when his father was sent to prison, it was the best day of his life and that maybe Lynne and the baby were better off without him. Naturally, Ripley pointed out that it was just the fear talking and that he needed treatment in order to be a present dad to his kid and to break the cycle of abandonment and trauma. All in all, these two have made a lot of progress. 

Lynne, thankfully, wasn’t in early labor either, so the storyline had somewhat of a positive ending, though I’m sure we’ll see more from them soon. 

Loren’s helicopter incident in the woods the episode prior was also at the forefront as he essentially told Maggie he didn’t remember what they talked about (so he has no clue he professed his feelings for her!) and tried to minimize his injuries to prove himself to Archer for the trauma fellowship. However, Archer can’t be fooled as he’s also one of the people who tried to downplay his symptoms, so he was able to detect what Loren was doing right away. And he gave him some key advice—know when to pull back and prioritize your own health first. As they say, the job will always be there, but you can’t help your patients if you aren’t helping yourself.

As for Maggie, I think she owes it to the both of them to address what was said in such a dire state head-on, but I understand wanting to give Loren space for healing and recovery. She should’ve learned from that life-or-death situation that you should never leave anything unsaid.

Dr. Charles teamed up with a new intern, Naomi Howard, who experienced a bit of a rough start due to nerves. She was assigned to a patient named Jay, who ended up being misdiagnosed with depression when he should’ve been on mood stabilizers to treat what Charles assumed was bipolar disorder. It was a pretty intense case for Naomi to witness, even if she was sitting on the sidelines for much of it, as Charles had to get to the bottom of Jay’s motivations—proving his dad wrong about his career in the arts. Thankfully, by the end of the hour, he managed to persuade him to make the necessary change to his treatment by suggesting that you don’t have to suffer for your art.

What did you think of the episode? Are you digging the flirtation between Asher and Ripley?

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