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ER season 11 thread

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by Patrick Sun, Sep 23, 2004.

  1. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    Pratt and Deb get a little taste of road rage.

    Will Neela come back?

    Will Sam come back after running scared of her ex?

    Do Carter and Kimba stay together?

    What is in store for Dr. Abby?

    Will the audience care as Weaver fights for her son?
     
  2. Richard Travale

    Richard Travale Producer

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    Thanks for the recap of last season Patrick. I had actually forgotten most of that stuff and wasn't that interested in tonight's premiere.
    But now I'm going to watch.
     
  3. Tony_La

    Tony_La Stunt Coordinator

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    May not be a spoiler, but just in case:

    I hate that NBC gave away the fact that Deb (Ming-Na) will be killed off. On the previews for Law & Order SVU, they prominently showcase Ming-Na in next week's episode. I may be mistaken, but you usually don't see an actor do guest spots on another show unless they're no longer employed.
     
  4. WillG

    WillG Producer

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    Yeah, that's an absolute spoiler if true.
     
  5. Kristian

    Kristian Supporting Actor

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    It was an alright premiere, but I'm starting to get tired of all the main characters going through hell every other episode.

    Not sure I like the addition of Shane West to the cast. He reminded me of Doogie Howser when he introduced himself.
     
  6. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    Well, I guess that spoiler wasn't true, and it was the 3rd person in the car that got it.

    Let's hope some of the subplots are finally done for the time being (Weaver's child custody battle, Sam giving up the life on the run, Carter letting Kimba go or giving her space).

    Looks like Dr. Abby's bedside manner is still strong in her powers of persuasion.

    How will Neela be taken into County General for an internship? Will she just float in the ER for a year before getting back on track?

    Pratt and Deb will probably be on the IR list. [​IMG]

    Morris is still a boob. New guy Shane West didn't have a memorable entrance, though I've heard that producers will try to transition ER to his character once Noah and Goran leave next season.
     
  7. Jonny P

    Jonny P Supporting Actor

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    The last couple of seasons I have become nostalgic for some of the old characters...

    They need to get Michael Ironsides back from season 1. Have him as the stern disciplinarian on the show...

    Will the show continue after this season? I still enjoy it quite a bit, but I don't know what it will be like without Noah Wyle...he missed some episodes last season, and I missed his character.
     
  8. Kristian

    Kristian Supporting Actor

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    By the way, to all the Futurama fans out there: That was John DiMaggio, the voice of Bender, as the cop who kept asking the doctors to perform a cavity search on the hooker. It was weird to finally have a face to the voice that I've heard for so long.
     
  9. WillG

    WillG Producer

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    There's video of him on Futurama S4. It's hidden as an easter egg on the menu for the "Where no Fan Has Gone Before" episode. The easter egg does not start out with him, but keep with it.

    Ok episode, but nothing special. Hasn't really been that way for awhile. I think what has happend is that this show has become just another soap oprea with the main characters. It does not really focus on very patients anymore except for the guest star the seem to have every season who goes through some character arc.
     
  10. Jonny P

    Jonny P Supporting Actor

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    By the way...

    Shane West was excellent as Eli on "Once and Again"...

    He does a good job doing the "angst-filled moodiness" that they like on ER...

    They probably should have considered "adding" ERs in the past like they have done with CSI and Law & Order.

    ER: New York...ER: Los Angeles...ER: Hawaii [​IMG]

    After nearly 10 seasons, I am not sure what direction they should take the show in. Maybe the formula has been milked to death...I dunno...

    Frankly, though, if Law & Order can stay around and still be interesting, then I suppose this show can too for quite a while...

    What they need (and I hate to sound sexist) are some "better" male characters on the show. The reason people tune in during the early years was for Anthony Edwards, George Clooney, Eriq LaSalle and Noah Wyle.

    The show's focus has turned way too much to the women on the show.

    In my opinion, Luca has never become the character that we have wanted. He continually gets portrayed as the "bad boy"...Clooney had a similar rep, but there was something likable about his rebelliousness...with Luca it just starts to grate on you...

    Pratt is pretty good. I like his character, but he is trying too hard to be another Benton...it hurts.

    There are far too many characters and too little focus on any one of them...except (it seems to me) for Abby.

    To me, Abby is not a strong enough character to carry a prime time show.

    They need to add a film actor of some stature who has fallen in the ranks and is now a b or c list actor...like Kiefer Sutherland on "24."

    They can't be afraid of having some "older" characters. "CSI" has older males in the leads, and all of them are ratings winners (they even do alright with the younger set).

    They should see if they could hire Donnie Wahlberg who was very good in "Boomtown" and the independent film "Diamond Men."

    Bring in a character that isn't "moody," but a character who might have a normal life and work as a surgeon up in the OR to provide variety.

    It might be nice to have that character be an older TV vet who was popular in the past...like Tom Selleck or Gerald McRaney...or even someone like Jonathan Frakes...

    Or maybe someone like Peter Horton who played Gary on "thirtysomething" in the mid 80s.

    If Corbin Bernsen can be on "General Hospital" then there are numerous actors from the past who could step in and provide some new flavor to the show.

    There are a lot of ways to reenergize the show. I think that they have tried too hard to make the cast "politically correct."
     
  11. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    The thing that Law & Order has had that makes it somewhat unique is that each episode is entirely driven by one through line of story, and somewhat disconnected from other shows. It's a self-contained vehicle, ie, if you miss six eps, and come back *eh* it's still a one show/one story method. Whereas ER is somewhat of a soap opera, and that makes it difficult to sustain over a longer period of time.

    I think what has hurt ER though, is something L&O did well in spin offs: put lots of attention back on what the plot of the show is rather then the overarching bit of the characters. I always felt like ER was at it's best when you had a lot of patient interaction and when you developed feelings for "this is what the patient is going through".. ER has strayed from that more and more, and the patients have somewhat become backdrops "this is the patient Abby uses as a starter" "this is the patient who people make fun of" and so on. I was watching some of the older episodes on TNT, and I always appreciated the "let's talk about what this means to your son" and so on kind of moments.. those are happening less and less, as we spend our time chasing people down in hotels and arguing over child care, and so forth.

    I mean, I love the main characters, but let the events of the ER drive the action more.
     
  12. Michael Martin

    Michael Martin Screenwriter

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    I think you're correct. At the same time, I think the writing staff is having a very hard time coming up with traumas and cases that aren't complete rehashes of what long-time viewers have already seen.

    In addition to that, I think an utter lack of logic to plotting and story arcs and extremely inconsistent characterization have really hurt the quality of the show. I used to watch every Thursday; now I just hear the show while my wife watches and I read or work on the computer. Watching the first two seasons on DVD simply brings it home: the show has completely lost its ability to create and believably portray three-dimensional people we can like and care about. They've even managed to make Carter pretty much a cipher for the plot; I have no sense of who he is at all. The whole Abby-Luka-Carter thing was the death rattle of the show for me.
     
  13. Jonny P

    Jonny P Supporting Actor

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    Add to all of this the fact that Romano became an even worse caricature of the caricature that he was, and yeah, I really agree with the two preceding posts.

    The first season of "ER" is some of the best drama to ever air on TV. There was an "electric" quality about it.

    It is possible that the producers (and network) have difficulty attracting "top talent" to write and direct for the show these days. The first season had Mimi Leder (who went on to direct "Deep Impact") and Quentin Tarantino direct. It had a good cast of stars that knew they were a part of the hottest drama on TV (when there weren't that many good dramas).

    The chemistry between Clooney and Edwards was good. They made good friends on the show. The show had some wild plots, but nothing ever so far-fetched that it left you scratching your head.

    There probably isn't a whole lot left to do as far as the medical subplots go, but the fact remains that Law & Order repeats itself again and again. It simply remains interesting because the writers make the "crimes" the main motivator on the plot
     
  14. Trenton McNeil

    Trenton McNeil Second Unit

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    Killing off Romano was the best thing I've seen done on Television. Ever. Gave me hope for the show.
     
  15. Jonny P

    Jonny P Supporting Actor

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    By the way....

    The season 11 premiere was the first "original" episode of "ER" to ever lose the time slot.

    It lost to "Without a Trace" on CBS.

    It makes one wonder if this might be the beginning of the end for "ER."
     
  16. Jason_V

    Jason_V Producer

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    As much as I've enjoyed some recent shows ("nicu" from last season for one), I think next year may very well be ER's last. With Noah leaving at the end of this year, it leaves NBC/WB one year to bring back some favorites and mount a "say goodbye" campaign. Would it not be excellent to see Carol, Doug and the girls? How about the return of Maggie Doyle, Peter Benton and scores of others? Granted, if everyone came back, then it would seem like a stunt...

    One of the worst and most disgusting episodes in recent memory is the one where Weaver finds the dildo in her locker. With the suspects-John, Susan, Luca, Abby and Gallant-I can't imagine any of them actually doing it. They're all mature professionals. That was when I knew the show was going down hardcore. It doesn't seem like there's any passion anymore; the actors look like they're going through the motions to collect a paycheck.

    It's sad because this used to be the best show on TV. We've gotten too many non-hospital related stories recently (Susan going to NY to find baby Susie, this insipid car chase, Carter/Luca in Africa, et al.) and the characters have become hollow shells of who they were.

    Storylines and characters are brought in and then dropped for no reason. ER used to excel at bringing people back again and again. I, for one, would like to see the fallout from the Alderman with syphillis from two year's back. Chances of that happening? None.
     
  17. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    I believe tonight's episode begins at 9:55 (according to TV Guide). Those using TIVO should plan accordingly.
     
  18. Jonny P

    Jonny P Supporting Actor

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    The actors that played residents in earlier years are older than the doctors on the show now.

    Ironically, producers keep cutting actors who are deemed "too old."

    A character that should have been cut years ago is Carrie Weaver. The lesbian angle is interesting, but since when did every character have to be a "special interest." It's turning into a hospital version of "Star Trek."

    In the early years, the show strived for interesting characters with interesting stories. The recent characters are stereotypical caricatures.
     
  19. Jason_V

    Jason_V Producer

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    ER nowadays is about shock value and not about the stories. Romano, Weaver and Corday used to have an excellent triangle going on: love, loathe, respect.

    I think one of the problems on the show is that new characters aren't being brought in with the future in mind. Kellie Martin's character from several years back could have been a good complement to Abby. Don't even get me started about killing off Gant (Omar Epps). He could have been the third leg of a powerful male trifecta (Abby, Weaver and Kellie Martin being the female equivalent). Instead, we get more angst from Luca, more angst from Carter, some stupid car chase for Chen and Pratt, Gallant leaving to "protect" Neela...it's frustrating.



    With Noah Wyle leaving this year and Goran Visnijc prolly following him, I doubt the last of the "old" guard will be written out of the show. Laura Innes is going to end up closing the hospital.

    This show needs a good kick in the pants. It's maddening because it has shown flashes of brilliance lately; someone just can't capture that week after week.
     
  20. Kristian

    Kristian Supporting Actor

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    Tonight's episode was nothing special. About the only thing that interested me was Carter's story, although the nightmare sequence at the beginning was over-the-top.

    Two episodes in and they've still done nothing with Shane West's character. Not only that, but they couldn't even keep the character consistent in the few seconds of screentime he's gotten. First he's a Doogie Howser type, now he's a Goth wannabe. What gives?

    The storyline with the "damaged girl" annoyed me. Not only was it kind of ridiculous that Abby and Neela would go through all that trouble at the end to reunite her with her parents, but the actress who played the girl was terrible. I suppose those not fluent in Spanish couldn't tell, but her dialogue delivery was just painful to listen to.

    I really hope this season gets better soon.
     

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