Er 5/2/02

Patrick Sun

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Jun 30, 1999
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The passing of the torch from Mark Greene to Carter is finally complete. Korday sends the ER a letter that Mark wrote as a beautiful farewell letter to all of his co-workers, and concludes it with the news that Mark passed away.

As expected, the news hits the main characters in different ways: Weaver is almost incapacitated by the news, she has a hard time dealing with it because he stood up to her, while remaining as pragmatic and honorable as possible and doing his job. Susan cries anytime she has nothing to do or when she sits down. Carter is aware of what Mark meant to the ER and to him in how he developed Carter into the ER physician he is today, but Carter is shell-shocked, and can't make decisions fast enough to save a man whose airway is obstructed and Romano has to save the day with a clever tracheotomy. Romano is reflective of how the body can turn on itself in the form of cancer as he removes malignant growth in a girl (found only due to her being injured) that was hit by accident along with her father.

Most of the ER staff show up for a get together in Mark's honor at a bar in which they celebrated Mark's birthday in the past. Abby is drinking a huge margarita-like drink, gets buzzed, and Carter shows up and finds her, and wants to take her to an AA meeting. She bites his arm when he picks her up and puts her on his shoulder. They, instead, have coffee. Abby promises to go to an AA meeting that day.

Carter, pulling an all-nighter with sobering up Abby, has to be back at the ER early in the morning, and he and Pratt deal with Mark's diabetic, multi-medical problem patient. Finally that patient mistakes Carter for Mark (his eyesight must have gone bad on him with his diabetic condition), and Carter stays with the patient until he passes away (Carter dozes off to sleep).

Weaver interrupts Susan and Carter in the doctor's lounge while he is offering comfort to Susan. Weaver then starts to clean out Mark's locker, but can't bear to finish the job, and asks Carter to finish up, and he obliges. Weaver tells Carter that the rest of the ER will be looking to him to be the man in charge, to fill Mark's shoes. During the clean-up, the equivalent of passing the ER torch to Carter is done when Carter sees Mark's stethescope, and takes it as his own now. It was a nice scene.

Abby tells Carter that she did go to an AA meeting that day, and that she did it for him.

Later, in a case where some guy almost shoots off his face, Gallant has problems with the severity of the injuries and almost throws up. Carter tells Gallant to go get some air. Later history repeats itself when Carter goes to see Gallant outside and tells him that there are 2 kinds of doctors, those who shut down their feelings, and those who don't. No shame in being a doctor with feelings, and offers encouragement to Gallant. Mark did this with Carter 8 years ago when Carter was still a med student in the ER. Again, Carter is stepping up and carrying on the mantle to fill Mark's shoes.

Oh, Pratt's stuck at County General because he got his 3rd choice for hospitals to work at for his residency.
 

Frank Anderson

Senior HTF Member
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Jun 7, 1999
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2,667
Outstanding recap Patrick. I missed the episode due to a power outage and look forward to seeing the repeat.
 

AndyDL

Stunt Coordinator
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Jul 10, 2001
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63
I thought this episode was really well done. But also very sad.

The recreation of the shot where Green comes out to talk to Carter when he gets sick was just great.
Andy
 

Daniel Swartz

Second Unit
Joined
Mar 3, 2002
Messages
448
Great episode! Not a dry eye in the house. I'm intrigued as to how they are going to tie in next week's episode given the announcement of his death this week. Maybe something through Elizabeth's eyes?

Also, I missed last week's episode b/c of a ReplayTV snafu. Was there anything Dr. Greene related in that episode? Or was it only about the whole NY thing?

Thanks1
 

Daniel Swartz

Second Unit
Joined
Mar 3, 2002
Messages
448
Ah! That answered my question perfectly. Were there any actualy shots of Mark in Hawaii? Or was it just third-party conversations through Rachel and Elizabeth? Thanks again.
 

BrianShort

Supporting Actor
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Jan 18, 2000
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931
Daniel: Next weeks show is all in Hawaii, I assume showing Dr. Greene's final days.

Brian
 

Chuck C

Senior HTF Member
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Jan 6, 2001
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Patrick, once again, thanks for the beautiful review. I picked up on some things thanks to your run-down of last night's show (I didn't start watching ER religiously until 1997).



This was my favorite scene. I've said it before and I'll say it again, Carter is the man!

I'm pumped for the Hawaii episode next week. I'm sure it'll be pleasant and graceful to watch.
 

Chad R

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Jul 14, 1999
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Real Name
Chad Rouch
From someone who's watched the show since day one this episode didn't affect me in the least sorry to say.

With the marketing blitz that NBC put out about Mark's letter it wasn't a shock.

Finally, the bit with Carter at the end imitating the exact dialogue and camera agnles from the scene in the pilot episode was just too much. Not to mention Carter got sick on his first day, Gallant has been there several weeks. It was much more subtle and elegant the way Mark passed the torch to Carter with the 'you set the tone' line from a few weeks back harking back to Dr. Morgenstern's words to Mark during the pilot. To do the same thing again now, without Marks involvement, is beating a dead horse.
 

Steven L

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Nov 16, 1999
Messages
100
Corday's third page of the letter was a big shocker to me, because I knew he is going to be in next week's episode. I knew about the letter, but not about Corday's addendum to it - so that certainly worked on me.

I thought it was an excellent episode and certainly sets up Carter as the main man next season. Chad, I do agree with you; they did the passing the torch thing already with the "You set the tone" remark when Greene left the ER. The Gallant scene seemed to carry it on too long - I think less was more in this instance.

For those who missed the episode, I don't think anyone's mentioned that Weaver "came out" by going to the Greene get together with her partner (sorry, I can't remember her name right now).

I'm looking forward to Greene's last episode next week - I hope it doesn't turn me into a blubbering idiot!
 

Paul E. Fox II

Second Unit
Joined
Oct 5, 1998
Messages
354
Well, I was doing a little PC work for a friend and when Carter read that last page...I had to stop. Tears were flowing freely down my face! This of course really struck my wife as funny, which made me cry harder!

Now, I'll have to have a box of Kleenex next week, I'm sure!
 

Jim DiJoseph

Second Unit
Joined
Dec 13, 1999
Messages
271
Chad, I must disagree. I thought the exact camera angles and whatnot gave the scene power. To see Carter's reflection in the puddle coming out to give Gallant a pep-talk was riveting, IMHO. All I could think about was that first episode where Greene did the same thing. And as far as Gallant getting sick weeks after being there, I felt Carter explained that best..."Some doctors hold onto their feelings, and some doctors don't. If you're going to hold onto your feelings, Gallant, you're going to get sick sometimes." Great dialog.

Also, was anyone else aware of the "Mister Roberts" connection when Carter was reading the letters? Also a very powerful scene.
 

JerryLA

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Apr 1, 2001
Messages
139
Every time that ER has lost a cast member I've thought.... it just won't be as good, and I've been wrong every time. Although Dr. Greene has been a major player in this series I think Carter is ready to step up and handle the job. It's series like ER that take the time, and have the time, to develop characters into people you can identify with and care about. I don't really think ER has a long term life left, but certainly enjoy it on a weekly basis and hope they can continue the quality of stories they have in the past for a few more seasons. Looking forward to this weeks episode and stocking up on Kleenex.

Jerry
 

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