After hitting its deliriously enjoyable Neal-centric peak a few weeks ago, Code Black seems to have settled back down into its comfort zone, this latest instalment being the third in a run of entirely watchable, perfectly passable but largely unremarkable eps.
Oddly – since he is a jerk – the show seems determined to make Dr Savetti happen, and, in fairness, this ep comes closest to making us feel sorry for him: despite himself, he bonds with an ailing, but keenly perceptive, HIV-positive patient, and in the course of it, we learn that Mario had a terrible childhood, may currently be struggling with his sexuality, has to deal with an unsettling medical scare and understands all the week’s allusions to Titanic, no matter how much he denies it. However – since he is a jerk – he manages to squander much of the sympathy the story (and his scene partner) try and build up for him by being a total asshat to Angus, and while I applaud the writers for trying to create a complex, multi-layered, prickly character, the problem is I’d rather spend my weekly trip to Angels Memorial with almost anyone else they can dig up.
I say “almost” of course, because Dr Leanne Rorish is still being her soundbite-spouting self, always preaching, never praising, and this week, bizarrely, flirting with her fellow obnoxious know-it-all Dr Guthrie Junior. There’s a truly bizarre sequence when, unhappy that a junior nurse is doing her job, DGJ throws a tantrum and a laptop, and Leanne, instead of being furious at this toddler-like display of temper and wastefulness, gets all starry-eyed – and quite embarrassingly – into it.
Of course, she still turns him down – because Secret Pain etc – but I imagine they’ll have some sort of smooch before the season/series finale. Probably BEFORE my beloved Neal (Raza Jaffrey) and Christa (Bonnie Somerville) at this rate; this week, the usually cool Neal is oddly apologetic and awkward (but still insanely handsome) about their breakfast Bloody Marys, getting all worked up because Christa might be thinking about other things (dude – if ONLY) when she has to take the “Code Bag” and run around the hospital resuscitating people. To her credit, however, Christa essentially tells him to get a grip, and resuscitates everybody she needs to in super-competent fashion because, as well as being super-nice, Christa is great. As is Neal, of course, who’s no less charming when he’s bashful, even if he has nothing to be bashful about. Swoon.