Plenty going on this week, in a busy and enjoyable episode. Patient of the Week #1, George, is having a stroke, brought on by anti-androgen medication which he’s self-administering. But why would he want to lower his testosterone levels? Well, it’s because he’s a paedophile, although one who has not – yet – assaulted any children, and wants to keep it that way. After being told he has to discontinue his medication, he leaves hospital and ups the ante by attempting to castrate himself. He’s unsuccessful, but the doctors decline to complete the job for him – there’s no medical reason to do so – until his testicles are beyond repair. So he has to suffer for a while until that state of affairs has been reached.
Patient #2 is Billy, who’s been brought in from juvenile custody after being beaten up because of a facial deformity caused by his father assaulting him. Shaun, Park, and Lim are on this one. Once again, the debate about what to do hinges on the definition of what is medically necessary: if he goes back to juvie the way he is he’ll get more of the same, but is that enough to justify risky and expensive surgery? Park, who thinks it is, tries to persuade Shaun over to his side by pointing to the similarities between his life and Billy’s: in particular, that both suffered at the hands of an abusive father. Park thinks this approach might work because Shaun has been practising empathy. (On taking away Glassman’s driving licence because of his memory lapses, “How do you feel about not having a drivers’ licence?” “Pissed”, replies Glassman.)
And the race to become the new head of surgery has entered the final furlong, with Melendez and Lim neck and neck, and Melendez by no means above a very dirty trick which Lim finds about. Which means that, furious, she enters the operating theatre at the very moment when Melendez is preparing to commence the severing of George’s nadgers. “Dr Lim!” he greets her. “Are you a castration fan?” “Right now I am”, she snaps back, fixing Melendez with a death stare. “There’s a long and dusty trail littered with people who have underestimated me.”
George’s castration can’t take place after all, and his story reaches an inevitable conclusion when he kills himself. Morgan openly wonders whether the world is a worse place for his passing. Shaun comes up with a suggestion for operating on Billy, and as Billy had been planning suicide as well manages to save a life. And Andrews ultimately decides to remain as head of surgery himself; I didn’t know that was even a possibility. Lim and Melendez retreat to a bar to lick their wounds; and possibly each other as well, judging by the body language. I might be wrong, but I would be HERE for that hookup if it happens.