To start this episode of The Good Doctor, we see Shaun Murphy (Freddie Highmore) sitting down to enjoy his morning apple and yogurt, which is interrupted by his gorgeous neighbor Lea (Paige Spara), who crunches into his apple in the midst of venting about her power being cut off by the moody super. This prompts Shaun to go to the convenient store to pick himself an apple, where an armed gunman frantically shoots a young woman, Alaina, who is picking up waters to go on a hike with her boyfriend.
Next thing you know, Shaun is in the back of an EMT truck with the victim and the gunman, who was taken out with a bat by the clerk, heading to San Jose St. Bonaventure Hospital. “What the hell is he doing here? It’s his fault. This is all his fault!” the boyfriend, Brandon, played by Zachary Gordon, yells in the ER, pointing at Shaun. Shaun wants to stay and help, and although Dr. Melendez (Nicholas Gonzalez) tries to send him home, Dr. Murphy insists he’d prefer to be in the hospital and Melendez allows him into surgery.
As Melendez works on his gunshot wound patient, Dr. Claire Browne (Antonia Thomas) works on the gunman, who has a swastika tattooed on his chest. With only one OR available, Claire tries to push the victim into the operation, but it’s her Nazi patient, Leonard, that is more critical. The lead doctor, Dr. Chen, sends the gunman to the OR, while the victim is stabilized, and Claire is beside herself. She speaks up in the OR and is kicked out of surgery for letting her personal feelings get in the way of her Hippocratic Oath.
In another OR, Shaun helps Dr. Melendez in surgery while Dr. Jared Kalu questions the boyfriend’s accusations. Alaina starts to bleed out before Shaun jumps in with his quick thinking and masterful technique to save her, as Melendez holds her open. What a change from just a few episodes when he was ostracized from the whole team.
After seeing Dr. Aaron Glassman (Richard Schiff), Shaun flashes back to his panic in the store, when the gunman asks for his wallet and he doesn’t want to put his hands down — which he was originally asked to do. His panic resulted in Leonard panicking and accidentally shooting the Alaina in the store. Dr. Glassman immediately asks Dr. Melendez to send Shaun home, but after Melendez reveals that he deemed Shaun capable to continue his day, Glassman sends Shaun to see the hospital therapist. However, therapy is not helpful as Shaun just wants to get back to his rounds and treating people.
Dr. Chen practically “sentences” Claire to babysit the Nazi gunman overnight, and when treating him, she realizes he is also a drug addict. Leonard begs Claire for more painkillers, as he is immune to what they’ve given him, and when she declines him, he throws his tray of food at her. While Dr. Browne tries to get off the case, Melendez tells her she needs to “Shut up and stay on.” When she returns to insert his IV after it fell out, the gunman scoffs at Claire, “There must be a competent doctor around, you know what I mean.” As she turns around to get his IV and ignores his crude comment, his continues to insult her for her race and gender. “I didn’t go to college, I didn’t have no affirmative action like you did,” the addict says before Claire shoves the IV into his arm and he howls.
In another room, the Brandon chides Shaun for his behavior at the corner store. “All you had to do is give him her wallet!” He yells as Shaun checks the Alaina’s urine, which is a dark brown. “She needs dialysis, her kidneys are failing fast, this is the first stage of total organ failure,” Shaun discovers as her pulls the covers off to show her extremely swollen feet. After Melendez and Shaun bring Alaina’s levels back down to normal, Melendez approaches Brandon, telling him, “You don’t know her, and you don’t know him at all. Go home.”
Dr. Glassman is still reeling over Shaun’s traumatic morning in the corner store and reveals he feels it was his fault. “I convinced myself everything was fine, but you need help. Shaun, you need guidance much more than I can give you,” he tells him, before Shaun abruptly leaves. “I am suppose to be with my patient,” Shaun says before getting up.
Alaina’s “boyfriend” Brandon actually starts to admit that he takes the blame for the morning’s events. “I didn’t like her when I first saw her this morning. I wanted to blow her off and go to the store to get water for our hike where I wouldn’t be able to pay because I didn’t have my wallet, and neither would she, and we wouldn’t be able to hike. She’s here because of me,” he cries to Shaun. Immediately, Alaina begins to go into organ failure, and simultaneously, the the gunman struggles to breathe. Claire decides to perform surgery to relieve the pressure in the trachea before Dr. Chen could get there, and her quick thinking saves the gunman’s life. In the other OR, Shaun admits he was wrong about the victim going into organ failure but finds the bleed that was killing her. He then tells Dr. Kalu “Good work,” which lifts everyone’s spirits in the OR — teamwork! Another lifted spirit is Claire’s, who saves the life of her Nazi patient and then tells him off. Go girl!
After the victories of the day, Glassman sits at the same spot where he started the episode — a high school track field. Jessica Preston joins him, and sadly whispers “13 years ago today.” “Give her space, and she just drifted and drifted, everything I did, I did wrong,” Glassman reveals, talking about his late daughter. “You got lucky, she didn’t. If I was there more, if I stayed on her,” the doctor says with his head in his hands. “You’re there for him,” Jessica tells him.
At the end of the day, Lea knocks on Shaun’s door to apologize for storming out, while Shaun tries to apologize (in his way) for being honest. “Don’t start lying to me Shaun, you’re the only honest guy I know,” Lea tells him before pulling out a perfectly ripe apple and handing it over. After she goes into her apartment, Shaun knocks on her door and calmly states, “I made a mistake today and someone got hurt.” Following the vulnerable moment, Lea leans into his arms and folds him in a hug. I’m loving these two.
HollywoodLifers, I thought this episode was one of the best yet, especially by Antonia Thomas. What did you think? Let me know!