The Good Doctor Season 7 Episode 2 Review: Skin in the Game

Television


Bringing new medical residents into St. Bonaventure should be a breath of fresh air.


But The Good Doctor Season 7 Episode 2 ended up being more silly than serious between Charlie’s inability to stop talking and Dom’s fainting and inability to recognize a brain scan.


What are they teaching in that medical school? Sheesh.


I’m unsure how I feel about Charlie and her severe case of babble-itis.


As an autistic viewer, I was thrilled that The Good Doctor hired an autistic actress to play the character. It’s about time — there’s no reason for it to have taken this long for an actual autistic person to portray a character that shares the way their brain is wired.


But the way Charlie was written made her hard to take, which was a huge disappointment.


The series’ original premise was that Shaun’s autism made certain things more difficult for him, and it seemed the writers were trying to recreate that with Charlie. But she came off as a parody of neurodivergent people, with every negative trait and few positive ones.

Jared: Good observation.
Charlie: Positive affirmations are good for people with ASD.


I’m glad she loves being autistic. I love being autistic, too. But that message was way overdone as if the writers were trying to convince us that they were pro-autism through her dialogue.


And so far, she doesn’t have much of a personality outside of being autistic. Autistic people are still people. They have hopes and dreams, friends and family, hobbies and interests… it’s just that social skills can be more difficult for us, and our interests can sometimes become obsessions.


The Good Doctor has long taken care to depict mental health issues, especially autism, accurately, but they missed the mark by a mile this time.


Besides making Charlie a one-note character, they made her far too much like Shaun. Autistic people aren’t all alike, and so far, the only difference is that she talks too much, and he’s more on the quiet side.


All she has going for her is that she’s bubbly and eager to learn — and she will probably be crushed more and more to discover her hero doesn’t like her.


How disappointing!


Her relationship with Dom is odd, too. When they first arrived at St. Bonaventure, I thought he was her aide, not another medical student, because he was helping her function.


He spent most of the hour trying not to faint at the sight of blood — did he seriously not know this would be an issue when he started medical school>


Park and Dom’s surgery was serious, but the story came off as silly for various reasons. Dom fainting all the time didn’t help, and neither did Park deciding to use the promise of surgery to force the patient to clean up his act.

You gotta have skin in the game.

Patient


It wasn’t Park’s business whether the patient gave up gambling, got back together with his wife, or anything else. The patient consented to this risky surgery, and it was Park’s job to perform it. Period.


Morgan’s newfound support of Park was refreshing. Thank goodness these two have moved past their split for the sake of drama.


Still, I wasn’t sure her pep talk was enough. Park kept failing when doing a simulation of the surgery — shouldn’t that have been resolved before he did the real thing?


Fortunately, he got it right, especially since the entire hospital appeared to be observing.


Talk about pressure! I wouldn’t want all those people in the OR observatory if I had to do a high-stakes surgery.


I knew Park would succeed, though. It would have been pointless to go through all this only for the guy to die on the operating table.


Meanwhile, Glassman and Lim got locked into a ridiculous competition. I had hoped that The Good Doctor would avoid the tired TV trope of two co-presidents butting heads at every turn, but nope.


At least it wasn’t malicious. But still, it was silly, and we didn’t need any more comic relief. There was more than enough nonsense already.


At least Shaun and Glassman finally made up. Hopefully, this is the end of their feud.

Shaun: You should have met Steve the day he was born.
Glassman: Yes, I should have. I was mad because you humiliated me and made it so I can’t do surgery. Did you forget that?
Shaun: That is not an apology.


The baby-holding scene at the end of The Good Doctor Season 7 Episode 1 was a fakeout; Shaun was still so uncomfortable with Glassman that he almost didn’t go to Eden’s party because Glassman would be there.


Fortunately, Shaun learned something from his patient fighting with his sex worker daughter and concluded that “family doesn’t always have to agree.” I’m glad that storyline had a point because it was another example of doctors minding patients’ private business.


Charlie finding out that Grace was a sex worker seemed contrived, and it only took her a few seconds to spill a secret she’d been asked not to tell — yet another reason she’s not endearing so far.


Thank goodness Charlie doesn’t know about Lea’s struggles with supplementing breast milk with formula. Goodness knows what she would say — and to whom — if she found out about that!


Lea’s never been my favorite character, and I usually don’t enjoy the domestic stories. But I loved her conversation with Morgan.


Morgan was empathetic and supportive for the second week instead of snarky and annoying. I like this new and improved Morgan; let’s hope she stays around!


One of the best things about The Good Doctor is how supportive most women are of one another. The female friendships on this show are so much fun and far better than the catfights and petty jealousy many writers insist on giving to female characters.


What did you think, The Good Doctor fanatics?


Hit the big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and let us know.


The Good Doctor airs on ABC on Tuesdays at 10/8c.

Jack Ori is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. His debut young adult novel, Reinventing Hannah, is available on Amazon. Follow him on X.

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