"Monday Mornings" Episode 1x02 Discussion Thread: "Deus Ex Machina" - Jamie Bamber News — LiveJournal
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"Monday Mornings" Episode 1x02 Discussion Thread: "Deus Ex Machina"
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asta77 From: asta77 Date: February 12th, 2013 05:48 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
The one thing I find frustrating right now is there are great moments where I see the potential for the show, but then something happens where I want to shake someone. Mostly David E Kelly.

I'll start with the bad and work my way to the good. Ty's hallucinations. Please say we are done with them. I'm all for Ty's guilt playing out for awhile. And I want to see Jamie playing Ty's guilt because we know how well he can play guilt. But the way he's being forced to show that guilt? Nooooo. I actually cringed during the teaser. A dream involving 'Dead child haunting me' and 'peers laughing at me' just screamed lazy writing. And, later, we were supposed to buy he says dead people (or their mom) in the hallways and...he believes it? O_o I was especially upset by that moment since I was enjoying the scene up until that point - the patient asking Ty if he was good at his job and Jamie's PERFECT, wordless response. :)

The Tricia case was a mixed bag. It's an interesting question, "Is a thirteen year old able to make a decision about her health? Can she choose between life and death?" And the young actress was great. I did wonder if Tricia was acting old for age, but then I realized thirteen year olds today are more mature (and have to deal with more) than when I was thirteen and being forced to deal with a potentially fatal form of cancer will make one grow up fast. My problems with the story were ultimately that three adult men were, at one point, ganging up on her to change her mind and a heavy-handedness evident throughout (which remains a justifiable criticism of the entire show).

Tina's turn on the hot seat I felt was a successful storyline for many reasons. One, it's obvious, with the lawsuit, this story will have time to develop over several episodes, at least. We got to see a pissed off and kind of snarky Tina (which I liked and is a far more interesting Tina than the one on the book). And I found something fascinating about the case (which I didn't in the book). In the episode, the surgery gone (sort-of) wrong has less to do with Michelle's competency as a surgeon, but asks should Tina have had a more active role in explaining and performing the surgery, give the patient's career? Not that she was entitled to better care, but while most people would give up their sense of smell and taste readily if it meant living, would a chef? Would the women have made a different choice or wanted another opinion before proceeding? Was this another case of arrogance on the part of the doctor? And isn't Hardin guilty of the same in convincing Tricia to have surgery?

On the Tina/Ty front, it looks like they are having an affair off-screen (or had?). Her "Honey" made me sit up in my seat. I know I don't call any of my colleagues 'honey'. ;p Still, it's being played as rather one sided. She used a term of endearment. She confessed to Sydney she may be in love with him. yet, we've seen no hints of affection from Ty. So, I'm getting an odd vibe from the 'relationship' right now.

Things that were awesome (not counting Jamie ;) - Buck and Sydney. OK, Buck wasn't awesome in the sense he is an awesome guy, but I just love what Bill Irwin is doing with the character. Buck barely registered as two dimensional on the page, but now I want to see more of himy. And he had the best speech from the podium. AND it made me think. I also think he was, genuinely, a tiny bit sorry for his behavior in front of the donor's mother.

And Sydney is just a hoot. Putting the doctor stuff aside, I feel I can identify with her the most of any of the characters. OK, it may be because I'm petite, opinionated and, occasionally, have a big mouth. ;D I also like her developing relationship with Dr. Lieberman. I'm actually feeling more chemistry between them then Tina and Ty right now.

Ok, I'm probably forgetting about stuff, but I have lunch to eat. Perhaps more later.
onlyariana From: onlyariana Date: February 12th, 2013 07:25 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
I was feeling overly negative but you hit on most of the things I was having problems with. Especially the cringe inducing teaser and the abuse of power in the 13 year-old girl case.

I'm hoping that Tina is making sure Ty isn't getting anywhere near an operating room while having hallucinations!!! In a show that's all about neurosurgery doesn't hallucinating seem like a set up for him to have a brain tumor? Or at the minimum get checked out for one?

I had some issues with Tina's turn at the podium. It isn't just about Tina, prepping her for her deposition was a great idea but everyone there is supposed to be learning from the cases. So all the doctors were learning that letting a resident do something for the first time might get them in trouble. So that'd be less chances for the residents to learn and that they'd likely be less competent when they complete their residency.

I did find it funny that Tina's asking Sydney if it's too soon to date Dr. L after almost being engaged when she's married and (who knows what) with Ty. Sydney continues to be wonderful. Yelling at him to ask her out was kind of beautiful and any man who responds to that by asking her out is a perfect fit for her. He's just dorky enough. <3

Gato is like House, but with feelings. :-D I miss having House on my tv and this show is helping to fill that void. Villanueva with the brilliant and sort of off the wall deductions and Jamie as the scruffy Brit faking an American accent. But with the bonus of having all his hair, thank goodness for oatmeal. ;-)

Overall I think problems I had with the pilot aren't here. There's obviously not the crammed in feeling now that they've introduced everyone. Buck's oddness is dialed back and he's being more than just a foil. Jamie's accent isn't as mumbly. Tina had stuff to do that didn't feel tacked on. I think the show took a huge step in the right direction.
zegeekgirl From: zegeekgirl Date: February 12th, 2013 10:22 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
OK, I'm going to get this out there in the hope that it jinxes it from actually happening! (False hope? Fuck it...)

In a show that's all about neurosurgery doesn't hallucinating seem like a set up for him to have a brain tumor? Or at the minimum get checked out for one?

In the book, one of the doctors does develop a brain tumor. It is NOT Ty. (I won't say who it is, because if it does happen in the show as it does in the book, it'd be spoilery to say the least.) Obviously, they could tweak the plotlines and give it to Ty instead but FOR CHRISSAKES, SHOW, NO. JUST NO. ;)
onlyariana From: onlyariana Date: February 12th, 2013 10:46 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
Yes. I didn't say anything about it because I didn't want to be spoilery but that's exactly what I was thinking. It would be a TOTALLY different story line with Ty vs. the character from the book. There really wouldn't be any good storytelling reasons for it beyond the shock value so I hope they wouldn't go that route.

Partly it was the girl, Trisha and how she said her mom made her get checked out because she heard God in a sonata. If that requires a check up I would think hallucinations would as well.
zegeekgirl From: zegeekgirl Date: February 13th, 2013 05:13 am (UTC) (Link Me)
There really wouldn't be any good storytelling reasons for it beyond the shock value so I hope they wouldn't go that route.

Completely agree. The context in which it is applied to the character in the book is very specific.
asta77 From: asta77 Date: February 13th, 2013 01:12 am (UTC) (Link Me)
So all the doctors were learning that letting a resident do something for the first time might get them in trouble. So that'd be less chances for the residents to learn and that they'd likely be less competent when they complete their residency.

I didn't get that impression. I took it more as a criticism of Tina not doing *her* job, which was talking to the patient, thoroughly explaining the possible consequences of the surgery and obtaining consent, personally. This wasn't made clear, but I'm not sure residents, alone, can obtain consent for surgery. This may yet come up in the deposition. And while I think it was fine for Michelle to do the surgery (and CG is a teaching hospital), was Tina around to supervise? Could she have stepped in and prevented the nerve from being damaged? Could it have been a good teaching moment?

Yeah, there was a certain amount of hypocrisy in Tina wondering if Sydney was rushing into something with Lieberman while she is (likely) cheating on her husband. And if her marriage is bad, then end it. I've seen nothing thus far to make this infidelity acceptable.
zegeekgirl From: zegeekgirl Date: February 13th, 2013 05:22 am (UTC) (Link Me)
Back that up, though; is infidelity ever, in a real sense, acceptable? ;) No, particularly not when it drags on in secret forever, but people make questionable decisions all the time and it does make for good character drama. The challenge the show will have moving forward is to make us invested in what happens to Ty/Tina even if we might not approve of infidelity, or feel as though Tina's estrangement from her husband doesn't merit her sneaking around behind his back, or are actively rooting for them. Whatever the case may be. I would agree that up to now, that isn't quite where we're at yet for all the reasons already mentioned, and we do know from the cast's interviews that there won't be a huge amount of time dedicated to the ins and outs of relationships, but they *can* sell it. It's early days yet.
asta77 From: asta77 Date: February 13th, 2013 01:14 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
Actually, yes, there are instances I feel infidelity is acceptable or perhaps a better term would be understandable. If a spouse is in an abusive relationship and fears for their safety if they leave, and falls into an affair with someone they care about and vice versa, I would hope they'd get out of the marriage, but can understand why not and why they are doing what they are doing. Also, if the couple has an 'open marriage' and relationships outside the marriage are known and condoned by both, well, that's their business and not cheating in the widely accepted sense. I don't see DEK going with either of those scenarios. And, unless they suddenly introduce children, an argument can't even be made for Tina and her husband staying together for their sake. Granted, we've only had one brief scene of Tina and her husband, but what we saw struck me as a marriage where they've grown apart, are living separate lives and aren't really *in* love anymore. So why go through the motions? Why, if you think you're in love with another man, stay with your husband and be unhappy?

And I could go into a whole other rant that would involve bringing up BSG so I'll stop now. ;p
zegeekgirl From: zegeekgirl Date: February 13th, 2013 10:02 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
If a couple has an open marriage, I wouldn't even consider outside partners to *be* infidelity. By the terms which two consenting spouses have chosen to define their marriage in that scenario, no one's being unfaithful. ;) Conversely, even though it's a dire truth that spousal abuse is socially acceptable in many cultures (even some corners of own), to my mind the very idea of it is akin to infidelity in the broader sense of the word (i.e. disloyalty, breach of trust); trusting or having faith in a partner who hits you is a complete anathema to me. So, casting the first stone n' all that...

What I'm trying to say is I'm with you on how one loves or is loved is, yes, totally their business and violence is NEVER okay. That said, even if such circumstances are not in play, plenty of people make lousy decisions that hurt rather than help their circumstances in a marriage; playing in that sandbox for dramatic effect in a show is not something I am compelled to write off unless it drags out too long or the characters aren't allowed to grow as a result.

(I brought it back round to topic, I did! ;) )
zegeekgirl From: zegeekgirl Date: February 12th, 2013 10:07 pm (UTC) (Link Me)
Yeah, there's a lot of crossover in your takeaway from the episode and mine. ;) Particularly on the Tina and Buck storylines! And in generally agreeing that Sydney's awesome. ;) However...

- I don't think I had quite the same extreme reaction to the dream sequence as you did; yes, it's a device we have seen many times and it might have been handled differently. (What if Ty turned over to Hooten's desk and Quinn was sitting there in a little lab coat, JUDGING HIM. That would have been unexpected, no? ;) Yes, I'm goddamned serious.) I think the visceral nature of Jamie's performance there kept it afloat; like I mentioned above, the hallucination scene is more problematic for me.

- The shift in focus in Michelle & Tina's surgery case IS interesting, and I think encouraging in the way I indicated above that the show plans to really develop Michelle's character more. SPOILER if you haven't read the book!>>>>> In the book, Michelle is being set up to be dismissed at the end, which circles back to her being in a particular place at a particular time when something very bad happens (won't spoil that aspect, there's no need.) Anyway, obviously the show has no need to go there (at least not yet) so it's nice to see them revise the dilemma as needed.

- You actually make a good point that I didn't consider... maybe Ty and Tina did sleep together but called it off, and that's what she's referring to with Sydney? Either way, I'd argue the show *is* being coy about it. It does feel one-sided because Ty is dealing with his angst, but also... how much of Tina's behavior is a combination of her feelings for him plus her natural inclination to be that "umbrella" for everybody? I think the answer is somewhere in the middle.
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