Inside Benton's head (in "May Day") : LUSENET : ER Discussions : One Thread

I got up early this morning after rewatching the epi last night. I tried to watch Benton from the beginning in the intervention room and to just imagine what he was thinking. He looked pretty peeved but I think that his mood was directed at himself and his co-workers. Here he is a big doc and he had the truth before his eyes for months and so did everyone else and look how they screwed up. He stayed in the background after Carter came into the room and said nada. He just watched with an interest that none of his fellow docs could match. But the difference was that when they thought they had done all they could do, he wasn't about to let Carter go. He chased him from the locker room to the outside. Think of all the times that Benton couldn't make it home for birthday parties, girlfriends, Reese and now for John Carter he leaves all of his patients on a split second notice and jumps on a plane. He and Carter are so different in the ways that they express their emotions but the wonderful thing is that they know each other so well that they can read each other to a T. Benton knew that Carter was in terrible emotional and physical pain and did not have a friend in the world. No one had pushed into his world in the past few months to really take care of these wounds. But Carter also knew that Big Bad Benton didn't chase anyone out the door unless he really cared about them. (Remember when Benton made Carter come to his mom's for Thanksgiving dinner because he knew Carter needed a friend?) So.....I ramble! But Benton's silence in that room was overpowering. The camera kept coming back to him so that we could see it. It was like he was thinking, " You all take your best shot at getting Carter to go along with this. Try the ambush method. If he goes along with it---fine. But before this thing is said and done, I'll make sure the guy that I love like a brother is OK." One more thing. When Benton takes Carter into his huge arms and it looks like he kisses the top of his head, then he looks away. That look into the distance said to me,---How was I so blind as to not see what this guy was going through? Complete disbelief in his own failure to be there. One of the strongest scenes ever. I hope everyone out there has a "Benton" looking out for them.

-- joan (, May 20, 2000


Response to Inside Benton's head

Good points Joan! I noticed the look on Benton's face when Mark and Kerry were talking to him and at first thought he was in denial over Carter's problem. But I think you are is more that he is mad at himself for missing what was right in front of his face. I didn't realize (I don't have this on tape so I was unable to rewatch it) that Benton did not say a word when they confronted Carter. The writers did such a fantastic job with how this played out. Benton running after Carter and Carter finally breaking down in his arms was so great!! Benton is the quiet, strong type (obviously) but we know he loves Carter by the scene of him running down the stairs in All in The Family (which gives me goose bumps just thinking about it) and last night. I really hope we see some more scenes like this with Benton and Carter next season!

-- amanda (, May 20, 2000.

Response to Inside Benton's head

Some of Benton's guilt over "not seeing" what was happening with Carter could go back to the death of Dennis Gant. Benton might still blame himself a little for Dennis's death and could have been thinking that he almost let something similar happen to Carter. Those last scenes, from the intervention to the plane, were so powerful. I have never been a big fan of Benton, but everything he did was so right. When Benton grabbed his coat and went after Carter, I was going, "Go, Peter!" And Carter's expression after he hit Benton was priceless. Carter's story and Benton's involvement just made this episode for me.

-- Annie (, May 20, 2000.

Response to Inside Benton's head

All of you couldn't have said it better!!!! The last scenes with Benton and Carter outside the ambulance bay and on the plane, made the whole episode!! It seemed to put everything in place for the Benton/ Carter relationship. It made years of watching ER worth it!!

-- Paula (, May 20, 2000.

Response to Inside Benton's head

What I loved about the Benton/Carter scenes, and I think others have mentioned this also, is that it stayed so true to Benton's character. Benton suddenly didn't become this mushy, all-gentle comforter. He was probably at a loss as to what to say or do to Carter, and his yelling at Carter to get into the van were reminiscent of the days when he was Carter's teacher and Carter had to do as he said. But-oh, his actions were so perfect; the quiet way in which he hugged him, that little kiss-- it's so true, actions speak louder than words!

-- samira (, May 20, 2000.

Response to Inside Benton's head

I'm glad you guys saw Benton's reaction (or non-reaction) at the intervention as a personal reflection. When I first saw him sitting there with his arms crossed, he looked to me like he did when Romano was chewing him about about not being able to read a prescription several weeks ago. For a little while I thought he looked bored or like, "I really don't want to be here". Of course, my view changed when he ran after Carter. Since many people seem to think Benton had that nonchalant look on face because he was thinking about what all has happened, I will go with that perspective.

-- Jane (, May 21, 2000.

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