NBC *spoiler* for episode #11 - "Rock Paper Scissors"

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It seems they skipped over episode #10 at NBC Media Village...


ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS - episode #11

Airdate: January 11, 2000

OSCAR NOMINEE JAMES CROMWELL ('BABE') GUEST-STARS -- Dr. Benton's (Eriq La Salle) relationship with Cleo (Michael Michele) is further strained when the wayward teenaged girl (guest star Toy Connor) whom he's trying to help resists his efforts to move her out of Cleo's residence and into a foster home while a bishop (Oscar-nominated guest star James Cromwell, "Babe") who's injured in a fall takes an interest in the brooding Dr. Kovac (Goran Visnjic). Elsewhere: Kovac resents having to treat a drunken driver (guest star John Lacy) who's responsible for tearing apart a young family; as Dr. Greene (Anthony Edwards) recovers from his surgery, Dr. Corday (Alex Kingston) recents some jolting news about her malpractice suit; Dr. Carter (Noah Wyle) is urged by Abby (Maura Tierney) to confront Dr. Weaver (Laura Innes) about his recent temptation to take narcotics; Weaver clashes with Dr. Legaspi (guest star Elizabeth Mitchell) over personal as well as professional issues.

-- JLS (ewwhatevr@aol.com), December 14, 2000


" Elsewhere: Kovac resents having to treat a drunken driver (guest star John Lacy) who's responsible for tearing apart a young family..." Oh GOD. Not ANOTHER Righteous Luka storyline!?!

-- Tracy (bankybooda@aol.com), December 14, 2000.

I have to say that I am glad for another "righteous Luka" sotryline, not because of the story itself, but because it means maybe, just maybe, tptb remember who Luka was last year. He is just so completely different than he was last year that I can't even recognize him. Maybe tptb can develop why Luka feels he needs to make moral choices for his patients. What are his motivations?

I want to see where Luka was going before tptb decided to have him kill someone (and again, not bring that up after 2 episodes) and before tptb decided to totally destroy Luka's character to make everyone swoon over how *wonderful* the dashing Dr. Carter is. I mean, don't tptb realize that so many of the teenagers who are watching ER are doing it to see Dr. Carter and that he could turn completely evil and mean, and everyone would still swoon? We know everything about Dr. Carter. We've been learning about him for 7 years now and while I appreciate that the writers need to find something purposeful for him to do, I resent that they are totally destroying other characters to do it. Last year Luka showed so much promise at the beginning. He had an interesting past, some character quirks that need some exploring, and not to mention he was not painful to look at. Then they totally ruined his character to further Carol, and now they are doing it to him again to further Abby and Carter.

This is a lot longer than I thought it would be, but basically, I think it is nice that tptb remember a little of who they started to develop last year.

-- Rachel (rachelrr@ivillage.com), December 14, 2000.

This spoiler almost attempts to answer questions about episodes preceding it. Some kind of option must occur in New York for Mark to have surgery, whether it be exploratory or any other kind. Carter's urge for trust may not be warranted or justified. Kerry's relationship may not be as charming and happy as it seemed at first glance. Interesting.

-- Joanne (bucklind@hotmail.com), December 14, 2000.

Thanks JLS! BTW, I thought someone (it may have been you, I don't remember) said that in the 10th episode someone would visit Mark and Elizabeth, and James Belushi (sp?) would be guest starring? It was either on this board or at the newsgroup.

-- Cammie (rmaelhorn@home.com), December 14, 2000.

Wow, sounds like another greatly depressing episode! Really, is there any uplift in there? Mark is recovering, Elizabeth gets more bad news (I assume) on top of all this other stuff, etc etc....I am wondering how Abby will try to urge Carter to talk to Weaver...will he get defiant against her too?

-- Elaine (mrsclooney78@hotmail.com), December 14, 2000.

Reagrding Carter's urge to take narcotics again in this episode, it's interesting that, as JLS posted earlier, he'll be going to visit Chase in the next eppy (12). I wonder what tempts him to take narcotics again-- stress, something else?

-- samira (matb_west@chickmail.com), December 14, 2000.

I'm curious to what Carter's reaction will be to Chase when thinking that it could have been him without the caring and presistence of his friends and co-workers. Just this week, Carter was complaining about the short leash they were keeping him on, maybe after seeing Chase he will be more appreciative of it? I've been wondering how Chase is doing as well, so this should be very interesting. In regards to why, I'm sure anything could have tempted him, especially the way things have been going in his life with patients, going back to work, stress, Deb, etc.

-- Joanne (bucklind@hotmail.com), December 14, 2000.

Hopefully, Carter visit with Chase will be a positive one for Carter. Maybe, it will give Carter more patience with all of his temporary restrictions no matter how frustrating some of them are.. Eventually , they will all be lifted, but they will all start gradually being lifted as Carter proves certain things along the way. His attitude could delay it if he keeps it up. He has already has some of his restriction lifted. He needs to havea positive attitude. I really do hope we see Carter address the emotional fallout from his knifing that contributed greatly to him developing a dependency in the first place.

-- Brenda (jckwfan@aol.com), December 14, 2000.

I think the one that will be the most surprised at Carter being tempted to take drugs will be....Carter. I honestly do not believe that HE believes he is a true addict. He stated in last weeks epi that he did not need to take the Naltrexone. IMHO, in his mind he was taking the narcotics to fight the pain and fatigue after his injuries. He probably thinks that now that the reasons for taking the drugs are gone, why should he need them?

His lack of attention at the AA meetings, his attitude toward his restrictions at work and toward his superiors all points to a frame of mind not conducive to a continued recovery. What did the guy at the rehab center tell him? "...deep down you think this is something that just happened to you.." I think he was right. Carter needs to stand up at one of those AA meetings and say "My name is John and I'm an addict", and really mean it.

On the other hand, there is a vast difference between being tempted to do something, and actually doing it. I think telling Weaver would be a big mistake. IMVHO, Abby needs to rethink that advice.

-- N Wilson (nwilson@wko.com), December 14, 2000.

Well, I would think that it would be in the best interest for Kerry to at least know that Carter was tempted, so that she can look out for him, as well as the ER. I think Carter and Kerry, even though she is boss, have a good friendship, and I think she'll first try to help him get through before adding additional restrictions, or reprimanding him.

One thing though about Abby giving him advice-- wasn't he supposed to get a real sponser? Whatever happened to that whole issue? It's fairly obvious, I think, that Abby isn't really in the right frame of mind to deal with Carter's issues as well as her own (and perhaps Luka's).

-- samira (matb_west@chickmail.com), December 14, 2000.

Yes, I agree with Rachel about the Luka factor. I really liked him last season. He was extremely likeable and attractive. I am unnerved about his dramatic change of character this season, but what IS it like to leave a war-torn country, losr your entire family, and then have all the bad memories haunt you after a violent episode resulting in a man's death? It's good that he's more than just a 2-D "nice" character. HOWEVER, it would be good to actually explore his issues more deeply than the writers are doing currently.

As far as Carter goes, yeah, he hasn't taken his disease seriously at all this season, so it totally doesn't surprise me that he fell off the wagon (and he did, regardless of whether or not he induced vomiting to get rid of the drugs). You could see the fall coming a mile away. I think after what happened last season, he needs to do some SERIOUS healing, and he hasn't even scratched the surface yet. So I'll bet his story will be quite interesting. I know the rules of AA don't allow for m/f sponsorships, but he's lucky to have his sponsor working in the same environment he's in--that's a lot of support!

-- Lee S.S. (Binkyinc@xsite.net), December 15, 2000.

I think if Luka's actions has taught us anything is that life is arbitrary rather than sacred. I've been reading older threads (Re: "May Day" episode) and, in conjunction with the "Paper, Rock, Scissors" spoiler, we can deduce (if we haven't already) that Luka has his own set of morals. His refusal to treat the sniper in "May Day" stems from his bitterness toward those who have wreaked havoc in his native country, those who are responsible for his family's death. Maybe his refusal was wrong in principle but you can't tell that to someone who feels more sympathy for an innocent victim (Nicholas) than someone who made the conscious choice to use violence for his own ends (the sniper). As for Gloria the pregnant girl, this subplot angered people only because it challenged their opinions on abortion (flame me all you like- it is how I feel). But really, can one feel sympathy for a woman who is either crazy or malicious enough to kill her own unborn son? I was waiting for him to operate on her and save the baby. Would it have been a violation? The state is arbitrary on the matter of life and death and patients and doctors are, too. One day, someone is important enough to save and the next day, a DNR is in order or a child in utero ceases to be a potential dimpled bundle of joy. Now, according to the spoiler, Luka is upset of having to treat a drunk driver who has ruined a family. So why is Luka subject to all kinds of flaming and praise? Maybe he is an arbitrary Catholic who upholds the sanctity of life for some but not for others. Maybe he is a man who has seen too much violence and this is his way of fighting back. Whatever it may be, Luka is inherently human and this is what I love. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I can sometimes relate to how he feels. He feels angry that those who hurt others are not punished (conversely, he is not there to punish but to heal). I love this Luka, I truly do. It is complex and emotional and, agree with him or not, compelling to watch. This is just my opinion.

-- joan8018 (joan8018@my-deja.com), December 20, 2000.

In the preview for rock-scissors-paper, the bishop is shown telling Luka "Everyone deserves to be comforted in their darkest hour"; presumably talking about the drunk driver. Two things struck me about that. First, as has been mentioned, Luka has a very black-and-white way of looking at things, which has consistently gotten him into trouble. I think not only are his personal demons going to get exorcised, but he'll be forced to evaluate how he treats his patients. Maybe realize that ALL his patients' lives are sacred and deserve respect. The second thing I thought of when hearing the quote was how Abby was there for him in his 'dark hour'. Maybe he's also got to forgive himself for turning briefly to the "dark side", considering how judgemental he tends to be toward others.

-- why? (tkjjd@yahoo.com), January 06, 2001.

And take into consideration that this is a mother and daughter here...very close to home. (though a bit too reminiscent to last week's show, but we are getting the patient stories back like everyone wanted)

-- Elaine (mrsclooney@hotmail.com), January 06, 2001.

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