We're getting ready for winter break, folks, but this episode was the perfect finale to what has been a fantastic fall for our beloved
I have always enjoyed the holiday-themed episodes, and tonight was no exception. While this one probably wouldn't rank up there with some of the classic Christmases in the ER in my book (remember the one where Jeannie Boulet put her star on top of the ER Christmas tree?), it did have the distinction of featuring
Goran Visnjic dressed as a reindeer. Just when I thought Luka couldn't get any more adorable, I am proven wrong.
Despite a healthy dose of romances old and new, it wasn't all mistletoe and merriment. Luka and Abby learned that Ames filed a restraining order after their confrontation. The conversation that Luka and Abby had in the apartment was very telling. When Abby talked about being afraid of losing what they have, she encapsulated, in just a few words, the concerns of all the viewers who care so much about the happiness of these two characters. I suspect this story line is not over, so I'd say she has cause for concern.
There is no easy way to say this, so I'm just going to put it out there: I like Ray and Neela together. I think they have chemistry, and I have enjoyed
Shane West since his days on
Once and Again. But the moustache absolutely
has to go. He looks like a porn star. I was so distracted by his facial hair that I could barely take him seriously when he was sparring with Tony and valiantly trying to help with the homeless kids. Please - either stick with the goatee or just shave and go for the youthful, clean-cut look. But lose the 'stache!
And to be truthful, I am beginning to think that Neela has more chemistry with Dubenko than anyone else. I adore
Leland Orser's portrayal of the soft-spoken surgeon, and I also think the writers have done a great job of slowly building a story around this guy. It seems like we are always learning new and interesting things about him. I, for one, have become almost imperceptibly invested in this character over the course of the past few seasons. As we all know, we don't always see that kind of subtle character development on this show. When he gave the gift to Neela, I did get a little nervous that he was also going to confess an attraction to her. I'm sorry, but no woman should have
that much luck in the romance department. I don't care how soulful and exotic she is. (If you are interested in hearing
Parminder Nagra's take on Neela's love life, check out her interview with TV Guide.com's Angel Cohn
The story with the homeless kids was heartfelt, but really served no other purpose than to bring Tony and Ray together on a tense mission. I was glad that they were able to help these children, who appear to be refugees from Thunderdome, but even more interesting was the glimpse into Tony's character. Aren't we supposed to like this guy? I'm sorry, but his blatantly lying to the kid to achieve his end goal did not sit well with me. Yes, it all worked out, but it just seems like he has an uncanny knack for being deceitful and shady.
Meanwhile, on a happier note, Archie Morris made a perfectly wonderful Santa Claus. While I find these sperm-donor children of his a bit of a stretch, I feel like
Scott Grimes is able to pull off even the oddest story lines with panache. I did find that ending to be a little contrived, but I liked that Archie is beginning to care about Hope, and their burgeoning relationship is bringing out the good in him. I also think that they have noticeably softened the harsh fervor of her character, and that is a good development. Once again, Morris had the quote of the evening when he was fighting his corporeal demons: "It's like some dorky angel has taken control of my mouth."
I know that many television critics and viewers alike find the closing montage with musical interlude to be a cheap storytelling shortcut, but I have to admit it gets me every time. That gorgeous song that they used at the end of the episode was
Sarah McLachlan's version of
River, which can be found on her fabulous new CD of holiday music,
Wintersong. I have to admit that when the homeless woman got dropped on her parents' doorstep, I lost it. Not sure if it was the story or the music, but it really got to me.
So as we get ready for a short break, I present to you my
ER wish list for the New Year:
- Please let Ben turn out to be a really nice guy who helps Sam find some happiness.
- Please let Luka, Abby and Joe be happy.
- Please let Neela be alone for a while, and let the boys fight it out among themselves. (Oh, and please bring some razors, especially for Ray.)
- Please let Archie continue to amuse and surprise us.
- And how about no repeats between January and May?
Enjoy the holidays, keep the comments coming, and I'll see you next year!
Were getting ready for winter break folks but this episode was the perfect finale to what has been a fantastic fall for our beloved ER I have always enjoyed the holiday-themed episodes and tonight was no exception While this one probably wouldnt rank up there with some of the classic Christmases in the ER in my book remember the one where Jeannie Boulet put her star on top of the ER Christmas tree it did have the distinction of featuring Goran Visnjic dressed as a reindeer Just when I thought Luka couldnt get any more adorable I am proven wrong Despite a healthy dose of romances old and new it wasnt all mistletoe and merriment Luka and Abby learned that Ames filed a restraining order after their confrontation The conversation that Luka and Abby had in the apartment was very telling When Abby talked about being afraid of losing what they have she encapsulated in just a few words the concerns of all the viewers who care so much about the happ