“Now I’m two guys: one is in a coma, the other is invisible.”
Things go south for Alex in the second episode of Saving Hope when Charlie’s ex-wife, Dawn, comes to town and starts suggesting all different kinds of ways to wake Charlie up – like Coma Arousal Therapy. (Yep, that’s real) She starts massaging him and giving him music to listen to which clearly pisses Alex off. And as if she’s not going through enough, Dawn tells Alex that she isn’t doing everything she possibly can to save Charlie; she’s acting as his nursemaid not his wife.
And I think we all can see that at this point during the show. It’s like she doesn’t want to feel Charlie or his absence so she won’t break down. And as always (always being the show’s two episodes), Alex runs away from the hell she’s going through by doing her job – perfectly I might add. Her case this week is a kid who bites, has diarrhea, and codes a lot. But here’s the catch: the kid, Cal, can see Charlie who takes him on a tour around the morgue and teaches him all about being in limbo.
After Charlie figures out what’s wrong with Cal, Alex discovers it, too; he has cancer. During his surgery, Cal codes again so he and Charlie get to chat one more time, and Charlie asks Cal for a favor. He wants him to deliver a message to Alex. He wants Cal to tell her that she saw him.
The kid with the nine lives wakes up and starts drawing a picture of Charlie. When Alex sees it, she quickly recognizes him, but when she asks Cal who’s in the picture, he tells her he doesn’t remember. A part of her feels like Charlie is around, though, like Charlie is right there with her which somehow gives her faith that everything will be okay.
So she goes into his room, and plays him a song – not his favorite like Dawn did but a song she’s sure he’ll remember. And we flashback to the first time she and Charlie said their I love yous. And then BOOM! His hand moves! It starts twitching and Alex gets this heartwarming smile on her face. He’s getting better!
Meanwhile, Maggie, the general surgery resident, is crushing on Joel. And just like every girl in the world, she’s showing it by being rude to him. But as they’re trying to save the life of a woman who’s refusing surgery because her religion prohibits her to get a blood transfusion (I researched it; apparently, she’s a Jehovah’s witness), their relationship evolves into this wonderful dynamic. Maggie, who looks shy, starts sassily flirting with him. (“I don’t have a crush on you, but I’d do you”) Obviously, they sleep together. But Joel, being the smug that he is, makes sure he tells her he doesn’t want a relationship first.
I loved this episode way more than the pilot. I finally have this bond with the characters. I was looking forward to Cal waking up and telling Alex that he saw Charlie. I got this huge smile on my face when Charlie moved his hands. I’m finally emotionally invested which is enough to keep me watching the show.
What made the episode better than the pilot is also the fact that Charlie existed as a spirit. We got to see him communicate with other people like him. We got to see him try to communicate with Alex – even though he failed. As of that second, the story began on this show. It’s all about those two trying to connect emotionally and spiritually even if they cannot connect physically.
As for the cases of the week, they were as interesting as the show’s trying to make them be. Somehow it doesn’t feel like the show is giving them much importance. The only reason the Cal case worked was because it helped the Charlie/Alex storyline evolve. But that’s about it. But to be honest, I don’t care much for cases of the week; procedural shows are becoming annoying and redundant.
I also felt like Dawn was under/misused. We got to see her in only a few scenes. Fine, those few scenes were enough incentive for Alex to reach out to Charlie. It was probably because of those interactions between Alex and Dawn that Charlie moved his hand, but I feel like the show could have dedicated a whole episode to the wife storyline. It could have shed more light on them arguing on what’s best for him. They could have dived into the legality of it all.
The episode was definitely not perfect, but hey, there were less lens flares than the pilot and it was way more interesting. So here’s hoping the show keeps improving because it has a lot of potential and the leads are amazing – Erica Durance kicked ass in that last scene. And yay for lots of Michael Shanks in the episode. I was bummed, though, that there wasn’t enough Joel/Alex interaction in this episode. But after him sleeping with Maggie, this all is going to turn into a love square, isn’t it?
What did you guys think of the episode?
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Tags: Saving Hope