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Review: Scrubs - Our First Day of School (season premiere)

by Joel Keller, posted Dec 1st 2009 10:02PM
Kerry Bishe in Scrubs: Our First Day of School(S09E01) As much as I want to treat Scrubs: Med School as a new series, let's face it: The show is listed everywhere as being Scrubs' ninth season. So that's the way I'm going to treat it until told otherwise. Sound good to you folks?

Anyway, my preview of this new iteration of Scrubs pretty much gave the entire setup, so we can mercifully skip past that and just talk about what was funny, and what wasn't.

Oh, and for those of you who are still hanging on to the story thread that is the Elliot / J.D. relationship, you'll be happy to know that everything's fine there. More after the jump.

Nice to see a glimpse of Sarah Chalke at the beginning of the episode; I can't imagine we're going to be seeing more than that in whatever episodes she happens to be in. So, we know now that J.D. and Elliot are married and expecting a kid. That's about all we're probably going to know. So, sorry, 'shippers; this series is about the med school, not about the old characters.

At least that's what I hope we eventually get to. As I said in my preview, the humor in this and the second episode of the night were more centered around J.D., Turk, and Cox, and that's not a good thing. With Cox, his disdain for all the young "murderers and assassins sent here to kill my patients" was natural. But the bromance scenes between Turk and J.D., and the scenes where J.D. yet again seeks love and approval from Cox feel a bit like a comedic crutch, as funny as they were (had to love hearing "Guy Love" as Turk and J.D. ran towards each other in the "quad"). I'm with Cox: "I thought we were over this."

It was fun seeing Cox take an interest in Drew from the start, mainly because he saw a little bit of himself in the second-time med student. As Bill Lawrence told Will Harris at Bullz-Eye, what might be worse than Cox torturing a med student is having Cox actually have an interest in him and making the pressure that much higher. We need to see more than just Cox grousing at students, and this turn of events has some possibilities.

As for the other new students: Cole's a prick, and every show needs a prick to play off of. I'd imagine the school and hospital will give him some humanity. Lucy is the new voice of the show, and it seems to be a good choice: she's a combination of the young J.D. and the young Elliot; unsure as well as brittle and emotional. She's got enough moxie, though, to deal with the horrors of the profession; she didn't seem to get all that freaked out that the patient she had bonded with ended up being her cadaver for the semester.

At this point, I have a wait-and-see attitude when it comes to the med students. They have shown just enough comic chops and personality to make me think some good writing will take them somewhere. Anyone who's seen Mike Mosley knows he's a good actor; it's Kerry Bishé and Dave Franco that are the blank slates right now. Luckily, Eliza Coupe as the anti-social Denise will be enough to carry that part of the cast for the time being. Just her "romance" with Drew ("Grab me like a man. Let's do this.") has promise.

More fun stuff:

  • J.D. to Turk: "You smell like prison."
  • Of course J.D. would use the jacket worn by Michelle Pfeiffer in Dangerous Minds.
  • Looks like the one and only time we'll see Neil Flynn has already come and gone. Liked that, without J.D. around to torture, he quit the hospital.
  • I did like Cox mocking the pretty Aussie student, not understanding what she was saying. Other good Coxian jokes: referring to Lucy by steadily declining rank numbers, and his Dikembe Mutombo question.
  • On the whiteboard in J.D.'s class: Medicine!
  • Of course Kelso is a popular professor! He loves to go out and have fun. He only tortured people in the hospital.

[Watch clips and episodes of Scrubs on SlashControl.]

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I wasn't particularly impressed by the new Scrubs, especially with the new characters, but I think we should give the writers and the cast a chance to develop. Without J.D., the show may stumble, but I'm confident there will be good episodes later on. Review of the episode on my blog.


December 02 2009 at 8:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm gutted that the janitor has gone. He was the best character in my opinion.

December 02 2009 at 7:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

to me, the biggest "elephant in the room" is Carla.

If Turk is going to be one of the anchors of the show, and much of his character was defined by his marriage to Carla and his family, at some point soon we need to see what has happened on that front.

Cox you can forgive a little more as his family was treated as an irritating sideline.

A Enid's death was treated cold, even for Kelso, that was cold.

December 02 2009 at 7:55 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to loudalmaso's comment

It might of been cold, but remember, this is Kelso. Remember how cold he was before he mellowed out in the earlier years? And to be fair, it didn't sound like he had a good relationship with his wife for the most part in seasons 1-8.

Some other things I want to point out:
Finally, it appears as if Perry considers JD to be a full equal. They shared a joke in this episode, and even gambled together in the following episode. That would not have happened back in the old Sacred Heart. Cox is not JD's boss here, allowing them to finally have a more casual relationship, and they certainly seem to be friends so far.

Additionally, JD mentoring Lucy at the end of this episode was fantastic. Watching him be the mentor that Cox never was to him, now the show truly has come full circle. I can't really say that about last season, since the interns were not the main focus, but with Lucy being a new primary character, watching JD try to be a friendly mentor was great. Only he could teach someone how to win at the game of Professor Doctor Cox.

December 02 2009 at 8:07 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I watched it, I WILL continue to watch it, but I don't know how to feel about it.

I just don't.

I HATE the Franco character. Mainly because David Franco is such a horrible actor.

We're talking EPICALLY bad acting, here. You know who would have knocked the "rich douche bag" out of the park?

Jason Bateman circa 1989.

Quick, someone get a DeLorean and go back 20 years and get young Jason Bateman to replace this non-acting fool!

Plus, they HAVE to do a flashback episode to show us JD and Elliot's wedding, right?

December 02 2009 at 7:06 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

What's with all the blonde chicks? And white people? Could they not have any minorities other than Turk? It's off putting. It's like I'm watching FRIENDS or something.

December 02 2009 at 1:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I liked it. I think it has potential once the characters and actors settle down a bit. I thought they were still a bit too caricature-y but maybe that was the point, given the alcoholic's drawing. I liked the Denise + Drew chemistry.

December 02 2009 at 12:19 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Guess Who

I've missed a few episodes of "Scrubs" over the years and it's never been a must watch show for me - that said, I think they did an amazing job with the reboot. The show was a solid mix of new and old, and leaves the door open for old cast members to pop in should the need arise.

Scrubs won't be winning any Emmy's and will never be a ratings hit - it will likely do what it's always done; move slow and steady season after season...

December 01 2009 at 11:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Guess Who's comment

I really went into both episodes READY TO HATE but I actually enjoyed the hour! It flew by because there was nothing cringe worthy. I like the new characters (Lucy is adorable) and I'm happy to see JD, Cox, and Turk still involved like this. I would have enjoyed some more backs story for the demolition of Sacred Heart, but I really really like the way the show is going right now. All the new characters have potential (minus the "prick").

December 01 2009 at 11:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Before the bashing of Lucy and the new cast starts, let me say some things:

Any of you remember how boring and dull JD was during his first few episodes? He was a boring narrator, not very funny, and the others were just bland. Give the new cast members time to develop. Give Kerry (Lucy) some time to fill her role, don't bash on first impressions. New characters ...are not perfect from the start. Geeze, have some patience.

December 01 2009 at 10:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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