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Review: Scrubs - Our Dear Leaders

by Joel Keller, posted Jan 27th 2010 9:25AM
Michael Mosley and John C. McGinley in Scrubs: Our Dear Leaders(S09E11) Just like with Better Off Ted, there doesn't seem to be any sign that the final two episodes of Scrubs are going to air any time soon. One was supposed to air tonight, but got yanked. One might air next Wednesday, but evidence is conflicting.

If this is the last episode we see, then, that'll be a shame, because this was the best one of the season. We saw a lot of growth by all the characters, even the ones that we've seen on our screens for nine years. But mostly, we saw exactly what the new Scrubs could be if given time: a great ensemble comedy that brings the funny on a consistent basis.

What did I like about the episode?

-- Drew asserting himself as a true leader, with Cox's help. It really looks like Cox is taking a shine to his number one, to the extent that he's giving Drew lessons that go beyond medicine. We're seeing a new side of Cox, too, one that doles out compliments along with his patented shaming method of leadership. Also, we know what makes him smile: the prospect of putting his students through Hell Week.

-- Lucy getting a spine. Sure, she picked on Trang, the smallest one in the group, but she had to assert herself somewhere. "It's getting froggy in here. Want to jump?" was one of the funniest lines I've ever heard her utter. Now if they just got rid of her narration (it's almost gone), we'd be in good shape.

-- Turk can be humbled. We've seen it before, of course, but as chief of surgery, we knew that we were going to see his ego go out of control at some point. Sure, as Kelso mentioned, Dr. Dennis is a "douche," but sometimes you need to suck up to help the greater good. It was also fun to see Turk try to break out his dance moves and pull a muscle. Those days of busting a move to Bel Biv Devoe's "Poison" are long gone, aren't they?

-- Denise being human and Denise, all at the same time. While she was trying to help Turk get back his dignity with the whole Dennis argument -- she called him a "little girl bitch" -- she was dealing with her feelings for Drew. Now, I wonder if the writers wrote about how Denise's throat would close when stressed to explain whatever hoarseness Eliza Coupe showed up with that week, or if it was just a coincidence. But it was interesting to see her own Hell Week psychotic break in a flashback.

-- The Trang / Maya pairing has a history: Maya's mom dated tennis champ Michael Chang. That family seems to be drawn to overachieving Asian men, don't they?

-- The Todd wanting scrubs that hugged his privates better. Always good to hear from The Todd.

What didn't I like? Not much. Cole was Cole. He's OK when treated mostly like he was in this episode, where he was mostly just comic relief. As others have mentioned, it seems like this role would have gone to Aziz Ansari if he didn't take Parks and Recreation last season, since Cole seems to be almost the exact same character as Ed, only Aziz did a better job with it. So Ed would maybe be an intern all over again and Cole would have morphed into someone else. Not sure.

To see the show improve every week at this point is encouraging and disheartening all at once, but it also proves once again that, in the right hands, many comedies will improve from a shaky start. Not sure if ABC will give this version of Scrubs a chance, but if they don't, at least we're ending on a high note.

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Joel, just when I think you and I are on the same wavelength :P

I thought this episode was still patchy but it did have some good laughs. Cole is still a caricature which I find really irritating. I thought 'Our Couples' the other week was the best episode so far.

I still think it needs a 'My Old Lady' which really told the audience what kind of show Scrubs was. I'm guessing ABC direction for season 9 was more comedy, less drama, which isn't working for me.

I remember BL said that they dropped Carla because there was no reason a nurse would be in a med school. I think loosing Carla is a huge loss as she was the rock that everyone else gravitated around. I hope if there is a season 10, she comes back (how about as a Med student, so she can be, as Turk so lovingly put it, more than just a nurse)

January 29 2010 at 12:35 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Great lines in this episode:

Turk: I mean who's named RUSSEL?
Denise: many people

Kelso: Boohoo. It takes me 11 minutes to pee.

Denise: One of you is going to have a psychotic break...I'm looking at you Jet Li.

Cox: Why are you wearing horse pajamas?
Lucy: It was laundry day and there was nothing else to wear...
Lucy's inner monologue: ...except MORE HORSE PAJAMAS!

Thoughts about the reboot: They took out the annoying things I didn't like about the original (namely JD and Elliot) and added new characters (Drew, Denise, Lucy) that are starting to hit their stride. I'd like to see more of this.

January 27 2010 at 4:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Yme Sandelmann

I wonder if Bill Lawrence was winking at us critical fans when Lucy said something like "after a few weeks I have found my spot, I am a good number two, not a lead". Too bad this was (probably) the end of the show because this was the first episode where I felt it all came together...

January 27 2010 at 2:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Yme Sandelmann's comment
Joel Keller

Not a bad thought, Christian. I'll give you a +1 for that.

January 27 2010 at 3:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Ashley Boyd

Although weren't all the episodes filmed before the show even aired?

January 27 2010 at 5:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Guess Who

I like the reboot - which is probably why it's doomed. ABC has done nothing but cancel shows I like one after the other for the past few seasons.

Maybe I need to start watching shows I hate just to get rid of them.

January 27 2010 at 2:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I had a good feeling about Scrubs all along. It's too bad many fans and, and it looks like, ABC couldn't give the show more of a chance.

It's an enormously tough trick to successfully rejigger a large ensemble cast like this, and it looks like Bill Lawrence, after a few initial missteps, was on the way to doing that.

I'll keep my fingers crossed for a longshot renewal as a hiatus filler or midseason schedule slot filler.

January 27 2010 at 11:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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