Private Practice Review: "All in the Family"

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Some think they take it a little far, but say this for Private Practice: Much like its parent series, Grey's Anatomy, it's not afraid to push the envelope with weighty topics.

Fans were promised the darkest story yet - PP already featured an unborn baby being cut out of its mother and stolen, mind you - and last night we saw the start of it.

We'll get to Charlotte in a bit, but there was plenty of other drama leading up to the shocking conclusion of "All in the Family," and most of that was pretty heavy too.

Lovely Addy

Addison's the type who takes work home with her. Sam? Not so much.

Addison and Sam treat a comatose patient who's ... pregnant. Because that happens in real life, right? In any case, they learn that it was her husband who impregnated her.

The woman is rushed into surgery and loses the baby. When Addison overhears the man telling her "they" will keep trying to have a family, she calls the authorities on him.

Sam doesn’t go as crazy over all of this as Addison, which really riled her up, even leading to a threat of withholding sex. Yeah, she seems like the type who would pull that.

It did bother him, though, he just wants to let it go while he's at home. Tonight the man wants to get down with his girl! Hey, gotta separate business and pleasure, right?

In the second wildest medical story line of the evening, a car accident patient, Jacob, tries to peace out of the hospital almost as soon as he's admitted. Definitely sketchy.

Pete realizes why. His co-passenger was male prostitute. Meanwhile, Charlotte informs her patient, Angela, that she’s well enough to have kids with her husband ... Jacob.

Oh, and he's HIV positive to boot.

Charlotte and Pete debated whether to tell Angela outright or let Jacob do it. He later does, introducing her to Evan the prostitute, who also happens to be the man he loves.

Angela knew deep down he was gay and was practically grateful to have this secret out in the open, but when Jacob told her he’s HIV positive, it was like a stomach punch.

Pete, Violet, Lucas

Speaking of secrets, Violet's trying to unlock Pete's. Through prying and using Google, she's figured out that his brother doesn't even live too far away. Why not reach out?

Finally, Pete comes clean about his "garbage" family, his mom who was a drunk, and the brother who covered it up when she stabbed one of her lovers to death. Holy cow.

One can certainly understand Pete's hesitance to bring that up, or try to reconcile with them now. But his mother and brother have been cast on the show, so he will soon!

Cooper and Charlotte's feud of the week is about whether to have kids. As we know, he wants them and she's balking. Tragically, it's the least of their problems right now.

After staying late to do admin stuff on a busy Halloween, Charlotte shuts down her computer and steps outside her office. Someone is waiting for her. It's beyond scary.

Poor Charlotte doesn't even have a chance as her attacker hits her in the face and stomach before throwing her stunned body back inside the office and closing the door.

If it weren't obvious enough, this is not going to end well. In fact, it's only the beginning of a tragic story line for Charlotte we will watch unfold next week and long after.

We imagine this will give more than a few female viewers nightmares, and while we applaud Shonda Rhimes for taking risks, it left us a bit uncomfortable just the same.

Is this the kind of thing you want to see on TV? Do the execution and the drama make up for the upsetting subject matter? We'd love to hear what you think about this.

Have at it! What did you think of last night's Private Practice? Discuss!

Review

Editor Rating: 3.4 / 5.0
  • 3.4 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.5 / 5.0 (71 Votes)

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.

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Nobody knows the name of the sonata that is being played when Charllote is attacked?

Amb

misskitten
yes you are right i'm sorry. i wasn't really paying attention to that part....it seemed like it would have fit. but i watched it again and your right. what a creeper! and why would he do that to charlotte? omg can't wait for tonight?!!!

Misskitten

@AMB the attacker is played by Nicholas Brendon (who played "Xander" in Buffy). It's the guy who was franticly asking for a doctor that Charlotte told to sit down in an earlier scene.

Amb

OMG i know who it was. if you watch it real closely, it is a african american that grabs her. i bet its that guy that was on the episode who was HIV positive and who's wife slapped him. i bet he's mad at her cause she ruined their lives. and.............the HIV guy was wearing a blue shirt, just like the guy that grabbed her. and did u see her eyes? she totally knew who it was that got her. wow............. creepy

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@Lizzie - She is from Georgia - that is her actual accent.
@Kaiya - I was reading somewhere that she was working closely with a Rape support group to make sure it was accurate vs farfetched.
Someone made comment either in this thread or the preview thread questioning why no one heard Charlotte being beaten/raped. In America, a woman is sexually assaulted/raped every two minutes. Why don't people come to their aid? Why don't people hear them? This is not a statistic I am making up, it is legit. If anything, this episode will increase the awareness of rape.

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While I think PP is better than Grey's anatomy now, I do think this story line might be very uncomfortable to watch. I am certainly for educating people about Rape and what it does to the Victims and families, but I wonder how far is too far. I will watch because I love the show and think Kadee is quite wonderful as Charlotte.

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I liked this show, but the Sam/Addison thing has got to go. I can't believe how atrocious the dialogue is. Poor Taye Diggs actually having to say "Sex for me," as though this is a conversation between mature adults. Truly, I thought it was the most poorly written dialogue I've heard on any show of this caliber (or what the show could be, considering the cast and Shonda Rimes' talent).

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You all that are bashing Kadee Strickland sound awfully ignorant, and this storyline is quite the change in PP, so I'm interested to see how this goes down...it's a very sensitive subject and I look forward to what Shonda's writing comes up with. Plus, Charlotte is a great character, and I think Shonda will do justice to this emerging storyline. The next episode maybe one of the best episodes of the season or the whole series so far. Very interesting! I understand that people get tired of seeing violence against women, it is a little disturbing after a while, but I see it as though it leads to the woman become tougher and leads to an evolving storyline.

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I don't like the Charlotte character. I wish she would drop the Hill Billy redneck accent!! Her voice is AWFUL!!!!
I don't care about this storyline.

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Kadee Strickland can not act to save her life. Hilarious they gave this storyline to a no talent nobody. Charlotte will become a messed up Fruit Loop after this storyline. Addison was right with case. I am glad she stood up for women's rights to consent. You go girl.