Tonight's new episode of The Good Doctor was a vast improvement over last week's pilot.
The Good Doctor Season 1 Episode 2 shows us Dr. Shaun Murphy's first full day at St. Bonaventure Hospital. His attention to detail with his patients is getting him into trouble, and the other doctors still have a difficult time accepting him for who he is.
After an extremely disappointing pilot episode, it was exciting to see the show's true potential on its second episode.
On The Good Doctor Season 1 Episode 2, Freddie Highmore and Richard Schiff are as wonderful as they were last week. However, the audience also gets to enjoy the other characters a bit more.
He more than earned the right to be here. He has had to get past people like you and their prejudices every step of the way.Dr. Aaron Glassman
Dr. Claire Browne, played by Antonia Thomas, already seems more human and likable. She's still flawed, as everyone is, but we are able to see the hardened mask melt away a little bit.
She's more sympathetic to Shaun and is also willing to stick up for him when others are mistreating him.
Thomas is doing an incredible job of balancing Claire's flaws with her decency. It was particularly great to see her remind Dr. Kalu that it was an actual person he was operating on and not just a cool procedure to do.
I actually started to care when she was on screen, and those moments with her and the other doctors did not drag on for me like they did in the pilot.
You do know you’re drooling, right? About cutting open a 40-year-old woman. A real person, right behind that door.Dr. Claire Browne
The flashbacks for the episode focused on one storyline, rather than jumping around from place to place like they did in the pilot. On this episode, the audience is able to learn about one small part of Shaun's life that made him who he is as an adult.
It's a refreshing and much-needed break from all the tragedy that was dumped on the audience on The Good Doctor Season 1 Episode 1, although we do see Dr. Glassman rushing Shaun's brother to the hospital while his brother is in terrible condition.
Since that is the only truly tragic flashback, though, it does not feel as melodramatic as the pilot did.
If you want to get anything in life, Shaun, there’s one thing you got to do. Never be afraid.Steve Murphy
I do wish we had slowly learned about Shaun's past instead of learning about all of these tragedies right away. It could have been more powerful to learn that he became a surgeon because his brother died without us necessarily knowing how he died right away.
It feels like the show gave away too many secrets at the beginning. If they had just focused the flashbacks more in the pilot, it could have been a different first episode.
It's reassuring, though, to see these more focused flashbacks. It gives me hope for the future of this show.
You’re right, I’m weird. Part of my weirdness is that I perseverate. That means I keep thinking about things. So, I will keep knocking on your door until I know Martine is okay.Shaun
Graham Verchere, who plays young Shaun, makes it especially easy to enjoy the flashbacks. Verchere was the perfect casting choice. His Shaun perfectly aligns with Highmore's, and it's easy for the audience to believe that he grew up to be the doctor we see today.
He's captivating when he's on screen. Even though I'm normally not a fan of using so much flashback on TV, it never once bothered me on this episode.
I did question how Shaun got scrubbed into the OR to operate on Martine without a single person stopping him. He's a surgical resident on his first day at the hospital.
Surely an attending or Dr. Glassman would have put a stop to that sooner than we saw in the show.
Shaun may be brilliant, but he's certainly not ready for that level of surgery, yet. Unlike last week, though, that was one of the only parts that had me thinking "What did I just watch?"
This episode dialed back on the medical speak and the overuse of the visuals. While they were still present, it did not distract from the episode nearly as much as it did in the pilot.
The pace also felt much better. This episode did not seem as long, and I never found myself checking the clock to see how much more I had to watch.
That is a huge improvement over last week's episode, which forced me to look at my watch at least seven times in 45 minutes.
I knew the show had a lot of potential, but after watching the pilot, I was scared it wasn't going to live up to it. However, with The Good Doctor Season 1 Episode 2, it feels like the writers are starting to understand what needs to be done to make this show as great as it could be.
I hope this development continues because this would be a groundbreaking show to have on the air. The representation of autism is needed on TV, and I'd hate for this show to let everyone down.
You can watch The Good Doctor online and tell us what you think! Did you like this week's episode or do you still not love this show? Weigh in below!
Kaitlynn Smith was a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She retired in May of 2018.