If you haven't learned anything from The Resident by now, you've learned that money talks.
On The Resident Season 1 Episode 8, it as all about the almighty dollar, but for an hour that started off with so much emphasis on money and class, it ended on such a beautiful and warm note.
I have the fuzzies. Do you have the fuzzies?
We knew the primary case of the hour would be about a homeless woman, but I love that it took unexpected turns, and it was far from predictable. Every time I thought it was going to head one way, and I cringed at the cliche nature of it, the show flipped the script on me.
I appreciate that, The Resident. I do.
Streeting or patient dumping is such a common and grotesque practice that I was eagerly awaiting The Resident's take on the issue. It is happening with such frequency that it's making the news.
We're not running a charity here!Bell
There was a case in Maryland a few months ago that was splashed all over the news and had many rightfully outraged and disgusted by a woman dumped out in the cold of January in nothing but a thin hospital gown.
In this instance, another hospital had dumped poor Sara Ravenscroft out on her butt, and knowing she needed medical attention, she found herself literally crashing the donor party at Chastain Park.
The way Bell volleys back and forth between reprehensible and subtly compassionate is often jarring. In this installment, it reached an all-time high.
Halfway through the hour, his behavior was deplorable. The remainder of the hour there was the Bell that makes you wonder if he's not a monster after all.
That man will give a girl whiplash. Conrad even had to adjust to it in his own way, as when he uttered a "thank you" to Bell it surprised both of them and likely the audience. Bell, he's hard to place, and at times it's what makes him a fascinating character, but other times, it's frustrating.
For example, his exchange with Conrad and Nic at the end was amusing, but when he went so far as to sanitize his hands as if he was washing the stench of poverty off of him, it got me riled up.
I'm curious about Bell's background. Was he always wealthy? Did he come from a privileged background?
Conrad: Maybe now isn't a good time for them to open their checkbook.
Bell: It's not always about the money. I'll wait a few days.
Nic: A few days?
Conrad: He'll be back before lunch.
Is he the guy who is detached from the little people because he never had to slum it with them? Then again, is he the guy who had a rough upbringing, and now he fights like hell to make sure he never has to go back to it?
The entire hour was a deep exploration of caste, class, and socio-economic systems and the perception of others as a result of them.
Bell couldn't be bothered with Sara when he thought she was a run of the mill, mentally-ill Jane Doe. He kept describing her as a problem and implied that she was a nuisance or a waste of space and money.
At an event where they were meant to schmooze their donors in hopes of getting more money out of them, the last thing he wanted to deal with was a woman who, in his mind, couldn't afford the $2200 it costs per bed at that hospital.
She's schizophrenic. She needs to accept it. Please, don't fill her head with a bunch of a false hope.Mrs. Ravenscroft
Atlanta General dumping her was a pain in his ass because it led her there, but he was more than willing to dump her too. She didn't matter when she was a Jane Doe. She wasn't a person; she was a problem and an economic drain on the hospital.
Bell would rather flush money down the toilet than help her.
The second he found out that she was Sara Ravenscroft of the Ravenscrofts all of that changed. Mina and Conrad's exchange where they admitted that she sounded like she came from money was hilarious because it was true.
In fact, they sounded like a well-to-do family from Harry Potter or something.
Knowing that she came from money meant that her parents would be willing to donate to the hospital that helped her in any way, and suddenly, Bell was all for her being moved to the VIP wing. That was a far cry from the street or the Psych ward where he preferred her.
It's safe to say Chastain doesn't have a free clinic as part of their hospital then, huh? When you have Claire, Lane, and Bell around, it's doubtful.
So while it was convenient in some ways, I rather liked that Sara came from money because it showed that anyone could end up homeless. Generally, people have this idea that homeless people are poverty-stricken, dirty individuals who are roaming the street.
Dear God, we almost had her committed. She could have died. What if she never forgives us?Mrs. Ravenscroft
There are misconceptions about them being lazy or mentally ill. There's an image of a grimy, toothless person who can barely communicate taking up space somewhere and being an inconvenience to society.
That's not the reality. If you live in the US, you may remember how bad things were when our country was deep in the throes of its recession. Homelessness was on the rise, and I assure you, it wasn't filthy, dirty people roaming the streets.
It was hardworking individuals working nine-to-five jobs only to sleep in their cars. They were people living paycheck to paycheck.
An acquaintance of mine had two suits that he rotated and wore to work every day. He slept in his car or a storage facility he rented for cheap, and he cleaned himself in public restrooms at nicer stores.
He looked every bit as average as any other person working at a call center. Yet, he was homeless.
As for Sara, there's a homeless person in my city who comes from a well-to-do family but still roams the streets. That person is mentally ill, which is different than this case, but imagine how different they would be treated if everyone knew about their origins.
That's why Sara not being mentally ill was refreshing, too.
It's so easy to dismiss a person that way, but not every person who ends up on the street has something psychologically wrong with them. Was I the only one who felt that her parents knew she wasn't mentally ill, but they wanted her to be mentally ill for some nefarious reason?
Doctor: Is that why you were invited here, Dr. Okafor? To help persuade us?
Mina: I was invited here because I'm black.
I figured it had something to do with money, and that they wanted her on record as being mentally incapable of making decisions, so they could make them for her. I'm glad I was wrong about that, but her parents were adamant about her being Schizophrenic, and they didn't appear open to accepting that she wasn't.
As for the other cases, Micah returned, and he's such a sweet character. He's positively enamored by Mina (who isn't?), and they would make the cutest couple ever. She seems interested in him as well. Hopefully, it'll become a thing.
Mina and her wry comments and tough demeanor could benefit from someone who is warm and sweet. They would balance one another out.
Also, can I take a brief moment to express my appreciation for Mina in that dress? She was stunning, once again. Can she make me a dress?! I'm so envious of how flawless she looks in her ensembles.
There were no bad patients here because Channing was delightful. Is there a petition to sign so that Jai Rodriguez can stop getting injured on medical shows? He needed surgery while on a plane on Grey's Anatomy Season 13 Episode 20. Leave him be!
It's good seeing one of the best members of the original Queer Eye for the Straight Guy making the rounds like this, and he has been making some rounds. Good for him!
Our darling Irving was back and utterly infatuated with Channing's profession. Channing was such a charmer, but he was a great listener, and he could read people well.
I loved that he got through to Devon the way that he did. Channing's grasp of the Indian caste system and traditions made him the perfect person to help Devon sort through his insecurities about his family background.
Priya and her family come from money. Devon's parents were doing well for themselves in India, but in America, his father found himself driving a cab to help put Devon through medical school. In this new country, his father is the "lowly" immigrant cabbie who is looked down upon.
I think your father is not the only one with money and pride issues. I think it's you too. I think your anxious that your in-laws won't feel that you measure up.Channing
Devon, unfortunately, felt some shame about that. The entire time this storyline was unfolding it was reminding me of another Indian character from another show. If on the off chance any of you have ever watched Freeform's Grown-ish, you'd know I was referencing Vivek.
Vivek's father was also a multi-lingual engineer turned cabbie, and Vivek was ashamed of his father's inability to blend in and become more Americanized. It was interesting seeing this story sort of rehash itself again on The Resident.
It's not often you see that particular viewpoint on primetime television given the lack of Asian diversity, so I appreciated it.
Devon's parents were adorable. He should be proud of them. If his in-laws can't accept the caste system difference, then screw them, I say.
Before any of you ask, I know some of you will, yes, I'm pleased that we got some Devon development in this hour. Devon was able to step in the forefront a bit on a personal and professional level, and Conrad and Nic still held their own with the professional storyline.
Over to you Resident Fanatics, how did you feel about this hour? Do you find Bell's character confounding? Hit the comments!
Don't forget, you can watch The Resident online here via TV Fanatic!
Jasmine Blu is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.