While everyone says This Is Us is the show that gives them the feels, no show hits me in the feels quite like The Good Doctor.
With the groundbreaking freshman run in the can, The Good Doctor Season 2 Episode 1 paved the way for a lot of change, set up exciting character arcs for the season ahead, and tugged on the heartstrings in practically every scene.
From Glassman's struggle to come to terms with his prognosis, to Shaun's struggle to rebound from that big mishap to Jared's goodbye, "Hello" had it all.
Let's talk about Jared's exit first because we already knew his departure was coming thanks to the casting bomb being dropped right after The Good Doctor Season 1 came to a close.
There was a severe issue with the way the character was developed during the first batch of episodes to the point that he was a replaceable part of the team, but somewhere along the way, he started to open up and was less one-dimensional.
It's a real shame because he brought his A-game to the season premiere. His final day at San Jose St. Bonaventure Hospital was action-packed, and I dare say it shaped his whole career ahead.
He knew Andrews wanted him gone sooner rather than later, but that didn't stop him going above and beyond the call of duty to bring Harry/Edward to the hospital.
His symptoms were all over the shop, so it was fun to watch Shaun and Jared's attempts to diagnose, but there was also an element of dread with the persistent threat from Andrews.
Calling the Denver hospital would have probably ended Jared's arc with him not having a shot in hell at beginning his new post.
Given that we knew Modu was exiting the series, there was a chance his alter ego would leave with nothing.
Hello, I'm Dr. Shaun Murphy. I'm a surgical resident at San Jose St. Bonaventure Hospital.Shaun
It would have been nice if the powers that be had kept his exit under wraps because it would have added a lot more emotional weight to that final scene between Jared and Claire.
It was tough for Claire to share her feelings, but that's something she's been working on. She knew there was a connection between her and Jared, and it was do or die time for their relationship.
How will that change Claire going forward? I'm not sure, but watching the love of her life walk away after she begged him to stay won't be of help.
The raw emotion on Claire's face at Jared's ambiguous statement about them being happy at one point was a real gut punch.
Did he mean that they could be happy together or that Claire would be happy in her career and a relationship with someone new?
God, this show.
If you watch The Good Doctor online, you know that Claire is one of the nicest characters on all of television, but that's not the best trait to have in her line of work.
There was a time Claire told a woman the woman would make it to her kid's wedding despite knowing there was a chance she would not.
Giving false hope to someone is a big no-no, especially to someone in a life or death situation, so I don't think Andrews' comments at her review came from a place of malice.
He knows she's good at what she does but that sometimes her heart gets in the way. That's why I was ecstatic when she wasted no time in offering to close up the patient who got the second heart.
Yes, there was piggyback surgery on the season premiere, and I have to admit, I had no idea it existed until this episode.
It was no surprise that it all went to plan because it helped bring a lot of media attention to Andrews acting as President of the hospital.
While I think he could have cared less about the patient, the procedure will likely put the hospital on the map and usher in new and innovative ways of saving lives.
I'm not sold on Andrews floating the idea of making Melendez Chief of Surgery. That seemed more like a throwaway comment to make him perform the surgery.
That's not to say I think he'd be bad at the job; it's just that this is a drama series and without anything being made official, nothing is stopping the board from poaching someone from another hospital.
The media attention Melendez will get will likely make him a worthy candidate, but I'm not ruling anything out until the job officially has a name attached to it.
Shaun's meeting with Andrews was a difficult one. He's on thin ice at the hospital as it is, and while it was good to know that he's exceeded Andrews' expectations as far as his healing abilities go, it was a tough one for his communication skills to be put on blast.
Dr. Blaize: I think you had me reinstated as your last official act before they booted you as president because I am the best oncologist around and you would like to get the best treatment.
Glassman: Yeah. So, I'd like to ensure that the brain -- in this instance, my brain -- stays as dry as possible during surgery, maintain minimal swelling. I would still like to be able to swing my 9-iron when we're done here.
Dr. Blaize: Of course, it's also possible that you had me reinstated because you'd like an oncologist who thinks they owe you and you want to push them around.
Glassman: Look, Dr. Blaize, I am like any other patient, entitled to have a say in my own treatment, but unlike any other patient, I have spent my entire adult life digging into people's brains. So, if you think I'm going to sit around and watch, you're mistaken.
Dr. Blaize: Well, if you think you can operate on yourself I'd happily add you to the list of potential surgeons.
There's no question about whether Shaun made strides thanks to his final day of working with Jared, but Jared's comments about Glassman needing someone by his side because he's facing a life sentence rubbed off on Shaun.
Shaun has struggled with the communication side of things, but much of his co-workers have adapted to it because they've grown to know that it's through no fault of his own.
In a sense, Shaun was burying his head in the sand because Glassman has been the constant in his life since a young age. That's why he calls him in the middle of the night when there's something wrong.
They have breakfast together, they laugh. How would Shaun be able to cope without that constant in his life?
That's likely why Shaun pressed on with work instead of confronting the elephant in the room. Knowing someone close to you is seriously ill is not something from which anyone can just rebound.
You can put on a smile, but everything you bottle up has a way of rearing its ugly head when you least expect it.
Having Lisa Edelstein as part of the cast as Dr. Blaize, reuniting her with David Shore was one of the best casting decisions this series has made.
Despite being in a limited amount of scenes, we learned a lot about her, and why Glassman brought her back to the hospital in the first place.
She was suspended from the hospital, presumably because of her addiction that we never learned much about.
She's ballsy and has a no-nonsense attitude. Simply put, she's the person you would want to be caring for you if you had an illness.
Glassman's fear is that people around him sugar coat things and give him false hope. Through those few scenes, it's clear that Dr. Blaize will exhaust every avenue while keeping him in the loop about any changes.
This was a successful start to The Good Doctor Season 2. The stage is set for more heartbreak for most of the characters, and while it's difficult to watch all of that play out, the cast is stable and can carry these emotional storylines.
Over to you, The Good Doctor Fanatics!
What are your thoughts on the way Jared was written out? Do you like Dr. Blaize? Did you agree with the criticism Andrews hurled at the residents?
Hit the comments below.
The Good Doctor continues Monday on ABC.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.