Caretaker burnout is real, and it's commendable that the series devoted an hour to hammering that message home.
So often, the focus is on the person in need of care, but as we saw with George and Celeste on The Resident Season 5 Episode 8, taking care of someone else also takes its toll on a person and can affect their health as well.
We also got our first introduction to Sofia Desoto, and brace yourselves, CoNic fans, because Conrad is definitely dipping his foot in the dating pool again.
Sofia Desoto is fun!
Kit's creative approaches to improving Chastain have had some stellar results, but she also threw me with the idea of a surgical coach.
While no one is perfect, and there's always room to improve regardless of how talented a person is, not too many people would take kindly to some random, unknown person coming in to judge how you do your job and your efficiency.
You can't blame BellRaptor for their raised hackles with this outsider coming into their space and "coaching" them as seasoned surgeons on how to improve on what they've done well for decades.
And Sofia didn't mince any words when telling them about themselves. But she was likable enough to pull it off without the innate instinct to reject her on sight for imposing on some of our favorite characters.
She managed to come across endearing. And despite her honesty, she wasn't rude or condescending in her approach. She had genuine constructive criticism that would only be a blow to their egos if they didn't know how to manage their self-absorption.
Who hurt you, Dr. Desoto?AJ
Once the two of them got over themselves and took her advice, they excelled during their surgery, and you can't even say she didn't have a decent read on them.
As put off as Kit was, and checking Sofia after she was the one who inserted her into Bell and AJ's life, Sofia was right in what she said to her too. Bell did attempt to leverage his relationship with Kit to address the Sofia addition.
While Bell never pushes too hard or exploits his relationship with Kit often or much at all, and she never allows her and Bell's relationship to dictate anything, Sofia wasn't wrong about how complicated it could make things.
Kit snapping at Sofia a bit was hilarious, though.
Oh, I'm sorry, I wasn't aware that you were also board certified in Psychology.Kit [to Sofia]
And as much of a stink that the Raptor put up about Sofia's presence, he's into her. He liked the fact that she gives as good as she gets and doesn't take any of his crap. And she recognizes he's good at his job but that he can always be better. She helped him become better.
The sparks were flying between those two.
And hey, the Raptor and Sofia may be an intriguing pair.
Although, at the moment, nothing tops the BellRaptor bromance. Greenwood and Warner have such fun chemistry, and their scenes have been amusing.
They play off each other nicely, and the series mixing and matching its dynamics has made things different this season.
Of course, everyone was trying to have a spark with Conrad.
The nurses were the thirstiest bunch of women ever, and it became excessive. Naturally, Conrad is a catch, but those women didn't have anything that resembled a sense of chill.
The most annoying part was how they resorted to using Gigi to get to Conrad. It was a bit tacky, especially Amber trapping Conrad into an adult play date by using their kids playing together to spend more time with him. And she did it in front of Gigi, which means he didn't have any space to decline.
Conrad: Hey, what you said earlier? You think I really could?
Billie: Marienne? Yeah, go for it.
Conrad: Thank you, Billie.
It amused Hundley, and for a bit, Billie was too, but we'll get into that in a few minutes.
Conrad doesn't know if he feels comfortable dating or gaining the affection of many interested women. For him, it's been a few years since Nic died, and he couldn't even begin to understand how to dip his foot into the dating pool again.
For years, he devoted his entire life to Gigi, and that's probably what they both needed after Nic's death. But Billie pointed out to him that it's okay for him to move on with his life.
She knows that Nic wouldn't want nor expect Conrad to be single forever, and she wouldn't want that for him. She's right about that, and it's not up for debate.
But the question is if viewers are prepared for this next phase in Conrad's life? Here's where the time jump has its downside. They've transported us a few years into the future, and naturally, that gives them room to explore Conrad's love life, but the audience is still stuck on Nic passing away on The Resident Season 5 Episode 3.
We've had approximately five installments to adapt to Nic's death, and now they have Conrad dating again and maybe, based on how so many of you perceived the interactions with Conrad and Billie, Nic's best friend possibly pining after him.
Personally, it would've been okay if Conrad didn't start dating again until the end of the season.
That said, if this storyline had to happen, then Marion was the best choice for him. She's been supportive and sweet to Conrad in the days since Nic died. She's been a presence in Gigi's life since she was a baby.
Conrad: Look at that. You are a magician.
Gigi: No, daddy. She's a nurse.
Hundley: Same thing.
She isn't trying to jump Conrad's bones, nor is she as aggressive as the other women. She genuinely cares about Conrad and Gigi both, and that's not a ruse.
Also, Marion works at the hospital in the daycare center, but she isn't specifically in the medical field. It means Conrad has access to her at the hospital, but she doesn't have to be a constant presence throughout his workday either.
Marion is a sweetheart, and while it's sad that Nic is gone, it didn't sting as much when Conrad invited her to have ice cream with him and Gigi.
Billie was there to encourage him, and you can tell that the two have grown closer over the years and managed to set their differences aside.
He values Billie's opinion and friendship. But to many of those watching, it seemed as if Billie was harboring some burgeoning feelings for Conrad.
It's not the first time that the notion of Billie and Conrad becoming something more got brought up within this fandom. It wouldn't be a surprise if Billie and AJ were a red herring and Billie and Conrad were the relationship that the series intended to suggest or employ.
Billie has mellowed out in the past couple of installments. When she wasn't encouraging Conrad, she was doing the same to Devon.
He's felt this pull toward the research and clinical trials portion of medicine, but he didn't feel as if he had the time to do it. He thought it was too late. But we all know it's never too late.
It's something he's felt passionate about since Rose, and now that Conrad has returned, it should lighten his load. He won't have to serve as Chastain's replacement diagnostician.
Leela was absent from this hour, but indeed, she'd have offered the same advice to Devon as Billie and Conrad did. If it's his passion, then so be it, and it also means that the series can explore that avenue of medicine more via his character.
Although, his bedside manner is something that you'll miss if he entirely devotes himself to the research portion and doesn't get to engage with patients as much.
Goodness knows his interactions with patients are leaps and bounds better than whatever has been going on with Irving. I cannot be the only one who has noticed the odd direction his character has taken, right?
We've seen his brash response to addicts and the mentally ill recently, and now he had a similar irritation with senior-aged folks. Is this subtle thing with Irving going somewhere? Are we supposed to believe he's always been this way? Am I making a mountain out of a molehill?
Ironically, is this something that alludes to healthcare worker burnout? Can Jessica come and collect her man?
Anyway, despite Irving's annoyance with their existence, George and Celeste were an adorable couple, but my heart ached for Celeste.
Not enough attention is on caretaker burnout, and the series went out of its way to explain, primarily via lines that felt like they were reading statistics from an article or something.
Just because you landed in the ER doesn't mean you have to stay.Billie [to Devon]
Despite those heavy-handed moments, the storyline was compelling, and it captured your attention and investment. It's heartbreaking but all too real that health insurance doesn't always cover things like home healthcare aides for people in dire need of them.
So, like with Celeste, the pressure and responsibility fall on them to take care of their loved ones even at the expense of their own health.
Celeste was so tired that you wanted to reach through the screen and hug her. And the worse part about it was that George was oblivious. He didn't seem to realize how bad things were for his wife and didn't factor her opinion or feeling into the equation for anything.
He considered them a team as they always had been, and he was so stubborn and averse to any help. But George didn't notice that Celeste was the entire team.
The woman was doing it all!
On top of that, they were dealing with the financial burdens of George's healthcare.
I loved that this storyline reintroduced us to Winston as a social worker.
It means we can see a lot more of him, and he was such a bright light of hope and sunshine that it would've sucked if we only had him for a short while.
I love how this show probably anticipated how much we'd love this character, and now we get to keep him as a recurring member of The Resident family.
Devon, Conrad, and Winston were doing everything in their power to not only take care of George, who they diagnosed with Parkinson's but Celeste, too.
Whenever she mentioned how tired she was or expressed not wanting to share a room with her husband or be around him, your heart broke a little more.
She loved him to pieces, but she was so tired. Her confession that she woke up some mornings and wished for a brief second that he passed away in his sleep captured how overwhelmed she was.
I used to have a voice, George. I miss that. All you need is somebody to take care of you.Celeste
But by the end of the hour, they managed to find a solution. It's a temporary one that still doesn't adequately address their problem right now, but it's a start; it's a reprieve.
I loved this storyline so much, and it's something that resonated. I've witnessed the caretaker burnout, and often it feels as though there is little space to address the effects on the person who isn't the sick on in need of help. But mental and emotional health is essential, too.
In this case, Celeste developed Broken Heart Syndrome from the stress of taking care of her husband. It was killing her. And that's the extreme that needed to happen for her to get some help finally.
More needs to be done about this, and so much of it is connected to the overwhelming cost of healthcare and limited coverage for social services.
What I've learned about what stands between a solid doctor and a good one is ego.Sofia
Over to you, Resident Fanatics.
What are your thoughts on Conrad dating again? Were you picking up that Billie has feelings for Conrad? What's your impression of Sofia? Hit the comments below!
You can watch The Resident online here via TV Fanatic.
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.