This week on The Resident we meet Mina’s mother and Henry Barnett makes a return visit when he begins experiencing strange side effects from the VNS device.
The Resident begins with a somber tone as the camera cleverly frames Mina receiving a breast cancer diagnosis. At least, that’s how it appears. Good news: It’s not Mina’s diagnosis. Bad news: It is a close friend of hers, Adaku’s. Mina promises to get her the best breast cancer surgeon she knows and flies in a famed Nigerian surgeon named Josephine Okeke (Lynn Whitfield), though Mina knows her as mom.
It becomes apparent why Josephine is both beloved and renowned and why Mina needs her assistance. She is able to achieve in one conversation what Mina wasn’t able to several: persuade Adaku to get a double mastectomy. By appealing to Adaku’s desire to have children, she is able to convince her to fight for the ability to stay alive long enough to see her child grow up.
As a woman who doesn’t want that for herself, it’s not surprising that Mina is unable to connect to that longing. It’s something I love about Mina’s character, her unwavering desire to not succumb to maternity sets her apart from the traditional female character stereotypes.
You have to wonder too, if much of Mina’s personal opinions on child-rearing come from growing up with a workaholic mother. The two share a deeply affecting conversation in a car ride from an awkward luncheon. Dr. Okeke wants to confront the past trauma that made Mina flee from Nigeria but Mina isn’t interested in opening old wounds. She believes Mina never liked her, even before the fire that killed her sisters. Both actresses do fine work here, the pain both women are still suffering yet unable to speak aloud due to their own respective pride connotes a complex relationship anchored in emotional turmoil and a failure to communicate.
Together, Mina and Dr. Okeke scrub in for Adaku’s surgery. And if you expected them to bond over scalpels and surgical cuts then you’d be as sorely mistaken as I was. Instead, we see the side of Josephine that Mina knows all too well. A side of her Austin pointedly soliloquizes about only moments before. She snaps at Mina, harshly criticizing her technique. Then she throws a scalpel across the room when a nervous Nurse Jessica hands it to her a moment too early. “I did not expect that,” Bell comments from the gallery.
Adaku comes through the surgery with flying colors but Mina is left shaken by another terrible encounter with her mother. Luckily, she has Austin to comfort her and let her know how appreciated she is by her Chastain family, even if not by her own mother.
Chastain cannot stay in business with this company.
In the murky world of QuoVadis, Gordon Page is touting the brilliance of the new VNS device, a device that has appeared to work wonders on recurring patient Henry, son of Zoey Barnett (Daniella Alonso).
After running tests on Henry, Nic and Conrad deduce that he’s doing fine and the device is working as expected. Although it doesn’t explain the plethora of new bruises he’s spotting, bruises he explains away as evidence of his clumsiness. But the falls are clearly indicative of something going awry with his body, and I’m guessing that something starts with a Quo and ends with a Vadis.
Just as Bell discharges Henry, the kid goes into cardiac arrest. His VNS device is stopping his heart every three minutes. It’s a race against the clock for Conrad to find the electronic wand that will turn off the device after poor Henry has died three times and his mother is in hysterics. They’re finally able to deactivate it and it brings both Bell and Conrad to the same conclusion, one we’ve known for a while now, QuoVadis has got to go.
Will Bell finally put the hospital and welfare of his patients above his own egotistical needs?
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Will the real Brent Trainor please stand up?
Devon’s latest patient, Miles Trainor, appears to have a benign case of kidney stones. But when he begins experiencing more severe symptoms, he and Irving rush him in for a CT scan and discover his appendix is inflamed. Only problem is, Miles already had an appendectomy.
Taking heat for his mistake (identifying a burst appendix is intern-level stuff), Devon feels the pressure to find a reason behind Miles worsening condition. He attempts to reach out to his brother, Brenton, only to realize Miles is in possession of his brother’s phone… Unless, perhaps, Miles is Brenton?
Miles has terrible health insurance and is drowning in student loans, hence why he stole his twin brother’s insurance card. The reason he was still having terrible symptoms is because he has rheumatoid arthritis and they stopped his steroid treatment to take care of the appendicitis.
Technically, he committed insurance fraud, but kindly Devon sweeps it under the rug for him. Everyone deserves a fresh start sometimes, right? Devon would know that better than anyone.
Odds & Ends
- Henry telling Nic he wished Conrad was his dad and that he was afraid of being sick because then Doug might leave his mom were such devastatingly honest revelations. You don’t always realize how much kids see and take to heart.
- “You’re a warrior, Adaku. Now you have the scars of a warrior.”
- To sum up the piece of work Josephine Okeke is look no further to this interaction with Bell: “One day she [Mina] will outshine us all.” To which Josephine responds “Speak for yourself, Dr. Bell.”
- Austin telling Mina, “We will always appreciate you, always.” MY HEART.
A new episode of The Resident titled “Adverse Events” premieres March 4th on FOX.