Next Of Kin

Episode Report Card
Heathen: C- | Grade It Now!
Next Of Kin

Straight from episodes of ER that are not this one: Abby's brother Eric is bipolar, just like Mental Maggie, who showed up to throw in her two cents that Abby can't fix this quickly. Eric insisted that he isn't crazy like Maggie was. Proving that ER is more absurdist fantasy than anything, Luka paid for sex from a hooker, as if he's not so hot that even hookers would lie down for free. And in the oddest choice ever, we see two seconds of Leon out in the hallway with Pratt just as Chen rushes out buttoning her shirt. What? That tells me nothing. I've watched TV before and I know that scenes like that sometimes convey wacky ketchup-stain hijinks. What I think they were trying to get across is that Pratt's brother is a little...simple.

On a snowy, cold morning in Chicago, Abby "Nurse Wretched" Lockhart jolts awake when she hears something break in her kitchen. Shuffling grouchily out of her bedroom, she spies Eric sitting rigidly on the couch watching television. "Where's Mom?" she asks densely, as if Maggie isn't less than a foot out of her line of vision. "You need cable," Eric barks. Abby goes ahead and exerts the minimal effort required to walk, turn her head, and get a view of Maggie in the kitchen. "I broke a bowl," Maggie apologizes. "I'm making scrambled. Want some?" Of course this family eats scrambled eggs. It all makes sense. Abby feels like there are enough scrambled things in the room, so she declines Maggie's offer with a bratty "no" that should earn her a scrambled face, but doesn't. "Got cheese?" Maggie asks. "Just the stuff in a can," Abby grunts. She then complains that, at 5 AM, it's a trifle early for breakfast. Eric brats that he's not even hungry. How did Eric get there? Last we left them, Eric was asking for another hearing of some kind, and they were in Nebraska, and Carter was there, and they got hotel rooms...did we skip an episode? "He's been up since 3," Maggie whispers to Abby. "Maybe you should talk to him." And after having done nothing but want to talk to Eric for, oh, two or three episodes, Abby pulls a long face as if this is a hideous request and pads reluctantly into the living room to darken its poor unsuspecting aura.

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