Friday, May 02, 2008

Scrubs, "My Waste of Time": Meet the meta

"Scrubs" spoilers coming up just as soon as I fire my PA announcer...

Once again, we get into the matter of the final season/penultimate season switcheroo with this one, which was so overflowing with meta humor -- J.D. complaining that his long fantasies are never worth it, Jordan questioning how J.D. always uses other people's problems to solve his own -- that it felt like the writers had been saving up all these jokes until the finish line was in sight.

And, while I usually don't like the really long fantasies -- think Doctor Toilet, or most of Floating-Head Doctor -- I think it's ironic that they finally made had J.D. complain about it after the heat-generating fake ball sequence, which was maybe the funniest thing in the episode. Given Todd's ambiguous sexuality and J.D.'s, um, complicated feelings for Turk, the image of the two of them -- and a disgusted Dr. Cox -- all reaching out to get their hands close to his junk still makes me laugh just thinking about it.

Also, the on-screen bug for "Legal Custodians" (get it?) during J.D. and Elliot's conversation was inadvertently made ten times funnier when the tools in the NBC promo department later covered half the screen with an ad for the Kentucky Derby. Ordinarily, I hate that stuff, but here it worked as an unexpected second payoff.

"My Waste of Time" wasn't as strong as Kelso's exit last week -- and I'm taking Bob's cameo here to mean that the producers aren't done with Ken Jenkins yet, thankfully -- as the J.D./Elliot story felt off. Yes, J.D. does pranks, but they're almost always on his friends or people in the hospital who deserve it; the stunt with the drive-through intercom seemed too mean-spirited, especially given the anonymous victim of it. Beyond that, though, I'm uncomfortable with the way the show is once more heading into the breech of a J.D./Elliot relationship. I'm on record as saying the time has long since passed, and that it should be clear to everyone that they don't belong together, but I could maybe stomach it if there were only a few episodes to go in the series. But to have to go through another one of their reconciliations, and then have 18 more episodes? Whether they stay together or not, I'm not looking forward to it.

On the plus side, I liked Dr. Cox and consiglieri Jordan conducting all family business out of the doctor's lounge, and of course Ted asserting himself with both Cox and The Janitor. (Plus, any episode where Ted sings gets bonus points from me.) And the story of Turk's testicle(s) remains painful, but funny.

What did everybody else think?

12 comments:

Andrew said...

Well, thankfully there's only one more episode this season, so unless have some huge event take place in that episode, I don't think they'll have much trouble recalibrating their pace for one more season. By the way, did anyone notice NBC's ambigous wording for next week's show? They're simply calling it, "the finale," not series or season, just finale.

Theresa said...

I thought it was one of the funnier episodes we've seen in a while. The drive thru joke did seem kind of mean, but I, too, loved the joke about Turk's prosthetic ball and I actually laughed aloud at Legal Custodians (I'm a sucker for bad puns). The whole episode really had me thinking maybe the next season wouldn't be so bad...until the end of the episode, with that stupid JD/Elliot hinting crap. This would be less annoying had they not said repeatedly that the whole point of JD breaking Elliot's heart in Season 3 in such a brutal manner was to put to rest any hope that they might get together again. So why do they continue??? Frustrating. A dark cloud on what, for me, was a surprisingly good episode.

JasonR said...

Surprisingly, I find myself rooting for J.D. and Elliot to get back together. I don't think it is clear they do not belong together - the problem has always been that both of them are stuck inside their own heads. I think the writers are moving them both towards getting beyond themselves (not as fast as I would like), and their eventual realization will be more subtle and organic. Maybe that is me projecting what I hope will happen. I really don't want Friends-style will they/won't they drama

LA said...

I'm really okay with a JD/Elliot pairing at this point. It's been 4 seasons since they've been together, and they've both matured significantly since then.

Great episode. I love that Janitor took over Kelso's office.

Bobman said...

I'm amazed that anyone could be FOR JD and Eliot hooking up again. Whatever the reasons for their past failures, there have been way too many of them (and they've been way too colossal) for them to ever think they could make something work in the long term.

Anonymous said...

I've completely forgotten what the situation with Kim is. Does she not still live in Seattle? Obviously, JD has access to his baby, but how often?

Zach Haldeman said...

Well, thankfully there's only one more episode this season, so unless have some huge event take place in that episode, I don't think they'll have much trouble recalibrating their pace for one more season.
Something huge happens next episode - the producers claim to have blown nearly the entire season's budget on it - but the whole thing is a story Dr. Cox tells to Jack.
As for the Elliot/JD hookup, until this very episode I was adamantly against it. I have argued people's ears off about how each of the three times they got together in the first seasons the story was just to prove that they weren't met to be with each other. "My Bed, Banter, & Beyond" was devoted to it, and to some degree their hookup in season two was, and JD leaving Elliot in season three was entirely for the purpose of closing the book on any future romance between them. But for some reason, while watching last night's episode, I just said "[frak] it." I don't care anymore. The show is finally getting its groove back in these episodes, and if they want to do this story, I don't really mind. I'm beyond feeling anything strong about JD or Elliot, so as long as it comes across as earnest in the present time, I'm okay with it, even if it doesn't add up with what we know of their relationship in the past.
And did anyone else notice in the scene in the cafeteria when JD went to have a fantasy Sam turned his head up too? Maybe they've done this before and I didn't even notice, but I found it hilarious this time.
And Legal Custodians was brilliant. That was one fantasy I'd have loved to see go on forever. (Or at least long enough to get a snapshot of the type of story this show would have. For once I really hope they actually revisit a fantasy.)

Anthony Foglia said...

@Anonymous said...

I've completely forgotten what the situation with Kim is. Does she not still live in Seattle?

I think she moved back to the area and works in a hospital across town. At least that's what I remember. She definitely left the Tacoma hospital.


Count me in the anti-JD-and-Elliot camp. Elliot might have matured in the last few years, but J.D. hasn't. But at this point, without any other prospects, they'll probably end up together.

PS: Turk's hot roasting nut, not funny. Doctor Toilet, not funny. Floating head doctor, funny.

dez said...

And did anyone else notice in the scene in the cafeteria when JD went to have a fantasy Sam turned his head up too? Maybe they've done this before and I didn't even notice, but I found it hilarious this time.


I don't know if they've done it before, but I agree that it was hilarious. Plus the baby is so darn cute!

I don't care anymore if JD & Elliott hook up again, as long as the show stays this damn funny. Legal Custodians, tee hee hee!

Anonymous said...

dr. toilet was funny.

its a toilet!!! and its a doctor!!! what's not to laugh at????

i always assumed the two leads would hook back up around the end of the series anyways, or the writers' would at least have them flirting with the idea, this just confired it. its all right, at least their not ross and rachael, where they actively decided against pairing up until the last possible second of the finale. lord did i hate that, it marred what otherwise was a pretty good last episode, but ross and rachael had been too big throughout the history of the show to ignore. thank god fraiser never had that problem.

UneFemmePlusCourageuse said...

Yeah, I also wouldn't mind seeing JD and Elliot get back together.

And 'legal custodians' was hilarious. As was the entire disjointed Janitor/Dr. Cox/Jordan/JD/Turk/announcer conversation.

monku said...

i like jd and elliot.unrealistic,yes, but they are quite endearing !they should sort out their issues though.