Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Scrubs, "My Saving Grace" & "My Happy Place": That dance we do

Spoilers for last night's "Scrubs" episodes coming up just as soon as I open a photo shop...

"I'm sorry. We've just been down this road so many times." -JD

I don't have a lot of time before the next press tour session starts, and so I want to focus on the thing that everyone still watching "Scrubs" will be talking about with these episodes: JD and Elliot getting back together.

Now, I've been on the record in the past as saying that I would be fine if they never, ever, never got back to this pairing again, that JD rejecting Elliot immediately after she ditched Scott Foley for him should have brought an end to the idea once and for all. But I really didn't hate this.

Part of that is that Zach Braff and Sarah Chalke do work very well together, and their long history and understanding of each other can lead to much better jokes than when either one is dating a guest star, or even someone longer-term like Keith. And the show is coming to an end, more or less, 14 episodes from now, so I'd almost rather not waste time introducing new love interests versus just throwing these two back together.

But the big part is the conversation the two of them had, which shows that both they and the writers seem to realize that all the drama from the last few go-arounds of JD/Elliot is stupid, and boring, and shouldn't continue. This was a mature conversation they had (and JD has been rehabilitated enough of late that I bought him as capable of having it), and if they're just going to be together without the soap operatics, I'm good with it.

Beyond the development we were all dreading (but that may have turned out okay), I thought these episodes were a cut below last week's. Obviously, you can't kill off Glynn Turman in every show, but I thought the jokes were a little more strained than in the first two, and I really missed having Denise/Jo and Ed around. The new interns have really added some good flavor to the show in a very short period of time, and so having Katie (the least overtly funny of them) around in either of these eps was a disappointment.

What did everybody else think?


Byron Hauck said...

I was never a big JD/Elliot romance-hater, but I did think one of the more interesting things the show did in the earlier seasons was to show how AWFUL they were together. But this episode absolutely sold me on giving them another shot.

Has there ever been a sweeter getting-back-together moment than this?

Omagus said...

I think I'm mostly in agreement. I wasn't completely against JD and Elliot getting back together but I really like the way it was handled. I also think that these episodes were not as funny as last week's...but let me say unequivocally that "Scrubs" is definitely back.

A couple of other thoughts:

- We knew going in that Courtney Cox was only going to be around for a few episodes but I wish she could have stayed longer. I like her character. It would have been really nice to see her and Jordan build up more of a relationship (much to Perry's horror).

- I am aware that each of the principle actors in taking off for a couple of episodes and I understand that that is due to budgetary concerns. But it's already become very noticeable. The show isn't quite the same without the dynamic chemistry of everyone there together.

Anonymous said...

How about that the first episode was Turk-less?! I can't think of anything more disappointing.

I got some solid laughs out of both episodes, and have no problem with J.D. and Elliot getting back together. I thought the whole spiel about "not caring what anyone else thinks" about their relationship was a good way to show the parallels between the plot device and the criticism it has (and will) will received on the issue.

KrisMrsBBradley said...

I've always hoped that they would find a "grown up" way to get JD and Elliot back together. The do, as you said, work well together, and I totally buy them as a couple.

I like that they threw in Elliot with JD's son (as I had totally blocked from my mind that whole JD got someone pregnant and had a kid season). It made the change in their relationship a little more believable. They have both changed and grown since their last go round.

While not as good as last weeks, still bounds and bounds better than anything from last season.

Anonymous said...

Overall these two episodes weren't bad like Season 7, however I didn't find them particularly interesting, either. Katie's story was not funny and was basically a retread of Elliot from Season 1 (you could even see this coming during rounds in an earlier episode when see tried to sabatoge another intern similar to how Elliot screwed over JD). I guess the writers are trying to show how cyclical everything is, but it seems like they already made this point in past seasons with previous interns.

I actually think I'm going to prefer the episodes with a whittled down cast. My Last Words obviously had a lot going for it, but one thing I liked was that not EVERY cast member got involved in the storyline. One of the things that bugged me in past seasons was how JD/Turk/Elliot/Carla/Cox/Kelso/janitor always ended up getting involved in some overlying storyline (even just for the most minimal of involvement like Elliot grabbing an ice cream for a kid). I like it better when they don't try to force everyone into the action just so each can "play his part" and it seems like a more realistic hospital setting when these people aren't always on the same schedule and don't seem like the only people in the hospital doing anything/everything.

As for JD and Elliot, I liked that the show kind of realized people's feelings about their relationship. I think Alan is right. Rather than draw things out, or wait until the last episode (a la Diane on Cheers), hopefully the writers used this to once and for all get these two kids together and then move on so that it's not a part of the show anymore. Of course, if they start fighting again, all bets are off.

And Courtney Cox was a waste on this show. Granted, she's not much of an actress, but her storyline had no impact on me. She was just, there. It seems odd when you consider the other strong guest appearances (Heather Graham, Brandon Fraser, and Michael Fox off the top of my head) that Scrubs has incorporated over the years.

Anonymous said...

the whole spiel about "not caring what anyone else thinks"

Agreed, I love all the extra meta commentary they are doing. Like the Nielsen patient at the end of the first episode back.

Bobman said...

Meh, I still hate them back together. They did an OK job of selling it on the show, but it's just such an awful idea. I know too many people in real life who have tried that game of getting back with people over and over again and it NEVER works out, so while it rings true that they'd try, it won't ring true if it succeeds.

Janitor definitely had me laughing though. Neil Flynn needs his own show somewhere.

Anonymous said...

Funny moment when Courteney told Perry that "Cox" was a stupid name.

The Janitor's "photoshop" plan ("she's gotta get her filmed developed sooner or later") missed one thing: with the popularity of digital photography, almost nobody uses film cameras anymore.

Anonymous said...

So what did Alan think of JD's "Shield" shout out? That impression (?) was a definite highlight for me.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed the subtle dig at Garden State (don't want to be one of those couples where one of them moves to another town and the other one races to the airport to stop them).

Anonymous said...

I really enjoyed these episodes, though not as much as last weeks. Like everyone else, I was done with JD & Elliot, but thought the way they brought them back together was thoughtful and well done. Wish it could have peculated for a couple episodes, but I'm in. I'm also noticing the absence of main stars, and hope they're getting it out of the way early so we can have a final string of episodes with everyone present and accounted for.

They weren't home runs, but there's something to be said for consistently enjoyable, which I think Scrubs is delivering (and for the most part delivered for much of season 7).

Unknown said...

I enjoyed these two episodes more than I enjoyed most of the past season of Scrubs. I've been in the same "enough already with JD and Elliot" camp as most of you, but yeah, this was a plausible conversation between two people who knew each other well. I really enjoyed that Elliot knows how to trigger JD's daydreams and all the callbacks to old behaviour and insecurities. And it grounded the conversation to not have us go inside JD's head, or how he doesn't give in to his inner voice. If they make JD and Elliot last to the end, or even for a bit, this was a good way to initiate it.

Mark B
Funny moment when Courteney told Perry that "Cox" was a stupid name. - totally missed that one, too funny now though.

Note for next week that it should be an amusingly weird one: it seems the Sesame Street Muppets are guest-starring.

AC said...

I enjoyed both episodes last night, even if neither of them had the impact of the first two. The bottom line is that I'm glad the show is back; I didn't realize how much I missed it!

I was happy that JD and Elliott had decided NOT to go back down the dating road again, and I was subsequently disappointed when it was revealed that they decided to go for it, but Zach and Sarah really do kind of melt my little heart. The passing years have indeed been good to their chemistry, and The Discussion was a really nice scene without being too meta; it equally beneficial to the characters themselves and to the audience.

Cole said...

Since the episode started with JD explaining, in a way, how his friendship with Elliot had progressed to family-type activities (cooking breakfast, being with Sam), it introduced the idea that they would be getting together at some point. It was subtle, since they've always been good friends and done very maturely.

And the music callback to Season 2's "sex buddies" was perfect.

Anonymous said...

"My cousin's a cop. Not a good cop, a rogue cop. Ever seen The Shield? You ever heard of FX? You're gonna get Michael Chiklis-ed." (paraphrased)

That was the highlight for me too.

Anonymous said...

I wish Christa Miller had stayed away from all the plastic surgery. Not only is she beginning to resemble the Joker, but her face doesn't move AT ALL anymore and it's really affected her performance.

Anonymous said...

I'm partial to Kelso's "I'm Norm in this bitch!"

I don't mind JD and Elliot getting back together. At this point, I really can't see either of them with someone else, and as pointed out, the actors work very well together. As long as they keep the melodrama down, I'll be happy.

Obviously, you can't kill off Glynn Turman in every show

You can if you name him Kenny!

fabarati said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
fabarati said...

I enjoyed the subtle dig at Garden State (don't want to be one of those couples where one of them moves to another town and the other one races to the airport to stop them).
While it could be a subtle garden state dig, it's much more likely a dig at Friends. It was mentioned in the same sentence as "being on a break", after which Elliot mentioned a friends marathon J.D. watched.

Tosy And Cosh said...

Bobman - I thought I read somewhere that Flynn's doing a family sitcom (mom, dad, kids in the midwest) with Patricia Heaton

Unknown said...

Wish it could have peculated for a couple episodes, but I'm in.

I'd say they've done a pretty good job of doing a slow build. The last part of season 7 was spent with them rediscovering their friendship (My Bad Too, My Waste of Time, My Princess).

Kick her! Kick her in the head! Favorite line.

Anonymous said...

Biggest disappointment for me was an utter lack of callous Denise/Jo goodness. After making such a huge splash in the Glynn Turman episode, I was really looking forward to more of her. Were the new interns also subject to the "16-episodes-only" budgetary thing? If so, then presumably Eliza Coupe will be back for the rest of the season now.

Didn't really care for the Katie storyline. We haven't seen enough of her to have any kind of investment in a Carla intervention. I didn't know what Carla was talking about.

As for JD and Elliot, okay, but it does sort of handcuff Sarah Chalke to Zach Braff, doesn't it, and knock her out of any participating beyond this season if the show were to continue without JD -- unless they're just going to break them up again, which would most likely be irritating on a monumental scale.

M3 said...

WOW, I totally enjoyed the episode. I did dread the JD/Elliot drama again, but thanks to the writers and also the generous use of words BLAH BLAH, it was good. Man they had a seemingly mature conversation without hearing the voice in JD's head for once :D

Anonymous said...

Again, liked both episodes. Maybe they weren't as strong as last week's, but they were both a return to form. I really like the way they handled JD and Elliot, and I am loving the way they are using Kelso.

Favorite lines:
"Mop it off." - Janitor

"I'm Norm in this bitch." (LOL) - Kelso

"That's like saying you're the
smartest cast member of The Hills." - Dr. Cox

CM said...

That's funny, I had the opposite reaction -- hated the first two and felt they were trying way too hard to be wacky, but I really liked these two and felt they were funny without being annoyingly over the top. I was happy not to see Jo and Ed being their wacky selves.

Pamela Jaye said...

courtney cox - i noticed it between eps 2 &

JD& Elliot - no problem here. loved the "blah blah"
i never understood why they didn't work as a couple - eexcept for the time jd threw her unfer the bus. but the other times...

meta closings - vvery boston legal. looved it. better than the bloopers which
are still better than promos for other shows

bill l is still trying to learn to blog
and it's appreciated.

anyone remember courrney on family ties?

running to the airport isn't unique to GS - it's a staple... or a cliche

this is better.
and at least JD & Elliot are alive... (bill l called Grey's - Scrubs in aa hospital. seriously. it's more Ally McBeal in a hospital, but... there is a similarity, except JD is neither Elliot's boss nor secretly married. he's just infested with a whole lotta gnomes (and i find myself wondering what he amd Meredith would think of each other. perhaps their voiceovers could mate.

Pamela Jaye said...

perry and kelso were also good btw

Pamela Jaye said...

also, some of the interns (and some cast) are in the webisodes - along with
1 intern i haven't seen on the show

UneFemmePlusCourageuse said...

I thought I read somewhere that Flynn's doing a family sitcom (mom, dad, kids in the midwest) with Patricia Heaton

As much as I love Neil Flynn, my reaction to this is a big: "ugh, not another one!" One of the best parts of Scrubs is that it's not one of those sitcoms.

Pamela Jaye said...

i find myself thinking of the Andrew Dice Clay "sitcom" (I didn't see it and I couldn't imagine it)