Last week, we left Mike Vogel’s Dr C being given some very bad news by colleague and friend Eva Zambrano (Lana Parrilla). This week (which follows straight on) his brother Rick was not mentioned (he’s back for next week’s episode), but we can assume the bad news has made Chris feel more than a little vulnerable. The only father-figure he has is Proctor, who finds revealing anything about himself excruciatingly difficult. So, when a giant sinkhole opens up on a construction site and Proctor expressly forbids Chris from attending, Chris disobeys Proctor in an attempt to impress him, and heads down the sinkhole to rescue, and operate on, a trapped worker. As ever with a Jerry Bruckheimer production, the special effects are very convincingly rendered and no expense seems to be spared in the creation of the devastation caused by the sinkhole.
These extra episodes, especially last week’s, have really helped build the character and cement our affection for Dr Chris Deleo, and Mike Vogel has imbued him with a lot of heart and warmth as well as the cockiness and bravado (and baulking at Proctor’s authority) that we saw in the main 8 episodes.
Needless to say, things don’t go completely to plan down the sinkhole, and we cut to Chris’s progress throughout the episode as he both attends to and gets to know his patient, Joe (Joshua Biton). Construction workers, like trauma surgeons, have little time for outside work relationships, it seems, and Joe confides that his boss is a father figure to him and has even had him over for dinner.
Joe’s boss, Colin, played beautifully by Jonathan Adams, is already at MT1 and being cared for by Alpha Team’s father-figure, Proctor. There are some lovely scenes between these two as they wait for news, and confront and compare their own situations. Proctor is every bit as anxious as Colin about his own particular man down the hole, especially after Eva has clued him in to why Chris did it, but he shows it in a much more British way (it’s all in those beautiful brown eyes…).
Eva is much more overtly anxious about Chris. If Proctor’s his father, then Eva’s his big sister. Here’s a quick bravo to the writers for giving Eva the boyfriend line (and to Lana Parrilla for delivering it so perfectly!). Eva is involved in an interesting subplot, about women in male dominated professions, with her patient Meg (Rose Rollins, another strong guest performance). The discussion about women in both of their professions comes about when Meg takes exception to being assigned a male surgeon named “Angry Ortho” to repair her broken bones. Who’d blame her when you realise he’s none other than Dr Bruce Kaye (Michael O’Neill, whose face must have hurt from all that frowning) who we first met way back in the early episode entitled 88 Seconds. You’ll recall his extreme rudeness to a then very green Serena Warren. It turns out that extreme rudeness is his default mood, and he gets so steamed up and grumpy with Serena that he suffers a heart attack in surgery. Of course, Serena saves him, and they embark on an unusual and rather amusing friendship. “Angry Ortho” even manages a disturbing smile. Once again, Lis Harnois shows her quality as an actress. She can make you laugh or cry with equal ease.
Although this was Mike Vogel’s episode, and the sinkhole location, though possibly slightly protracted, provided an added excitement to the episode, it was my beloved Jeremy Northam as Proctor who once again stole the show in the very last scene. Almost despite himself, Proctor finds he can’t be cross with Chris for disobeying him without admitting his anger comes from a place of affection. Chris delightedly pounces on this admission and teases Proctor by asking if he can came round for dinner. Jeremy’s face is an absolute picture throughout this scene. Somebody please write this wonderful actor some comedy. Whatever he chooses to do next, it can’t come too soon.
Down to the Bone is Miami Medical episode 12 of 13, which means that next week’s will be our last episode ever. I’m afraid CBS are messing with our heads by billing next week’s episode as the season finale instead of the series finale, because I’m told by Jeffrey Lieber, the show’s creator and exec producer, that there are definitely no plans for any more episodes. The fact that Friday’s episode got more viewers than the previous week’s, even though the show is cancelled and getting no promotion, cuts no ice with CBS. I’ll leave you to apply your own expletives…but not here, go to the CBS website, scroll down to the bottom, click on Feedback, and deliver up the contents of your spleen.