In Thursday night's Scrubs
, J.D. and the rest of the staff at Sacred Heart learn about what it means to get older as they each deal with maturity in their own way. J.D. and Turk, who have been busy with their babies, are feeling particularly antsy, so when the opportunity comes up for them to both have an afternoon together, baby-free, the two decide to go for broke and do the stupidest thing they can think of. Their idea: "World's Tallest Black Doctor" using the giant lab coat they have, along with a giant stethoscope and clipboard.
Cox, in the meantime, is getting heat from Carla after telling a young boy that he was diagnosed with leukemia against his parents' wishes. Though Cox believes that the child should know all the facts about his own future, Carla feels as though Cox is purposely taking away the kid's childhood. Cox, as usual, takes his frustration out on J.D. who is practicing his "World's Tallest Doctor" bit. After Cox calls him an immature child, J.D. quickly feels bad about himself and goes to Turk, saying that the two need to grow up and stop playing games all the time.
To top things off, Elliot overhears a conversation Kelso is having with one of his co-workers and discovers that his birthday is coming up. When asked, Kelso tells Elliot that he is 58 years old but Elliot soon discovers that this is a lie and sets off, determined to discover his real age. Ted and Janitor offer to help so the three break into Kelso's office to read his personnel file only to find out that Kelso is actually turning 65.
Of course, as always happens in Sacred Heart, just as neatly as everyone's related problems began, they are also eventually addressed. The Turks sit down J.D. and Cox and explain that both of their problems are related. J.D. should be more mature but still not deny who he is and should let loose every once and a while. And Cox needs to let people be who they should be and stop forcing others to grow up so fast simply because he had to. Even Elliot and her gang finally manage to throw Kelso a birthday party, which he actually seems to enjoy. However just as we are led to believe that Kelso has come to terms with his age we learn the true reason for his reluctance to admit it - apparently the board requires that all heads of medicine step down when they turn 65. Kelso is then notified to begin searching the hospital for his replacement.
The best thing about being on the air for seven seasons is the seven years of development and character introductions the writers get to play with. Background characters like Hooch ("Hooch is craaazy ") get their chance in the spotlight and it is always one of the most memorable parts of the show. In fact, this last season seems to be going out of its way to feature of all if its colorful supporting cast with key plots revolving around characters like "Snoop Dog Attending" and Dr. Beardface. Last week's episode was entirely about the background cast.
The other great thing about being around for so long is the thorough development of all the cast members. Episodes like this one make me sit and try to figure out why I sympathize so much for Dr. Kelso, the cruel, insecure, selfish and somewhat racist adulterer, but for some reason, I do. Even Cox is noticeably more human and relatable than he was during the first several seasons. Elliot is confident and Turk and Carla are as solid as ever. In fact, the only character that seems to lack in development is the main character, J.D.
There were times during this episode that I couldn't help but wonder myself why a 32 year old doctor and father spends so much time playing games with his friend. But, the show is centered around doctors goofing off, so maybe this is necessary. As much as I will miss this show, I am happy that this is the last season, as I sort of want J.D. to grow up a little and, of course, settle down with Elliot like the show's been hinting towards since the very beginning.
Unfortunately, though normally I would be hoping for a believable and well planned out storyline to get our two leads back together, with the filming of the last episodes of the series up in the air, part of me just sort of wants J.D. and Elliot to hook up as soon as possible just so that their story can be finished before the series is.
-George Freitag, Buddy TV Staff Columnist
(Image courtesy of NBC)