Friday, November 5, 2010

Private Practice: Season 4, Episode 7 "Did You Hear What Happened to Charlotte King?" Review

'Did You Hear What Happened to Charlotte King?'

A heart beats at a rate far beyond the normal rate, so much that one gasps for air. Out of fear, depression, hurt, worry, there is that feeling of trauma which leaves pity, regret and then there is this episode. Shonda Rhimes took a plunge by manipulating such emotions to an already sensitized audience. Did anyone else feel that warm gasp in the throat, that knot that you couldn't get rid of in that opening scene? While Charlotte's world was ripped beyond repair, another world revolved around her and everyone else existed, it seemed so impossible that something so sudden could sneak up and bite you, breaking a few bones in the process. Pete's expression after Charlotte crawled out of her shattered office, a place she could not return to. Pity, shame, comfort; expressions they both exchanged in the hallways. This was a Private Practice that would stay in our memories, appealing to every emotion, compassion at the top of the list.

"Cursed", that was one word Violet described the situation. She couldn't bring herself to see Charlotte, not in that condition. While the writers chose to screen the moments right after Charlotte's assault, instead of her recovery, we as an audience had to shed tears as there was no room to breathe. The intensity of each scene was crucial, sadly overwhelming. Even as Cooper was having a pre-bachelor night at a bar, there was not room to laugh at his drunken jokes and Amelia come-on's. Only when Violet appeared distraught with her son, delivering the worst news any future husband could bear, could he gather himself, ready to fall on his knees and beg for the clock to turn, and for him to be there for the woman he loves; his future wife.

Amidst all the fear and closed curtains, a sideline story, another world circulating around this depressed situation existed. A man with a blood stained shirt, mentally deranged and unknown to Sheldon, the person that may have slipped through his fingers. We connected the pieces and couldn't feel any emotion during those Sheldon scenes, except for him to get the call about Charlotte, and connect the pieces on his own. Instead, nothing happened, the man slipped through the system and all for what, because the woman he mentioned told him "to wait his turn!". How do we as an audience react to such a statement, this deranged man sitting in the station interrogation room? His smirk as he confessed haunting our thoughts and depressing ourselves because Sheldon, oblivious to Charlotte's world was in for a whole load of pain. Not only was this fiend released, but the woman Sheldon feared was assaulted, was right under his fingers and he was gone! Just like that!

This was another emotional turn for fans. We remember the Violet's encounter with Katie, Addison and Sam's car accident; with a woman whose stomach was ripped to her death after giving birth, Maya and Dell, but this has topped the scales that emotionally cripple fans to the brink of deep sadness. We may hope for a recovery, but like Charlotte said, she would not be getting enough sleep and neither would the fans for her sake. Even as Amelia had unrelated scenes with Charlotte, they connected and Amelia's heart break was shown. Addison has to bear the guilt, and unknown to viewers was the reasoning behind Addison's hesitance to answer Charlotte's burning question, did Addison face any trauma situations like the one, or maybe a close friend? Sam was there for Addison, but he didn't really visit Charlotte, and he had only hoped that Addison was not in that situation herself. Was Sam insensitive to say that?

Cooper was the most heartbreaking as Charlotte had to comfort him; the irony.

Where is Naomi? White's financial disputes do not matter as much and Naomi should have shown her face, if even for a few seconds. There is not much that can be said in situations like this, but we can be heartbroken like the rest of the group and possibly hold hands and comfort. Hope for some kind of unexpected glory, that Charlotte would make it out. Even as she walked down the halls and Cooper helped her suit up for home, their faces were enough. The nosy nurses in the beginning could not compare to the unforseen misery in that final scene. KaDee Strickland kept firm as an actress in creating this character. The cast complimented each other.

In "All in the Family" there was preparation for tears, and it leaves you with that gripping pull in your stomach and a clasp in your jaw, a pull in your throat and heavy eye lids. I really don't know what to think of this one Shonda, I was frustrated and depressed. There are no more words that could describe.

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Four and a Half Stars

Grade A-

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