‘The Resident’ Starts Important Race Conversations

If you had to work the system to get where you are, should you be excused when you got where you are by unethical means? That was the question posed in episode two of The Resident‘s fourth season.

Dr. Barrett Cain was painted as the bad guy almost from the get-go. He may be an amazing neurosurgeon, but his morals are askew.

I never thought much about why Cain (Morris Chestnut) does what he does, other than ego. Derek Shepherd on Grey’s Anatomy had a big ego. Tom Koracic has one too. That was the understanding. Brain surgeons have big egos. And why shouldn’t they? They have learned how to operate on brains. Save people’s lives. You have to be confident to go into that specialty.

The Resident hasn’t touched much on race unless it has something to do with the medical system or its flaws. But with the recent surge in the Black Lives Matter Movement, it’s more important than ever to have these conversations.

Mina and AJ disagree on how to deal with Cain’s latest dangerous move. (Guy D’Alema/FOX)

Should Cain be excused because he’s fighting a system that has been stacked up against him? I would say no. What he did was wrong. Dangerous even. And he continues to do it. But I also see Dr. A.J. Austin’s (Malcolm-Jamal Warner) point-of-view. It’s like how women are supposed to stick together. It’s not easy to get to the top. And unfortunately, once you do, especially if you are the only one in the position of that gender or race, you will be judged more harshly if it all comes crashing down. That makes it harder for the next person to come along.

I liked that the writers had Dr. Mina Okafor (Shaunette Renée Wilson) and Austin on different sides of this issue. I hope they start exploring more issues and bringing different viewpoints.

The one thing that doesn’t have different viewpoints is the brown community dying because their hospitals are in poorer areas, and they don’t have the people or resources to save everyone.

It was heartbreaking to hear about why Dr. Devon Pravesh’s (Manish Dayal) dad died, and what’s worse is that he wasn’t the only patient that could have been saved. The system is rigged for the privileged people. I have no idea how we fix it, but keep talking about what’s wrong is a start. We can’t just move on from this tragedy and forget all the truths it uncovered.

The issues brought to light are not the only things that this season is focusing on. The fallout from the pandemic is just starting for Chastain Park Memorial Hospital. It looks to be a rocky road ahead.

First, Logan Kim (Rob Yang) got fired. Because Dr. Conrad Hawkins (Matt Czuchry) told Red Rock that he bent the rules to get the PPE. While the writers were just getting me to like the guy, I’m not necessarily upset that he’s gone. But he left with a warning for Conrad, that things will get worse.

I’m not sure what that will look like but the hospital not getting another CEO is a bad sign. And the CEO of Red Rock will not tell them who will run the hospital.

It was funny seeing Kerr Smith as the CEO. He went from Riverdale principle to CEO of a horrible corporate company. The scenes with him in it were serious, but I couldn’t get over the fact that it was Jack from Dawson’s Creek on my screen. Plus, most recently, his role on Riverdale was still stuck in my head. The part was a little strange, though they redeemed his character once he left.

“Mina’s Kangaroo Court” was a pretty intense episode, especially with Mina and Austin not seeing eye to eye right after their sexual relationship starts. They don’t seem to be breaking up, which is a relief, but it appears we are in for a different dynamic from them this season.

CoNic is starting the next phase of their relationship. There’s a baby on the way! (FOX

It wasn’t all intense, though. I really enjoyed Dr. Randolph Bell (Bruce Greenwood) trying to make amends with his former stepson. While it didn’t go well, I’m continuing to enjoy the growth of this character. He’s come a long way from the character we hated in the first season.

And, Nic Nevin (Emily VanCamp) and Conrad are having a baby! I was wondering how the writers would move forward with this relationship. The fourth season is a little early for marriage. But Haley and Nathan got married at the end of season one of One Tree Hill, and while they spent a lot of season two and three apart, they spent the majority of the series together. It’s one of the few shows to do that. Now, The Resident is doing the same.

What do you think of the conversations The Resident is starting? Tweet me @MandyTTCarr or comment below.

Mandy Carr

Editor and Founder, Primetime Addiction

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