Tuesday, September 21, 2021

REVIEW: 'The Resident' - Hackers Limit the Resources at Chastain and the Doctors Must Get Creative With Their Skills in 'Da Da'

FOX's The Resident - Episode 5.01 "Da Da"

An attack by cyber criminals sends the Chastain ER into a tailspin and Kit tries to figure out whether or not to pay the ransom. AJ deals with a personal connection to the patients brought into the ER during the attack, leaving them all vulnerable. Conrad works on balancing life as a new dad. Devon and Leela debate taking the next step in their relationship.

In 2020, the television industry aired 493 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the season premiere of FOX's The Resident.

"Da Da" was written by Amy Holden Jones and directed by Rob Corn

For those who follow the behind-the-scenes news of production, uncertainty was the dominant mood heading into this premiere. Morris Chestnut took a job starring in Our Kind of People, which conveniently airs after The Resident on the linear schedule. No one knew if he would continue to appear here as Cain. And now, only one throwaway line is given about whether or not Cain chose to stay at Chastain. Kit delivers the news that he's left. Then, it's right into action with the cyber threat. Meanwhile, an actor was hired to play Billie's son she gave up for adoption but who showed up at her door in the season finale. No further clarity is offered on that moment whatsoever. Billie is a component of the drama currently happening at the hospital. Her skills as a doctor are needed. Her personal life isn't a priority. And finally, it was announced that Emily VanCamp would be leaving the show. Nic is heard but not seen here. A looming sense of doom hangs over Nic's fate for those clued in to this development. The Conrad-Nic relationship has been a central focus for the series. The previous season was all about their wedding and having a baby. Conrad is depicted here as a caring and loving father. In fact, everyone at the hospital loves his daughter. They all want to spend more time with her. And Nic is just conveniently gone for a day trip to a spa. She will return shortly. Plenty of uncertainty still exists because the viewer expects some tragic to happen to her. That seems like the only fate that would make sense for why she is no longer in Conrad and Gigi's lives. But again, that's just speculation. Nothing of the sort happens here. This premiere is all about the cyber attack on the hospital. Of course, it's eerie that this show is starting with a ransomware story at the same time as the premiere of 9-1-1. Is that some cross promotion or some note from the executives at FOX? Or is it simply a coincidence because the creative teams are aware of the stories that now inform life for first responders? With this show, the attack is confined to one episode. It still takes Devon too long to realize that he has a friend who can potentially hack the criminals who are trying to extort the hospital. He comes to that realization after a conversation with Leela. Now, that does showcase how they uplift and inspire new ideas in each other. That makes them a winning pairing. And yet, this is something Devon should have thought about before that moment. Plus, his life is in peril at the conclusion of the premiere. That may set up the expectation that someone is going to die and the show is purposefully misdirecting the audience into thinking it's Devon. That probably works for the people not aware of some of the casting developments. Plus, it makes sense that the hospital is so overwhelmed that some patients are casually forgotten about. In fact, the pure chaos is the point and not one individual story. The only patient story that matters is the father and daughter both being plagued with heart attacks that are inexplicable. They are in dire need of surgery. That's not a possibility at the moment because the hackers have limited the resources. Conrad, AJ, Bell and Billie find a solution. They implement it. It's still not enough to save both lives. That leaves AJ's heart broken for this young girl having to grow up without her father. That too is a theme of this universe. Multiple tragedies have taken parents away from their children. That has informed their behavior as adults. That pattern may continue. But again, that's potentially on the horizon. At the moment, it's only fair to judge what's currently happening. This overall plot is topical without trying to go into the nuances of the situation. It wants to confine it to a single hour. It wants to simplify the scope of the threat and mostly just make it a hurdle everyone must overcome. Plus, it's just a little too ridiculous when a computer or phone glitches and someone loudly declares: "we've been hacked." It's not subtle. Nor does it reflect the dangers and perils these threats offer our society. It can be homegrown too. That's the epic twist at the end. Kit shows confidence in her team. She is rewarded for that trust and support. It's possibly too simple as the solution. But the only uncertainty seemingly has to come from Devon's plight with a gas leak that not many people have noticed in one specific wing of the hospital. That immediately establishes yet another case of dire circumstances to propel the story forward.