The Good Doctor – She
By: Jessica Wolff
Dr. Shaun Murphy (Freddie Highmore) finds his neighbor, Kenny (Chris D’Elia), knocking on his back door and lets him in. Shaun reluctantly agrees to allow Kenny to use his antenna until he can get an appointment with the cable guy. Dr. Marcus Andrews (Hill Harper) introduces the team to the newest resident, Dr. Morgan Reznick (Fiona Gubelmann). Dr. Claire Browne (Antonia Thomas) welcomes her and Morgan asks Dr. Jared Kalu (Chuku Modu) if he is the autistic one before Shaun corrects her.
Dr. Lim (Christina Chang) suggests a competition between the residents to strengthen teamwork and patient care, but Dr. Neil Melendez (Nicholas Gonzalez) refuses. The residents are excited about the competition when Lim announces the prize is choice of surgeries for the next week, and Lim picks Shaun and Jared to be on her team while Melendez picks Claire and Morgan for his.
Lim, Shaun, and Jared check on their patient, Quinn Darby (Sophie Giannamore) and talk to her grandmother (JoBeth Williams). They are alarmed to find that Quinn has a penis and Shaun insists that she’s a boy. Quinn’s grandmother insists that Quinn is going through a phase, but Quinn protests. Shaun uses biology to argue that Quinn is really a boy. Jared explains gender dysphoria to Shaun, and Quinn asks Shaun how he knows he’s a boy. He replies that he knows he’s a boy biologically, and Lim orders Shaun to set up an imaging test to figure out why Quinn has pain in her abdomen.
Melendez, Claire, and Morgan examine their patient, Howard Shaw (Adam J. Smith), who insists that he passed out because he missed breakfast. Upon further questioning, Shaw reveals that he’s been self-medicating and Melendez tells Morgan to set up an ultrasound. Andrews and Dr. Isabel Barnes (Marsha Thomason) visit a fertility doctor about their issues and she tells them she will look at their samples to determine the problem. She assures Isabel to not worry and Andrews assures her that they’re a team.
Claire and Morgan determine that Shaw has ruptured his appendix in the ultrasound. Shaw tells them that he has to make arrangements for his kids, and Morgan tells him that Claire will make the calls while she preps him for surgery. Shaun attempts to question Quinn about her gender identity, but Jared tries to stop him. Melendez asks Claire questions about Shaw’s condition, but Morgan interrupts and impresses him with her knowledge and accomplishments. Claire tells Morgan that it’s good to have another female surgeon, but Morgan tells her that she has no intention of being friends, as she plans to be one of the last residents standing.
As Quinn goes in the imaging machine, Shaun continues to misgender her and question her identity. Jared tells him to stop disrespecting her, and Shaun explains that transgender care was not part of his curriculum. Upon looking at the images, Shaun determines that Quinn has testicular cancer. Lim explains the diagnosis to Quinn and her grandmother, and Quinn asks if she’s going to die. Shaun continues to misgender her and list the possible causes of her cancer and low bone density.
Quinn’s grandmother gets a call from her parents and asks Quinn if she’s taking puberty blockers. Quinn confirms and tells Lim that she didn’t disclose it because her parents didn’t want her grandmother to know. Morgan explains to Shaw that he has an infection, and Shaw tells her that he can’t spend extra nights in the hospital because of his kids. He explains that his kids are his life and Claire promises to find a laptop so he can Skype with them.
Lim tells Quinn and her grandmother that puberty blockers don’t cause cancer, but are responsible for the low bone density. Shaun tells Quinn that she has to stop taking puberty blockers and Jared tries to assure her that she’ll be fine without them. Quinn gets upset, as she doesn’t want male features. Morgan believes Claire’s kindness towards Shaw is competitiveness, but Claire argues that it’s basic human decency. Claire and Morgan rush to Shaw as he takes a turn for the worse, but don’t understand why the infection isn’t clearing.
Jared asks the Lab Tech (Nelson Wong) for Quinn’s test results, but he tells him they aren’t ready. Morgan brings the Lab Tech a donut in exchange for expedited test results. Shaun asks why she gave him a donut, and Jared calls it a bribe when Morgan tries to explain that she’s attempting to be kind. Morgan shows Melendez Shaw’s test results and they see that his infection is resistant to all medication.
Lim, Shaun, and Jared tell Quinn’s parents (Keith Allan and Michelle Morgan) about the surgery. Quinn’s parents are assured, but Quinn is scared of losing the effect of the puberty blockers. Shaun suggests that they can remove both testicles, but Quinn’s grandmother is offended by the suggestion. Lim apologizes for Shaun’s lack of tact, but Quinn suggests they go ahead with gender reassignment surgery now. Her grandmother continues to insist that Quinn is going through a phase, but her parents tell her the decision is not up to her.
Outside, Lim tells Shaun to stop making inflammatory statements and Shaun questions how he knows they are inflammatory. She tells him to test them on Jared first, and orders them to do paperwork on the case. Melendez and Morgan explain Shaw’s condition to him, and Morgan explains that he was taking the wrong medication for the wrong symptoms. Melendez explains the necessary procedure and apologizes to Shaw for the effects of it.
Jared gets mad at Shaun for his statements, but Shaun insists that he did nothing wrong. Shaun tells Jared they’re being helpful when Jared asks if he likes doing the scut work. Jared insists that he’s being punished for Shaun’s behavior and believes they’ve lost the competition. Shaun argues that the competition isn’t important, but Jared explains that he wants to win to redeem himself. Shaun tells Jared that they should do the scut work well in order to win the competition.
Andrews comes home and Isabel tells him that the fertility doctor found an irregularity in one of the tests. She says that it’s her fault for waiting too long, and then calls him out for not assuring her. He criticizes her decision to pursue her career over having kids, and she reminds him that there was never a good time previously. Andrews tells her he knew it was too late, and Isabel asks how long he’s been resenting her. He insists he doesn’t, but tells her that he can’t say it’s not her fault.
As Shaun watches a Spanish soap opera, Kenny breaks into the backdoor of his apartment and tells him he got cable for both of them. Shaun thanks him and Kenny asks him about his work. Kenny comments on Shaun’s mismatched furniture, and Shaun explains that the people of Casper donated each piece to him before listing the donors.
Dr. Aaron Glassman (Richard Schiff) and Lim inform Quinn’s parents that Quinn’s grandmother has made a claim of child abuse against them for allowing Quinn to think that being trans is okay. After some discussion, Quinn’s mother tells them to do the surgery that Quinn wants. The fertility doctor tells Andrews that he has a low sperm count, but that nobody is at fault. Andrews insists the test must be wrong, and Isabel comforts him.
Claire demands to know why Morgan didn’t tell her about Shaw’s test results, and Morgan emphasizes the importance of the competition. Claire calls her out for her lack of sympathy for Shaw. Morgan makes a speech about how they can’t be invested in every patient, which inspires Claire to suggest a different method that would help Shaw avoid surgery. Morgan likes the idea, confident that it will help them win.
Glassman and Lim sit down with Quinn’s parents and grandmother to mediate the discussion. Quinn’s mother angrily tells her grandmother that the parents are the ones to make medical decisions. Quinn’s parents tell her about Quinn’s struggles and that she attempted suicide when they tried to force her to present as a boy in public.
Claire presents her idea to Melendez in the cafeteria and the research she’s done on it. Morgan jumps in and supports the idea as well. Melendez agrees to try it after some convincing and compliments both of them. After Melendez leaves, Claire calls out Morgan for only being a team player when it suits her. Morgan tells her that she put Claire in charge of handling the stool sample needed for the procedure.
After checking on Quinn, Shaun asks her what it’s like to be a girl and then asks if the question is inflammatory. Quinn admits that she’d rather have questions than judgment. She explains the challenges she faced, and how freer she felt when her parents let her be herself. She compares it to floating in a pool, and Shaun admits that he’s not a good swimmer.
Quinn’s parents ask about the benefits and risks of losing one testicle or both, and Andrews explains that removing both will remove Quinn’s ability to have children. Lim argues that Quinn already seems confident in her decision, but Andrews insists that she’s a child and might wants kids later. Quinn’s mother tells her grandmother that Quinn will still be a girl no matter what they decide. Quinn’s grandmother confesses that it will be hard to accept, and Glassman tells her that not putting his family first cost him a lot.
Jared and Shaun find Quinn vomiting and determine that her testicles are twisting. Andrews runs back to the meeting room and tells Quinn’s family that he needs a decision now. At Quinn’s grandmother’s pleading, Quinn’s parents decide to remove only one testicle. During surgery, the team rushes to save Quinn while Melendez’ team successfully works the procedure on Shaw. Claire suggests doing a write-up of the procedure for publication, and Morgan jumps in with an offer to assist. Claire attempts to shut her down, but Melendez compliments Morgan’s previous writing.
Lim’s team continues to struggle to find the problem with Quinn, and Jared finds signs of a possible hemorrhage. Shaun uses his textbook memories to support Jared’s theory, and they cut Quinn open to confirm internal bleeding. Melendez, Claire, and Morgan tell Shaw about the successful procedure and he thanks them. Shaw’s daughters, Keira and Sammy Shaw (London and Waverly Cardinal) run to their father Shaw introduces the doctors to the kids, but is unable to remember Claire’s name. Morgan talks to the kids, and Claire walks out frustrated.
Quinn wakes up and asks if they removed both testicles. Lim tells her they only removed one, and Andrews lies that it was his decision. Quinn’s parents tell her the truth and assure her that they support her completely. Lim tells Quinn that her endocrinologist will help her with her hormones and Andrews explains that she might change her mind about having kids. Quinn points out that cisgender people are obsessed with biological kids, and that she can adopt if she really wants a kid. Quinn tells Andrews she’ll be back when she’s eighteen for gender reassignment surgery, and Andrews promises to help her.
Lim tells the group that Melendez’ team won the competition, and Shaun congratulates them. Morgan tells Claire they make a great team, and Jared questions why Claire isn’t happier about winning. Melendez collects his prize, and Jared admits that Shaun was right about the scut work being helpful. Shaun declares they make a good team, and tells Quinn’s grandmother that Quinn prefers the color purple to pink upon seeing the bouquet in her hands. Melendez approaches Claire and tells her that she needs to rise up and make the game on her own terms when it comes to Morgan.
Glassman approaches Shaun and talks to him about Quinn’s surgery. Shaun tells him he likes Quinn, and Glassman is glad that Shaun is using the right pronouns for her. Shaun admits he still has a lot of questions, and Glassman tells him that questions can lead to acceptance. Glassman offers him a ride and dinner, but Shaun says no since Glassman rejected his friendship. Shaun knocks on Kenny’s door and asks for a favor. Kenny breaks them into a public pool and Shaun floats in the water, explaining that he is attempting to understand.