“Private Practice”, Season 5, Episodes 11, “The Standing Eight Count”, and 12, “Losing Battles”: Review

The Standing Eight Count

Pete, Violet, Sam and Addison adjust to their new, singles lives in different ways. Addison questions how much she wants a baby and confides in Jake, Violet considers an offer to go on a date with a young, hot paramedic, and Sam and Pete have a bachelors’ night at a local bar. Meanwhile, Charlotte faces a personal, ethical dilemma when Amelia uncovers a secret about Mason’s mom, Erica, and Sheldon refuses to bend to the pressure when an old friend from the police force wants him to rubber stamp a fellow cop suffering from PTSD.

Losing Battles

Just as Violet’s personal life takes a turn for the better with Scott, the paramedic, Joanna (the abused woman she met at the airport months earlier) arrives in need of urgent medical attention, being both pregnant and badly beaten; Cooper, Charlotte and Amelia all counsel Erica on the toughest decision of her life; and Addison and Jake meet with potential surrogates.

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The Standing Eight Counts is first post-Addison/Sam episode. Violet and Pete are working their way through their separation while Charlotte and Cooper are becoming actual parents to Mason.

I was disappointed by Amelia’s and Charlotte’s choice and means to illegally obtain Erica’s medical records without her approval. This seemed out of character for Charlotte. In spite of her being worried for Mason’s mum, I thought her morals and principles would have pushed her to find a different way to find out what was going on with Erica. Besides, doing something incredibly illegal or unethical is the last possible resort, but Amelia got a fairly calm no when she asked if she could examine Erica after noticing hand tremor. Finally Amelia also seemed too quick to decide there was nothing they could do for the brain tumor they found, without looking into whethere there were treatments that they didn’t know of yet and they coult attempt before deciding Erica is done for. I felt so sad for Mason… Luckily, he now has both Charlotte and Cooper to help him get through a very rough period.

The Standing Eight Counts is also the episode of the boys’ night out when the boys feel the need to let off some post-breakup steam and freshly single Sam and Pete got quite a night to remember. However, Sam simply couldn’t get Addison off his mind by sunrise and though got a bit hot and steamy in the elevator, Sam’s escapade seemed kind of awkward, too, almost as if he wanted to get a notch on his belt rather than really enjoy himself. BTW, being neighbors, coworkers and exes put Sam and Addison in a delicate (awkward?) position, in my opinion.

Sheldon get the only patient of the episode, a police officer going through PTSD after shooting an unarmed 19-year-old kid. He is obviously not ready to go back to work but the force is pushing Sheldon to rubber stamp him and the police officer himself wish he could be back on the job. Sheldon doesn’t choose the easy way out and doesn’t back down: he fights against his cop friend to keep him off the force.

Losing Battles left me all shaken up.

First, there is Joanna (the battered woman whom Violet met at the airport months ago) who shows up at the practice beaten up and pregnang, needing urgent medical attention. I feel like it was a bad idea for Violet to nurse Joanna back to health at her own home, thinking David (Joanna’s abusive husband) would never find her there. I wasn’t surprised when David’s showed up at Violet’s doorstep and shoved it to get his wife back. It was gruesome and brutal to see David attacking both Joanna and Violet and then Violet stabbing David to death repeatedly. I wonder if things would have ended differently if Violet had taken what Joanna said about wanting to kill Davind more seriously the first time around and reported it to the police, as Sheldon advised, and whether the the doctors should have tried harder to intervene or simply let the police investigate. Anyway, I guess it is time for Violet to move and leave a house where Pete had a heart attack and a murder was committed.

We don’t know how Erica broke the news of her illness to Cooper, but it was tough to watch her trying to decide how she should live her last few months (undergoing treatments with heavy side effects to buy more time vs a shorter but quality time to spend with her loved ones).

Meanwhile, Jake and Addison are trying to to find Addison a surrogate, but none of the candidates seem suitable in Addison’s eyes. Even Amelia volunteered her services which Addie declined, telling her that she needed to find out who she was. Addison realizing she needs a break from all of the baby stuff and wanting to focus on absolutely anything else was welcome news: perhaps, freed from the obsession of having a baby quickly will be more successfull in her next effort to become a mother.

The guys spending time together discussing where and how to find women – from working out at the gym to creating online dating profiles – provider some comedic scenes that were cute and funny as well as to be highly appreciated in a very dramatice episode.

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