The pilot for the long-anticipated Emily Owens, M.D. has finally come and gone. In one hour, there were two confessions of “love,” one amazing surgery, a heartbreaking secret and about a million embarrassing things that happened to Emily. So far, so good!
To a certain extent, if you’ve watched the promos and sneak peeks, you knew exactly what to expect from Emily Owens, M.D. Despite all the clips that were available, Emily Owens still had plenty to offer.
During her first hours on duty, Emily (Mamie Gummer) and the rest of the residents made rounds with their attending, the beautiful but cold Gina. At the bedside of a little girl, Gina asks Emily for a diagnosis and she nails it. However, when she explains the prognosis in kid-friendly terms, Gina chastises her and leaves her to do discharge papers. Then the little girl codes. Some quick thinking on Emily’s part saves Abbey’s life, but she won’t return home just yet.
After losing and then finding an Alzheimer’s patient, Emily continues to visit the sick little girl, Abbey. They bond over how stressful school can be and how cute boys are. When Emily challenges Abbey to tell her crush how she feels, the little girl suggests Emily do the same thing with Will (Justin Hartley). Emily is left fumbling.
Abbey also requests that Emily do her surgery. While she knows she can’t yet perform the surgery, she could still be in the OR with her, if Abbey requests it. So the request is made, and Gina, infuriated, rips into Emily in the middle of the hallway.
The day is turning out to be rough and is only made worse when, encouraged by Abbey’s success with her crush, Emily finally gathers the “ballvery” (that’s “balls” and “bravery” together) to tell Will how she feels. He’s adorable and attentive to Emily, yet he admits he’s not interested in her.
Emily finds refuge in the stairwell with a small supply of chocolate, wanting a few minutes to sniffle in private.
Her resident advisor, Micah Barnes, shows up to pull her from her pity party. He takes her on a walk through the hospital. He shows her the guy who has to learn to walk again, and the woman in room 501 who has just been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He tells Emily the woman’s son will try to cheer her up with hopes of drug trials, but he already knows she only has about six months to live.
Spending time with Dr. Barnes and getting to help out with Abbey’s surgery makes Emily see things a little more clearly. She exits Denver Memorial the way she entered: With a smile on her face and hope for the future. And when she leaves behind Dr. Barnes, he slips into room 501, tells the patient her diagnosis and then promises her — his mother — that there are plenty of drug trials worth investigating.
Oh, the sadness!