This episode of Red Band Society flashed back to Charlie’s accident, and we saw our dear friends at Ocean Park Hospital make some questionable choices.
Red Band Society season 1, episode 5, “So Tell Me What You Want What You Really Really Want I’ll Tell You What I Want What I Really Really Want,” (okay so we extended that slightly. Note the slightly) focused mainly on Charlie (Griffin Gluck) and Dash (Brian Bradley). A nice change, seeing as these characters have been fairly peripheral until now.
Surprisingly, Dash’s story is the most compelling of of all the Red Banders’. At least so far, we’re impressed with how seriously he’s taking his situation.
That’s cute Kara, but everyone knows Banksy
Dash and Kara (Zoe Levin) make an agreement that he’ll tell her what he knows about the hospital board members that might help her move up the organ donor list, if she helps him get into a fancy apartment complex.
She succeeds, and has him pose as her designer “Dashel.” Turns out he just wants to get to the roof, where he creates a stunning piece of street art, which the Red Band Society can later admire from the roof of the hospital.
After they get back, Kara finds Dash in a bad state, and realises that the day might have been too intense for his system. They have a very moving conversation, in which Dash reveals that he doesn’t expect that his new lungs (if he even gets them) will last very long. He’s doing this for his parents, he tells her, but he doesn’t expect to live forever. He just wants to be remembered.
Ultimately the pair finds out that they have more in common than they think, and honestly at this point, this potential romance is 10 times more engaging than the convoluted Jordi/Emma/Leo thing. Yeah, let’s talk about that…
Did anyone order a love triangle?
Remember that rich hypochondriac who was meant to serve as the kids’ fun uncle? Apparently that wasn’t working out too well, so Ruben (Griffin Dunne) is being written out of the series.
Before he leaves, he gives Jordi (Nolan Sotillo) a car (because of course he does) to celebrate his emancipation, and lets Emma (Ciara Bravo) teach him how to drive. Leo (Charlie Rowe) tags along, because Jordi is trying to prove that he’s not going to make a move on Emma. Um… yeah.
Emma and Leo endanger themselves and everyone else on the road by getting into a huge argument while both trying to help Jordi. Clearly there are big feelings needed to be expressed – and after they get back (in one piece! It’s a miracle), that’s exactly what they do.
Leo thinks Emma is upset about what he said about her disease, but she cares more about the fact that Kara kissed him at homecoming.
Leo says it’s her fault that they’re not together, because she just wanted to be friends. “I changed my mind, I don’t wanna be friends!” she exclaims. “Well, neither do I!” Leo fires back, and kisses her. But this only makes Emma storm off. Pan back to reveal: Jordi, an upset look on his face.
Good thing we have Charlie explain to us that this was, “A declaration of love, and a declaration of war,” because we honestly can’t tell what these kids are thinking.
When Leo calls the RBS to the roof where they toast Charlie and admire Dash’s graffiti, Jordi grabs Emma’s hand. That look of confusion on her face? We feel ya, sister.
Seriously. Just two episodes ago, Emma wanted to get back together with Leo. Leo also wanted Emma, but we weren’t sure why. Jordi liked Emma, but then he didn’t, and now he does? We get it, teens are complicated. But these kids need to figure out what they want. And explain it to us, please, because it’s hard to get invested in a love triangle when it’s less like a triangle and more like a series of unconnected scrawls on a chalkboard.
Oh Jackson, Nurse Jackson
Undoubtedly, the true star of this week’s episode is Octavia Spencer, who gets some great material to work with.
Charlie has been in a coma for eight weeks, and men in suits come to assess whether there’s any reason to keep him in the hospital, or whether he needs to be moved to a long-term facility.
Nurse Jackson flashes back to the night he was brought into the ER, and in the best scene of the episode, we see her make him a promise: that she’ll be there when he wakes up.
We meet Charlie’s mother Mandy, who blames Charlie’s dad (Thomas Ian Nicholas) for what happened.
She discovers that Nurse Jackson has allowed Nick to visit Charlie despite Mandy’s wishes – and while we agree with Jackson that she should probably be more focused on her son, we get why this peeves her.
Especially when we see the lengths Jackson is willing to go to to keep her promise to Charlie: at the end of the episode, she switches out Charlie’s blood sample, to make the suits think he’s improving.
Oh, but it’s okay. Leo told her he had a dream where Charlie appeared. So it’s totally legit!
…No. It’s weird. Dr. McAndrew (Dave Annable) makes a good point that while Charlie’s recovery is important, moving him would free up a bed for another child who needs it. Obviously Nurse Jackson has connected to Charlie, but forging test results because a sick kid had a dream? This has got to come back to bite her at some point.
And also? If the dream space really is “anything we want it to be,” would it really be an empty hospital? Really? Enquiring minds want to know.
What did you think about this episode of Red Band Society? Are you on board with the love triangle? Do you think what Nurse Jackson did was justified? Sound off in the comments!