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Philadelphia Gay News
“E.R.’s” chief of emergency medicine Dr. Kerry Weaver didn’t just come out of the closet during the drama’s May 17 season finale, she shattered it during an explosive confrontation with the hospital’s self-absorbed and malicious chief of staff.

During the action-packed and emotional finale - which included a bloodbath at the hands of a mad gunman, a staffer’s possible occupational exposure to HIV, and the choice of a doctor to let a wounded criminal die rather than treat him - Weaver (Laura Innes) learned that the object of her affection, psychiatrist Dr. Kim Legaspi (Elizabeth Mitchell), had been fired by ultra-nasty Dr. Robert Romano (Paul McCrane). Worse, Romano made it clear that his decision to boot Legaspi was based largely on the fact that she is a lesbian.

“I should have fired her when I found out,” Romano said.
“Found out what?” Weaver fired back.
“That she’s ... incompetent,” Romano managed to recover.

Incensed, Weaver blasted Romano, threatening to quit if he followed through with his plans to fire Legaspi and promising to reveal his homophobia
and the illegal dismissal of the psychiatrist to the hospital’s board, the American Civil Liberties Union, the media and “anyone else who’ll listen.”
She also, finally, said the three words fans had waited most of the season to hear - “I’m a lesbian” - before storming out, and leaving Romano in stunned silence.

The exchange, and the admission to herself and her colleague that she’s gay, seemed to take its toll on Weaver. The final image of her during
the episode was of the character speeding away from the confrontation with Romano, a worried look in Weaver’s eyes and an unsteady hand
raised to cover her slightly quivering lips. The fallout of Weaver’s blowup with Romano, and her public coming out are set to be key plot
points in the first few episodes of the Emmy Award-winning drama’s eighth season, beginning this fall.

The inclusion of gay subplots, as well as the occasional appearance of gay recurring character nurse Yosh Takata (Gedde Watanabe), are regular components of the hit drama. However, Weaver’s coming out marks the first time a lead character on the show has been gay or lesbian.

“E.R.” airs at 10 p.m. Thursdays as the cleanup batter in NBC’s ongoing “Must-See TV” lineup.

Laura Innes and Elizabeth Mitchell in the Media

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