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Mars Attacks
Written By:  R. Scott Gemmill
Directed By:  Paris Barclay
Airdate: October 26th, 2000

Mars Attacks is the third episode of the Seventh Season and marks the first time we meet Dr. Kim Legaspi.  

This episode lays down the foundation for many of the year’s major story arcs.  Carter returns after drug rehab and learns his new work protocols.   A very pregnant Chen has yet to tell her parents of her condition.  Weaver recruits a reluctant Abby into the ER where she promptly kisses Luka at the end of her shift.  Frank, the ex-cop,  spends the episode running police checks on all the patients until Kerry tires of his antics. Carter bonds with a very precocious orphaned boy.

Kim’s introduction is unceremonious.  She pops onto the screen as if she has always been in the ER.  Kerry barely loses a step even acknowledging her.  Right from the beginning it’s obvious that she and Kerry have a unique relationship.  Within a few seconds, each girl invites the other into her space.

Tell me that you’re here to help out.


    We could really use an extra pair of hands down here.
(No comment on the double entendre.)

Stop by later, if you want.  It’ll be like Mardi Gras.

The end of that first scene also marks the first of many times that Kerry watches Kim walk away.  In this case, she does her patented double take.

What do we learn from this first encounter?

   Psych doc and Kerry are on a first name basis implying some level of job parity.  
   Kerry respects psych doc’s medical skills enough to request her assistance in the ER (or at least respects her hands).
   Psych doc wears her sleeves really long (especially when wearing pink).
   Psych doc flirts and Kerry definitely notices (but isn’t quite sure what to make of it yet).

In their second scene, Kim jokes with Kerry again.  No one else ever really plays with Kerry.  Kim does and consistently.  She is one of the few characters who makes Kerry laugh.  In addition, the blocking and framing of the characters in the suture room foreshadow their future relationship.  Kerry leans against the door frame talking to the patient, Kim stands close behind Kerry, leaning her hand against the wall resulting in a very suggestive and couple-like pose.  When Kerry backs up later to give Malucci access to the door, Kim doesn’t retreat -- she merely allows Kerry to move closer to her.  

What do we learn from the second encounter?

   Psych doc is familiar enough with Kerry to kid with her, twice even.
   Kerry is happy to help psych doc look for the missing patient.
   Kerry and psych doc work well and look cute together.
   Psych doc can yell as loud as Kerry but isn’t as quick with blankets or fire extinguishers.
   Almost everything psych doc says sounds like flirting.

What we do not learn from this episode?

   We do not learn psych doc’s name.
   We don’t know how long she has been at County, her rank and position or how long she’s known Kerry.
   We don’t know if psych doc flirts with everyone or just Kerry.

Kerry moments:

   Exposed belly when she’s pressuring Abby to join the ER staff.
   "Let’s get Mr. Karmitobick started on flame retardant saline and get someone down here from the special burn unit."
   Helping the check bouncing grandma (and voice of Babe) escape Frank’s dragnet. {"Honey, day care is on the fourth floor.)
Gaff here -- Kerry is wearing gloves as she points to Gloria but when she turns around to talk to Kim, the gloves have magically disappeared.
   Kerry’s double take after her first scene with Kim.
   "Grow up Malucci."
   Giggling at Kim’s story about the Popsicle enema.

Kim Moments:

   Got to love Kim’s invitation to Kerry to join her for the madness in the psych ward during the full moon.  She breezes through the ER leaving Kerry confused and intrigued.
   Sternly asking Kerry what has she done with her patient.
   Leaning up behind Kerry in the suture room.
   Yelling, "Get a gurney!."

Memorable Lines:

So who’s watching the drugstore cowboy?

Did you even take the Hippocratic Oath?
I had my fingers crossed.

He begged me to give him a Popsicle enema.  

Rating: (out of five dropped Chalupas)

Kerry and Kim Goodness:      3, for the excitement of being new and lack of angst

Overall Episode:        3.5, good camera work, nice guest stars, interesting and fun cases

Production Note:
 The director Paris Barclay has been around for some time on ER, NYPD Blue, The West Wing, etc.  He is an openly gay, African-American, two time Emmy winner, Harvard grad who was recently honored by GLAAD.

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