Saving Hope‘s “Heartsick” is a roller coaster of emotion, just as fans have come to expect. The ratings, however, just aren’t moved. As TV By the Numbers reports, the increase was marginal.
NBC’s complete lack of promotions continue while the show takes a three week hiatus for the 2012 London Olympics. At this point, I believe NBC is setting Saving Hope up for failure here in the US. The Olympics may very well bring in the highest ratings of any event that NBC airs. They are wisely taking advantage of that audience by showing ads for their current and upcoming fall shows. The apocalyptic sci-fi Revolution, the return of Grimm, the new comedies The New Normal, Guys with Kids, Animal Practice and Go On, the news show Rock Center, a new celebrity competition Stars Earn Stripes, the new season of The Voice, a firefighter drama called Chicago Fire . . . . Anyone else see something missing here? There is no better time to try to acquire new viewers than the Olympics. The shows they are advertising for are geared to a wide variety of viewers: sci-fi, comedy, reality, drama, and news. The medical drama doesn’t deserve to be in that group? As far as I can tell it’s the only show that NBC has upcoming that they have NOT shown a single ad for. What do they have against Saving Hope?
The lack of previews is leaving viewers wondering where the show stands. I saw many questions on Twitter immediately after the show asking if “Heartsick” was the season finale and when it would be back, if at all. It certainly had that season finale cliffhanger ending, but fans should think of “Heartsick” as a mid-season break, one that wouldn’t even exist if it wasn’t for the Olympics. As a mid-season break, NBC should be taking special care to tell viewers when it will be back. They aren’t. In fact, the aforementioned ad for Rock Center tells viewers specifically that it will return the Thursday after the Olympics. Saving Hope? Silence.
In “Heartsick” the hearing for Charlie’s power of attorney begins and ends. A murdered convict follows his body to Hope Zion where his organs are harvested for transplanting. He teaches Charlie yet another aspect of his strange existence when the transplanted heart doesn’t meet its new owner’s needs. Joel encounters a cop in a lot of trouble. Gavin finally makes a move on Maggie, and there’s no telling where that’s going.
I was a little disappointed that Charlie was not in the room for the hearing. I had expected him to want to listen, but it looks like the hearing may not have taken place within the hospital, so maybe Charlie couldn’t get there. If he could have, he would have distracted viewers from Alex’s impassioned argument that she knows Charlie’s wishes better than his ex-wife. Dawn based her argument in facts and documentation of Charlie’s opinion of long term life support. Remind me never to text anyone that they should pull the plug on me!
Joel has a case that maybe will have a greater effect on him than anything else has thus far. An ambulance cop by the name of Jerry (Brian Markinson) has a back problem, but Joel realizes that there’s much more to it. As it turned out Jerry was known around the hospital for asking for pain medication as a way to deal with severe depression. He had caused a terrible accident once that resulted in death, and he couldn’t handle the guilt. Joel takes it upon himself to try and help Jerry, but he says all the wrong things. While Jimmy sits in his squad car, his gun in his hand, Joel says, “You have to believe me that things are going to get better. Without that belief you’ve got nothing.” The second the words were out of Joel’s mouth I knew exactly what was going to happen. Never tell a suicidal person that if they don’t believe they have nothing, because by the time they get to where Jimmy was, gun in hand, they probably don’t believe in anything anymore.
The end of the episode left fans in a panic. As outrageous as it seems, Dawn won the right to decide whether to keep Charlie on life support or pull the plug. With Alex draped over him sobbing, Charlie watches helplessly as Dawn switches off the life support. She has her reasons, and some fans might even understand them, but this still isn’t what we want! Will this be the end? Will Charlie be left to roam the hospital until he finally finds the light? Or will the loss of life support make it possible for Charlie to come to terms with his coma enough to improve his condition and breathe on his own before it’s too late?
Two more weeks to go, and we’ll find out!
Make sure you tune back in to NBC on Thursday August 16th at 9/8c!