TV Recaps

Saving Hope Recap: "Heartsick"

 Erica Durance as Alex Reid, Daniel Gillies as Joel Goran

Going into “Heartsick,” this week’s episode of Saving Hope, my expectations were pretty low. I assumed the episode was going to be a tug of war between Alex and Dawn over Charlie. It started off that way, with both women arguing their cases in front of a judge. But then the episode shocked me by turning into the best, soapiest, drama-filled, emotional episode yet. I was literally holding my breath through several scenes and in the back of my mind, I kept wondering where this amazing writing had been for the past four weeks.

Alex and Dawn had very different views of what Charlie would want. Dawn believed he’d want to die with dignity and never want to be in a helpless, vegetative state for the rest of his life. Alex was insistent that Charlie was still in there and he would want to try everything possible so he could fight to come back. Each woman had various pieces of evidence to back up her claims. Alex mentioned that Charlie had asked her how many kids she wanted to have the day of their wedding and Dawn got a strange look on her face. She told Alex that she was too close to Charlie and couldn’t see what was best for him.

Meanwhile, Maggie (still the worst) was whining to Joel because her sister and her baby were coming to stay with her for the weekend. She asked Joel what he was doing and he said he’d be working out and sleeping (Joel looked even hotter than usual this week. I’m not sure how that’s possible either, but it’s true), and Maggie was fishing for an invitation to stay with him. Joel said he had to think about it and she was not happy with that answer. Later, she brought it up again in front of Gavin and he gallantly offered to let her stay with him. She agreed and when she left, Joel made a quip about how he doesn’t think men and women can just be friends. (Seriously, I’d rather see Joel and Gavin date each other than Maggie. This show needs more viable female options).

The patients this week were all connected. Alex was doing a heart transplant and the heart was coming from a prisoner who had gotten his head smashed in with a barbell. The cop, Jimmy, who transported him in, asked Joel to take a look at his back. Joel ran some tests and didn’t find anything wrong that couldn’t be fixed with exercise, but Jimmy wanted pills. He got pushy and Joel agreed to write the prescription. He asked Joel what the worst thing he’d ever seen at the hospital was. Joel told him that a guy walked in off the street and his head fell off. Of course when he said that, my Vampire Diaries loving mind immediately went to this:

Anyway, back to the episode. It turned out that Jimmy was a pill addict and he always came into the hospital with various back problems to score drugs. Joel was mad that no one had warned him. It turns out that Jimmy had shot a kid once and then crashed his patrol car into a brick wall. (Yikes, no wonder the guy is a drug addict). Joel catches Alex before she goes into surgery to see how she’s holding up. (Seriously show, give us more scenes with these two). Alex tells him that she doesn’t want him to be nice to her. He tells her that he’s there if she needs him.

Alex prepares to do the heart transplant and Dawn scrubs in because the regular cardiologist is unavailable. Things are beyond tense between the two women, but they focus on the patient. The transplant goes well until there is a tear in the artery wall and he starts bleeding. Dawn can’t reach the area to put the stitch in, but Alex can and everyone was holding their breath (as was I) until Alex fixed it and his vitals evened out once again.

The prisoner was with Charlie the whole time and he said he’d never consented to organ donation because he doesn’t sign things. Charlie is having his own issues and explained what was going on and how he might be taken off life support. He started to have pain and he said that might be a good thing. Unfortunately, it was a pulmonary embolism. The doctors were monitoring him as Charlie and the prisoner kept watch over the transplant patient. His body was rejecting the heart and the prisoner worried that his heart was bad because he’d killed two people. Charlie suggested that he talk to the heart and give it closure. (As I’m typing this, I know how silly it probably reads, but it was a really great scene). When he was finished, the transplant patient started to respond to the treatment.

Alex and Dawn had another argument and Dawn admitted that she was still in love with Charlie. She also told Alex (during surgery) that she and Charlie had been pregnant once and she wondered if things would have been different if that had worked out. (First, I hate when people say “we” were pregnant. Second, how is this relevant? It seems like a pretty cold thing to drop on Alex). The judge called them back in and he explained that in the eyes of the law, an ex-wife and a fiancée were the same (if you say so, Judge). He sided with Dawn and Alex was completely devastated. I have to admit I expected this to go the other way so I was pretty shocked.

Joel went searching for Jimmy and found him sitting in his patrol car with a loaded gun in his hand. Joel tried to talk to him and explain that things would get better and there were always other options, but Jimmy picked up the gun and killed himself. Joel was traumatized and I just wanted to hug him (more than usual). He was sitting in the lounge and Alex came to sit beside him and told him that she’d lost. He asked if there was anything he could do and she was just broken. Joel told her that even though he knew it was the worst possible time, he wanted to tell her – she stopped him before he got the words out, but it was obvious he was going to say he was still in love with her. Joel then proceeded to go to a bar and get into a fight which ended with him breaking his hand on some guy’s face.

Gavin decided he was tired of sitting on the sidelines and went to talk to Maggie. He told her that there’s always going to be a boy that you like and there will always going to be a boy who likes you, but they’re never going to be the same person. Then he kissed her. Maggie told him she didn’t think it was a good idea for her to stay with him that weekend. Awkward.

Charlie coded again and Alex begged Dawn to save him, but she insisted that he be taken off life support. Alex sat by Charlie’s side and told him that she wasn’t going to say goodbye to him. She broke down and Charlie sat beside her, begging her to never let go of him. (My emotions were all over the place. It was literally heart-wrenching to watch). Dawn came in and told Alex that she was just doing what she thought was best and Alex said she knew that. They were both crying and Charlie was starting to slip away and then the episode just ended.

How could they end it there?! Is Charlie going to wake up? How is Joel supposed to be a surgeon with a broken hand? Why do I want to cry every time Erica Durance does? So many questions and to make matters worse, the show isn’t going to be for three weeks because of the Olympics. Seriously, I don’t understand how this show can go from being super boring to amazing in the span of a week, but that’s exactly what it did. Now I just need it to come back from the break and keep it up. My mind is still blown right now. See you in three weeks.

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About the author

Mandy Treccia

Mandy Treccia has served as TVSource Magazine’s Executive Editor since 2016, formerly as Editorial Director from 2012-2016. She is an avid TV watcher and card carrying fan girl prone to sudden bursts of emotion, ranging from extreme excitement to blind rage during her favorite shows and has on more than once occasion considered having a paper bag on hand to get her through some tough TV moments. Her taste in TV tends to rival that of a thirteen-year-old girl, but she’s okay with that. Follow her on Twitter at @SourceMandy.

  • Agree the Maggie character is soo not working for me.

  • SourceMandy

    Thanks! This was by far my favorite episode. So much emotion.

  • Jessie

    Great recap of the episode last night! You nailed every event that happened and with a great amount of detail. I absolutely love this show and cannot wait for the show to get back from the break!