'Emily Owens, M.D.' Midseason Review: My take on the series so far (it's the best)

Emily Owens, M.D.” returns tonight on The CW with the first of its final six new episodes so I thought it might be a good time to finally write this midseason (series) review that I’ve been putting off for weeks.

If you read my recaps regularly, then you probably know that this is my favorite new show and I am going to be sad forever once it’s gone because it has so much potential and I don’t feel like it was given a fair chance to prove itself. But for some reason, no one consults me on major television decisions (weird, right?) so there’s no point in dwelling on what could have been.

Instead, let’s talk about what makes this show so awesome. The heart of the series lies with Emily. It is impossible to watch this show and not root for Emily because she’s so genuine and sweet and real. Yes, she has a ton of awkward moments and secondhand embarrassment happens each and every time I watch the show, but that just makes me root harder for her. We’ve all suffered through these awkward moments whether they happen at work or in front of that person we’re not-so-secretly crushing on or in front of the last person we’d ever want to see us fail. But no matter how awkward things get, Emily always dusts herself off and continues moving forward.

The rest of the characters on the show are just as well-developed and that includes the patients. It’s easy for shows to neglect their procedural aspects so that we can care more about the main cast than the patients, victims, etc, depending on what kind of show it is. But out of the seven episodes that have aired so far, there was only one time that I barely paid attention to the patients. Most episodes, I’m sitting there doing my best not to cry and I don’t always succeed. The one that touched me the most was in “The Question of Faith” when the father decided to let the baby grow up and be the one to make a decision on which gender it was going to be. That was such a beautiful moment.

I did have one fault with the show during the first few episodes. Emily is obviously the main character and while it is important to tell the story through her eyes, there were times when it was way too forced to have her around while drama was happening with the supporting characters. The worst was when Will was comforting Cassandra after she choked in surgery and Emily was literally spying on them through the window. But thankfully, the show has gotten away from that and there have been scenes where it’s just Micah and Joyce or Tyra and the chief or Will and Dr. Bandari and I think that helped flesh out the supporting storylines even more without taking away from Emily.

Last, but not least, I have to give this show props for telling one of the best, most-balanced love triangles I’ve ever seen on TV. Lots of shows go the love triangle route and most people pick a side and stick with it. But when it comes to Will/Emily/Micah, it has been next to impossible to do that. Even though I went into the series completely biased (here’s a little widely known fact: Justin Hartley is my favorite), by the end of the first episode, I was rooting for Micah. Watching Will awkwardly tell Emily that he didn’t see her that way after she declared her feelings for him was so hard to watch because it felt all too real. But seeing Micah cheer her up and stop her from vending machine binging was so sweet and the way he looked at Emily was adorable.

But Will was back in the game fairly quickly once he and Emily got past the awkwardness in the next episode and agreed to keep being friends because that friendship was important to both of them. However, Will lost all sorts of points when he asked Emily if she would mind if he started dating Cassandra. I did cut him some slack because he didn’t really see how terrible Cassandra was when it came to Emily, but still. He gained some points back when he agreed not to date her when Emily asked, even if he was kind of a jerk about it. But this entire time, Micah was awesome and he was there for Emily and she was there for him when it came to his mother’s cancer and it was fun to watch their friendship develop, even if Emily was completely clueless that Micah had feelings for her.

Things got even more interesting when Will was working on a case with Micah and Micah noticed that Emily was nowhere near over her crush on Will. Micah, in turn, was quite hard on Will when he did something he wasn’t supposed to, which led to Emily asking Micah to ease up on her friend (ouch!). But Micah wasn’t just sitting around pining for Emily; it turns out that he’s been dating another doctor for 10 weeks (nice!). While the two of them were pretty adorable, it was obvious Micah had feelings for Emily and Kelly picked up on that as well in the last episode and suggested that Micah admit it to himself.

Of course Micah is not the only one who has feelings for Emily. It became quite clear over the last two episodes that Will has feelings too, even if he’s not ready to acknowledge them. But when he was talking with his patient about the message he left for Emily, it definitely seemed like the thought had crossed his mind more than just the one time. The birthday episode completely sealed it with Will when he gave Emily a pep talk, telling her that she needed to see herself the way he saw her (aw). Cassandra and Micah both noticed the way Will was looking at Emily and of course she remains oblivious to both men’s feelings for her, but that’s because she’s not used to the attention so it just makes her all the more endearing.

Now, if this show was going to run for five to seven seasons like it should, I would be all for the back and forth, but since we’ve only got six episodes to go and thanks to creator Jennie Urman, we know there’s going to be a resolution and a very romantic scene in the final episode, I really hope Emily ends up with Will. Yes, some of this might be my bias talking, but most of it is because I want Emily to get what she wants and she wants to be with Will. But if she ends up with Micah, I’m not going to throw my TV out the window because all that matters is that Emily will be happy. I, however, will be crying in the corner, forever sad that the show is over.

“Emily Owens, M.D.” returns tonight at 9 p.m. EST on The CW.

Mandy Treccia has served as TVSource Magazine’s Editorial Director since 2012. 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.

  • Brandee

    Mandy Treccia gushes about Emily Owens on CW network, but never mentions that it has mostly attractive females and mostly unattractive males. That pattern is repeated on most shows on CW and other networks. They oddly believe that male viewers care whether actresses are attractive and that female viewers do not care if male actors are ugly. I like plot involving Justin Hartley and Mamie Gummer. Most other plot was boring and annoying. The same ugly man who was the star of Melrose Place was startlingly given a role on Emily Owens. I stopped watching Melrose Place because I felt annoyed by the artifice of an ugly male being surrounded by beautiful females who craved him. Then, there he was on another show, pretending to be attractive.