Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20 Review: A Needle In The Heart

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It's hard to know what to make out of a makeshift season finale.

Chicago Med's season was cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic, and what might have been just a run-of-the-mill episode suddenly had to serve as the last episode until the fall.

Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20 featured some big stories, but no big cliffhangers, and as a result, it fell flat.

Risking His LIfe/Tall - Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20

The biggest story of the hour was Marcel's legal problem.

Nat: Hey, Crockett, what was all that with the detectives?
Marcel: They're investigating a murder from seven years back.
Nat: Well, what did they want with you?
Marcel: My impression is they think I'm a suspect.
Nat: Why would they think that?
Marcel: Because they appear to have got my DNA at the scene;

The idea of detectives from Marcel's past showing up was tantalizing. The man is an enigma, a gifted surgeon who never talks about his past and who did something suspicious with April's drink once.

But the case against him was poorly executed. 

The detectives questioned Marcel off-screen, showed up again to arrest him, and then let him go as soon as Nat discovered a medical fact they hadn't considered.

Saving a Child - Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20

We never found out who Marcel was accused of killing, whether he even knew them, and what other evidence there was besides a DNA sample.

It felt like this whole thing was a clumsy way of getting the information in that his daughter died of leukemia when he was in medical school.

Detective: The timing may not be good, Ms. Goodwin, but this is a police matter.
Goodwin: I am not interrupting Dr. Marcel while he is in surgery.
Detective: Judge just gave me a warrant for his arrest.
Goodwin: I am not interrupting a surgery on an 11-year-old child for any reason. You can take up your concerns with Dr. Marcel when the operation is over.

The best part of this was Goodwin refusing to let the cops arrest Marcel in the middle of a lengthy surgery. Other cop dramas (yes, I'm looking at you, Law & Order: SVU!) make a habit of doing just that, and it's annoying.

There was no real fallout from that, though, other than Billy's mom deciding in the middle of surgery, she wanted a second opinion. And all that came of that was Dr. Moody informing Nat about Marcel's history.

Questions about Marcel's Past - Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20

If we had to have a story about Marcel's past leading to his arrest, it should have been an actual story.

It would have been an excellent opportunity for a crossover with Chicago PD, too. Sure, Atwater made a cameo appearance to tell Nat that it would be challenging to prove Marcel's innocence, but that wasn't enough.

A story would have involved Marcel having more than a coincidental connection to an unnamed murder.

The first hour would have ended in his arrest, and then the story would have continued on Chicago PD. 

And it most definitely should have included Jay Halstead, since he's Will's brother.

On the Hot Seat - Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20

The way it was done, the only question left is how soon this whole thing is going to lead to a Nat/Marcel romance.

April and Ethan are on their way back together already, and Nat has now both been kidnapped along with Marcel and saved his ass from being imprisoned for a crime he didn't commit.

Plus, she's the only one who knows his daughter died of leukemia -- an underwhelming secret, but for whatever reason, a secret nonetheless.

How much more bonding do she and Marcel need before they kiss?

Speaking of Ethan, has anyone in Chicago Med history made a more boneheaded decision than he did when he went into that store?

Questioning Nat - Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20

Yes, a child's life was in danger, but how did Ethan's behavior help anything?

Did he really think a gunman who got into a shooting war with a store owner was going to stand down just because he said he was a doctor and that the kid needed a hospital?

All he did was put himself in danger unnecessarily, though I suppose the emergency surgery he did with a knife that was sitting around might have accomplished something, even if the knife was not sanitized.

And he managed to talk the gunman down by... explaining how brokenhearted he was over April. Okay then.

Fatherly Advice - Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20

This story, predictably, ended with April giving Ethan a big hug and telling him how scared she was before the SWAT team took him aside to take his statement. Like anyone didn't see THAT coming.

Nothing like a crazed gunman to reunite heartbroken lovers, I guess.

Meanwhile, Dr. Charles' case was compelling, and so was the Anna stuff.

Maggie: Is she all right?
Charles: Apparently the guy she's sweet on is sweet on somebody else.
Maggie: Ouch.
Charles: Yeah, but all the texting...doesn't it just amplify it?
Maggie: 13-year-old girls. Their hearts are just wired differently.

When Anna said she'd die if she went back to school, I was sure that her friends were pressuring her to vape, considering the last problem Charles had with her.

Questions About His Past - Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20

Her real problem was typical teenage drama, but her conversation with Charles was still heartwarming.

Hopefully he will gradually let go of jumping to punishment and threats first and finding out what's going on second. Use those psychiatry skills better, Dr. Charles!

Will had two cases, both of which were rushed beyond belief.

We never found out what was actually wrong with Christian. He was clearly high and was there for the sole purpose of making Will doubt Asher.

And what happened to his other patient once the ID fraud was discovered? Did he recover? Get arrested? What?

Siding With Asher - Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 19

The story about the patient using someone else's insurance card was the most compelling aspect of the hour, but this got short shrift to focus on all the relationship drama instead.

This was another story that should have been fleshed out more.

Goodwin could have been involved, and there could have been a discussion about what to do about this patient who resorted to desperate measures that almost killed him and whether the hospital could or should press charges for the fraud.

Instead, it was a lot of nothing and mostly gave Will a reason to yell at someone when he really wanted to yell at his girlfriend.

What did you think, Chicago Med fanatics?

Am I too hard on Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20, or did you also feel like these stories were rushed?

Hit the big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and share your thoughts.

The series will return sometime in the fall of 2020. In the meantime, you can watch Chicago Med online here on TV Fanatic.

Chicago Med airs on NBC on Wednesdays at 8 PM EST/PST. Chicago Med Season 6 will begin airing in the fall of 2020.

A Needle In The Heart Review

Editor Rating: 2.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.0 / 5.0 (10 Votes)

Jack Ori is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. His debut young adult novel, Reinventing Hannah, is available on Amazon. Follow him on Twitter.

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Chicago Med Season 5 Episode 20 Quotes

Maggie: Look who it is. Anna Charles!
Anna: Hi, Maggie.
Maggie: Your dad drag you into work today?
Anna: No, I wanted to come. I like spending time with my dad.

Marcel: Dr. Moody and I go way back. He used to ride motorcycles in med school.
Billy: Dr. Moody rode motorcycles?
Marcel: Yeah, but he had to give it up when he became a pediatrician. Stethoscope kept flying off his neck on the way to work.