TV Article

If We Ran 'ER'

EW creates a cure for the sagging ''ER'' -- We give four solutions to help resuscitate the NBC hospital drama

Now that Noah Wyle has said he's leaving ER, we wondered, why are we still watching? (Fear of change?) But being the giving people that we are, we offer ER this Rx as it starts airing new episodes April 14 (NBC, 10 p.m.). Physicians, heal thyselves!

Stop adding new characters
Quantity isn't quality. If Sara Gilbert, Shane West, that Morris dude, and Abby's love interest, ''Beard Guy,'' disappeared, we wouldn't miss them. We refer to one of them as ''Beard Guy,'' for crying out loud.

Emergencies don't need to make us vomit to be emotionally effective
Self-immolations, servered torsos, throwing kids out windows. . .Remember ''Love's Labor Lost'' in season 1, with Mark and the botched C-section? It's stayed with us 10 years — no helicopters involved.

Do not ever set an episode outside the hospital again
Field trips have never not sucked, but the lowest point came when Neela and Gallant read dippy love letters over scenes from an Army hospital in Iraq. Distance just makes our hearts grow fonder. . .of Without a Trace.

Kill off Carter
Last thing we need is a Very Special Episode in which Abby realizes she still loves him and shows up in Seattle to the strains of Don Henley. Drop the hatchet! (Not literally — see above.)

Originally posted Apr 11, 2005 Published in issue #815 Apr 15, 2005 Order article reprints
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