Private Practice 4.11 “If You Don’t Know Me By Now” Review

The look on Addison’s face says it all. Her mother, the infamous Bizzy, is back in town. She brought along her lover, Susan, who just so happens to be riddled with cancer. Bizzy only accepts the answer Bizzy wants, and she wants Addison to miraculously save Susan’s life. A slap across the face was meant to drive the point home.

I hate when Bizzy is in town. That Addison is as strong as her character was originally written is quite shocking given what she was subjected to while growing up, and I don’t enjoy scenes when she is uncomfortable and feeling inadequate. The only good thing about the visit is that she is forced to call in her colleague, the hot Dr. Rodriguez, to assist with her diagnosis and treatment of Susan. Together, they provided the miracle Bizzy and Susan demanded. They’re a good team.

I can’t possibly be the only person who feels her relationship with Sam was rushed just to give the main character something to do, someone to love. I don’t buy them as a couple. I don’t think I ever can. It’s too implausible. To me, Sam is like an extension of Naomi and therefore more of a best friend to Addison than a lover. I think the sex is only good for her because it is illicit. Being naughty has a way of turning your head and jumbling your good senses.

Violet’s life is about to change as she has written an intimate memoir about her life and ordeal in her attempt to feel less like a person who had a baby cut out of her. A publisher wants to put her on the fast track and publish immediately. It feels a bit embarrassing to be jealous of a character on TV who writes a book about a horrible ordeal and gets it published, but I’ve had horrible ordeals, too. To share her story with the masses and help others whose own experiences would probably pale in comparison to what she has been through would be a dream come true for a therapist. I’m really enjoying Violet, and the way she describes what she went through in casual conversation is very realistic to me. I had a twinge of dislike for her relationship with Pete when he questioned her desire to share her life with the world. I’ve had doubt about what they share and don’t always think his motives are in Violet’s best interests. Though in the end he proved me wrong, something still lingers in the back of my mind.

The beautiful, snarky and smart Charlotte remains tormented after her assault. She is, by far, my favorite character on Private Practice. Going from the sexually confident emotional Wonder Woman that joined the show to the distressed and fearful woman she has become as a result of her rape has evoked an extreme reaction from me. It’s hard to imagine the impact of a similar act on someone who didn’t start with the remarkable self assurance found in Charlotte. The pain and loss she feels when with Cooper, whom she loves and trusts implicitly is not easy to witness. I’ve been continually impressed with the storyline and find the path of her progress far more understandable to me than how Violet coped with her trauma.

I love how Charlotte is reaching out to the other women in the practice, listening to them and thanking them for being there for her. Her spirit was alive when she thanked Violet, making sure to sneak in that she is mean to her most of the time because she is all touchy feely and that’s annoying…but also telling her learning about Violet’s rape helped her. In some ways, I think reaching out to the girls is more difficult for her than trying to make love to Cooper again.

To that end, I thought their final attempt to make love, which was awkward and ended in laughter and fried chicken was nearly perfect. A gradual ascent to a healthy relationship will have the most satisfying and long lasting character impact. They have the chance to become one of (if not the most) secure couple on television. That will be an evolution that has my full support.

Private Practice has grown into a show about mature adults with realistic (if sometimes over the top) issues. This season has been remarkable so far, and I look forward to each week in a way I wouldn’t have imagined just two years ago.

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