Still of Violet (played by Amy Brenneman) and Addison (played by Kate Walsh) from Private Practice 2x04

Rewatching ‘Private Practice’: “Past Tense”

As a new segment on WhatSamWatches, I will now be doing more informal reviews/commentaries on what I’m watching. And it’ll include shows I’ll be rewatching just because I feel like it. I know I just did a review on Private Practice not that long ago but I’m not ready for it to be over. So I’m binging the show from the beginning all over again. So since I rewatched the third episode of season two last time, we’re now onto the fourth episode of season two of Private Practice.

Past Tense

Split screen of a conference call between Cooper (played by Paul Adelstein), Addison (played by Kate Walsh), Violet (played by Amy Brenneman), and Pete (played by Tim Daly)
  • I’d be annoyed too if my best friend just started ignoring me. Honestly, Naomi acted really immature about this entire situation. She knew the practice was in danger financially but didn’t really do much about it. And then got mad when Addison tried to help fix it. Sam obviously wasn’t the right answer considering he turned out be terrible at managing the practice. Plus, the way he handled it by just taking over like that wasn’t great either but still.
  • This practice isn’t just important to Naomi. The fact that she felt so betrayed and insulted by all of this is just frustrating. And Addison knows she’s right but still forgives Naomi for being a terrible person about it. But I’ve always thought Addison as someone who’s a little too forgiving. At least when it comes to Naomi.
  • The start of this episode really dates the show. I mean, the concept of conference calls definitely isn’t a new one anymore. But I’m sure it was at the time.

The Practice Stages an Intervention

Addison (played by Kate Walsh) taking a stand against Sam (played by Taye Diggs) and Naomi (played by Audra  McDonald) while the rest of the practice (from left), Cooper (played by Paul Adelstein), Dell (played by Christopher Lowell), Violet (played by Amy Brenneman), and Pete (played by Tim Daly) support her by standing behind her
  • A little odd that Addison would just reveal to Violet that she and Kevin haven’t slept together yet (considering they’re not really friends yet at this point), but okay.
  • That small little kiss on the cheek between Pete and Violet was cute. A little random at the time but as someone that already knows what happens later, it’s a nice little foreshadow in a way.
  • Did Cooper really just slap Dell on the butt to congratulate him on being back? That was weird.
  • Sam and Naomi really know how to spoil a mood. They were all so happy a second ago until they heard the elevator ding.
  • I wish they explored Addison and Cooper’s friendship a little more. A random thought but the handshake between them before Sam and Naomi get there is odd. But I really wanted to see more of their friendship because as a fan, I know that Kate Walsh (who plays Addison) and Paul Adelstein (who plays Cooper) are actually long-time friends. I think I mentioned this before in another blog post but I digress.
  • I can’t believe Naomi really just pretended to not know what the intervention was for. Or maybe she generally didn’t know. If so, she’s a lot more naive than I thought she was. It’s obvious that there’s a problem between her and Sam but she just pretends like it doesn’t exist. Pretending it’s not there doesn’t make it go away!
  • Forcing those two in a room together and not letting them out is probably the only way they’d ever figure things out let alone make amends. Addison made the right choice. And it’s already obvious that she’s the rightful leader of this practice because neither Naomi or Sam turned out to be very good at it.

Cooper’s Personal and Professional Lives Collide

Cooper (played by Paul Adelstein) trying to get Braden (played by Ty Simpkins) to follow the light
  • Braden’s got a nice head of hair. And I just realized he’s the kid from Iron Man 3.
  • I feel for this mom. She’s really tried everything for this kid and she still can’t figure out how to better help him.
  • That moment of eye contact was really sweet. It’s such a small thing but a cute moment.
  • I don’t think I’d be as bothered by Cooper being on an adult dating site. Maybe it’s just a generational thing with online dating being so normalized now but doctors have personal lives too. And while it’s a little disturbing realizing that you’ve seen your kid’s doctor naked (via some online pictures), I don’t think it’s super concerning. I mean, she was on that website too so I assume that means she also has some pictures up online. I’d feel weird about it but I wouldn’t necessarily judge a doctor based on that alone. But maybe that’s just me.
  • Early Cooper and Charlotte scenes are cute. It’s also nice to see Cooper as the one who’s more interested in a more committed relationship. Usually, men are seen as more detached so it’s a nice change in pace.
  • See? Charlotte knows what she’s talking about. Their personal lives don’t have anything to do with how they practice medicine.
  • However, it’s weird that Cooper didn’t take down his pictures but Charlotte did. Even more so that he’s on that many sites.
  • Sam, Cooper is not listening to anything you have to say about the vote. Honestly, no one really wants to hear what either Sam or Naomi has to say. I think they’re all just frustrated and annoyed at them right now. And I don’t blame them.
  • Cooper really is a great doctor, and it shows in this episode. Braden’s mother clearly wants nothing to do with him but he tries to figure out what’s wrong with Braden anyway. And he prints out all his research and gives her the names of other pediatricians. Now that’s commitment.
  • Braden starting to talk is the sweetest thing ever.
  • That must’ve been hard for Cooper to insist on talking with Charlotte dressed like that. And Charlotte talking about her favorite book was adorable.

Sam v. Naomi

Addison (played by Kate Walsh) making a speech in front of all the other doctors (from left): Sam (played by Taye Diggs), Cooper (played by Paul Adelstein), Dell (played by Christopher Lowell), Violet (played by Amy Brenneman), Pete (played by Tim Daly), and Naomi (played by Audra McDonald) (not pictured)
  • The practice is already convinced things will go back to “normal”. Whatever “normal” is for them.
  • A vote is a terrible idea. And everyone knows it. Well, everyone except Sam and Naomi apparently.
  • Pete really had to rub it in with an “I warned you”.
  • Well, at least Naomi’s right about the fact that they can’t keep things the way they have been. Funny coming from her considering that one of the biggest reasons why it was so bad is because of Naomi’s stubborn resistance against the whole thing. Even though she knows she did wrong.
  • There’s no way their campaigning would be “civil”. If there’s one guarantee about everyone here, it’s that they’re all up in each other’s personal lives. Less so now than in later seasons, but my point still stands.
  • Of course Dell should get a vote. He’s definitely the wild card out of everyone else. If Addison agreed to vote, she probably would’ve picked Naomi purely out of loyalty. And if everyone else actually voted for either Sam and Naomi, I predict most of them would vote for Naomi as well. Just because of how terrible Sam’s leadership skills are.
  • Dell guilt-tripping Naomi is the best thing ever. She got him his job back but she also made him quit. Like I said, he’s the wild card.
  • I’m with Pete. I just wouldn’t want to get involved. It’s a good thing he doesn’t really care about Sam and Naomi’s campaigning.
  • Ironic that Addison taking over is exactly what Sam and Naomi needed to make amends considering they were both so against the idea of it.

The Vote

Dell (played by Christopher Lowell) counting the votes out loud with Naomi (played by Audra McDonald), Cooper (played by Paul Adelstein), and Sam (played by Taye Diggs) sitting on the right
  • This vote between Sam and Naomi is ugly. But I can’t believe Sam really just stepped in front of Naomi while she was talking to Dell. It was one thing to interrupt her but just physically blocking her is another thing. And everyone is just tired of their drama.
  • Violet’s comment about Addison being the only trustworthy person left at that practice and Addison responding with “low bar” is iconic.
  • After everything, it’s a little naive of Addison to think that things could just go back to the way things were (even though she doesn’t really know what that means). There’s just been too many hurt feelings at this point to go back.
  • So much for making peace. This vote just made things worse, and they all know it.
  • I would’ve voted for Addison too after this speech.
  • Part of why I (and most Private Practice fans, really) strongly dislike both Sam and Naomi is because of how stubborn they are. Addison just made this speech about how terrible the idea of this vote is and they all know she’s right. But instead of admitting she’s right, Sam just reiterates that they’ll vote at the end of the day. They used to be married and now they can’t even figure out how to run their practice without dragging everyone else into their mess. All because they’re too stubborn to admit they’re wrong.
  • Why were Sam and Naomi allowed to vote? Of course they’d just vote for themselves.
  • After everything, are Sam and Naomi really that surprised that no one wanted either of them to run the practice anymore?
  • “If either one of them had won, this place still would’ve been divided” – perfectly said, Violet.
  • I love that Addison tried to comfort Violet about what she said in her office. Even though Violet refused to talk about it, it was still a sweet sentiment.

Sharbat’s Surgery

Addison (played by Kate Walsh) talking to Sharbat (played by Rome Shadanloo) and Amina (played by Sarah Ripard)
  • Maybe it’s just a cultural thing but the refusal to even acknowledge Addison’s handshake was awkward.
  • I know Sharbat’s just a high schooler but for an appointment like this, it’s strange to have her mother in the room. She’s definitely less likely to be forthcoming about her discomfort in that area. Then again, I doubt her mother (or either of her parents, really) would want her to go in alone.
  • Even though Violet’s stance on the whole situation changes, I agree with her here. And Dell. It’s Sharbat’s choice. Even though Addison feels weird about revirginizing the girl, it’s not her choice. And if Addison doesn’t want to do it, Sharbat could just have it done somewhere else.
  • I don’t love that Sharbat lied about being raped but I still feel for her. She has this boyfriend she loves here but her parents are miserable. Maybe it’s a cultural thing but I understand wanting to do anything to make your parents happy. And if that means going back to their home country, Sharbat’s willing to do that for them. Even if it means losing her boyfriend and marrying a guy she’s never met.
  • Violet didn’t try that hard to hide her past with rape. It wasn’t hard for Addison to catch onto that.
  • This procedure definitely wasn’t an easy decision. But it is still Sharbat’s choice, which is probably why Addison agreed to do it in the end.

Pete and Meg

Pete (played by Tim Daly) checking the scab on Meg's (played by Jayne Brook) back, who's putting on her shoes
  • Meg really does just appear out of nowhere, doesn’t she? And they’re all talking about Addison’s patient so this is definitely breaking HIPAA. Then again, Private Practice (and Grey’s Anatomy, for that matter) breaks doctor-patient confidentiality a lot.
  • And Meg and Pete just make out in front of everyone with no explanaiton whatsoever. Then again, Pete’s got a weirdly mysterious past throughout the whole show.
  • “If you vote for me, I promise to tell you everything I know” – so much for fair tactics.
  • Everyone knows what the blinds closing means in that office. Especially since it’s Pete of all people.
  • I would’ve liked to know more about Meg and her past with Pete. We never really learned that much about their past. And it seems like Pete has an interesting past.
  • I love that Violet’s just ready to interrogate Pete and Meg after they come out of his office.
  • Despite their earlier conversation, I love that Addison and Violet just know to follow Meg into the bathroom after she leaves Pete’s office.
  • I would’ve liked to know more about Pete’s experience with Doctors Without Borders.

Kevin and Addison

Still of Addison (played by Kate Walsh) with her arms around Kevin's (played by David Sutcliffe) neck
  • I love that even though Naomi’s icing Addison out, she at least has Kevin to keep her company. Even though they’re in the very early stages of their relationship, it’s nice for her to have someone to talk to.
  • Not gonna lie, it would’ve been cool to see Addison on vacation at some point in this show. It makes sense as to why she turned down Kevin’s offer but we never really see Addison not working. I get that it’s a medical drama so of course we always just see her as a doctor. But seeing her relax would’ve been nice. I would’ve really liked to see her take that trip to Fiji at the end of season four. For anyone who hasn’t gotten there yet, sorry for the slight spoiler!
  • It does sound like Addison’s about to break up with Kevin.
  • That little, “I’m happy with waiting” joke was cute.
  • Why did I never find David Sutcliffe attractive in Gilmore Girls (when he played Rory’s dad, Christopher) but I weirdly find him attractive in this show? The characters are obviously completely different but still.
  • I’m glad Addison took Violet’s advice about the whole rules thing. Her relationship with Kevin, in general, was an interesting one. It was basically Addison trying something different because of how messy her past relationships were. It didn’t work, obviously, but it was definitely an interesting place to take the character.

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