‘Good Sam’ Review 1×08: “Keep Talking”

Good Sam returned from break, and the One Tree Hill reunion we’ve all waited for is here! As we get into the final few episodes of what is hopefully the first of more seasons, there are clearly a lot of stories that need resolutions. This episode gave us more backstory and more insight into the characters we’ve followed from the beginning of the series. 

One Tree Hill fans had a lot to love in this episode, with Hilarie Burton and Bethany Joy Lenz reuniting as sisters. Reuniting with their former co-star Sophia Bush was such a joy to watch. These three not only have chemistry that radiates through the screen but impeccable comedic timing also. The OTH Easter Eggs were used effectively to remind fans of the show why it was so endearing. 

This show continued its focus on addictions, this time through Lenz’s character, Amy Taylor. Although she was the focus of this week’s fantastical medical mystery, there was definitely a point made about the long road to sobriety. Coupled with Caleb’s (Michael Stahl-David) openness about his sobriety journey, it’s always good to see shows like Good Sam make an effort to show these storylines, and help take the stigma out of this illness. 

Pictured (L-R) Bethany Joy Lenz as Amy Taylor and Hilarie Burton as Gretchen Taylor Photo: Ramona Diaconescu/CBS ©2022 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

The main purpose of this episode, it seems, was to give more backstory into these characters. It was alluded to that Sam had been in an accident as a child. There was also a moment where her parents, Griff (Jason Isaacs) and Vivian (Wendy Crewson), admitted they were hiding something from their daughter. Now, we know that these were connected. 

On one level, this was an effective way to develop these characters. Having an almost role reversal, where Vivian intentionally kept the truth from her daughter, added another layer of complexity to a woman who’s been supportive of her daughter. This storyline also gave us the hilarity of Griff seeking therapy from his ex-wife’s new husband Asher (Sendhil Ramamurthy).  It will definitely be interesting to see how the show handles this story going forward since this was a massive breach of trust. 

Pictured (L-R) Jason Isaacs as Dr. Rob “Griff” Griffith and Sophia Bush as Dr. Sam Griffith Photo: Ramona Diaconescu/CBS ©2022 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

One of the most touching stories that Good Sam continues to develop is the repair of Sam and Trulie’s (Skye P. Marshall) relationship. They’re back to being able to joke with each other, and they’re far more at ease. They continue to be connected over Griff, wanting what’s best for him. As Griff navigates his own PTSD, it’s clear that Sam and Trulie love him very much. Sam and Trulie are such strong characters in their own right, and their relationship is incredibly powerful.

Hopefully, as the series approaches the end, Good Sam can do what it does best. I’m not 100% sold on the romantic stories the show is trying to tell, but there’s still time to sort that out. Ultimately, the political powerplays aren’t going anywhere, nor are the players themselves. We’ll hopefully also get to see more minor characters going forward, as they all have so much potential and have shown they can carry their own stories. I for one think there’s a lot more room for Good Sam to grow, and I’ll be cheering as they do.

Good Sam airs Wednesdays 10/9c on CBS.

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