‘Good Sam’ Review 1×11: “Family/Business”

Good Sam is really leaning into the chaos and drama in the latest episode, “Family/Business”, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing! This show has been a lot of things over its short tenure, and this episode was no exception. Some things work, some don’t. With two episodes left in the season, it’s clear that anything can still happen. 

This episode was directed by Jason Isaacs himself, which was fitting since his character Griff had a lot of changes coming to him. The end of Griff’s proctorship, once a massive source of tension in this series, ultimately ended with a whisper. In fact, the true growth for this character in this episode came in his admitting his past mistakes, and realizing how damaging hiding the truth has been for Sam (Sophia Bush) in particular. The ending to this particular story was also anti-climatic in a way, and yet strangely it feels like this was always how it was meant to go. 

Viewers had a chance to explore more sides of Sam’s character in this episode. She’s clearly devoted to her work and her hospital so that she and her team can continue doing the most good. However, she made the choice to hide at least part of the truth from her team, which showed her in a far more human light. The conflict between Isan (Omar Maskati) and Joey (Davi Santos) even got a purpose, to show what an incredible leader Sam is under pressure. She knows her team so well, and it’s clear they’ve grown under her care and guidance. 

Pictured (L-R): Sophia Bush as Dr. Sam Griffith and Omar Maskati as Dr. Isan M. Shah. Photo: Danielle Blancher/CBS ©2022 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

I’m still not convinced that the love triangle Good Sam has tried to set up is working. It’s not that there’s anything wrong with Caleb (Michael Stahl-David) per se. Clearly, there are residual feelings left on both his and Sam’s part. This has been clear all along. Malcolm (Edwin Hodge) continues to prove himself, however. This episode seemed to allude to the fact that Sam and Malcolm’s future plans are more aligned. Both of these men are worthy in their own right. However, it’s clear a choice must be made. 

Trulie (Skye P. Marshall) was a standout again in this episode. Her move to trauma suits her so well, even if she has to contend with terrible bosses along the way. Her standing up for herself was inspirational. She’s far too experienced to let a little gruffness and meaness derail her as she focuses on saving lives. She didn’t deserve the ending this episode. From everything we’ve seen of her so far, she absolutely deserves better. 

Pictured (L-R): Evan Parke as Byron Kingsley. Photo: Danielle Blancher/CBS ©2022 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Finally, after so long seeing Sam’s family in the midst of their drama, this episode shifted focus to the Kingsleys. Tina’s (Victoria Rowell) motivations for wanting to sell the hospital were questionable. There was far less set-up for this story than there was for the Griffiths. It ultimately fell flat, and in many ways a waste of two particularly charismatic actors who clearly have so much to offer the stories here. At least disaster was averted, and the hospital lives to fight another day. 

Good Sam has given viewers a lot to love and a lot to puzzle over in its first season. This show has so much potential, and has from the beginning. Unfortunately, it struggles to define itself, even while the characters and the actors who portray them are captivating to watch. The stories very clearly aren’t over as we rapidly approach the season finale. 

Good Sam airs Wednesdays 10/9c on CBS.

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