J.D. rides a high horse and the new interns get an idea of what it means to work at Sacred Heart.
J.D. spends the beginning of this episode drowning beneath a waterfall of harsh words, spewing from Dr. Cox. With Cox in Kelso’s old shoes, it’s now his job to say "no" to people when they need things. Today, J.D. is requesting that the hospital hire on more nurses so that Carla and her co-workers don’t have to work forced over-time. Cox suggests that J.D. earn the money himself by charging people for providing the service of not opening his mouth to annoy them. This lashing lasts roughly three minutes, and though Cox’s answer is no, J.D. is still recognized as the hospital’s new savior. People look to him when they need to bring something to Cox’s attention. He walks down the hall with a smile on his face… until he runs into Janitor. Janitor explains to J.D. that he doesn’t like this new show of confidence. He warns J.D. that if he continues to act like a jerk he will be punished. We also learn that fifteen years ago Janitor was the victim of a freak hypnotism accident, and that somewhere out there there is a word which, if spoken, will render him unconscious. J.D. tries a few words at random with no results.
Turk introduces the new intern surgeon, Derek Hill; a young, black guy who thinks more than he speaks. Turk advises J.D. to "get [his] strut on" because he is now the man. J.D. begins to work on his strut by putting a little funk in his gait, but is immediately recognized by Janitor who (being a man of his word) must now punish J.D. As Janitor moves in, J.D. begs to be allowed to put down his popsicle. At the mere mention of the word "popsicle" Janitor drops his head and appears to be unconscious. J.D. celebrates his timely victory and saunters off. As he leaves Janitor raises his head and smiles at how easily J.D. fell for it.
In another room J.D. is speaking to the interns who have returned from hiatus in this episode. Finishing his speech, J.D. asks Derek what he thought of it. Derek’s voice goes off in his head and we learn that he is struggling with himself to not make some wise-ass remark to insult J.D. Derek loses the battle and sarcastically compares hearing J.D.’s speech to hearing the voice of to Martin Luther King, Jr. Derek scolds himself and walks off, leaving J.D. stunned.
Elliot and Denise are treating Page, a teenage girl who is suffering from blurry vision and a stiff jaw. Denise can barely stomach the girly exchange between Elliot and their patient, but when the two doctors are alone, she proposes that they perform a temporal biopsy on Page to test for temporal arthritis. Elliot initially disregards Denise’s advice, but later Denise bribes Elliot by saying that she will go around telling people that she wishes Elliot were her older sister if Elliot will approve the procedure.
At Sacred Heart’s entrance a line of interns stand next to Janitor’s abandoned cart. Howard plucks what he believes to be a mint from one of the jars and pops it into his mouth. The cart begins rolling down the ramp, picking up speed on a trajectory heading straight for an unassuming patient. Just before impact the cart stops and the interns learn that Janitor has it set up with a remote control. He also informs Howard that the mint he is chewing is a patent-pending, tiny, concentrated urinal cake. Howard and Katie say something to annoy Janitor, but Sonny makes fast friends with the guy in the blue jumpsuit.
In the OR, Todd explains that he is annoyed how J.D. is so far advanced in his career, even though they all started at the same time. When Turk is asked for his opinion, Turk says he isn’t annoyed at all, but the truth is obvious. Turk’s a bit annoyed also.
Janitor stages an elevator malfunction while the interns Howard and Katie are taking it down a floor. Sonny observes with her positive attitude, and Janitor laughs at his handiwork while Katie screams from behind closed doors. Later, Sonny seems a bit offended that Janitor never makes her a victim of his cruel, practical jokes. Janitor explains that she simply couldn’t take it if she wound up on the wrong end of his mop. He also takes a minute to terrorize J.D. with his cart. When the "busted" elevator doors open, Katie is sharing a shirtless moment of passion with her geeky co-intern.
Carla enters and praises J.D. because Dr. Cox approved the motion to hire more nurses. Applause follow, but are interrupted by a jealous Turk who explains that J.D. is acting like a ridiculous, arrogant tool. In the same breath, Turk grabs his new intern and explains that they are going out for a beer. Derek’s voice pops into his own head again and he tells himself to ‘stay out of this’, meaning their business. He silently prays that no one will look at him, and that he’ll remain out of the tension between Turk and J.D.
Sonny tries to tempt Janitor’s rage by throwing cherry tomatoes at him, but he seems aloof to her attempts. J.D. pitches in and tosses his own tomato. Janitor gets up immediately to lay the smack down on J.D. who falls back on the word "popsicle" as a bailout. J.D. lands on his ass and learns the hard way that Janitor has, once again, decieved him. The next time we see him, J.D. is covered in tomato juice.
Denise’s biopsy comes back negative and Elliot rubs it in with her celebration dance. In bleak contrast to Elliot’s excitement, Page is in tears because the procedure has left a giant, noticeable scar across her temple. Elliot tries to console her, but to no avail. Outside Page’s room, Elliot explains that thisis why she never listens to interns. not because they don’t know anything, but because they aren’t accountable for anything when something goes wrong. Page’s face now bears a crude scar… and all for nothing.
The episode climaxes when Turk takes a few more shots at J.D. in the cafeteria. Derek sits next to his senior surgeon, doing is best to stay out of it- yet amazed that J.D. has taken his snide ‘Martin Luther King, Jr." comment seriously. Carla sits down and introduces herself to Derek and Cox joins the party, excited that he is responsible for causing a rift in the relationship betweeen Turk and J.D. The four of them bicker like lawyers and Derek excuses himself from the party. Meanwhile, Sonny accepts that Janitor won’t be pulling any pranks on her, and Denise struggles with the role she played in causing Page’s misery. The three interns resolve their dilemmas by turning around and facing the music; Denise admits to Page that she pushed for the biopsy and apologizes, Sonny approaches Janitor one more time to learn that he has pulled a prank on her by making her obsess over the way he neglects her, and Derek turns to a table of jackasses and let’s them have it. He tells J.D. to climb down off his high horse, scolds Cox for getting off on the misery of others, lights Carla up for not standing beside her man, and tells Turk that he makes a poor role model.
The next day is business as usual at Sacred Heart- except the new interns have gained enough respect from their seniors to warrant a formal "hello" when they step through the doors that morning.
The interns are back this week and the line separating the old cast and the new cast is getting blurrier. As a matter of fact, each prevailing scenario in this episode involved a pair consisting of one intern and one original cast member; Denise and Elliot, Sonny and Janitor, Derek and Turk… I can’t help but reiterate my suspicion that the new roles might outlive their predecessors, and soon enough we’ll be watchin Scrubs episodes where the drama centers around intern relationships. Put simply: I think we are witnessing a passing of the torch.
As for this episode, it was just another good time. Cox opened the floor with a shot at J.D. which dwarfed his average tirade, and left the goofy doctor speechless. Janitor does what he’s been doing best for seven years, and opens himself up to the prospect of terrorizing a whole new generation of doctors. I was a little surprised at Turk for not supporting J.D. in his moment of triumph, but I guess the tension between them made the episode’s climax more interesting to watch.
Recap by Jonathan Friedler