Degrassi: The Next Generation

Season 3 Episode 8

Whisper To A Scream

Aired Tuesday 9:00 PM Nov 05, 2003 on MTV - Music Television
out of 10
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119 votes

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Episode Summary


After her dad leaves to go on a peace keeping mission, Ellie's mom starts to drink. As things get more and more hectic, Ellie discovers a dangerous new outlet for her pain; cutting. Terri has a secret admirer, and when Toby starts flirting with her, she assumes it is him.


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  • When Ellie's father leaves for a peacekeeping mission and life seems like to much, she turns to cutting as an outlet. Meanwhile, Terri tries to solve the mystery of who has been leaving roses on her locker.moreless

    When I first saw this episode, words couldn't explain how I felt. Cutting was a subject I had never seen explored in media or discussed anywhere aside from a brief "honorable mention" in health class somewhere before or after eating disorders. Aside from maybe a ten minute discussion in eight grade health, self injury was a mystery to me. As a result, when I turned to cutting as a way to cope with pain, I thought I was the only one and that I was crazy for doing it.

    Ellie is not only easy to relate to but how Degrassi approaches this (at the time) rarely talked about subject is honest, despite a few "after school special" moments. The moment Ellie pulls her sleeve away to reveal her arm made my heart stop and even more the inexplicable moment where she suddenly cuts for the first time without any recognizable thought process leading her to it is so real, so raw, that anyone who has ever self injured in their life can see it and feel exactly what Ellie is feeling.

    It's hard but therapeutic at the same time to watch this episode. For cutters, it can be a trigger. For those who don't really understand self injury but want to, seeing Ellie's silent battle with the stress and overwhelming pain of her life may help.

    Regardless of who you are, this episode and how Stacey Farber portrays Ellie's struggle with finding a way to cope is amazing - definitely not an episode of Degrassi one should miss.moreless
  • Ellie's dad leaves with the army. Ellie's mom starts drinking and Ellie starts cutting herself. Terri is getting roses by a secret admirer.

    This is a really good episode about Ellie. Ellie's dad goes off somewhere with the army. He said something about being a peacekeeper. Anyways in a result her mom starts drinking. It sucks that her mom drinks. She needs to clean up her act. In result of her mom drinking, Ellie starts cutting herself. I really didn't like seeing all those marks on her arm. I am so glad the Paige was trying to be a friend about it. She is usually mean but I'm glad that she was being nice to Ellie once she knew Ellie is a cutter. Rick has been leaving roses for Terri. I think that is really sweet but I've seen other episodes where Rick is abusive so it's sad that she's going to be going out with him. Terri thinks that Toby has been leaving the roses. It's so funny to hear the words that come out of his mouth and how he saids it. It's good that that was only a science project. I think it would be too wierd to have Terri and Toby hook up. I give this episode a 10/10.moreless
  • Ellie's Dad goes on a peace keeping mission leaving her with her alcoholic mom which leads to Ellie's own way to deal with the pain

    Ellie's dad goes on a peace keeping mission with the Canadian Army which he's a part of. Ellie is sad to see him go and her mom tells her to put on a fake smile like her til he leaves. At the same time she is going to have an interview with Caitlin Ryan for a co-op her TV show but she is going against Paige for the job. Which starts off bad by paige accidently spilling jucie on her and it staining and her doing not so good at the interview. But she does end up winning the job. Mean while her mom hasnt left the couch and just drinks. Ellie is late to school a few times which she then starts to cut her self and her arms to relieve the pain. She keeps it up and does a good job at her job but then Paige sees her cutting herself in the bathroom they fight about it, and Paige is about to go to the school counceler. But eventually Ellie goes there herself but isn't ready to talk yet, but the schedule another appointment for the next day because maybe then she will be able to talkmoreless
  • Synopsis: Ellie Nash deals with self mutilation; parental addiction; crushes.

    When Ellie's dad is deployed on a military mission, she and her mom each deal with the separation in different ways. Ellie's mom goes on drinking binges and neglects her daughter. Her addiction is so overwhelming that she falls asleep while cooking and nearly burns down the house. Meanwhile Ellie has to deal with her dad being away, her mom's spiraling alcohol addiction and the stress of gaining an internship with Caitlin Ryan. In an effort to control her out-of-control life she begins cutting herself. True to the show's format of teens helping each other out, Paige discovers what Ellie is doing, and Ellie gets the help she needs. "Whisper to Scream" was realistic and one of the better written Degrassi episodes.moreless
  • Ellie begins to cut herself.

    I think this episode was well-written, and I'm glad that they covered the issue of self injury. Ellie starts to cut when everything gets to be too much for her - Dad off to Iraq, mother an alcoholic, school piling up, etc. I liked that Paige was the one that eventually helped Ellie, but the way that she found out wasn't the best. My nitpicks:

    1 - Unless a self-injurer is cutting or hurting them self for attention, which was not Ellie's reason, that they usually cut in private. I don't think it was very realistic for Ellie to cut in the middle of a public school bathroom.. she could have gone into a cubicle or something. 2 - The compass didn't actually look that sharp :P but hey, I'm just picking there.

    3 - I haven't watched many episodes of Degrassi, but from what I gather, her cutting was a one-time thing in just this episode. I don't think thats really realistic. Self-injury is an addiction, and its not very easy to stop, even with counseling. I think they should make Ellie have a relapse or something..

    Anyway, all in all, it was a good, well-written episode. Poor Ellie!moreless
Daniel Levesque

Daniel Levesque

Colonel Nash

Guest Star

Jennifer Podemski

Jennifer Podemski

Ms. Sauvé

Recurring Role

John Bregar

John Bregar

Dylan Michalchuk

Recurring Role

Michael Kinney

Michael Kinney

Mr. Armstrong

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

  • QUOTES (2)

    • Terri: (aggravated by Toby) Are you following me?
      Toby: I don't know, am I?
      Toby: 'Til next we meet.
      Hazel: Or maybe your admirer is Toby.
      Both: Ugh!

    • Ms. Sauvé: Hey Paige, give me a second and we'll talk about your friend.
      Ellie: Who? Me?
      Paige: I don't care if you get mad, what you're doing is dangerous, okay? It's scary.
      Ellie: You can't handle it. You have to take away the one thing that matters.
      Paige: What are you talking about?
      Ellie: You want my co-op job.
      Paige: I'm not talking about the stupid job! You're hurting yourself. (Ellie shakes her head) Look, this is beyond me. I don't know how to help you, but Sauvé will.
      Ellie: I don't need help!
      Paige: Then show me your arm.
      Ellie: There's nothing wrong with me!

  • NOTES (3)

    • Jake Epstein (Craig), appears in this episode, but does not have any lines.

    • Sarah Barrable-Tishauer (Liberty), Stefan Brogren (Mr. Simpson), Daniel Clark (Sean), Ryan Cooley (J.T.), Aubrey Graham (Jimmy), Shane Kippel (Spinner), Pat Mastrioanni (Joey), Miriam McDonald (Emma), Amanda Stepto (Spike), and Dan Woods (Mr. Raditch), do not appear in this episode.

    • The original title for this episode was "Control."


    • Toby: Hello Clarisse

      The way Toby says this, is in the style that Hannibal Lector says it in "The Silence of the Lambs".

    • The title of this episode is the same as a song by The Icicle Works from their 1984 self-titled album. In North America the song is known as "Whisper to a Scream (Birds Fly)" but the original song is the reverse-"Birds Fly (Whisper to a Scream)".