Season 10 Episode 7

Death and Taxes

Aired Thursday 10:00 PM Nov 13, 2003 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
90 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Lewis has a rough day: Chuck proposes having kids with her, she misses an appointment with an auditor, and Ben Hollander commits suicide. Pratt receives an unfavorable review from Romano and also treats a con who was raped in prison. Abby, on her ER rotation, agrees to study with Neela. Gallant makes a decision that results in the death of a young girl with leukemia. Sam's son Alex spends the day in the ER, following Luka around for most of it, ending with Luka X-raying his head. Chen gets a call from the Chinese embassy and heads for a plane as her vacationing parents were in an accident. Sam unscrews Romano's hand and Lewis locks it up for the rest of the shift.moreless

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  • Not all can be saved

    The beauty of this episode was defenetly Susan's storyline - the way from the beginning of the episode we got those little clips of that old man, she has trying to help, preparing for their meal and how, from step to step he started to realize and that drown him into the point he pulled the trigger. Great camera work and very emotional.

    Also, Gallant and his try to save that girl with cancer - again, very emotional and sad but well done.

    I start to like Sam's son more and more even thought Sam's char leaves me totally cold. And Kovac and Elizabeth confronting each other - that was rather good either.

    I think a great episode.moreless
  • Abby begins her ER rotation whilst Susan has a bad day that ends in tradgedy.

    Watching these episodes something seems refreshing about them; Er's acclaimed good writting and skill of dealing a harsh storyline without mellow-dramatics.

    Susan's day goes from bad to worse after a less than encouraging proposal from Chuck to have Kids,by the look on her face it was evident she wasn't impressed.In the same fashion a surplus amount of patients caused her to miss her appointment with an Auditor and to cap it off Ben Hollander died after a suicide attempt.There are those day when you know it's going to be dire and if i were her i would of stayed in Bed.(But then the prospect of staying with Chuck on other thoughts maybe not)

    Abby began her ER rotation that was doomed for failure after she overlooked an apparent skull fracture on a portable CT.Susan then deciphered that the injury had infact been incurred after the babies visit to the hospital.Leaving Abby with a satisfactory first day but the boyfriend with charges of child abuse.Neela asked Abby if she would like to study together after a momentary pause Abby accepted.Signs of a friendship or familarising with the enemy..?moreless
  • Bob Newhart guest stars and brings phenominal acting along with him. His character, along with Sherry Stringfield's was a brilliant mix.

    This episode stands out to me for a few reasons: 1.) Bob Newhart's unforgettable and touching performance as Ben Hollander, a suicidal man slowly going blind. 2.) Abby beginning on her ER rotation. 4.) The growing tensions between Luka and Sam...And of course 3.) Romano's groping mechanical hand. This episode was a fabulous example of how the writters of ER can convey several conflicting emotions to the viewer, all in a single episode. The beginning of the episode had me in tears--laughing--while the ending of the episode left me in tears--empty and utterly depressed. The Romano-Sam-Susan confrontation over Romano's "naughty" hand at the beginning of the episode was much needed comedic relief to an otherwise down episode. Abby had a fullfilling and successful first day in her ER rotation, fresh off her surgical rotation. Newcomer Nurse Sam Taggart again isn't impressed with Luka's charm on Alex. And as for Ben Hollander, it was a terrible ending to a memorable and touching character. Overall, a fabulous installment of ER.moreless
  • Lewis has a bad day .

    Poor Dr. Lewis had a very bad day. I think she really feel guilty about the death of Ben, but she don't have to feel that way, like she said it he want it that way.

    I think that Neela and Abby hate each other, and with this thing of "studing" together is just a way of getting to know a little better.

    I feel very bad about the poor baby and the guy with Aids. He felt so gay, becase we don't have to culture to understand that rape is not only for girls or women but guys it happen to guys too. And the baby, the boyfriend of the mom, wan't even his father so he could beat him. But not only because he is hes father he had the right to beat him, it was sooo sad.moreless
  • A very bad day for Dr Lewis

    This was not a good day for Dr Lewis between being audited by the IRS and seeing her friend commit suicide to some difficult patients. I thought Bob Newhart did a great job on the show and it was sad to see his character die. Another important part of this episode is Abby and Neela continuing to develop into doctors. Abby thinks she has missed a diagnosis, but unfortunately it turns into one of the most disturbing storylines ever. I hope that boyfriend who beat the baby goes to jail, he deserves it. Gallant is forced to make a difficult decision and it does not work out well. The whole Romano thing really bothered me in this episode. He continues to be a huge jerk, and if it weren't for that storyline I would give it a higher ranking.moreless
Alex Kingston

Alex Kingston

Dr. Elizabeth Corday

Linda Cardellini

Linda Cardellini

Nurse Sam Taggart

Maura Tierney

Maura Tierney

Abby Lockhart

Mekhi Phifer

Mekhi Phifer

Dr. Greg Pratt



Dr. Jing-Mei "Deb" Chen

Parminder Nagra

Parminder Nagra

Neela Rasgotra

Bob Newhart

Bob Newhart

Ben Hollander

Guest Star

Betsy Brandt

Betsy Brandt

Franny Myers

Guest Star

Nicholas D'Agosto

Nicholas D'Agosto


Guest Star

Scott Grimes

Scott Grimes

Dr. Archie Morris

Recurring Role

Laura Cerón

Laura Cerón


Recurring Role

Troy Evans

Troy Evans


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • At 40:48 a sign on the wall can be seen which says, "Quizá necesites lentes. O quizá sea un ataque al cerebro." This is Spanish for:
      "You may need glasses. Or it may be a stroke."

  • QUOTES (26)

    • Romano: (to Gallant) I'll give reductions to residents like you with two paws and half a brain.

    • Neela: Excuse me, Dr. Romano. May I speak with you privately?
      Romano: You're already my favorite, you want people to talk?

    • Romano: (to Abby) Ah, the Helen Keller of County. I hear you missed a skull fracture today. Keep it up, you'll be back to 'code browns' in no time.

    • Luka: (About Mr. Presky's perforated appendix) He was given discharge instructions and came back as directed. The system worked.
      Corday: Oh, for you, maybe. But he'll be subjected to a riskier surgery and I'll miss dinner with my daughter. Score one for your bloody mission.

    • Pratt: Dr. Romano, you got a minute?
      Romano: I've got ten patients of my own and six med students I'm avoiding like the plague. You think it looks like I have a minute?
      Pratt: I need you to do a rape kit.
      Romano: I didn't see anything on the board.
      Pratt: Came in with a knife wound, he didn't tell us at first.
      Romano: 'He'?
      Pratt: The prisoner you gave me earlier? He has some rectal bleeding.
      Romano: Oh. Well, you go ahead. I'll sign off on it.
      Pratt: No. Per legal, an Attending's supposed to do all rape exams.
      Romano: It'll be our little secret.
      Pratt: Hey, wait a minute! Wait a minute! You're always all over me for this, that, and the other protocol, and now you want me to do a procedure which requires me-
      Romano: What, are you all of a sudden Mr. By the Book? This is not a stretch for you, Pratt. Just do it. Break the rules, you're good at it.

    • Mr. Persky: I thought you said it was appendicitis?
      Luka: Not if you can stomach that much hospital food.

    • Susan: Nice assessment.
      Neela: Thanks.
      Abby: You never compliment me like that.
      Susan: Like what?
      Abby: "Nice assessment".
      Susan: I do.
      Abby: No, you don't.
      Susan: ...I don't?
      Abby: No.
      Susan: I give you my time which is the highest form of a compliment.

    • Romano: Okay, here's a real time-waster: transport from Gelden. Stable twelve year old hemonker with fever.
      Corday: Is that the community hospital on the east side?
      Romano: Yeah, otherwise known as a glorified doc-in-a-box. Who's expendable? (turns to Abby) Well, you are, but since you're neither fish nor fowl, you're useless even on a mindless transport.
      Corday: Robert.
      Romano: Ah, eureka. Our affirmative action hero (Gallant) and our sultry hand thief. (Sam) Go with God, but more importantly, just go.
      Sam: My kid's here and I don't have a sitter.
      Romano: Oh and that's my problem, how?
      Luka: The nurses can take care of him in the lounge until you get back. Right, Chuny?
      Chuny: Sure, no problem.
      Romano: Okay, fine. That's settled. Ebony and Ivory can go off into the sunset and maybe the rest of us can get a little work done around here without being stared at.
      Susan: (to Abby about Romano) I don't think his mom loved him very much.

    • Sam: You okay?
      Ben Hollander: Me? Oh yeah. Blind, getting blinder every day. Life is good.

    • Frank: (Romano has a different attachment to replace the hand Susan hid) What happened to your other gizmo?
      Susan: It's being punished for being naughty.
      Romano: Yeah. Enough fun and games, where is it?

    • Ben Hollander: I could do without smelling dog poop again or stepping in it.
      Susan: Housebreaking not going so well?
      Ben Hollander: No, it's fine. And thanks.
      Susan: For what?
      Ben Hollander: The dog. He laughs at all my jokes, licks my feet. I think I'm in love.

    • Romano: Hey, Abby. Guy over here needs a foley. Oh, oh, wait. I'm sorry, you're playing doctor today. Okay, nevermind. I'll find a nurse who's not kidding herself. (turns and sees Sam) Here's one now. Mom, right? Uh, there's good news and bad news: the bad news is my enlarged prostate guy needs a tube shoved up his urethra. The good news is he gets to have you in his penis.
      Susan: (to Romano) I absolutely positively have to take my lunch hour today; I'm being audited.
      Romano: I didn't know we paid you enough to get audited.
      Susan: You don't.

    • Romano: (Sees Sam's son Alex sitting on the desk) Hey! Teen mom, newsflash: This is not daycare, okay? Eighty-six the love child and stop tying up the phone lines.
      Sam: (to Alex) The next time you decide to put a marker on your face, can you do it before school so I can get a sitter?
      Alex: That means I can stay here?
      Sam: Only until I can find one. Now, go to the lounge and do something normal, like homework.

    • Chen: (Romano's robotic hand grabs Chen's ass) Hey!
      Romano: It's an electrical malfunction.
      Chen: Only on women?
      Romano: It happens!

    • (after Sam talks to Luka about her kid)
      Abby: What was that all about?
      Luka: Over protective mother. (pause) Still on surgical rotation?
      Abby: No, I start my ER rotation today.
      Luka: Welcome home!

    • (after taking Romano's robotic hand)
      Sam: I've got a rule against ass grabbing.
      Susan: That's a good rule.

    • Romano: (to Gallant) I just finished your eval. You'd better practice these words: paper or plastic?

    • Pratt: All right. So what did I miss?
      Romano: Your calling as a hoodlum. Here. Prison stabbing. That ought to be right up your alley.

    • Pratt: Hey. What the hell you doing here?
      Morris: Working.
      Pratt: I thought you quit.
      Morris: Oh, my dad wouldn't let me. Said he'd pull the money plug if I didn't see this thing through.
      Pratt: This thing, meaning a career in medicine?
      Morris: Yeah.

    • (Sam removes the hand on Romanos prosthetic arm after it grabs her ass)
      Susan: What are you doing?
      Sam: He just grabbed my ass! Here, takes this to church and have it exorcised. (hands Susan the hand and walks away)
      Romano: That's right, you keep walking! Right up to the nursing directors office, 'cause by the time you get there, there'll be a pink slip waiting for you.
      Sam: Good! Give me plenty of time to file my sexual harassment lawsuit!
      Romano: (to Susan) Do you mind?
      Susan: Yes I do. You can have it back by the end of the day if you learn to behave!
      Romano: Give me my damned hand back!

    • Alex: What's a prolapsed rectum?
      Lewis: Shouldn't you be reading Harry Potter or something?

    • Romano: Times up, where's my hand?
      Lewis: It's in the women's bathroom in the tampon machine. Get it yourself.

    • Romano: (to Susan) Pratt is a rabid dog that needs to be taken outside and shot before he infects the rest of the staff.

    • Romano: HEY, do I have to remind you I'm in charge here?
      Lewis: You'll have to convince me first.

    • Susan: You can only take so much of the blame, you didn't give her cancer
      Gallant: Then why don't I feel any better

    • Susan: What pleasure could you possibly get from humiliating people
      Romano: It's called fun, you should try it some time

  • NOTES (1)


    • Romano: Ebony and Ivory (Gallant and Sam) can go off into the sunset and maybe the rest of us can get a little work done around here without being stared at.

      "Ebony and Ivory" is a 1982 duet by Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney about racial integration and harmony. Gallant represents the ebony because he is black and Sam represents the ivory because she is white.

    • The game Alex and his friend are playing is the crossover fighting game Super Smash Bros. It was developed by HAL Laboratory and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo 64.