ER

Season 4 Episode 7

Fathers and Sons

0
Aired Thursday 10:00 PM Nov 13, 1997 on NBC
8.6
out of 10
User Rating
90 votes
5

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

EDIT
Doug learns that his father has passed away. He drives to California to identify the body and gather his father’s belongings, with Mark along for moral support. While putting his affairs in order, Doug learns some surprising facts about his father, and also has a revelation about his own life and future. A side trip to San Diego, where Mark’s parents live, unveils Mark’s uncomfortable relationship with his father and leads to a heated exchange between Mark and Doug.moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Weaker, but still interesting...

    7.5
    The out of the ER episodes are, in my opinion, often some of the weakest of the series. That said, this episode may be one of the best of that type. A few interesting tidbits:



    - In this episode it is stated that Mark is originally from CA and Doug spent part of his childhood in KY. This is a direct reflection of the actors' own backgrounds, as Anthony Edwards (Mark) is from CA and George Clooney (Doug) is from KY.



    - This episode reveals that Dr. Greene is an occasional smoker. This is kind of surprising, yet oh so believable. I can't count how many times I have seen doctors (hypocritically) standing outside of a hospital and smoking. It's definitely a stress relieving mechanism that is, sadly, an understandable vice for an ER doc. (I'm glad that this is never a prominent vice, though, as watching people smoke grosses me out).moreless
  • Doug and Mark go to BARSTOW, California to deal with Doug's father who passed away in a car accident. A very well written episode which ends with Doug, Mark, and Carol sending the ashes into the desert. Doug tells Mark he's from Ozzie and Harriet land.moreless

    10
    In an episode where we learn more and more about the reality of Doug Ross and Mark Greene, the setting is in the desert in Barstow, California. Doug's dad has been killed in a bad accident. His father, drunk at the wheel plowed into a truck that killed his wife and a father of 6. They then go to San Diego where we meet Mark's parents. His dad, a retired Naval Captain is smoking like a chimney. Doug dressed down Mark when Mark complains about his upbringing. In a touching moment, Carol shows up to be there for Doug.moreless
  • A look into Doug's and Mark's past

    8.3
    We learn more about of Doug and dr. Greene as they travel to California to gain Doug's father's body after an accident where he was killed. Instead of action in ER, cases, we have moving and deep episode about character's inner world. And somehow it really gives a new picture, new direction how to see them two, little better idea to understand their friendship and themselves.



    The tempo of this episode is not comparable of usual episodes and there is nothing what could be compared with usual ER. This episodes seems to stand totally alone, but that is not a bad thing as the emotion, revealing look into past can give us much. And in the end, Carol joins them, and the interesting episode gets worthy ending.moreless
  • I need some sort of ER action!

    6.9
    This episode was entirely based outside of the ER, and I hate, I repeat, hate those episodes! Africa, middle of nowhere, whatever. I just don't like them. So this episode was no different. However, it wasn't all doom and gloom. I did enjoy seeing Mark's family, and some excellent acting from George Clooney. Hope wasn't entirely lost.
  • Good Episode away from the hospital.

    8.6
    This was a good episode that really gave a insite into Doug and Marks personal side because it is away from the hospital.



    It help Doug to come to terms with his fathers death as he is unsure of how to deal with it and what his feelings are.



    I am glad that Mark went along because I don't really like the grumpy Mark. We meet his parents and learn about his issues with his father.moreless
Alex Kingston

Alex Kingston

Dr. Elizabeth Corday

Anthony Edwards

Anthony Edwards

Dr. Mark Greene

Eriq La Salle

Eriq La Salle

Dr. Peter Benton

George Clooney

George Clooney

Dr. Doug Ross

Gloria Reuben

Gloria Reuben

P.A. Jeanie Boulet

Julianna Margulies

Julianna Margulies

Nurse Carol Hathaway

Patti Allison

Patti Allison

Motel Manager

Guest Star

Bonnie Bartlett

Bonnie Bartlett

Ruth Greene

Guest Star

Frank Califano

Frank Califano

Priest

Guest Star

John Cullum

John Cullum

David Greene

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (2)

    • Somewhere in Doug's life he had to have had some Catholic upbringing. After he knelt in front of Pedro Lopez's marker on the side of the road (Pedro Lopez was the man Doug's father killed in the accident), he rose up and made the sign of the cross.

    • This is the first episode of ER to take place entirely outside the hospital.

  • QUOTES (3)

    • Mark: What are you thinking about, Doug?
      Doug: Carol... I'm in love with her. I mean, I used to think I knew what love was. I cared about a lot of women. I just don't think I've ever really been in love. I think about her all the time. I don't like it when I'm not with her, I don't want to be with anyone else. That's love, isn't it?
      Mark: Yeah. That's love.

    • (while dumping his father's ashes off a cliff in the desert)
      Doug: I hated the son of a bitch. And I loved him.

    • Doug: I'm confused now. Your father's still alive, right? He's still with your mother.
      Mark: So that's the criteria for a good father? Longevity?
      Doug: Did he smack you around a lot? Used to smack your mom around?
      Mark: Poor Doug.
      Doug: Wait. Poor Doug? Your father, did he, did he come into your room in the middle of the night and throw up on your bed and pass out? Did he do that? Did he leave you in a hallway in Atlantic City while he screwed some hat check girl, Mark? Did he do that? Did he do that, Mark? Your father was there for you every night, you and your mother. And that's love. Now, whether it's the way you want it or not, it's love, Mark. You grew up in Ozzie and Harriet land. Get your head out of your ass.

  • NOTES (3)

  • ALLUSIONS (2)

    • Mark's mother collects Hummel figurines. First introduced in 1935, these cheerful works of art are products of a collaboration between Franz Goebel, head of the W.Goebel Porzellanfabrik, and a talented German artist, Sister Maria Innocentia Hummel. Sister Hummel died in 1946, but her artistic legacy has been carried on to this day by the Goebel Group.

    • Titls: "Fathers and Sons"
      This episode shares a title with Ivan Turgenev's 1862 novel about the inevitable conflict between generations and the clash of values between traditionalists and intellectuals. Fathers and Sons is also the title of a 1969 Muddy Waters album.

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