Season 2 Episode 7

Hell and High Water

Aired Thursday 10:00 PM Nov 09, 1995 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (12)

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out of 10
188 votes
  • A classic, but...

    As one of most-watched ER episodes [48 million] of all-time, there is no denying that it is a classic that really put George Clooney on the map. Yet, like many of ER's event episodes, I find it a bit cheesy and cliched. The characterization of Dr. Ross as the doctor who goes above and beyond (rules be damned) to save a child is definitely on point, but the plot itself feels a bit too Lassie-esque. The addition of the news helicopter with live coverage of the rescue also seems a bit over the top and a departure from the more realistic roots of the early seasons. (Yes, the media can be crass, but I had to lovingly roll my eyes at the notion that a news org would broadcast images of a child flatlining. That is an ethical line that most would never cross, in my opinion.

    Wet George Clooney certainly doesn't hurt this episode, though.
  • Defenetly one of the best episodes

    This episode defenetly the one episode that remind me why I love this show. Dramatic, lot of excitement and some thrilling changes.

    As I have never seen season 1, so, this episodes is really the first time to get deeper look into Ross char and the tragic inside him. The situation he is put, is well chosen. And the second story - little girl - a really moving too. But it was really clear, somehow, that the girl will die and the boy will survive so that Ross could stay. Despite not so cleverly hidden plots, really enjoyable and superb episode.
  • In this explosive episode Doug Ross caught in a flood, gets told by a kid that his brother is trapped inside a ditch. Now it's up to Doug Ross to save the kids life and save his own as the flood grows stronger.

    The episode that probably launched George Clooney on the map. The episode continues where the last one left off, with Doug Ross life in disarray. After sleeping with Carter's girlfriend and getting losing his contract as an ER doctor, Doug Ross is nothing but a Doctor without a job. In the middle of a storm as Doug Ross is about to smoke marijuana a boy hits his car door telling him that his brother is caught in a ditch between a strong metal post. So Doug Ross immediately tells the kid to call the police and goes to save his brother. Despite his best efforts to make sure the kid doesn't fall asleep (Since there is a set of metal bars in between them), Doug Ross soon runs out luck as the flood erupts and destroys the ditch and metal post. The next scene is Doug Ross carrying the unconscious boy and administrating CPR to revive him as a News Crew and ambulance arrive. Using his sound judgment Ross advises the crew to go to the ER and instead of taking the ambulance takes the News Helicopter to deliver the boy in time for the Doctors to operate and save his life. So the last shot is obviously good for Ross, he just saved a life and is now a news hero as he and Mark Greene leave the ER to a crowd of News Reporters. The episode like "Love's Lost Labor" showcased Clooney's great acting ability and are one of his best highlight episodes. He should have won an Emmy Award for his role as Ross and this episode signifies everything the show lost after he left in the 5th season. Though it is still one of the best ER episodes of all time.
  • To this date this is still my number one favorite episode of ER.

    Whenever this episode is on in reruns I watch it (and not just because George Clooney is focused on a lot in this episode). I love this episode for many reasons - the main one being how Clooney's character, Dr. Doug Ross, was always made out to be the bad boy doctor but in this episode it shows that no matter how much he bends or breaks the rules in the end he's all about saving people's lives. He risked his own safety to save a little boy during a terrible storm. A great episode!
  • Doug Ross is on his way to dinner in a storm when a boy stops him and screams his brother needs help doug struggles to rescue the boy in a water drain and takes him to county in a tv chopper with live coverage of him on tv trying to save the boy

    this was one of the best episodes of ER it was exciting and really made you get into the story. George clooney was fantastic he never ceases to amaze me he is a brilliant actor and he pulled this episode through and made it a memorable one that i cant stop watching
  • I saw this episode for the first time, I think this is the best episode ever on ER. The kid Ben was extreamley good. Ross was great too but out of this whole episode it was outstanding.

    Dr. Ross is headed to a Opera or some kind of play and than sudently is tire goes flat. As he gets ready to smoke some maraijuana a little boy comes up to him and screams for help. Meanwhile, in CG, doctors are taking care of Molly, a hit and run victim who later pass away. Ross is trying to save Ben a boy traped in a awer. Later Ross is try frantically to save Ben and sucseeds on saving him.
  • very good

    a very suspensful exciting episode. I love it. It is my favorite episode in like the first 3 seasons. Extremely well done by george clooney. I was soooo happy that the little boy was ok and it ended happily. I was so scared that the kid was gonna drown. It is one of the best er episode ever.

    very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very evry evry evry very very very very very very very very very very very very very very evry very very very very good!!!
  • A gem of an episode

    Having bought the first 4 series' DVD sets a while ago, I have been racing through them. I hadn't really seen much of ER before I bought them but love the show now. Yesterday I reached Hell and High Water (coincidentally exactly 10 years since its first ever airing on NBC). This episode has to be one of the most well - written episodes I have seen yet. George Clooney was fantastic with the storyline with the boy stuck in the tunnel full of raging water. The paralell story with the young girl was nearly as gripping. I was astonished that the 42minutes had passed so quickly by the time the credits rolled. Despite not having Sherry Stringfield ( who I now admire as an actress, despite her character in NYPD Blue who was quite unappealing)in the episode, this was First Class and hopefully there are many more hidden gems among the DVD releases waiting for me to discover. Well done to all!!!
  • Doug at his finest.

    Hell and High Water is a story of two children involved in two different traumas. Molly, who was a hit and run victim; and Ben, a boy caught in a storm drain and freezing water.

    Carter and Harper are in charge of taking care of Molly. They are able to treat her, and make her stable. Molly is awake and alert, and gives Harper a bead necklace that she made. We're even at the point of discussing plastic surgery.

    In the meantime, Doug is not having a good time. It seems he found a new home in private practice, but he really does not want to leave the ER. He's on his way to an Opera, and he gets a blown tire. As it turns out, that blown tire was a lucky thing for young Ben.

    This puts Doug in the right place to come to the rescue for Ben. Doug is resourceful and strong. Ben faces possible drowning or freezing to death. Doug is able to keep the very frantic boy somewhat calm, and able to keep him awake, but time is running out. Ben's brother cannot find a phone, so Doug breaks a store window to give the boy access to a phone. Doug frees Ben from the drain, but a gush of water throws them into a flooded area. A news helicopter shows up just in time to find Doug triumphantly pulling the boy out of the water.

    But it's not over yet. Ben is hypothermic, and not breathing. Doug performs an emergency tracheotomy. He battles the paramedics and insists on flying Ben to County on the news helicopter.

    Just as thing bring Ben into the ER, Molly crashes. This sets the stage for a whirlwind of emotions, as we bounce back from one child to the other.

    Even in Doug's finest hour, he still has controversy following him. Does he let the paramedics take the boy to Mercy, 12 minutes away, but no trauma center? Or does he the boy in the news helicopter. A transport not equipped for emergency care, and County is 3 minutes further away. Doug is insistent and gets his way. It was touching at the end, when Mark reaffirms that this was the right decision.

    The writers of ER have always done a great job mixing in good and bad emotions in one episode. Hell and High Water is an excellent example of this style. As were watching them work on Ben and Molly, you find yourself happy and sad at the same time. You're proud of Doug, and how he was able to save Ben. Ben's life was just a short distance from death, for quite a while. And you find yourself crying for Molly. And for Harper, as she had a personal rapport with Molly.

    The storm drain was built, and the scenes were shot at the studio. To be able to pull this off was extraordinary. The lighting and directing here are superb. Specifically, with the spotlight from a news helicopter on Doug, as we see Ben in his arms. This is one of the series best.
  • After practically not having his contract picked up, Doug Ross leaves the hospital and parks in the rain, about to smoke some marijuana. Suddenly, a boy is pounding on his car window screaming that his brother is trapped in the the whole ep

    This was a very pivotal episode. Especially for Doug Ross. (George Clooney) He did such a fantastic job. Every time I see it, I am on the edge of my seat, biting my fingernails. i honestly don't know what else to put in here. Watch isn't as good as it was in the first few seasons, but every once in awhile, it's a got a really good episode.
  • As Carter and Harper look after a kid that was in a car accident, Doug is having a job interview and has to save a kid from not being drowned... Doug takes a huge risk!!!

    I liked the fact that things between Harper and Carter were still very hard, in contact I mean. the tension was noticable and very well done by the actors. Also very sad about the girl that she dies in the end because you expect that Ben, the kid Doug tries and will save, dies but instead this girl dies... Unexpected imo.

    In this episode I also totally felt sorry for Doug. He has to find a new job in a place he doesn't want to work clearly. Really sad but this whole saving the kid from the sewers and all does show what kind of great pediatrician Doug is. And I'm glad that the kid turned out okay. Also George Clooney is a wonderful actor for acting so good with kids and being a caring doctor. A job well done.

    Overall this episode was very exciting and had an unexpected turn imo. I like this, keeps the excitement up! A true and perfect ER episode! May more follow!
  • Dr Ross tries to save a kid from a drain pipe, while Carter and Harper try to save a kid hit by a car.

    I have trouble seeing this as not the greatest episode ever. This episode shows what ER should be. I think that the ending with the contrast between the two kids is amazing, and a large part of what makes the episode so great. This episode made Dr Ross a hero, he shows great courage trying to save a kid\'s life. It comes as close as possible to being perfect and having everything. I could not wait to get the Season two DVD so I could watch this episode over and over, I'll never get enough of it. This is truly the greatest episode ever.