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Season 15 Episode 20

Shifting Equilibrium

Aired Thursday 10:00 PM Mar 19, 2009 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
130 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Neela proves her worth as attending material when she clashes with Dubenko on how to proceed with two different surgical cases. Brenner gains a deep insight into his painful childhood.

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  • Goodbye Neela...

    This is really the end... With Neela leaving, ER has definitely started wrapping up things... I can't believe this is it.

    I've been watching the show for 15 years, I grew up with it (I was 12 when it started!) and even though the passion gradually faded over the years it was still a great pleasure to check in once a week.

    I was very surprised because I had no idea that Neela wouldn't make it to the finale. I couldn't help but cry. Her goodbye to Dubenko was very emotional. And oh my God, Abby came back!!!

    On the other hand I knew that Ray was coming back and the writers really milked it. The waiting was unbearable

    I couldn't help but scream. Make him appear now, why does it take so long for Neela to go?!!

    The both of them finally get together. After all this time...

    I'm sorry we didn't get a great final kiss but that would have probably been too corny for ER.

    It reminded of when Carol joined Doug in Seattle.

    I'll miss Neela (and Ray) terribly for the last two episodes. She was my favourite character (with Abby).

    And I really need to get prepared for the finale... the emotion will be overwhelming...moreless
  • Goodbye Neela.......

    In this episode of ER, the following happens. We open this episode with the knowledge that Neela is leaving County, in this episode. We open the episode as she leaves the hospital, for the last ever time. We then see her in an airport, and she phones someone and leaves them a message to ring her back. Then Simon turns up, at the airport bar. We then go back to 12 hours earlier. We also learn that Neela has done 2499 cases during her surgical years, her last case will make it 2500. But alas the surgery doesn't go ahead and so Neela leaves County with only 1499 surgical procedures under her belt. Neela and Simon Say their goodbyes at the airport, with a goodbye kiss. As a goodbye, Frank organises a little get together for Neela before she leaves in the break room. He even has Bollywood dancers there. Everyone is there to say goodbye to Neela, as she sets off for a new life. Haleh then takes Neela down to the wall, where she puts her name off of hr locker. As she is taken down she has flashbacks to her life in the ER, through the years since she started there. We then learn who Neela left the message for as they are returning the phone call and it's Abby. They talk and Neela then boards the plane to her new life. Neela arrives at the airport and has a look of doubt about it all on her face. Then we see Neela driving with a map in her hand. She finally gets to her destination and we see that she is at a medical centre. We then see her entering a rehab room, and then it clicks. She is in the Centre where Ray works, and then we see him. Finally Ray & Neela are back together, just like they are supposed to be. Roomies Forever!!moreless
  • ER waves goodbye to Dr Rasgotra.

    They finally did what we'd be hoping for and brought Neela and Ray together at last. I love the fact that she was the one that gave it all up to go to him. But saying that, i was the least she could do. After all, he lost his legs because of her. Morris and Claudia were cute together. I hope nothing bad happens to them, in true ER fashion.

    And Abby's back! Woohoo! It was great to see her too. All we need now is Weaver, Kovic and Susan to return (again).

    A great episode. I shall get my tissues ready for April 2nd!moreless
  • Last Neela's day at the ER...

    They are really making me cry with almost every chapter this season. Neela's last day there was marked by Brenner's confession and possible redemption. His heart to heart talk with Neela was simply awesome. I'm glad he is getting some help and he is finally fighting his demons. Morris and Claudia had a great moment in this chapter too, I really liked them together!

    I found really cute that Frank is doing all that party thing for Neela.

    The walk to the Nurse's wall was completely tearjerker! And then Neela remembering her first day there and some moments with Abby, Gallan and Pratt. I couldn't stop crying!

    And the end? AMAZING!! I'm really really glad that she went to where Ray was! Happy endings always make me happy!! Another great chapter of this last season to show me again how much I'm gonna miss this show...moreless
  • After last week's episode, this one was a letdown

    Although losing Neela before the end of the series was a shame - she did deserve her own send-off, she has been the 'Carter' of the more recent years ~ a pivotal character.

    I never liked Ray so the ending did nothing for me but Brenner (albeit an Aussie....supposedly) is a proper pain in the posterior so just as well she didn't fall for him. I could have done without the whole airport scenario.....I think the time would have been better used talking on the mobile to Abby while she waited.

    There were snippets that were tearjerky, the walk to the wall always gets me ~ I would have enjoyed a few flashbacks then for our sake, even if Neela didn't remember themmoreless
John Stamos

John Stamos

Dr. Tony Gates

Linda Cardellini

Linda Cardellini

Nurse Sam Taggart

Scott Grimes

Scott Grimes

Dr. Archie Morris

David Lyons

David Lyons

Dr. Simon Brenner

Angela Bassett

Angela Bassett

Dr. Cate Banfield

Parminder Nagra

Parminder Nagra

Dr. Neela Rasgotra

Shane West

Shane West

Dr. Ray Barnett

Guest Star

Maura Tierney

Maura Tierney

Dr. Abby Lockhart

Guest Star

M.C. Gainey

M.C. Gainey

Darrion Walters

Guest Star

Justina Machado

Justina Machado

Detective Claudia Diaz

Recurring Role

Leland Orser

Leland Orser

Dr. Lucien Dubenko

Recurring Role

Yvette Freeman

Yvette Freeman

Nurse Haleh Adams

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

    • The music number played at the end when Neela is leaving and joining Ray, is the same music number that plays for Dr. Greene in Orion in the Sky when he is leaving, and for Abby. When she is dancing with Frank and leaving as well.

    • Goof: When Haleh takes Abby to the wall of name plaques in "The Book of Abby," the wall is behind a door. In this episode, however, the wall is not behind any doors.

  • QUOTES (13)

    • Neela: Please tell me I'm not making a horrible mistake.
      Abby: Of course you're not making a mistake.
      Neela: But how does one know? How does one ever know?
      Abby: You're doing that thing you do.
      Neela: What thing?
      Abby: That existential crisis spin-out thing that never leads you anywhere.

    • Neela: Maybe you can just wish me luck.
      Dubenko: I'd like to, but I can't.
      Neela: What?
      Dubenko: I can't accept the fact that you've accepted a job at an academically and clinically inferior institution just to spite me.
      Neela: Now who's a narcissist?

    • Neela: Denial. Avoidance. Fear. There are so many things I've missed out on, because I was afraid.
      Simon: (smiles) You're obviously not afraid to fly in really bad weather.

    • Dubenko: (to Neela) Six months, six years, I don't know. Not sure when, but you will be back. County is in your blood. And until then, my friend, good luck!

    • Neela: So many times in my life I failed to take a chance, even when it was clear to everyone else, including me, that I should have.

    • Ray: Finally. You're really here?
      Neela: Yeah. I really am.

    • Brenner: Thank you for helping me see that I was stuck too.
      Neela: (welling up) You know, I'm the last person you should be telling...
      Brenner: You were right. (pause) I can't love anyone until I sort some stuff out. But maybe because of you I've started to do that.
      Neela: (tearfully) Simon...
      Brenner: This is why I came here. (long pause) Neela, this really, (pauses, then whispers with deep emotion) God, this mattered so much to me. Thank you.
      (they kiss sweetly)
      Neela: Thank you for saying that.

    • (after Neela figures out that he bought a ticket in order to get past security to come see her)
      Brenner: It just seemed wrong, it seemed terribly wrong, to let you go, and not even say goodbye.

    • Neela: ...For as long as I can remember I've carried this irrational dread of making a mistake. It's with me all the time. (pause) And, and why on earth I decided to become a doctor, where the cost of a mistake is so high! It's insane!
      Brenner: It's masochistic.
      Neela: I know!

    • Dubenko: (to Neela) I'm not mad at you. I'm amused by your narcissism.

    • Morris: ...As long as you promise not to get shot again!
      Claudia: Voy a tratar lo mejor posible, Archie Morris.
      Morris: What?
      Claudia: See, I just wanted to see how much Spanish you really understand.
      (Morris laughs)

    • Morris: The original idea was to bake you a pie wearing nothing but an apron, but I have to work late and I don't have an apron.
      Claudia: Me neither.
      Morris: See? We're perfect!

    • Brenner: The truth is a time bomb, but once it's out, it can't hurt you anymore; you can move on, you can move forward.

  • NOTES (1)


    • Title: "Shifting Equilibrium"
      The title of the episode relates to the name of the medical facility where Neela arrives at the end of the episode - "Lechatlier Medical Center." In chemistry, LeChatlier's Principle states "if a system at equilibrium is disturbed, the system will, if possible, shift to partially counteract the change."