Season 12 Episode 20

There Are No Angels Here

Aired Thursday 10:00 PM May 04, 2006 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
158 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Pratt gets to work in Darfur, but soon finds his eyes opened to the need all around him. Debbie attempts to persuade Dakarai to seek treatment for his illness. Carter, Pratt and Dakarai find themselves in the middle of the conflict when a man and his pregnant wife arrive at the camp needing treatment, with trouble not far behind. Events force Pratt and Dakarai to make a dangerous journey.moreless

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  • Welcome Dr. Pratt, who recently learned what life means by working in Africa.

    When I first found out that Carter would appear again, I was very happy, even tough it'd be in Africa. And when I found out Pratt'd join him in Africa, all I could think was that ER'd be boring again, like in season 10.

    I had no idea how good this episode would be.

    Many people hate Pratt, I was always indifferent to him. But when comparing him to the other County doctors in Africa, Kovac and Carter, as characters and as actors, Greg Pratt/Mekhi Phifer, was unbelievably better. He showed the emotion, the fear and the distress the other two never knew how to. He learned in two episodes to be a better person and doctor. Without knowing, Pratt already knew (in a different way) how and why those people are so badly treated, as he himself grew up being bullied for being black. Carter's the rich boy. Kovac's the sucessful doctor. Those little outburts of sadness of their african experiences never touched anyone. But an African-American doctor helping people like him, and knowing exactly what to do or say (even tough he's been arrogant forever) was amazing.

    Take Carter, Dakarai and Debbie away, and this episode'd have been perfect. Once upon a time, there was John Carter, who was funny and who all people loved. Now I can't stand my once favorite ER character. He's SO boring. And the whole Debbie-Dakarai romance, and his disease, were completely unnecessary to the episode.

    Pratt was the man. He fought for that pregnant lady like he never did for anyone at County. He acted like a man when he tought the Janjaweed had killed Dakarai, and not like a spoiled boy as Carter (when he tought Kovac was dead). Sometimes he didn't understand what was going on, or why they had to let some things happen, but instead of getting used to them (like Carter and Kovac did), he adapted his own ways to these situations. He kept walking with a sick woman in the middle of the desert. He kept working even tough he was tired (and with none of that mouthwasher/vodka left, very Pratt-y, by the way). He was very African.

    The episode ends with a little boy holding Pratt's hand and walking with him. In a way, the little boy was thanking those writers for having finally written a good episode in Africa, for finally showing us how the situation is in a true way, for finally giving Pratt a wonderful episode, for finally making us realize that, even tough all of the good old characters left us, they can always make the new ones just as amazing.moreless
  • Good cry now and then.

    I have just no words for episodes like these. It was very deep and sad as they try to portray one of the most horrible humanitarian disaster on the world.And the manage it - on the level of the old good ER. It was so fantastic to see Carter again - like nothing had changed from the time he used to be around.

    So, it was really great episode. The whole danger, the atmosphere, the excitement (if it can be said)... It was just amazing episode. And oh.. I cried.. if not the whole episode then most of the time. Very moving and that's why I love ERmoreless
  • This was ok but I\'m not so sure if I can cope with 4 more!

    Ok, hated the first 10 minutes and didn\'t have very high hoped - I *shock horror* even left the room and started playing tetris on my brother\'s gameboy, and trust me, that kind of behaviour is normally forbidden when it comes to ER....

    However, it did get a lot better. I just think the end was a bit of a cop-out. Was that guy (forgotten his name) supposed to have walked all the way back? Puhlease! ER totally avoided any political points then, by making the endinmg miraculous and happy which seems rather pointless as I have my suspicions Gallant is going to die in the name of politics next week anyway.

    Oh, and where oh where is Kem? I don\'t exactly like her, but if Carter left ER and America for her it would at least be nice to know why he\'s living in Africa and she\'s nowhere near...I thought the whole point of their love is that it transcends all earthly things and allows them to be together all the time regardless of death, politics etc. Ooooh, is she dead? Hmmmm....

    Are we going to see any more Africa or will we next see Pratt back home, a brief conversation with Kovac and that\'s it...Or...will we get another four episodes nect season

    Hmmmm...overall, yeah, it was ok. Still not as good as the season 10 ones, I think it was placed in the wrong place in the season. And I just don\'t think ER will ever be able to drive any messages home to us as well as films like Hotel Rwanda managed to. They just seemed to chicken out at the last minute. Everything seems far too dependent on our feelings towards particular characters.

  • Every now and then, it is okay to get out of Chicago.

    I know, I know. So many of you have decided that ER should not be taking an hour out of its 22 episodes-a-season life to shoot an episode in Africa. I get it. As a matter of fact, I thought about this way for quite a while.

    And then I heard someone tell me the other day that they had no idea where Darfur is and what is going on there. I am now grateful that I got to learn more about an ever-increasing problem going on in this world.

    Okay, so now for everything else. I liked this episode. It\'s not my favorite, but for one of those \"in Africa\" episodes, it was well done.

    It was nice to see Carter again, even if it wasn\'t really interacting with everyone back in Chicago. I about fell off the chair when Pratt started telling him about LUBY. What disappointed me a little bit is Carter\'s reaction to the news. COuldn\'t TPTB have written him a little more reaction? Maybe a little bit of shock? Or a little bit of questions that the old Carter might have asked? Even if he has changed quite a bit after being in Africa, Carter was still written a little out of character.

    All in all, this was an okay episode. I was drawn to Dakarai and Debbie, and many of the other characters that are not the norm on ER. The last scene was quite touching, where the little boy grabbed Pratt\'s hand and pulled him along, and the humor with Carter telling Pratt that he\'s not paying for the Jeep.

    And the music really set the mood for the show. Whoever is in charge of that area is brilliant.moreless
  • I don't usually watch ER - it doesn't have a big enough range for me. But this episode was absolutely mind-blowing in it's execution, and I loved it.

    This didn't feel a lot like a TV series - more like a mini film. It was certainly to the level of one - the plot was perfectly balanced and I don't think I've ever seen a more well drafted script in a US tv show.

    They managed to reflect a lot of complex problems without labouring the point, and evoke pathos to characters we've never seen before in minutes. That's special, and you couldn't do this every day - the level of talent assembled for this is staggering.

    Some parts of this show were also very beautiful, but the end seemed to sweet to be real - perhaps they were trying to avoid being oversweet.

    Compressing such a complex story into an hour made it a bit hectic at times, but it did cram several good stories into an hour successfully and is one of the best pieces of TV I've seen in a long time.moreless
Mekhi Phifer

Mekhi Phifer

Dr. Greg Pratt

Goran Visnjic

Goran Visnjic

Dr. Luka Kovac

Maura Tierney

Maura Tierney

Dr. Abby Lockhart

Parminder Nagra

Parminder Nagra

Dr. Neela Rasgotra

Linda Cardellini

Linda Cardellini

Nurse Sam Taggart

Shane West

Shane West

Dr. Ray Barnett

Noah Wyle

Noah Wyle

Dr. John Carter

Guest Star

Eamonn Walker

Eamonn Walker

Dr. Stephen Dakarai

Guest Star

Quanita Adams

Quanita Adams


Guest Star

Mary McCormack

Mary McCormack


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (4)

    • Pratt: What did she say?
      Dakarai: She said we were angels. I told her there are no angels here.
      Pratt: Speak for yourself.

    • Pratt: I'm glad I came here.
      Carter: I'm glad you came, too, 'cuz I'm sure as hell not going to take the blame for that van.
      Pratt: Uh, gee, thanks.
      Carter: Okay. I'll take it out of your paycheck.
      Pratt: What do you mean? We actually get paid for this?

    • Pratt: Okay, either those are the good guys, and we're saved, or the bad guys, and we're dead. Either way, I'm done walking.

    • Pratt: I've had hangovers worse than this.
      Dakarai: Perhaps you should drink less mouthwash.

  • NOTES (3)


    • Title: There Are No Angels Here
      The episode title is a quote from Deputy Secretary of State Robert B. Zoellick, whose experiences in Darfur were described in a November 2005 New York Times article: ""I didn't start out starry-eyed about this.' But, he added, Sudan is a harsh place, where citizens live by 'a culture of retribution.' Officials in Washington, including 109 members of Congress who wrote to the State Department last month accusing Mr. Bush of appeasing Sudan, want to find a simple villain in the Sudanese government, he said. 'But there are no angels here.'"

    • In the teaser, Pratt asks Dakarai if he was "expecting Marcus Garvey." A controversial figure in his lifetime, Marcus Garvey was the founder of the United Negro Improvement Association (1917), dedicated to the political and economic improvement of black Americans, and later to black reparation to Africa, principally to Liberia. Highly critical of the European colonial domination of Africa at the time, the UNIA held its first convention in 1920. A Declaration of Rights of the Negro Peoples of the World was signed and Garvey was elected the first Provisional President of Africa as part of a movement to declare a unified black-African government. They chose the colors of red, black and green for their flag, the same colors seen on the modern Sudanese flag.