Awesome episode. This perfect balance of drama, humor and trauma scenes is exactly the reason why I fell in love with this show. "The few, the proud.. the desk clerks!" yes, that's a classic. The plot of the video being made by Jerry and Frank for the "unsung heroes" of the ER was so funny and so essential ("quintessential!" Carter would say...) in this episode. The scene showing the cleaning lady talking about how important her role was, and the camera slowly drifting away to show Carter's face was one of the highlights of the episode. And an old music theme from early season was used when Jerry was shown in slow motion getting an injection for the allergic lady! Really nice touch here! The interviews' scenes were very well acted, and well spread throughout the episode. They gave good insights about the characters' feelings. And it was unusual and a bit mesmerizing to see the actors look straight at the camera. Noah Wyle in the first interview was wonderful. His face when saying "That sounds pretentious?" was another highlights of the show! He was also incredible in the last scene, turning off the alarm, smiling enigmatically, and then showing pain in his eyes. That last scene was a bit mysterious, letting the audience wonder about what he was meaning exactly. Was he really talking about his view on his work, or did the writers put in his mouth what they had been trying to do with the show? More about Carter: here is a man who has experienced more than many people in one lifetime. He's been through a lot, has seen suffering in the ER and in Africa probably as much as you can see in one lifetime. Carter is a relatively young guy, who has the experience of a man in his eighties and who now also has the failing body of an elderly. Kudos again to Noah Wyle for putting so much in Carter's eyes. He looks almost resigned about his declining health, with this enigmatic mysterious stance of someone who's lived enough.
Another highlight of the episode: Archie Morris. He's become the perfect ER doc. He is caring, manages to keep a cold head in the dire situation, trusts his colleagues and is a real team-player. He "sets the tone". The lingering story about Sam and her mother is a waste of time in my opinion. The ragged breathing of Sam's mom is annoying to listen to, and this lady looks way too angry and bitter to raise any sympathy. The scene with Gates where she admits that she wants to reconnect with Sam was a bit redeeming, but not much. The next episode looks like it will live up to this one!