Season 1 Episode 22

My Occurrence (1)

Aired Tuesday 9:30 PM May 07, 2002 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
414 votes

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Episode Summary

Jordan's brother Ben is admitted at Sacred Heart for having an accident with a nail gun. J.D. learns that Ben has leukemia, but won't believe it, since there have been many mixups in the hospital lately, so he goes on a search for the real test results.moreless

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  • k

    Jordan's brother Ben (Brendan Fraser) comes into the hospital after piercing his hand with a nail-gun; however Dr. Cox and J.D. later become worried when his hand will not stop bleeding. A blood test shows that Ben has leukemia. A series of paperwork bungles nearly has Turk operate on the wrong patient, and incorrectly leads Elliot to inform another patient that she's pregnant. J.D. therefore decides to wait before informing Ben of his positive blood test result, and asks the lab to check the result.

    They do so, and over a montage accompanied by "Hold on Hope" by Guided by Voices, they discover that Ben is fine. In a stylistic sequence, the staff all gather to watch Ben leave, and pose to have a picture taken. J.D. asks Ben why he let everyone pose for the picture, because he said earlier that posed pictures never look real. However, Ben points out that "none of this is real". The style returns to realism; J.D. is still in the doorway, holding the original diagnosis, and is forced to tell Ben that he has leukemia.moreless
  • Jordan's brother is admitted in to the hospital.

    Jordan's brother, Ben, is admitted in to the hospital after a nail gun accident. Brendan Fraser guest stars as Ben. You can tell this episode is going to be good since it's a two-parter and you know there is going to be an awesome cliffhanger. After I finished watching this episode, I didn't know if this episode was terrible or great. There are a bunch of mistakes floating around the hospital, starting with Turk, then Elliot. Nicole Sullivan reprises her role as Elliot's patient, which is always great to bring back old patients. It seems like such a long time ago that Nicole was on this show, probably because so much eventful things happened in the season. Elliot has a mistake with a pregnancy test with her patient. So when JD gets the test results that Ben has leukemia, he passes it off as a mistake. He goes to every person that might have made a mistake. It turns out in the end, he's fine. Until JD has flashbacks on all the things he went through, he realizes nothing is real. It's all in his head. It goes back to the scene in which JD is about to tell Ben he has leukemia. He then tells him and it's to be continued. I didn't know it was terrible because it seemed like everything that happened in JD's head was just filler so they can make this a two-parter. But I give this show props for a shocking ending, and awesome editing as usual. And since is their first two-parter, I decided this episode was brilliant. Can't wait to see what happens with Ben. A brilliant episode.moreless
  • When Jordan's Brother, Ben, comes in for a medical exam, Dr. Cox reveals his more compassionate side and J.D. must reluctantly deliver the bad news about Ben's health.

    This is one of these episodes you just never forget! Everything i hear the song ' Hold on hope' i think this episode. It was one of the more serious episodes, but there were still a few very funny moments. The character of Ben is very likeable and that makes it even sadder to see what happens to him. Jill Tracey was mildly annoying, but it wasn't that bad. She's just a little bit over the top. In the subplot of her wasn't that great. But this still deserves 10, since there isn't too much of her in there. The ending (JD's 'how it could have been' fantasy) was cleverly plotted, but it took me a little while to figure out when IT switched from reality to JD's dream. But when they take the picture together, you see that it's not reality, because of the blurryness.The Janitor was also subberb once again. One of my all time favorites!!moreless
  • Awesome. Another reason why Scrubs stands out as the best comedy

    One of my top favorite episodes, and one of the first ones I saw, I was lucky, because I got hooked very quickly with the show also the second part "My Hero" is fantastic as well. The whole thing was very funny as usual, well I love Scrubs because I enjoy and pay attention to every little joke and quote, and always make me laugh. I had a great laugh with the fantasy of Ben's arm on fire, I love that. Another big one at the part of -"You are not going to write her one of your letters, because she doesn't deserve it!" -"I lost my thesaurus." The janitor was funny when he scared JD. I liked he hemapathologist scene of Doug, the scene of Ted, JD and Kelso in the elevator, Elliot's fake crying. Second appearance of the "annoying" Jill Tracy. Anyway, the episode was amazing and a little sad, very well written and unexpected. And JD knows in what movie has appeared naked an actress .

    Dr. Cox's friend and Jordan's brother Ben gets to Sacred Heart after he had an accident with a nail gun. Pretty funny scene with JD and both Cox and Ben at the beginning. Turk was about to remove one testicle, when he was informed there was a mistake. Elliot's friend returns to the hospital, and Elliot tells her she's pregnant, but then again there was another mistake. So when JD gets the results and it says Ben has Leukemia, he feels it was an error. Half the episode revolves around a big occurrence from JD. The scene with the flashbacks, along with the song "Hold on hope" made the episode. I was amazed. It was clever and great the part of "Come on JD, you know nothing of this is real", it was very well thought. At the end JD gets back to the reality and tells Ben he has Leukemia. Ben says -"That sucks.", JD says -"Yeah."

    It's a superb episode that you are not going to find on another comedy, the fourth brilliant episode of the season followed by other two.

    Brendan Fraser's 1/3 who comes back in the best episode ever.moreless
  • Jordan's brother Ben comes to Sacred Heart due to a nail gun accident. J.D. finds out he has leukemia but doesn't believe it.

    A series class of Scrubs. A fine example. Just a good episode! It fulfilled my expectations of Scrubs, LOL. It was funny with Ben and how he takes the pictures all the time. The sibling rivalry between Jordan and Ben was also funny, because it is something I can relate to. It was also just a little bit sad how Ben got leukemia. But it was also a bit funny to see J.D. go out and try to prove the test results wrong, because he likes Ben so much and does not want him to get leukemia. A good episode!moreless
Donald Faison

Donald Faison

Dr. Christopher "Chris" Duncan Turk

John C. McGinley

John C. McGinley

Dr. Percival "Perry" Cox

Judy Reyes

Judy Reyes

Nurse Carla Espinosa

Ken Jenkins

Ken Jenkins

Dr. Robert "Bob" Kelso

Sarah Chalke

Sarah Chalke

Dr. Elliot Reid

Zach Braff

Zach Braff

Dr. John Michael "J.D." Dorian

Steven Hack

Steven Hack

Dr. Bobb

Guest Star

Mary McDonald

Mary McDonald

Admit Nurse

Guest Star

Kimberley S. Newberry

Kimberley S. Newberry

Dr. Allan

Guest Star

Neil Flynn

Neil Flynn


Recurring Role

Christa Miller-Lawrence

Christa Miller-Lawrence

Jordan Sullivan

Recurring Role

Nicole Sullivan

Nicole Sullivan

Jill Tracy

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (6)

    • JD says that Dr. Cox has never invited him out to have a beer. Yet a fairly major part of My Heavy Meddle, six episodes earlier, was about that very thing happening.

    • Dr. Kelso always calls the interns for their last names (including the surgeons). However, he called Todd by his first name.

    • J.D.'s female names given to him by Dr. Cox in this episode are Janice, Gladys and Carla.

    • Ben is in the hospital originally due to the fact that he shot a nail through his hand. Later in the episode when he goes out to talk to J.D. and show him the pictures he took, he shows no sign of having anything wrong with his hand. In fact, he lifts himself up onto the railing to sit down using the palms of his hands. This shows how J.D. is daydreaming the whole time Ben actually has Leukemia because reality does not show.

    • In the first scene where Carla approaches J.D. to talk to him about his search for a mistake in Ben's test results, she says "either your instincts are right, or your brain is trying to protect you from something". In the flashback to this scene later on, Carla says "either your instincts are right, or your brain is trying to protect you from the truth".

    • In the scene when J.D., Elliot, Carla and Turk are eating in the cafeteria there is a goof with J.D. and Elliott's drink. At the beginning of the scene J.D. is drinking what looks like apple juice and Elliot is drinking milk. At the end of the scene when J.D. is paged to go get Ben's results they've switched drinks.
      However, this drink switch might signal the moment in the episode where J.D. begins to imagine a sequence of events, because he has already realized that Ben has cancer.

  • QUOTES (38)

    • J.D.: Wait, why would you want a picture like that? I thought you said that posed pictures aren't real?
      Ben: Come on, J.D. None of this is real. You know that.

    • Carla: Let me ask you something. You're kind of a boob guy, right?
      J.D.: Excuse me?
      Carla: I can tell, because I've seen you look at mine. Um, not in a sleazy way, or anything...
      J.D.: I think this is the most uncomfortable conversation I've ever had!
      Carla: You wanna touch one?
      J.D.: I stand corrected! You're my best friend's girlfriend!
      Carla: Ah, so your instinct is to pass on this fantastic one-time offer?
      J.D.: I'm afraid so...
      Carla: I'm up here, Bambi.
      J.D.: Oh, sorry.

    • J.D.: Can you help me out here?
      Elliot: What do you want me to do, cry?
      J.D.: Can you do that?
      Elliot: Sure. Gimme a second to think of something sad.
      J.D.: Quickly! Quickly!
      Elliot: Okay, that's not helping!
      J.D.: I'm sorry, I shouldn't even put you in this position. I-
      Elliot: Oh, there we go. You know, another man in my life trying to protect me.
      J.D.: Stay with it, Elliot...
      Elliot: I mean, everyone thinks that I'm just this little girl who can't take any criticism because her mom and dad give her nothing but criticism.
      J.D.: Good, Elliot, this is good...
      Elliot: And look where it's gotten me! You know, I'm 26, single, and all I do is work! You know, I may as well just give up the idea of being a healthy and... happy relationship, and just go ahead and... And... And...
      J.D.: ...become your mother...
      Elliot: Yeah!
      Franklin exits the bathroom
      Elliot(crying): Check Mr. Sullivan's tests again!
      Franklyn: Okay!
      Elliot: How cool was that!

    • J.D.: I'm just asking you to check, Franklyn, and see if you could've made a mistake.
      Franklyn: Look, I've worked here seven years, and never made a single mistake!
      Elliot: You mixed up my patients' urine samples yesterday!
      Franklyn: Okay, I make lots of mistakes. But I really have to go to the bathroom right now, and after that I'm going to lunch.

    • Ted: Hey... there... buddy... How is my... best friend... doing?
      J.D.: Ted, you and I hardly know each other.
      Ted: These aren't my words.

    • Turk: Look here: My friend needs you to check on the Ben Sullivan file, and you're gonna do it right now. Why? Because you're not gonna drop the ball like you did on my patient.
      J.D.: You said "drop the ball."
      Turk: I know! That was totally by accident!

    • Turk: Yeah, I know who screwed this up. It's that same lazy-ass admitting nurse that mixed up my files. And there she is! I'm gonna go get her.
      J.D.: Turk, I can fight my own battles, man.
      Turk: You're not gonna write her one of your angry notes, are you? 'Cause she doesn't deserve it.
      J.D.: No, I lost my thesaurus.
      Turk: Okay, well you go get her, then!

    • Dr. Cox: Look, Ben, I know I am prone to making the occasional casual reference to your sister being a, well, a wire-haired man-goblin... but I hope that has no effect on your relationship with her.
      Ben: That's really very sweet of you to think that you're that important.

    • Dr. Cox: Ben? Why?
      Ben: 'Cause it's my thing. You're just jealous you don't have a thing.
      Dr. Cox: I had a thing - I used to like to hike, but Jordan somehow got that in the divorce, too.
      Ben: She got your hobby? That's vindictive!

    • Elliot: So, turns out she wasn't really pregnant after all, 'cause some idiot mislabeled her urine sample!
      Turk: I was a heartbeat away from giving an appendix patient a crotch lobotomy! If I do my best, and I lose a patient? You know what, I can live with that. But if a clerical error is the reason why a guy's walking around here with only the lonely? Well, damn! That don't sit well with the Big Dog!

    • Ben: What the hell are you doing to me?
      Dr. Cox: Just humor me. It's probably mono, anyway.
      Ben: Isn't that the "Kissing Disease"?
      Dr. Cox: Yeah.
      Ben: Score!

    • Ben: Come on, let him have a little fun.
      Dr. Cox: All right, Clara, you can go ahead and order yourself a Cosmopolitan; we'll just grab a cab home.
      J.D.: Actually, Ben has been sneaking me beers all night, and I'm quite drunk.
      Dr. Cox: Well, that's just great.

    • Ben: Kim Basinger.
      J.D.: Please, '9 1/2 Weeks'. Winona Ryder.
      Ben: Never naked, but just hand-to-nipple in 'How to Make an American Quilt'.
      J.D.: Aww! Good! At last, a worthy foe!

    • Jill(into phone): Tim, sweetie, I wouldn't have slept with someone else if I didn't love you so much!
      Elliot: No! No! No! No, no, no, no, no, no, no! Stop! Take the phone...!
      Jill(into phone): Hold on one second. Ho-ho-hold on! (To Elliot)Hi!
      Elliot: Hi! Your last name is Tracy! Well, of course, you know your last name is Tracy, but what you don't know is there's a woman down in 308 whose first name is Tracy. So I started thinking about your urine sample, and how you always carry that water bottle with you and stay very well-hydrated - which is why your pee is a much lighter color than most people's pee. And then I remembered the sample that came back with your name on it was bright yellow and the other Tracy, she is not much of a water drinker... which is why I think her skin looks so pasty-
      Jill: Okay, sweetie, I'ma need you to get to the point.
      Elliot: You're not pregnant! The lab tech just switched the samples!
      Jill: You're killin' me... (To her phone) Hey, Sweetie! You know I was just jokin' about all that stuff, right?

    • Dr. Kelso: Dr. Turk, I heard about your mishap earlier today, but here's the skinny: If that patient finds out what happened because you can't reign in your yapper, then heads are going to roll. And I promise you yours and Ted's will be the first to go!
      Ted: What did I do?
      Turk: Consider my lips sewn shut, sir. Which, in this hospital, could actually happen!

    • Turk: I can't stop thinking about Mr. Weinberg's testicles.
      Todd: Duuude.
      Turk: I mean, I almost removed one of them, Todd!
      Todd: Which one?
      Turk: Like it matters.
      Todd: Oh, it matters!

    • J.D.: To buddies!
      Dr. Cox: What in the hell do you think you're doing!? You can't drink beer, you're our driver! That's why we brought you to begin with.
      Ben: It's just not right. You know, I'm gonna drink this for both of us.

    • Dr. Cox: Hey, Ben, you realize we haven't grabbed a beer in a couple of weeks - what's that about?
      J.D.'s Narration: You know, he's never asked me to grab a beer. But I don't care...
      Dr. Cox: Newbie? Would you like to come?
      J.D.: Oh, God, yes.

    • Ben: Jordan, I'll call you later, all right?
      Jordan: Okay, fine. Forget it. Forget it. You big jerk!
      Dr. Cox: Y'happen to remember when she used to be fun?
      Ben: No.
      Dr. Cox: Me neither.
      J.D.: Me neither!
      Dr. Cox: When spoken to, Newbie. When spoken to. Here, I thought we were clear on that one!
      J.D.: Yeah, we were...

    • Ben: Hey, don't be mean to him. You're mad at me.
      Jordan: Yeah, because you shouldn't be doing contracting work. You. Are. Clumsy! That's why things like this keep happening.
      Ben: They don't keep happening.
      Jordan: How many times have you hurt yourself with that nail-gun?
      Ben: Once.
      Jordan: Oh, come on.
      Ben: What? With that nail-gun? It's a new nail-gun. If it'd been any other nail-gun, then, yeah, the estimate would be slightly higher.

    • J.D.: So, you're gonna wanna re-wrap the gauze when it gets soiled.
      Jordan: Wow, re-wrap a dirty bandage. It's phenomenal how you doctors keep all this stuff in your head.
      J.D.: You know, we don't - it says it right there on the box.

    • Jill: Oh, I almost forgot! I'm engaged!... Oh, right... There used to be a ring there, but then my, uh, fiancé did some soul-searching, and we decided that it needed to be a little more fancy.
      Elliot: Oh, you have no idea how happy this makes me! I've been trying to figure out how to tell you the only reason you're vomiting and exhausted is, well... you're pregnant!
      Jill: I'm what, now?
      Elliot: Yeah, pregnant! Your fiancé is gonna be so happy!
      Jill: My fiancé and I decided not to have sex until we were married.
      Elliot: So he's not gonna be so happy.
      Jill: More curious, really, than happy...

    • Jill:How are you!?
      Elliot: How are you?!? I haven't seen you since your breakdown!
      Jill: Oh! Which one!?

    • Surgeon: Patient's name is Moe Weinberg. Cancer is confined to the right testicle. Dr. Turk will be assisting with the removal.
      Turk: Sorry, Moe - looks like you're about to either lose Larry or Curly!... Starting the incision.
      Surgeon: Wait, wait, wait. Stop, stop, stop. I'm guessing Mr. Weinberg is Jewish?
      Turk: Yeah. So?
      Surgeon: Why isn't he circumcised?
      J.D.'s Narration: A recent medical study found that a mistake is made on about twenty percent of all patients. Most of these are clerical and harmless, but, it still adds up to a lot of near misses.
      Todd: Dr. Wen wants me to ask you if there could be a mix-up? Because our appendicitis patient, that dude doesn't have an appendix!

    • Dr. Cox: Hey, Ben, look what the cat tried to drag in right before it was skinned and eaten.
      Jordan: You're still with the annoying camera?
      Ben: Do you just skip the whole part where people say hello to each other?
      Jordan: Hello, Benji. You look very pale.
      Ben: I miss the sweet talk!

    • J.D.: You're a little weird, aren't you.
      Ben: Just a little bit.

    • Ben: So, who's the, uh, fan club?
      J.D.: Neat hug!
      Dr. Cox: Newbie, no one likes a lookie-loo. Not now, not ever.

    • Elliot: Drew Barrymore, Meg Ryan, and Jennifer Connolly?
      J.D.: 'Boys on the Side'; 'The Doors'; and as for Miss Connolly: topless in 'Inventing the Abbotts', bottomless in 'Requiem for a Dream', and in 'The Hot Spot', you gotta love her - frontal and... tush-tush!
      Carla: Oh, my God!
      Turk: You da man.

    • Turk: You ever notice how a tumor looks just like cheese?
      Carla: Is that good cocktail conversation?
      J.D.: I had this patient today, thought he had blood in his stool? Turned out to be pimento!
      Carla: Mmgh.
      J.D.: What?
      Elliot: I worked on a homeless guy who vomited up an entire mitten. I mean, that's not gonna stop me from wearing mine when it's cold out!
      Carla: What is wrong with you people? We have a good bottle of wine, we all look nice for once - can we please talk about something other than work? Please?
      Turk: Name an actress. J.D. could tell you which movie she appeared in naked.
      Carla: I'm gonna go put on my pajamas. I can't believe I shaved my legs for this.

    • Hematopathologist: Call me Dr. Bobb.
      J.D.: You go by your first name?
      Hematopathologist: No, first name's Fred.
      J.D.: "Fred Bobb"?

    • J.D.: OH! Why do you have to jump out and scare me all the time!?
      Janitor: I don't jump out and scare you! I follow you around all day! I only got about an hour and a half worth of work around here, and the rest of the time I track you... like an animal.
      J.D.: You're kidding, right?
      Janitor: Haha... I don't know? Am I? Hmm...

    • Jill: The last time I saw you, I was really stressed out - you know, the weight of the world on my shoulders... So guess what I did?
      Elliot: Quit your job!
      Jill: Flushed my fish down the toilet! No more feedings, no more cleaning the bowl... No more being judged for having a second glass of wine...
      Elliot: Oh, don't even get me started on judgmental fish!
      Jill: Uh-huh. But then that sent me on this whole shame spiral, so I decided to travel. I got hit on in Venice! I climbed Mount Kilimanjaro! ...For about ten minutes - it's very, very steep... And then I went to Florida to swim with the Dolphins! And I don't mean the fish! There was an NFL thing going on at the hotel!

    • Jordan: Maybe it's been too long. Maybe my feelings were hurt a little bit.
      Dr. Cox: "Feelings." That's a good one.
      Ben: Jordan, you're a big girl now. When you got the divorce, you put people in the awkward position of having to choose between you and Perry.
      Jordan: You're my brother!
      Ben: Well, admittedly, that made it a bit harder.

    • Ben: Argh! You could hang a freakin' raincoat off my nipples.... Left one at least, only the right one's just a little shy.

    • Ben: When they're posed, they're not real. You know, I hate that whole, like, "gneen!" thing. That's why, at a party, you'll see me in the bushes with my camera.

    • [J.D. points at the two-by-four in Ben's hand.]
      J.D.: So, what's that, like your lucky board...or something?
      Ben: Oh, that? No, it's a nail-gun accident.
      [Ben holds up the bloody board, very obviously nailed right to his hand. ]
      J.D.: Oh, my God, that's disgusting!
      Dr. Cox: I already dosed him with morphine, and the x-ray says the nail went straight through, so it's not that big a d...
      [From J.D.'s perspective, the room begins to spin. ]
      Dr. Cox: Oh dear God, she's getting woozy! Quickly, show her the bloody side!
      [Ben holds the board up. ]
      Ben: Look at that!
      Dr. Cox: Yeah, yeah!
      J.D.: Oh....
      Ben: Touch the nail!
      Dr. Cox: Touch the nail!
      Ben: Wanna touch it?
      Dr. Cox: Touch it!
      Ben: Touch the nail! Touch my nail! TOUCH IT! LICK THE TIP OF MY...!
      J.D.: Ooooooooh!
      [Suddenly the room goes black.]
      Dr. Cox: Good night!
      Dr. Cox: [To Ben] Now, let's get you to a hand surgeon.
      Ben: What about the tough guy?
      [Dr. Cox strips off his rubber glove and shoots it at J.D. on his way out of the room. ]
      J.D.: Ow.
      Dr. Cox: Somebody'll get her.
      [Following Dr. Cox, Ben leans over J.D. and waves the fingers of his nailed hand over the board. ]
      Ben: Bye-bye!
      J.D.: Oh, please don't.

    • Dr. Cox: [To J.D. at the bar] Gladis, if you could chalk it without pleasuring it that'd be terrific.

    • Dr. Kelso: Ted, tell him our most important rule at Sacred Heart
      Ted: "Too much ha ha, pretty soon boo hoo!"
      Dr. Kelso: My other rule.
      Ted: Uh, "If you don't look for a mistake, you can't find one."
      Dr. Kelso: That's right, Teddy-bear. Now... Stop looking for trouble just because you like this patient, and face the facts! Remove him, Ted.
      Ted(while ushering J.D. out of the elevator): That "Ha-ha" rule is true!

  • NOTES (4)


    • An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge: The title of this episode is a reference to the classic short story An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge by Ambrose Bierce. As the main character, Peyton Farquar, is being executed, he engineers a fantastic escape. Ultimately this is shown to be just a vivid fantasy, and he dies. A similar occurence happens with regard to Ben's cancer.