Summary for "Freeze Outs"

The following summary was written by Yvonne Hering and edited by
 Yolette Nicholson. We share responsibility for all grammatical
 and continuity errors, but all opinions are the writers' alone.

 "Freeze Outs"
 Air date:  2/20/95
 Written by David E. Kelley & Dennis Cooper
 Directed by Dennis Dugan
     Dr. Jeffrey Geiger is in the autopsy room examining a
 corpse's heart when Dr. Geri Infante walks in.
     "I've got him after you," she tells Geiger.
     "The consent was just to examine the heart."  Geiger doesn't
 look up as he checks out the organ.
     "The widow said I could.  I'm trying out a new rhinoplasty."
 Infante takes a closer look at the corpse.  "Wait a second.  I
 think I already did this guy once."
    "Referring to his nose?" Geiger asks.
    "Ha-ha."  She continues examining the dead man.  "No, not
 mine, but it is good work," she says.
     "Geri, I'm going to be a while here."  He doesn't take his
 concentration off the corpse for a second.  "What can I do for
     Infante takes a deep breath.  "I want us to sleep together."
     Geiger's scalpel slices right through the heart.
     "It's a good thing the guy was already dead," he mutters.
     "I'm sorry, but I know you," Infante says.  "Once you're
 inside somebody's chest 'How about lunch' doesn't get your
     Geiger focuses all his attention on Infante.  "Is that what
 you really want?  Lunch?"
     "Today?  Yeah.  Next time, maybe dinner.  And then, maybe
 dinner and a movie.  After that, maybe we do sleep together."
     "Is this how you ask men out?"
     "I never ask men out," she says indignantly.  "The problem
 is you're not going to and you're the man I want to see."
     "Well, I'm very flattered, but I don't like you," he says.
     Infante smiles.  "Yes, you do.  I wouldn't antagonize you so
 much if you didn't like me.  At least a little."
     She points to the cadaver on the table.  "Jeffrey, you need
 to get out more. You're playing with corpses.  Male corpses."
    "It would be unprofessional for us to date," Geiger stalls.
 "You're a senior surgeon.  It would interfere with my sexually
 harassing the nurses."
     "There is some kind of chemistry between you and me.  There
 has been for ten years," she argues.
    "You and me?" he asks, dumbfounded.
    "You're afraid I'll be too much for you.  You're probably
 right," she agrees.  "I don't want to put you down, but
 emotionally you're a child.  You're afraid to cross the street
 for fear of being run over."
    "I heard that in a song.  I think the Carpenters."  He stares
 at the woman in front of him.
    "I'm offering to help you get across the street, Jeffrey. I'm
 willing to hold your hand the whole way," she offers.
     "You and me?" he repeats.
     "You and me," she concurs.
     Stunned, Geiger stares at her.
                                                 *  *  *
     Dr. Dennis Hancock informs his patient, Mr. Ellis, that his
 T-cell count is 49.  He can make Mr. Ellis comfortable for six
 months, mostly with drugs.  Hancock tells him they could fight it
 and give him about a year to live, but it won't be comfortable.
     Mr. Ellis admits he wouldn't feel ''comfortable'' just
 surrendering to the AIDS.  Hancock is willing to help him look
 into alternative methods.  He knows of some experimental
 procedures  in the hospital, if Mr. Ellis is interested.
     The way Mr. Ellis figures, he has nothing to lose.  He asks
 Hancock to sign him up.
                                                 *  *  *
     Geiger and Aaron Shutt walk quickly through the hospital
 corridors.  Geiger fills in Shutt on the conversation with
 Infante.  He wants Shutt to come with him on the date.  He
 doesn't do well when talking to women, Geiger tells him.  Shutt
 disagrees.  Geiger talks to women all the time, he points out.
 Geiger explains the problem with this one is that she talks back.
 He insists Shutt come along. If it doesn't work out, Geiger can
 leave and she'll still have someone to talk to, he says.  He's
 trying to be considerate.  He begs Shutt not to make him say
 please.  He hates that word.
     Dr. Billy Kronk bursts between them suddenly and runs into
 the ER.  Geiger and Shutt quickly follow to see what's wrong.
 Paramedics bring in a young boy on a stretcher.  He had been
 submerged underwater for approximately three hours.  The doctors
 rush to try and save the child.  Shutt sadly says, "He looks
                                                 *  *  *
     "He is not gone,'' Dr. Phillip Watters assures the reporters
 assembled before him. ''When a person has been under the ice as
 long as this boy, he goes into hypothermia, which resembles
 death.  But, by warming the core, it's possible to bring him
     "Even after he's been dead for three hours?" asks one
     "Again, hypothermia stops the heart and brain before there
 is permanent damage.  But, it's possible to bring them back with
 a slow warming,"  Watters says.
     The reporter shoves a microphone in front of Watters.  "What
 is this about cutting off his hands and feet?"
     Watters looks at him disgustedly. "Why am I talking to
     He walks away.
                                                 *  *  *
     As Dr. Watters strides by, he sees the boy's mother at the
 nursing station desk, trying frantically to get some information.
 "Where's my son?"  she implores.
     Dr. Watters steers her to another area to explain what's
                                                 *  *  *
     Dr. Danny Nyland rushes to help the child.  Nurse Maggie
 Atkisson shows him a tube of blood they took from the boy.  It's
 black.  Kronk, Shutt and Geiger continue trying to get the boy's
 heart to beat.  Nyland pumps the boy's chest while Kronk performs
 a tracheotomy.  After the boy starts breathing, a paramedic
 informs Nyland that the child's ear fell off.  Nyland gives it to
 Maggie.  He tells her to store it on ice and not to lose it.
 Maggie looks disgusted, but rushes to put it in a plastic bag.
                                                 *  *  *
     Shutt and Geiger review the boy's X-rays.  Shutt has to
 evacuate, he says, but not until the boy's heart starts beating.
 On their way to the elevator, they run into Infante.  She asks
 Geiger if their date is still set.  He nods and tells her Shutt
 is coming, too, that he thought it would be more fun if they all
 went.  Infante smiles.  As they wait for the elevator, a beeper
 sounds.  They all check, but it's Infante who has been paged.
 Before she leaves, she tells Shutt and Geiger to go out by
 themselves without her.  She's sure they'll have a great time.
 Shutt tells Geiger he gets the feeling she didn't want him along.
 Geiger laughs as they get on the elevator.
                                                 *  *  *
     In Dr. Hancock's office, he and hospital counsel Alan Birch
 try to persuade researcher Diane Grad to take Mr. Ellis on as a
 patient.  Her caseload is full and she refuses.  Birch doesn't
 understand why she can't add one more.  Mr. Ellis reminds her
 that he is dying.  Grad understands, but said it doesn't
 distinguish him from her other patients.  Hancock can't believe
 how coldly she is reacting.  She wishes Mr. Ellis the best and
 leaves.  Birch says he'll take the matter up with Watters.
                                                 *  *  *
     Kronk tries to comfort the boy's mother.  They don't know if
 there will be permanent brain damage yet.  She asks if there's
 still a chance.  When he says there's still some hope, she begs
 him not to give up.  Kronk assures her they won't.
                                                 *  *  *
     Watters once again is surrounded by reporters.
     "The boy is still critical.  When we know more, we'll tell
 you," Watters says.  Seeing Dr. Grad, he walks away and pulls her
     "How much would it hurt to add one more patient to your AIDS
 experiment?" he asks.
     "A lot," she answers.
     "The thing is, I explained to Dr. Hancock when he came to
 this hospital that the facilities at Chicago Hope would be
 available to him."
     "Well, please assure Dr. Hancock that had Mr. Ellis been
 your patient, Dr. Phillip Watters, Chief of Staff, the answer
 would still be no."
     "Dr. Grad, there is a time for politics and a time to just
 be a doctor."
     She smiles.  "Which one of those times are we enjoying at
 the moment?"
     "I'd twist your arm, but you're a researcher.  It might
 break," Watters snaps.
     "Oooh." Grad pantomimes a concerned face.
     Infante walks up to them.  "You paged?"
     Watters turns his attention to her.  "A patient's ear fell
 off.  Put it back on."
     He stalks off leaving Infante and Grad looking puzzled.
                                                 *  *  *
     Nyland keeps pumping the heart with no results.  He quietly
 tells Kronk that the child, Brian, was submerged for three hours.
 Kronk refuses to accept there is no hope.  He instructs Nyland to
 keep pumping.  Kronk uses paddles on the boy, but his heart's
 still not pumping.  Kronk wants to put hot water on the heart.
 Geiger arrives and tells him it probably won't help, but that he
 should give it a try.
                                                 *  *  *
     In Birch's office, Birch, Mr. Ellis, Hancock, and Watters
 try unsuccessfully to persuade Dr. Grad to accept Mr. Ellis as
 her patient.  She explains it would compromise her research.  He
 needs a bone marrow transplant.  It's too expensive.  His
 insurance company will review his case, but by the time they make
 a decision he'd be dead.  Watters points out that her research
 wouldn't be too costly.  She disagrees.  Her grants are based on
 success.  A high death rate could ruin things.  It all comes down
 to money, she tells them.  Mr. Ellis tells her he understands and
 agrees with her policy, but he begs her to make an exception.
                                                 *  *  *
     While Geiger tries to explain performing open surgery to the
 boy's mother, Infante walks by.  Geiger informs Dr. Infante that
 as soon as they get circulation, she can sew the ear back.
 Infante coldly tells him that if he doesn't want to date her, he
 should just say so instead of inviting friends along.  He denies
 he did that, but Infante doesn't buy it.
                                                 *  *  *
     Dr. Hancock tries one more time to persuade Grad.  He finds
 her repugnant.  Why can't she leave Mr. Ellis out of the
 statistics?  Grad maintains it would ruin her project's
 integrity.  She's trying to save thousands of lives and he's
 trying to save one, she says.  She informs him of another
 treatment that isn't part of her research.  She could inject the
 patient with malaria.  They explain the procedure to Mr. Ellis.
 He asks why she's suddenly helpful.  She explains that
 researchers are told not to get personally involved, but that Dr.
 Hancock had put a face to this patient.  They'll need approval,
 it's very controversial and might not work, she cautions.  Mr.
 Ellis wants to give it a shot.
                                                 *  *  *
     They try to convince Watters to allow it, but it's too risky
 and controversial.  He orders them not to do it.
                                                 *  *  *
     Hancock and Grad try to convince Mr. Ellis to sell his life
 insurance policy.   He could get $60-70,000, easy.  Birch arrives
 and is surprised to see Mr. Ellis hasn't checked out yet.  He
 tells them that he is worried that they will still perform the
 malaria procedure. Birch knows they can get the patient to sign a
 waiver and that it would be considered humane by many people.
 However, the chief of staff said no.  As house counsel, he must
 respect Dr. Watters' decision.  He repeats pointedly that he just
 wants to make sure they understood that he was concerned that
 they would do it without anybody knowing.  They all smile and
 Birch leaves.
                                                 *  *  *
     Ellis is injected with malaria.  It doesn't take long before
 Ellis is shaking with a high fever.  Hancock is by his side when
 Birch checks on him.  Hancock tells him Mr. Ellis seems to have
 become very sick with a high fever.  Birch says he's heard.  He
 suggests that it might be a flu.  Hancock agrees.  Birch
 shouldn't stay, Hancock says, they wouldn't want him to become
 infected.  Mr. Ellis quietly thanks Birch before he leaves.
                                                 *  *  *
     Geiger struts down the hall, when Infante pops out of one of
 the operating rooms.
     "Jeffrey, you better give it to me or it'll shrivel up and
 die," Infante holds out her hand.
     "What?" he asks, confused, backing away.
     "The ear?  If we don't reattach it soon, it won't stay
     "Oh, as soon as we get circulation," he bumps into a wall
 and rubs his arm.  "As soon as we get the heart pumping."
     "Why are you so afraid of me all of a sudden?" she asks.
     "I'm not afraid of you.  Why should I be afraid of you?
 That's silly.  I"m not afraid."  He walks away, mumbling to
 himself. "Ridiculous."
     He backtracks to Infante's surgical room.  "All right, I
 admit it.  I'm scared of you."
     "Why?" she asks.
     "I have this thing about intimacy.  I hate it," he admits.
     "OK.  Why?" she repeats.
     "Afraid underneath it all, I'm mentally ill.  If no one
 knows about it, I can function.  If I let someone get close to
 me, she'll know I'm nuts.  People look at me like I'm nuts, I'll
 feel like I'm nuts.  Suddenly I'm not functional anymore."  He
 paces. "Fighting against intimacy seems like a good way to keep
 my insanity secret."
     "That you're insane, do you really think that's a secret?''
 Infante scoffs.  ''Jeffrey Geiger is insane.  Now, there's a news
     She laughs.
     "See?  I offer a little bit of candor and you use it like a
 weapon to bludgeon me.  There's a word for people like you.  What
 is it?''  He pretends to think.  "Ah, yes. Woman."
     "Aren't you relieved I know you're crazy?" she asks,
 unfazed.  "Think about it.  I know you're nuts.  That *has* to be
 an enormous relief."
                                                 *  *  *
     Shutt performs brain surgery on Brian.  His vital signs
 don't look good.  Geiger, who is operating simultaneously, asks
 that the bypass pump be turned off.  The nurse complies. The
 boy's heart lies still.  After a moment, Kronk suggests pacing
 him. Geiger forestalls him. There's nothing as strong as a
 12-year-old heart, Geiger assures him. Suddenly, the heart jerks
 and begins to pump.  Geiger reminds the hospital crew that they
 still have a long way to go.  He pulls off his mask and gloves
 and tells Infante she's up next.
                                                 *  *  *
     Kronk brings tea to Brian's mother.  He explains to her that
 the heart is now beating.  They still don't know if there will be
 permanent brain damage.  His brain is very swollen.  He was
 deprived of oxygen for more than three hours.  The heart is
 beating and he assures her that's a start.  There's nothing to do
 now but wait.  It's not in their hands anymore, he tells her.
                                                 *  *  *
     Infante reattaches Brian's ear.  Shutt and Geiger watch.
 Camille assists.  Once she's finished, Geiger tells her it could
 be hours before they know anything else.  He asks if she'd like
 to grab a bite.  Just the two of them, he adds.
     Shutt volunteers, "I'm free."
     Geiger tells him to shut up.  "What do you say?" he prods
     "Sure," she responds.
     Camille smirks. Geiger rolls his eyes  at her.
                                                 *  *  *
     Birch insists Watters speak at a press conference.  Watters
 refuses, but Shutt is more than willing.  Birch gives him a few
 pointers,  "Talk cautious, yet optimistic.  Hopeful, with the
 appropriate degree of gravity--and wear a suit."
     Shutt pushes his face into Birch's.
     "What would I do without you?"  he asks sarcastically.
     Watters smiles, "Not respect."
                                                 *  *  *
     Geiger and Infante go to a plush restaurant on their first
 date.  Geiger tells her about a 12-year-old cardiac patient of
 his while his foot bounces nervously under the table. The kid had
 a heart of an 80-year-old, he says.  He asks if she would like to
 see the article and abruptly gets up.  It's buried in his trunk,
 he says. He'll go get it. Infante tells him she'll see it later.
 Geiger sits back down. His foot resumes its shaking under the
                                                 *  *  *
     Kronk, Nyland and Camille place leeches on Brian's ear to
 suck the blood.  One drops on the floor.  They argue about who
 should pick it up.  Kronk steps on it.  Nyland is afraid they'll
 get letters.
                                                 *  *  *
     Geiger and Infante return to Geiger's office.  He tries a
 smile.  It was a nice dinner, he says.  Infante disagrees.  She
 thinks it was horrible.  They were both nervous and it was
 excruciating, she says, instead of coffee, he wanted to come back
 to the hospital.
     Geiger explains he had to come back to monitor the boy's
     ''Otherwise I'd, uh . . . you know, I'd . .uh . . . I'd love
 to . . .'' Geiger falters.
     Infante smiles brightly, ''OK, I'll take a raincheck on the
 . . . otherwise.''
     Infante turns to leave, but Geiger stops her at the door.
    She turns around.
     ''Do you really think this is . . .'' Geiger stops and
 closes his eyes. ''Never mind.''
     "I can't stand this," she tells him.  "Somebody has to make
 a move here."
     "Please let it be you," he whispers.
     Infante crosses the room and kisses him.  He doesn't
 respond.  She draws back and pats his chest.
     ''This is how it works, '' she begins carefully.  ''I kind
 of put my lips onto yours and squish them around a little. And
 you sort of squish yours around too.''
    Geiger smiles. Infante grins in response.  ''Look at that,''
 she says.
    She starts to kiss him again, he kisses her back. She pulls
 his hands out of his pockets and puts them on her hips. Her arms
 move over his shoulders. Finally, they get the hang of it.
                                                 *  *  *
At Brian's bedside, his mother, Kronk, Watters, Nyland look to
 see if he's made any progress.  His mother is concerned about the
 leeches.  They assure her they prevent the blood from clotting.
                                                 *  *  *
     With lips locked, Geiger and Infante start removing each
 other's clothes.  She reminds him it's supposed to be a first
 date.  He stops, apologizes,then they start again.  Suddenly,
 Geiger starts to choke.  He's swallowed her earring.  She can't
 believe he swallowed a diamond stud.  She wants it back.  Geiger
 clutches his stomach in pain and keels over.
     Infante and Watters wheel Geiger on a gurney to X-ray.
     Watters asks, "What did he swallow?  A Bug?"
     "Could have been a bug.  Could have been a diamond earring.
 Will you stop asking so many questions Philip," Infante shouts.
     The three of them review Geiger's x-ray.
     "That's an earring, all right.  How'd it get in there?"
 Watters asks.
     "It's not important," Geiger tells him.  "Here's what is,
 I'm not in any pain at the moment."
     "I'd like to use an endoscope.  It's an heirloom." Infante
     "You can't do an endoscope. It's halfway into my abdomen,"
 Geiger protests.
     "I want the earring."
     Watters adds his two cents.  "You should be able to pass
     "Like hell," Infante yells.  "It's more than a carrot.  I
 saw fantastic voyage.  Loved it, but that earring is not making
 the voyage you're talking about and ending up on my ear."
     "How did you manage to swallow it?" Watters asks again.
     "Never mind," Geiger shouts.  "Geri, I'm going to take a
 suppository, followed by a nice cup of steaming coffee, chased by
 a bran muffin and 16 ounces of prune juice."
     "It's an antique,"  she says.
     Geiger asks her, "Want to see it again or not?"
     "How did you . . ." Watters tries again.
     Geiger and Infante simultaneously yell, "Never mind!"
    "Phillip, regardless of how I ingested the jewelry, I'd
 appreciate you not revealing this incident around the hospital,"
 Geiger tells him as he leads Infante out the door.
     Watters mumbles to himself, "Who would believe it?"
                                                 *  *  *
     Infante watches as Geiger downs the coffee, prune juice and
 muffins.  He insists,  "I'm nothing if not regular.  At least in
 this respect."  He asks, "Can I ask how is it you happen to be
 wearing a family heirloom?"
     "They were locked up in the safe in my office.  I figured
 I'd throw them on for our little date because . . ." she becomes
 embarrassed and stops.
     Geiger takes her hand.  "So, I swallowed your earring.  You
 and me.  If we're going to date, I'm sure we'll hit snags.  So I
 swallowed your earring.  This too shall pass."
    Infante laughs. They kiss.
                                                 *  *  *
      Shutt, Camille, Birch, Watters, Nyland, Kronk and Brian's
 mother anxiously watch Brian.  They are sure he squeezed his
 mother's fingers.  They did a needle prick, but it was negative.
 Watters instructs Nyland to try again. He does.
     Geiger and Infante come running through the door.  They
 inquire after the boy's condition.
     Camille tells Infante,  "Your ear looks great."
     Confused, Infante reaches to her earringless ear.
     Camille shakes her head, "No that one."  She points to Brian
 and Infante smiles uncertainly.
     They all try to get Brian's attention.  "Brian can you hear
 me?"  "Brian.  Look at me."  "Can you hear me?"
     "Blink if you can hear me," Shutt tells him. Brian blinks.
     "That's a blink," Kronk shouts enthusiastically.  "Patient
 is awake."
     Brian tries to speak and looks around.  "Mom."
     They all smile for the young boy and his mother.
                                                 *  *  *
    Alan Birch speaks on behalf of the hospital at a news
 conference.  "He's awake.  We are expecting a full recovery.  No
 permanent brain damage."
     Meanwhile, on another floor of the hospital, Mr. Ellis
 watches the news conference on TV about the miracle at Chicago
 Hope.  Grad enters, adjusts his covers and leaves.  Ellis shakes,
 as he lies alone in his hospital bed waiting for another miracle.

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