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The Knick “Mr. Paris Shoes” 

Photo Credit: Mary Cybulski/Cinemax
Photo Credit: Mary Cybulski/Cinemax

Since Dr. Thackery is about as interested in having Dr. Edwards as a deputy as Edwards is in sitting around doing nothing, he decides to make use of himself in other ways. It’s when he’s stitching up a young woman in whatever the equivalent of an ER is in the 1900s, when the notices The Knickerbocker won’t admit patients of color. He offers to help, but whatever the admitting nurse said to the woman seeking help makes her want to leave the hospital immediately. So Edwards converts part of his basement office into an examination room and starts seeing patients there.

It’s so interesting to see how markedly different Dr. Edwards’ home life is from the other hospital doctors and administrators. Thackery seems to live in an opium den, Cornelia comes from new money and has led a life of privilege. And as her father says, if she wasn’t born a woman, she’d be running the hospital outright. But Edwards lives in a boarding house with a public bathroom (and shares his pillow with a cockroach) and almost gets into a fight with another tenant over his shoes, which are from Paris. Later, Edwards has to result to defending himself with his fists to get his fellow lodger to back off. But as least he’s thoughtful and kind enough to provide the man with some pain relievers for when he wakes up from the beating.

Somehow I’ve already gotten used to patients dying on the operating table, but I wasn’t expecting a nurse to die from attempting to put out an electrical fire. And hospital administrator Herman Barrow is essentially to blame because he made the electrician cut corners and then demanded a kickback for the contract. Of course the electrician is willing to redo his shoddy work, but he demands cash from Herman for the job. It’s a bit of a problem because Herman’s in deep with Bunky. He owes $9K, which is the equivalent of about $450K today.  That is one serious gambling problem.  When Herman sees him later, Bunky demands prompt payment and takes one of Herman’s teeth as collateral.

Random Thoughts

It’s more than a little pathetic that Thackery and Gallinger can’t be bothered to ask Edwards about the galvanic procedure, must less let him perform it on a patient. A sixty percent success rate sounds pretty damn good to me. They’re so resistant to leaning on Edwards in any way that Gallinger and Chickering have to resort to breaking and entering? I know I’ve being naive about race relations at the turn of the 20th century, but wow.

I hope we continue to see Thackery with his mentor and former boss Dr. Christensen. He’s so different, but that’s because we’re seeing him pre-addiction. Thackery probably takes his job just as seriously now, but it seems like he was such a different man back then. I like that he’s eager to work with Christiansen and be taken seriously. This is a man who is legitimizing surgery by taking it out of the barber shops and Thackery wants to hitch his wagon to this ride.

Not only am I surprised that Sister Hariet is performing abortions, but I’m doubly shocked that she’s not damning these women to hell. I’m the first to admit that I don’t know much about religion, but I will say I find it refreshing that she’s not sitting in judgement on these women. I mean, she wouldn’t be considering the work she does. But it’s dangerous that Tom Cleary knows she’s doing something she’d rather keep secret. Once he finds out what she’s up to he’s going to look for a way to profit off it.

The Knick airs Fridays at 10/9c on Cinemax.

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