Chicago Med interview: EPs break down huge Crockett, Natalie moment

The first Chicago Med episode of 2021 has now officially come and gone, and there was a lot to appreciate here. We saw the doctors continue to struggle with working amidst the pandemic, but also to reinforce personal connections.

In our mind, there was no personal moment more significant than seeing Dr. Crockett Marcel grow closer to Dr. Natalie Manning, as Manning was able to recognize now he routinely pushes others away and relies on one-night stands and the like. Yet, she sees him and cares about him for the person he is, and that is something he’s rarely had over the years. It could even be transformative for him.

To speak more about this moment, plus some other assorted stories coming (including one pertaining to vaccinations), take a look at part 2 of our interview with showrunners Andrew Schneider and Diane Frolov below.

CarterMatt – I love the moment with Natalie and Crockett at the end of the episode. It seems as though she believes he could be someone different, though I’m not sure Marcel feels the same. Could that be a turning point for him?

Frolov – Yes, absolutely. And what he feels in that moment is someone saying ‘I do really care about you.’ It permeates that barrier that he has.

Going forward in the next episode, you’ll see that the two of them are awkward in this new state that they’re in. They don’t know what it means, but it’s very significant in their relationship.

There’s also something so psychological in that moment, given that these are doctors having to spend all of their time helping others, especially in a time like this. I can imagine someone asking one of them [in Marcel] ‘are you okay?’ holds greater weight.

Schneider – Sure. Everyone’s overwhelmed. We’ve instituted these psych check-ins with Dr. Charles and the staff because of the pandemic. I think you can really feel the weight, and we hear so much from our consultants and what we read about how overwhelmed caregivers are. In Southern California, it’s worse than ever.

Frolov – Some of that tension also boils over into the performance. In the scenes, the actors take their masks off and there’s an intensity to that. The actors are in the middle of this crisis, and there’s a reality to the performance this year.

Schneider – The cast rehearses with masks on, and when they do a take, the AD says ‘masks off.’ They take their masks off, they do their masks on, and then the AD immediately says ‘masks on.’ There is this tension — everyone is trying to protect each other and get the job done. I think it does add another emotional level to their performances.

There’s something topical in the Will story right now, as he is pushing for a trial that he believes in, but also is facing a lot of skepticism from people who are hesitant to get on board. What challenges await him from here?

Schneider – He’s a guy who finds himself at a crossroads in his career. He’s trying to improve his standing and make a change, and in this very difficult time — in real life and in the life of the show — we do want to get into the cultural issues involving medicine.

Frolov – In fact, one of the episodes coming up is going to look at the fact that minorities are underrepresented in these trials.

I know we’re at a spot now in the real world where some health-care workers are starting to get vaccinated. Is that something you’re planning to showcase soon?

Frolov – Yeah. When we were filming episode 5, we decided we would change it a bit and have our doctors vaccinated.

Schneider – A number of our real MD consultants have gotten the vaccine, and we wanted to show it and incorporate it into the series, while also trying to guess with our air dates what would be a realistic time to do it.

What did you think about Chicago Med season 6 episode 3?

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