A swoon or two

Summary: A small, nearly insignificant touchy, feely moment turns into a major symbol in this episode. Events transpire that cause Christy to gain a great appreciation for MacNeill. And in the end, he wants her to be on a first-name basis with him.


Neil MacNeill

Neil and Christy on the Bridge


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Judgment Day
Episode Written by Tom Blomquist
What is going on here: This is a finely crafted episode in that several small, subtle details fit together to reveal big truths about main characters, and in the process, also provide a powerful thematic touch. This narrative technique also contributes to the developing relationship of MacNeill and Christy as Christy discovers several fascinating things about the enigmatic doctor that puts him in a very favorable light in her eyes. At the same time, we are also introduced to a new dynamic in the story, the triangle between Neil, Christy, & Miss Alice. This episode is also the first real hint that there is something troubling and unsaid about Alice Henderson's daughter.
The Details: I would be remiss if I didn't open this discussion focused on the significance of the title as it represents the action of the story but also the theme...that of judgment, as this is an episode where several key characters make significant judgments on others based on events and conversations that take place. This is an episode of real enlightenment between people as they come to learn and understand more about each other. There is a recurring motif in this episode (a lamp, light and conquering a fear of the dark) that reflects that theme of character illumination which ties together the action of the episode. This theme is first brought to our attention very early in the episode in a small occurrence in a scene between the three main characters that are being judged in this episode--Christy, Neil MacNeill and Miss Alice Henderson.    MORE->>
Best swoon moment: For those who want to rewind and watch the "good stuff" over and over, I suggest the scene between Neil and Christy on the foot bridge that occurs near the end of the episode. The scene takes place in a lovely pastoral setting as they walk through the trees and end up on the small wooden bridge near the mission where they have a private conversation. This is where MacNeill asks her to start calling him by his first name, Neil, and he opens up to her and tells her about his laboratory, his trachoma research and his hope to find a cure.Neil and Christy on the footbridge Christy is clearly impressed by this discovery about this remarkable man, and they share a few sweet moments basking in each other's presence and admiration. SWOON! O.K. you say, this is such an obvious and predictable choice; however, if the truth be told, my real favorite moment in this episode is a bit unusual for swoony, but here it is: the lamp scene by the bedside of Alice Henderson. The very gentle touch of MacNeill's fingers on the bare skin of Christy's wrist and his lingering gaze into her eyes tell us that we will find at the heart of this episode several subtle, private moments between the couple. Hats off to the writer, the director and the actors who can get my attention with something so seemingly minor, as I came perilously close to swooning during that little moment.