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'Black Box' recap: Lies, truths, fake truths and more lies

Season 1 | Episode 10 | “I Shall Be Released” | Aired July 10, 2014

We open with Catherine at therapy and about to make a big confession to Dr. Hartramph. Catherine says she’s in crisis, and she did something impulsive. Catherine then flashes to a recent evening with Will where he questions her about the pen from Hotel Mirabella. And yes, he knows that Bickman hangs out there (thanks, Esme). To avoid a big kerfuffle with Will over the pen, Catherine does make a confession—she tells Will that she’s really Esme’s mother.

Catherine tells Will about Esme.

Catherine tells Will about Esme.

She tells Will the whole story. She was young, her manic incidents were just beginning. She was in the psych ward when Esme was born. Josh and Reagan had only been dating a short time, but because Reagan knew she could never have children, she wanted Esme. Will promises to not tell anyone the truth.

Dr. Hartramph’s reply to this confession? “You cover a lie by telling the truth you promised never to reveal.” Catherine’s response? “You’re judging me.” Well, yeah. The doc is upset with Catherine and tells her something must change.

Patient alert! A man, Dean Norwood, checks into The Cube to see therapist, Dr. Mahmoud. Nurse Tinker gives him some forms to fill out. Dean looks them over and says his problem isn’t on the form. Why? Because he’s dead.

Later, Dr. Mahmoud meets with Dean, walking in the hallway because, he says, he cannot sit still. Turns out his problem (you know, of being dead) is rooted in a motorcycle accident.

Catherine and new doc-in-training MacKenzie chat in the hallway about another patient, Lily. MacKenzie pre-diagnoses Lily and says she has the flu. To Catherine’s dismay, MacKenzie already advises Lily and her mother of this. They walk into Lily’s exam room. After a few simple questions about Lily’s symptoms (headache, muscle aches, stomachache, stiff neck), Catherine determines that Lily does not in fact have the flu; she has meningitis.

How Dean sees himself.

How Dean sees himself.

Dr. Morely (we’ve missed you these past few weeks) observes Mahmoud and our Walking Dead patient, Dean, in the hospital hallway. Mahmoud sees Morely and excuses herself for a moment. At this time, Dean catches a glimpse of himself in a glass reflection—yep, he definitely looks dead (in his mind). We then learn that Morely is incredibly interested in Dean’s illness—also known as Cotard syndrome (fact-checked!). Mahmoud invites him to join her.

Back in Lily’s room, MacKenzie lets Lily and her mother know that the meningitis tests came back negative. MacKenzie attempts to give Lily some water, but winds up getting bitten on the hand.

Elsewhere, Catherine is getting some coffee. Bickman walks up behind her and puts his arms around her waist. Of course, she backs away and says she hasn’t broken up with Will yet. Bickman acknowledges this and says he’ll stop for now. He then casually lets Catherine know that her patient is a biter.

MacKenzie is getting her hand treated when Catherine walks in. After a discussion about fear of water and foaming at the mouth, it’s clearly determined that Lily most likely has rabies. Yes, RABIES. Catherine rushes to see Lily’s mom.  After talking with her, the probable cause of Lily’s rabies is a bat bite (from a school field trip).

Back to Morely and his curious Cotard case. Mahmoud and Morely perform a scan on Dean’s brain. Again, Morely is super-excited because no such test has ever been done on someone with Dean’s condition. Morely is amazed by the results; Dean’s brain is consistent with that of a brain-dead patient. Meaning Dean actually does think he’s dead. A nurse walks in and lets Morely know that Lily’s rabies tests came back positive.

Catherine and Morely meet with Lily’s mom. They tell her it’s a late stage of rabies and nothing can be done. As expected, Mom is extremely upset and heartbroken. She refuses for this to be the end and wants Catherine to not give up on her daughter.

Later, in her office, Catherine is busy studying a whole mess of medical books. Bickman and Morely walk in and Catherine tells them she wants to dig deeper into the case. Advances are made every day, she tells them.

Over at Will’s restaurant, it’s Esme’s first day on the job (as a busgirl). Will tells Esme to go collect her share of the tips from Delilah. And, as if you could hate her any more, Delilah refuses to give Esme anything because she’s still in training. At this time, Esme conveniently overhears a couple of restaurant workers discussing—in Spanish—Delilah and Will’s past. Obviously, Esme speaks Spanish and pipes into the conversation. The workers cover their tracks and tells Esme that the fling between Will and Delilah happened before Catherine, but now Will can’t fire Delilah unless she did something very big that everyone sees.

Later that evening, Catherine is still in her office. She frustratedly pushes the big medical books across her desk. A Peeping Tom Mahmoud sees this from the hallway and continues to watch as Catherine pulls out several pill bottles from her purse and then puts them back.

Dead dude Dean wanders the hospital hallways, again peering at his zombie reflection. He goes into an empty operating room, finds a scalpel and cuts into his wrist. Later, Bickman goes into said OR and finds an unconscious Dean.

Catherine stops taking her meds.

Catherine stops taking her meds.

Catherine meets with MacKenzie and fellow doc-in-training Leo to do research on rabies treatment. And … Catherine is very, very off her meds. Later, she scribbles on a chalkboard what could be a breakthrough in the case.

The next morning, Morely meets with Dean. Morely confesses to being to curious about the case and promises to find something quicker to help Dean.

Back in Catherine’s office, Bickman finds a speedy Catherine, who’s clearly been awake all night. She says she found something that could help Lily. Bickman and Catherine relay the treatment to Morely: a medically induced coma that would allow time for the antiviral meds to kill off the rabies. Morely is unimpressed and says he needs better odds. Which is exactly what Catherine hurriedly leaves to do: find better odds. At this time, Mahmoud suggests Catherine is on something, but Bickman comes to her defense.

Later, Morely meets with Dean for a new form of treatment: electronic shock therapy. At this point, Dean is up for anything.

While coming up with better odds in her office, Catherine gets a phone reminder for her therapy appointment. She calls Dr. Hartramph to cancel, and the doctor is immediately concerned with Catherine’s frantic behavior. The doctor tells Catherine to take her meds before it’s too late. All the while, Catherine’s bipolar brain is working to find a cure for rabies, and seemingly does so.

Catherine wants to use Ketamine to induce the coma. She and Morely meet with Lily’s mother. Because her daughter is dying, the mom readily accepts any treatment.

Dr. Mahmoud with Catherine.

Dr. Mahmoud with Catherine.

In a very weird moment, Mahmoud attempts to speak to Catherine, who first barks at her and then kind of feels her up. Yeah, that happened. Catherine then walks away to her office and takes her meds.

Back at the restaurant, Delilah shows a VIP group—Will’s business partner and a couple of potential investors—to a table. The group brings with them a very expensive bottle of wine, which Delilah takes away to be opened. You know this isn’t going to end well.

At The Cube, Catherine wakes up to her alarm. Now cool, calm and medicated, Catherine puts her office back together and finds her credit cards strewn about her computer. Apparently, manic behavior leads to a bit of online shopping. After cleaning herself up a bit, she goes to see Lily’s emotional mom. Both watch a comatose Lily from outside the room.

And on a lighter note, at Will’s restaurant, Esme switches out the fancy-shmancy VIP wine for cooking wine, AKA vinegar. Delilah is blamed for the mishap and Will happily FIRES her on the spot. Just as Delilah is leaving, she turns back and accuses Esme of the incident. Something tells me this isn’t the end of Delilah; she’s not that passive.

Dr. Mahmoud catches Catherine in the hallway. Embarrassed about her odd behavior, Catherine falsely admits to taking (and having a bad reaction to) amphetamines. She coolly thanks Mahmoud for her understanding. Mahmoud isn’t buying it.

MacKenzie checks on Lily’s stats. Catherine enters and tells Mom that the treatment is working; Lily’s antibodies are fighting the rabies. The downside: They’ve stopped inducing the coma, and so far Lily is unresponsive. To make matters worse, later, Nurse Tinker takes Lily’s vitals and now she’s spiked a fever.

Worried, Catherine tucks away into a meeting room. Bickman sees her and goes in to check on her. In a sweet moment, Bickman tries to lift Catherine’s spirits—after all, she’s cured the rabies. But Catherine feels like she’s killed Lily in the process. And Bickman is a genius for a reason: He suggests they lower the thermostat in Lily’s room to freeze out the fever.

Elsewhere at The Cube, Dead Dean is feeling better. He’s not completely alive yet, but he’s not completely dead either. He peeks at his reflection one last time and sees himself, only slightly dead-looking.

A bundled-up Nurse Tinker takes Lily’s temp and is amazed. She’s stable, AND she’s waking up. All is right with the world. Catherine (and Bickman) cured rabies.

Catherine and Bickman.

Catherine and Bickman.

Later, Bickman steps onto the elevator to leave. He sees Catherine at the back of the elevator and walks to her. A lovely, slow, sweet kiss happens. Just break up with Will already, will you?

And on that note …

Will is at Catherine’s apartment. She walks in and sees her rather large lot of online shopping. Will pours a couple glasses of wine and says they have a reason to celebrate: He fired Delilah! In that moment, Catherine apologizes and gives Will the engagement ring. He calmly takes it and sips his wine and then proceeds to trash her kitchen table and leave.

Well, well … that was an eventful episode. So Will now knows the truth about Esme. Dr. Mahmoud knows Catherine has a dirty medical secret. And Catherine (finally) ended things with Will, and he’s bitter.  Do you think he might do something with his newfound knowledge? Or will he be faithful to his promise? Next week’s episode shows some tension between Catherine and Bickman—NO! Hang tight, folks: Only three more eps to go!

Black Box, rated TV-PG, airs Thursdays at 8/7C on ABC.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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