Spoilers ahead for Episode 18 of Chicago Med Season 8, called “I Could See the Writing on the Wall.”
Dr. Hannah Asher has been the best version of herself since returning to Chicago Med, to the point that she is able to help others with their addictions rather than actively struggle with her own. She had a tragic backstory on the medical drama from her earliest appearances and dysfunctional relationship with Will because of that addiction; now, “I Could See the Writing on the Wall” has revealed that the tragedy goes back a lot further than just Season 5, and Hannah ended the episode by making a questionable decision for Dean Archer.
Hannah’s case of the week seemed normal enough to start, when a pregnant mom by the name of Sarah came in at 38 weeks with her son Ryan because she was short of breath. Young Ryan insisted that they come to the hospital, while Sarah kept trying to prioritize getting him back to school over finding out if something was wrong with her… and it turned out that there was: a heart condition that would be best treated by a night of observation and medication at the hospital. Sarah demanded to be able to take the meds home with her so she could stay with Ryan, but didn’t make it out of the ED before her water broke.
Tragically, the baby was in breech position, and Sarah decided that she wanted a C-section because it would be safer for her unborn daughter, even though it was much more dangerous for her with her heart condition. Her luck ran out, as she died on the table. The baby girl – who was delivered safely before Sarah’s death – and her older brother lost their mother, and Hannah was deeply upset. In a conversation with Crockett, she revealed why this loss hit closer to home than most.
Hannah told her fellow doctor that her older sister Lizzy had been Ryan’s age when their mother died, and her brother Matt was older as well. She explained:
Well, if there was any question of whether Hannah had any personal motivation to become an OB/GYN, she just answered it herself in great detail in this episode! Even though Crockett and Hannah haven’t been the closest of the doctors on Med, they shared an emotional moment when she opened up about something that she has kept to herself, and he had a sweet hug for her when she clearly needed it. It’s a good thing that Hannah opened up to somebody, but it may have led her to make a decision that won’t go over well with Dean.
Hannah’s Decision About Dean
Hannah got the news early in “I Could See the Writing on the Wall” that Dean’s kidney situation has gotten a lot worse, and he’s going to need a transplant. He confided in her while establishing that she’s the only ED attending he trusts to represent him at a big meeting, but wouldn’t agree with her that he should tell son Sean about needing a kidney. Dean doesn’t want to worry or pressure Sean, while Hannah pointed out that he’s around a year into his sobriety and donating could be good for him.
She seemed to accept Dean’s decision not to tell Sean at the beginning of the episode, but she was in a different state of mind by the end after the loss of Sarah. After telling Sean that Dean couldn’t know that she was the one who told, she informed him that his father’s health is getting worse. No wonder Jessy Schram talked about an “emotional triangle” with Hannah and the Archer men!
Hannah technically didn’t tell Sean that Dean needs a kidney transplant, so she didn’t reveal 100% of what she’d been told in confidence, but the promo for the next episode confirms that there’s going to be some fallout. Take a look:
It’s hard to say if Hannah would have told Sean about Dean’s health getting worse if she hadn’t gone through the tragedy with Sarah and reflected on her own losses, but it certainly seems that her decision was informed by everything that happened earlier in the hour. Unfortunately, fans are in for a wait before seeing what’s next. Chicago Med returns to NBC with its next new episode on Wednesday, May 3 at 8 p.m. ET. In the meantime, you can always revisit earlier episodes of Med streaming with a Peacock Premium subscription.