This week’s January 27, Episode 13, Season 3 of “The Good Doctor” focuses on meaningful “firsts” in life and choosing priorities. Dr. Shaun Murphy (Freddie Highmore) is feeling much more than lucky after his first physical intimacy with Carly (Jasika Nicole) but dismayed that her experience was not as fulfilling. “Sex and Death” is an apropos and fetching title, but the deeper meaning of this episode, like so many on “The Good Doctor,” revolves around the fragility of life and how every moment becomes a choice to decide what matters. No one has the promise of tomorrow-- only the choice of what to do with each hour of today.

Shaun has a pep in his step on ‘The Good Doctor’

Dr. Murphy is “reporting” to Dr. Reznick (Fiona Gubelmann) on his fabulous first intimate moment with Carly, from his perspective. He asks if she thinks most of their coworkers in the hospital are having physical relations, and if so, “why aren't they much happier?”

Shaun is delighted that he had the “parade” experience amidst their passion, and he wants to ensure that he can create the same for Carly. Dr. Park and Dr. Brown advise Shaun that becoming knowledgeable on intimacy with a partner is much more about looking, listening, and feeling than it is about study. Still, just as he does for surgery, Shaun commits himself to preparedness.

The Good Doctor” has been cautioned that he should not discuss the three-letter word starting with “s” while in his professional setting, but his exuberance is, understandably, making complete obedience difficult.

Initially, Oliver (John Ales) inquires only about medications to ease the symptoms of his chemotherapy which, of course, are debilitating in any measure. His wife (Bonita Friedericy) encourages him to do whatever possible to have his best life.

Shaun soon discovers that the delight of a 22-minute “quickie” encounter, including a two-way bus ride, doesn't allure Carly.

The Good Doctor” pledges to keep pursuing positive approaches with his partner.

Morgan has an unsuspecting meeting with her mother on ‘The Good Doctor’

Morgan Reznick doesn't know it, but her mother, the famed artist, Caroline Reznick, brilliantly captured by Annette O'Toole, has already had a consultation with Dr. Glassman (Richard Schiff).

She has 10 locations of malignant caverns, “mal-cavs” in clusters in her brain. He knows she is craving for his third opinion to be “the one” that will spare her life, for the sake of her art, the passion of her life. He cannot give that answer, but he does propose an alternative procedure that will allow her to be fully present in the lives of her family members, and live for many more years, despite sacrificing some of her creative abilities. He uses his own example of a new vocation and a new marriage to illustrate the possibilities. She refuses to surrender her life's work.

Caroline and Morgan meet in the hospital, and almost at the same moment when Dr. Reznick announces her as “Mom” and Caroline asks: “Is this a friend?” of Claire, her mother drops to the floor in crisis.

Morgan has created several false scenarios regarding her family and been found out on most of them. This time, however, Dr. Park declares his wild admiration for the work of Caroline Reznick, and the family conflict is on the surface for all to see. Her mother, brother, and sister all adopted the arts as their calling. Morgan went full-throttle into science and medicine, which her mother may have found admirable, but not acceptable. The last family outreach that fans of “The Good Doctor” saw was a visit from Morgan to her grandfather’s nursing home.

When the team has to observe the impact of seizures from the diseased clusters on the brain, Morgan steps in for duty. She at first is a bit too happy to dredge through her mother's failings and slights over decades, and Caroline is truly a no state to fight, although she tries.

Sure enough, a massive seizure comes, and Morgan braces her mother in a “therapeutic hug” almost like Lea did with Shaun in “The Good Doctor” episode, “Friends and Family.” The scene is a tour de force for Fiona Gubelmann, who already has described that the episode “broke my heart” in a recent Yahoo interview. These dramatic moments come down to life-and-death. Morgan makes a desperate plea to Dr. Glassman to perform a groundbreaking, somewhat untested stereo lactic ablation procedure. He declines, but then, sees the details drawn out by Morgan herself and reconsiders.

The daughter can't help but raise the decibel level when it comes to observing her mother's procedure. Her comments and “guidance” blast from above.

Dr. Glassman succeeds in the precise process of obliterating the clusters. In the interim before surgery, Morgan shares with her brother (Allen Leach) the beautiful, marvelous, and medical creation of neurons in the brain, and he comes to understand the gift of her mind as being as divine as art. The next time we see Caroline Reznick, she is taking steps on a walker and has emblazoned her signature on the bathroom door of her room, to the delight of Dr. Park.

Oliver and ‘The Good Doctor’ have different ideas for a bucket list

Shaun is still seeking to please Carly, to the fullest measure, while taking Claire's (Antonia Thomas) counsel, he hopes to pique her interest in passion by donning the full kilt, ala “The Outlander,” and turning up at her doorstep.

The effort sparked a binge-watch of six episodes but nothing in the bedroom.

There is nothing off-limits about talking parades in the staff lounge, and Dr. Lim (Christina Chang) offers her seasoned counsel when it comes to Shaun's desire to give Carly pleasure. Using the analogy that a frozen pizza takes a microwave, and too many men of “The Good Doctor’s” age take the pizza out of the microwave too soon. She encourages that Shaun’s “superpower” is his complete commitment and focus, just as during surgery. She instructs that he should “work that parade route” until “the band stops playing” and then go “3% more.” The scene is utter deliciousness to fans, and all can see that this illustration was one that clicked for Dr.


On another front, every time his team revisits Oliver, he is in different clothes, talking magical adventures, the latest being an odyssey to Costa Rica. Clearly, his wife only wants her husband for as many days as she can have him. He tries to persuade her to join him on the trip. Even Dr. Park alludes, “back to the bucket list” as the grandiose talk resumes. The Mrs. is dismayed, echoing “I thought I was enough,” and telling her husband to go alone.

Adventures can happen throughout life, some are grand, and some are made more memorable than a million-dollar cruise just because of who is there to share them. Adventures as instant fulfillment, however, seldom have lasting significance.

Oliver’s bubble of embracing life to its fullest soon bursts. He asks Dr. Murphy what makes him happy in life. Of course, “The Good Doctor” is deferred from relating his most recent joy by Dr. Park, but he has no trouble in coming up with alternatives, such as “a crisp apple” the sunlight shining on his bedsheets “in a perfect square,” and the surety that the circumference of a circle is always the same formula, no matter the numbers. Shaun calls Oliver's options "too loud" for his tastes.

When Shaun and Carly are boarding the bus after the day, they find Oliver sitting on the bench, staring blankly. “Are you getting on?” asks “The Good Doctor” of the patient bound for parts unknown just hours before.

Oliver answers no. Many more medical dramas have spun off of the success of "The Good Doctor" but the competitive TV Shows have not told human stories any better, or with a more superlative cast.

The closing scene mirrors Episode 12 of “The Good Doctor” last week, with Shaun sleeping and Carly smiling with a joy that only comes after a proper, wonderful parade.