For viewers of “The Good Doctor” who feared they might need cardiac resuscitation from the absence of their favorite drama from the lineup of TV Shows for the coming fall, good news has arrived. TV Insider broke the news last week (June 8) that the beloved and critically-acclaimed medical drama was among the group of shows filmed in Vancouver, British Columbia, that could submit restart plans for approval to resume production. The process will take a while, but most assuredly, Dr. Shaun Murphy (Freddie Highmore) and (most of) his fellow residents and staff at San Jose St. Bonaventure Hospital will be alive and well for Season 4 on “The Good Doctor.”

Two of the pivotal leading ladies in the ensemble cast of “The Good Doctor” were featured in June 16 profiles by ShowbizCheatSheet and the Daily Express.

Neither Paige Spara, who portrays Lea Dilallo, nor Antonia Thomas, who brings Dr. Claire Brown to life, could predict the devastating impact of COVID-19 on humanity or the world of screen productions, but their characters’ future destinies look very different as both ladies face life and love through very different eyes.

Love and loss come to ‘The Good Doctor’ after life-and-death situations

It’s no wonder that Paige Spara’s Lea knows her way around bottles of tequila. The 30-year-old Pennsylvania born actress played a bartender in her 2017 big-screen debut, “Home Again.” The same year, she took on the flighty, fickle, self-focused, but fascinating, character on “The Good Doctor.” Faithful fans cherish the two words of “Tequila STAT” from their first date more than any Shakespearean sonnet.

Season 3 was a time of wonder and reckoning on “The Good Doctor.” Dr. Carly Lever (Jasika Nicole) offered Shaun the absolute fullness of unselfish love and his first encounter with intimacy. Still, it was Carly who saw “something” between her boyfriend and Lea during a night of karaoke fun that was more powerful than she could conquer.

She persuaded Shaun to reveal his feelings to Lea, and she rightly confessed her own selfishness as being a stumbling block to future love between them. She was the person he chose to see him through facing his father for the final time, and she was the only person able to comfort him, yet in the episode, “Heartbreak,” the dejected lover lets her, and her car, have it.

After “The Good Doctor” survives an earthquake, flooding pipes, and the amputation of his patient’s leg in “I Love You,” last season's finale, he emerges to find Lea waiting, ready to profess that she was “stupid” and that her love is true. Only time will tell if this is just another fleeting emotion from the character who is truly fascinating but finds new men like snacks from a vending machine. Dr. Murphy has experienced real love now, so he, too, has new windows to the heart. Only the talented storytellers in the writers’ room know if Lea can ever be ready for the sacrifice of love, but Paige Spara does understand the reason why Shaun and Lea “flourish” as friends-- she is inspired by his confidence, candor, and caring.

Fans can only hope that some of those qualities will eventually rub off on Lea Dilallo.

Antonia Thomas takes Dr. Claire Brown through more loss on ‘The Good Doctor’

Freddie Highmore and Antonia Thomas have much more in common than their natural British accents and perfectly conveying American ones in playing their medical roles on the medical drama. Thomas told Jimmy Kimmel that the first task any English acting student has to nail is a flawless American accent, and she and Highmore master that mark to perfection on “The Good Doctor.”

While Highmore made his professional mark very early in “Finding Neverland” and another project with Johnny Depp, the Tim Burton remake of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” Antonia Thomas also had an auspicious place in notable TV for younger viewers.

In 2009, Claire was cast in the sci-fi series, “The Misfits

Like Paige Spara, who got noticed on the ABC Family sitcom, “Kevin from Work,” Antonia was greatly blessed by doing television for younger viewers. After completing her first film in 2011, several short-term roles kept the actress honing her craft. From 2015 to 2018, Antonia Thomas was featured in the landmark British television series, “Teletubbies,” as the female narrator.

In her role as Dr. Claire Brown, Antonia Thomas faces more grown-up losses than ever on “The Good Doctor.” The stunning loss of Dr. Neil Melendez, the surgical wizard played by Nicholas Gonzalez, was shatteringly personal for Dr. Brown. She first noticed that the mentor and friend who never forgot details didn't describe the location of the earthquake as a brewery.

That small detail became a menacing forecast, as his internal injuries were already past the point of making him septic.

Displaying the wisdom of a true medicine man, Dr. Melendez took a mantra of “no blame” and no focus on past mistakes for his final hours. Claire placed a crucifix in his hand to help him find peace, and the two found absolution in proclaiming their love before his last breath.

Dr. Brown is still wrestling with the loss of her mother, and now, the loss of the man who brought friendship into the fruition of love. Her pain is not going to pass quickly, but at least she is not alone. She has always been nothing but a true friend to Dr. Murphy, and “The Good Doctor” has endured his share of heartache at a rapid pace.

He can now pay forward the compassion to Claire—he, too, lost a mentor in Dr. Melendez, and he doesn't yet know it. The character dynamic has shifted forever among the residents and they will rally in support of Dr. Melendez’s legacy, but the anguish will be real. Dr. Brown has to complete her work to love and forgive herself before being ready for new love.

Rising from the ashes on ‘The Good Doctor’

Just as ashes spread over the ground prepare soil for a new life, the grief that overtakes “The Good Doctor” will give way to brighter days. One of the relationships that fans clamored to see more of last season was between Dr. Brown and Morgan Reznick. The aftermath of the earthquake may open the door just enough for that wish to come true.

Morgan, sublimely captured by Fiona Gubelmann) was genuinely standing (and sleeping on the subway) in support of Claire after the loss of her mother, sequined hats, and all. She also put aside her usual self- promoting in the season finale run-up in performing a surgery to save a patient that would almost positively cost her future as a physician. The permanent damage further done to her freshly-sutured arthritic fingers may be irrecoverable. Heroes come in all forms on “The Good Doctor.”

Can Claire and Morgan probe deeper friendship? Vulnerability is a good starting point.

Another future up in the air, but for a good reason, is that of Dr. Park (Will Yun Lee). Following the wrenching loss of a young man, and portraying his forgiving father in the hallucinating final moments, the doctor makes a call to his own family.

He tells them that he is moving to be close to them. What that means for “The Good Doctor” is still uncertain. It would be a double-punch to lose another fine actor in the drama.

Decisions, death, and destinies are entwined for the future of “The Good Doctor.” The best news is, sooner or later, there will be a season to untangle the strands.

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