Gideon's Crossing and The Practice

Gideon's Crossing (2000-2001)
The Practice (1997-2004)
Type: Crossover
Group 2

   Okay, I used to think David E. Kelley was the crossover king. Now... I dunno, I think he's just a big crossover nut! A freaking kooky crazy lunatic of crossovers... and I mean that in the nicest sense of those words.

   See the thing is, he crosses his shows over a lot (see the other entries on Ally McBeal, Boston Public, Chicago Hope, Picket Fences and The Practice). But with this crossover he had done two major crossovers with two different shows within just a couple weeks of each other. Slow down man!

   A few weeks before Gideon's Crossing (not a Kelley show by the way) and The Practice crossed over, Kelley crossed over The Practice with his new FOX network show Boston Public. The plot for that crossover had The Practice's Ellenor Frutt being friends with one of Boston Public's teachers. Ellenor and fellow lawyer Jimmy Berluti crossed over to help her friend fight his being fired (for full details see the entry on this crossover). The plot for this crossover, similarly, had Ellenor Frutt being friends with Gideon's Crossing's Doctor Ben Gideon. Ellenor and fellow lawyer Jimmy Berluti crossed over so that Ben could help pregnant Ellenor fight to save her unborn baby. I'm not sure what the deal is with Jimmy and Ellenor. Whole cast to choose from and they just keep crossing them over this pair over. And what the heck? Ellenor is best friends with somebody on EVERY show around? Go figure.

   Here's what happened in a bit more detail. Starting on The Practice, pregnant single-mom-to-be Ellenor started experiencing problems with her pregnancy and eventually decided to seek help from her friend Doctor Ben Gideon. With most of the other characters on the show running around dealing with a murder trial and the trial of a rapist who attacked a young girl, it was left to Jimmy to be there for Ellenor. By the end of the episode, Gideon had yet to determine what was wrong with Ellenor.

   Which brings us to the Gideon's Crossing episode which aired the following night. Considering Ellenor's symptoms, Gideon and his staff still couldn't seem to figure out what was wrong with the pregnancy. Then they hit upon what was wrong. There was no problem with the pregnancy, there was something else unrelated wrong with Ellenor - appendicitis. Bad news. Should they deliver the baby early so they could perform an appendectomy and risk the baby's life? Or should they perform surgery on Ellenor while she was still pregnant? The smart simple move would be the first choice. But that would endanger the baby to save Ellenor and Ellenor made Ben Gideon promise to put the baby's life first. So they tried the second option. It didn't work so well and tons of complications followed that endangered both mother and child. The situation was best summed up by Ben Gideon. He explained he made his treatment decisions because he made a promise to a friend, that he wanted to be more than a doctor and wound up being less than a friend. The situation looked bad enough that Ellenor had to name a guardian for her unborn baby in case the baby made it and she didn't. She chose Jimmy. If she died Jimmy promised to crossover with the baby onto all sorts of kids shows... well okay, maybe not.

   But Ben Gideon shouldn't have worried too much. Like Ellenor was going to die. She's a major character on another show. As if they would kill her off. And if they did it certainly wouldn't be on a show other than The Practice. In the end she pulled through. The door was left open for another "birth of the baby" crossover with Ben telling Ellenor he would see her again when she was in labor. But in the end Ellenor had the baby without the good doctor's help and no further crossovers.

   On a behind the scenes note, I have to wonder what inspired this crossover. Yes, David E. Kelley loves to do them. But like I said, this one came pretty quickly on the heals of another crossover where Kelley crossed over two of his shows on different networks. I can't help but wonder if this crossover was part of some kind of bargain with ABC, who airs The Practice, to get them to allow the cross network stunt. It would make sense that ABC would say, "Sure we'll let you do the Boston Public/The Practice thing, as long as you wouldn't mind helping us hype Gideon's Crossing with a The Practice/Gideon's Crossing crossover." It would make sense and hardly be unreasonable. There was a plot that made sense to carry between the shows, Kelley sure likes crossovers and Gideon's Crossing was a quality show. Not like they were asking him to cross his show over with some piece of crap.

   When will Kelley cross again? What shows will be involved? I wait with baited breath for the answer....

Other The Practice Links
The Practice and Ally McBeal
The Practice and Boston Legal
The Practice and Boston Public

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