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Elenor O'Hara, M.D.


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#1

fadooski

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Posted Jun 8, 2009 @ 6:28 PM

Jackie's friend and an Attending Physician, O'Hara is played by Eve Best...

I wonder about her friendship with Jackie and how it came about. She seems to have singled Jackie out. It seems to me that her Englishness, her Manolo Blanicks and being able to pick up the tab at a nice restaurant are meant to signify staus and emphasize the status difference between physicians and Nurses. Is she 'slumming it'? Maybe being privy Jackie's indiscretions gives her the vicarious thrill of being naughty without risking herself. That's assuming she knows about Jackie's many, many breaches of ethics.

Her anecdote about why she went into medicine (poor bunny!) was interesting too. She seems to attribute higher motives to nurses than physicians. Maybe she feels that she became a physician for the wrong reasons and sees Jackie as her opposite.

Edited by fadooski, Jun 9, 2009 @ 1:21 PM.


#2

snarkella

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Posted Jun 8, 2009 @ 10:06 PM

I know doctor's make a lot of $$ but who would wear Manolo's to work in a hospital?

#3

isiscloud

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Posted Jun 9, 2009 @ 7:29 PM

I think Elenor has a point between doctors and patients. As a doctor, you have to have a certain distance between you and the patient otherwise you'll end up crazy. A nurse is the person who has the compassion needed that a doctor may lack, especially a surgeon. It might be why House can be such a good doctor and a good clinician. I know that as a vet (my dad's one) loving animals isn't enough. You have to be able to distance yourself and want to get to the cause.

She's as dispassionate about as Jackie is passionate. Who wears Manolo's to a hospital when you're on duty 12 hours at a time? Although it was an interesting contrast to Jackie's mucklucks and the Uggs Nurse J gave to the bike messenger's girlfriend.

#4

fadooski

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Posted Jun 9, 2009 @ 7:37 PM

Certainly the Nurse-patient relationship is extremely intimate and long-term while the physician-patient relationship is more distant. Elenor is probably curious about that perspective. Every profession has it's own culture, so the Elenor/Jackie friendship could be looked at as a cross-cultural one.

#5

Joimiaroxeu

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Posted Jun 10, 2009 @ 2:59 PM

I arrived at this speculation after watching the pilot, and after watching the first "real" episode my opinion hasn't changed: I think Elenor is a figment of Jackie's imagination.

In her drug-enhanced dreams, Jackie probably imagines what life would have been like if she'd been able to go medical school and become a high-powered "lady doctor". In Jackie's actual world, she has to wear boring flat shoes because she's constantly on her feet (plus she's got a back problem); her constant work attire is a set of color-faded scrubs; if she's lucky she can grab a coffee with some special "sweetener" in between her double shifts; even when she's away from the hospital she can't just sit by and watch someone undergo what might become a medical emergency when it looks like no one else is going to step up to help; and, as a nurse, she's obliged to follow a doctor's orders even when she knows the doctor is misreading the patient's situation.

In her fantasy world, she turns all the bland nurse's life stuff sideways and adds some Sex and the City girl-esque flourishes like wearing expensive but impractical high heels while on duty; tossing designer clothes into the trash after you change outfits in a cab because you didn't have time to go home after the previous night's swinging adventures; taking time out of your busy day to have lunch at a tony restaurant, blithely putting the suffering patients out of your mind because, geez, let the nurses deal with piddly stuff like administering a Heimlich; and, pulling rank on a fellow doctor and putting him out of the exam room because he's a barely competent idiot.

To verify this I'd need to go back and re-watch, but I don't recall that Eleanor was mixed in with the other characters in the sense that they referred to her when she wasn't present (as they certainly would, given her position). Her actions seemed to be sort of "photoshopped", as if they were constructed as part of a day dream. Anyway, I like the show so far and one of my main motivations for continuing to watch it will be to see if my speculation holds up.

#6

bchenowith

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Posted Jun 10, 2009 @ 8:57 PM

Elenor did interact with Dr. Coop. Would Jackie be at a fancy restaurant alone? Elenor was also the one to warn Jackie that the administrator was looking for her.

#7

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Posted Jun 12, 2009 @ 10:00 PM

The two women could just like each other, and understand each other better than most people around them. Their difference in status doesn't prevent them from being friends. Also, some doctors- male or female- dress to the nines when they aren't in scrubs, if that's just their style. I don't find the way she dresses to be unlikely.

I saw Eve Best on Broadway (in "A Moon for the Misbegotten") and thought she was quite good in a very different sort of part. So I'm definitely looking forward to more from her.

#8

LaJollaGirl

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Posted Jun 29, 2009 @ 7:59 PM

I am not quite sure how we as viewers are meant to feel about the posh doc O'Hara, with her gorgeous accent, her blithe demeanor, elegant attire, and barely concealed disdain for the patients or for smudged makeup or laddered stockings. I love the smart click of her Manolos as she glides through the halls but I also find that I dread her in some way as well. She does have a bit of a Sex and the City flair about her but I am hoping she is more rounded out as the show continues. She should be allowed to evolve into a character with some emotional depth and a few surprises; she seems to have something interesting working in her eyes and this hints that she is more than a mere glamour doll.

I also happen to appreciate the fact that she is a somewhat curvaceous woman and not an absurdly thin one. Her figure and status would I imagine make her immensely popular with the gentlemen, though her romantic life has not been developed. She would probably be intimidating however.

I would never want her as my own physician as she seems to represent the worst of the more brilliant types of specialists (though she does not seem to be a specialist but a sort of GP in the ER). She would always trust her own instincts (which, granted, generally seem to be spot on) but she would also ignore patients as they (in her mind) blathered on about their aches and pains and this would inevitably lead to a problem down the road.

#9

JennyBeans

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Posted Jun 30, 2009 @ 10:59 AM

I'm fascinated to see how they develop her character and relationship to Jackie. How on earth did this friendship start? The actresses play well with each other, and the character of Dr. O'Hara is hilariously caricatured, but I sense there will be more to that (or perhaps I am merely hopeful?). She just seems too performed, if that makes sense, as though Dr. O'Hara is putting on an elaborate spoiled girl act that is both part of her personality and part of either her aspiration or her self defense.

The New Yorker review of the show pointed out Dr. O'Hara as a weak point, which had me nervous about her going in to watching the show. But now I disagree with the review and am eager to see what happens to her and her relationship with Jackie next.

#10

Guitargal

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Posted Jul 16, 2009 @ 7:33 AM

It's probably just wishful thinking, but I am getting a "Hoy! Yay!" vibe about Dr. O'Hara. I just love the character...the snark, her friendship with Jackie, the clothes...tough shell but soft underbelly. I look forward to all of her scenes. More please!

#11

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Posted Jul 21, 2009 @ 12:35 AM

The New Yorker review of the show pointed out Dr. O'Hara as a weak point, which had me nervous about her going in to watching the show. But now I disagree with the review and am eager to see what happens to her and her relationship with Jackie next.


I read the same review. And I see their point but I also disagree. I like the character even if she is a bit of a stereotype at the moment. And they also said that there is no way someone like Jackie would be friends with her. Which I completely disagree with. Both of them are the types who are going to be attracted to competent, tough and straight talking women. They are both obviously a little lonely for different reasons.

And Jackie uses people. Its not a character trait that she would happily acknowledge. And I am not saying she is friends with Dr. O'hara to get lunches or deserts or anything like that. But it comes with it and Jackie doesn't mind.

#12

FunkyLB

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Posted Jul 21, 2009 @ 8:59 AM

Guitargal said:

It's probably just wishful thinking, but I am getting a "Hoy! Yay!" vibe about Dr. O'Hara.

Yep, I see it, too. I hope she is queer. O'Hara fascinates me more & more w/ each successive epi. I don't see a caricature at all anymore 7 epis in. I can't wait for them to pull back more layers. I always feel like she's starting to come into focus for me & then in the next moment I don't know anything at all about her. I think she's in a lot of pain, source unknown. Interesting....

#13

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Posted Jul 22, 2009 @ 2:21 AM

And they also said that there is no way someone like Jackie would be friends with her. Which I completely disagree with. Both of them are the types who are going to be attracted to competent, tough and straight talking women. They are both obviously a little lonely for different reasons.

Hell, yes.

I've just now started watching, and am of course pretty confused, coming in to the 7/19 episode as my first brush with the show -- but one of the things I got right away was why Eleanor & Jackie are friends. Because they're both smarter than everyone else around them! I'll have to check out the context of the entire review, but already I believe they were snotty enough to write something like that, because of course, women's friendships never transcend class.

STFU, New Yorker.

Edited by voiceover, Jul 22, 2009 @ 2:53 AM.


#14

Guitargal

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Posted Jul 28, 2009 @ 7:32 AM

O'Hara shows up on her day off to talk to Jackie! Ho!Yay! Loved the waiter backing off...Oh, smoke away! Was she smoking Spirits?

After last epi I was hoping for more O'Hara to see what was going on with her family. Ok. I admit it. I just wanted more O'Hara period!

Looks like next week she and Jackie start to crumble. Or, Jackie is crumbling and taking everyone else with her.

#15

Arline

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Posted Aug 5, 2009 @ 11:38 AM

What was the blue dress O'Hara was wearing in episode 9? It looked like something from Searle...I want it, or some affordable version of it.

#16

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Posted Aug 20, 2009 @ 5:11 PM

"Oh my darling! What a wildly entertaining mess you've made!" Eve Best has one of the all-time great actress laughs, up in Allison Janney / Joanna Cassidy territory, and very different from either.

#17

jacksonspoint

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Posted Aug 24, 2009 @ 10:57 PM

Eve Best is a terrific actor. Have seen her onstage a few times and she's even better live.

#18

LTG

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Posted Aug 25, 2009 @ 6:36 AM

Her transformation from high-powered doctor to wounded little girl as she cried over her mother was amazing.

#19

Guitargal

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Posted Aug 25, 2009 @ 3:10 PM

I was so mad at Jackie for leaving her high and dry! Poor O'Hara! And ITA agree Eve rocked. Even in that hideous outfit!

#20

lincoln84

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Posted Aug 25, 2009 @ 9:33 PM

I would LOVE to see Eve Best on Broadway...I hope she makes a return in the off-season soon...I did see she is filiming a mini-series for PBS that will air in January...she has the lead role in Dolley Madison. I think they finished a few weeks ago...

I STILL cannot believe however that she cut her gorgeous locks shoulder length! I love her long hair.

Edited by lincoln84, Aug 26, 2009 @ 9:53 PM.


#21

EdithPrickley

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Posted Aug 26, 2009 @ 9:23 AM

Wow, NOT a pretty cryer, which makes me love her even more. Eve Best is fabulous.

#22

lincoln84

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Posted Aug 29, 2009 @ 11:26 PM

I really hope the writers give her more to do next season...her acting is superb and I'd like to see her character open up a bit. She is two time Tony nominee! Utilize her more, please!

#23

lincoln84

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Posted Jan 25, 2010 @ 12:31 PM

Someone needs to explain to me the "Hoy Yay" thing. I don't get it. I guess that means a gay-dar thing but why does Dr. OHara give you that vibe? I don't get that AT ALL from her character. Because she showed up on her day off to talk to Jackie means she is gay? Can't you have a good friend that meets you for lunch etc...without being in love with you or other women? I have read this in other forums about Dr. OHara and I am completely at a loss as to what I am not reading in to this character. Maybe I am stuck on the fact that she told Jackie that her mother ran off with her boyfriend and married him on O'Hara's 25th b-day. That would clearly explain some major pain/defense mechanism with her saracasm and aloofness.

Obviously, the writers have alluded to a relationship in Season 2 w/ Julie Ormond and "one of the doctors". My guess is OHara of course. Just wondering what I missed in Season One.

#24

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Posted Jan 26, 2010 @ 4:59 PM

The word is used to describe a homoerotic or homoromantic subtext between two characters, generally on a television show. Where one sees HoYay is, of course, extremely subjective, though in some cases it can be canon, not just subtext

Ok, so that said, I will take a quick stab at it: (will ponder more and feel free to ask other questions)

Can't you have a good friend that meets you for lunch etc...without being in love with you or other women?


Sure. But add to the mix helping Jackie hide her affair, assisting her drug addiction and stealing Jackie's bills off the kitchen table and I think sheís crossed into Ho Yay! Territory. Then, spending the night, which it appeared it had not been the first time, and my gaydar is dinging madly. And sometimes it's just the way O'Hara looks...like she wants to say more, feel more, be more to Jackie.

In my mind, OíHara is more like the side kick in love with the main character or the main character's girl.

Admittedly, Ho Yay! is often little more than wishful thinking and is more a habit of sorts from folks my age, whoís only gay characters for years on screen of any size were in their imagination.

But Ho Yay! is subjective and if you donít see it, you donít. We all have ideas of what direction we want our favorite characters to go. You may want OíHara in bed with a hot guy while I would want her in bed with me. :-) And ultimately, itís up to TPTB as to where she ends up.

Finally, Iím not sure what you mean about the 25th birthday thing, so Iíll have to wait for you to expand, but if you mean the fact that she had a boyfriend at 25, that doesnít mean anything. Lesbians aren't man haters, for the most part. (Some of my best friends are men! Ha!) And I personally know plenty of women who have come out in their 30ís, 40ís and 50ís. And there are probably plenty who come out older, or never come out at all.

Hope this answers some of your questions or at least will start the conversation.

#25

lincoln84

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Posted Jan 26, 2010 @ 11:43 PM

Yes--that helps. Thanks so much for addressing this. I understand of course that because O'Hara had a boyfriend when she was 25 does not mean she can't be gay or even bi but given the short time the writers have to develop the characters, I'm not sure why they would add that elaborate story of the mother running off with her boyfriend and marrying him? That is a devastating story and it did seem to bother O'Hara but would something like that sufficiently set up the next story-line of her being involved with Julie Ormond? There is obviously alot we don't know but this doesn't seem to make sense to me. I guess we will know soon enough.

I don't get at all that she wants more from Jackie but you could be right--it may be more of me wanting something for the character that isn't germane to the storyline. I do think she sees herself as a protector of sorts for Jackie which she can easily do as a doctor and especially with her money. She does make time for Jackie outside the hospital but as a single woman with no kids, how hard can that be? I do the same with my friends who are married w/kids. I did find it interesting that she had spent the night a Jackie's house before but with a husband and 2 kids, I doubt that there was anything romantic about it. As I said, your comments about O'Hara being gay were not exclusive; I have read others speculating as well. I just couldn't figure out what I was missing.

I will say this: I didn't think it was too likely that a very attractive female doctor with that accent and fabulous clothes would be alone or celibate in NYC! I am very curious to see where they take this character. I have been fascinated with her ever since Zoey went Psych-101 on her over dinner.

#26

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Posted Jan 27, 2010 @ 10:48 AM

That is a devastating story and it did seem to bother O'Hara but would something like that sufficiently set up the next story-line of her being involved with Julie Ormond?

Of course, the answer is, "depends". lol The storyline could have been used to say more about mother/daughter than anything else. Or to demonstrate that O'Hara didn't connect with boyfriends. Or perhaps to use the one scenerio to easily cover both?

I did find it interesting that she had spent the night a Jackie's house before but with a husband and 2 kids, I doubt that there was anything romantic about it.

No, I didn't mean to imply that anything happened, I just thought it was odd that a grown woman would have spent the night. I mean, it is NYC, after all, where folks take cabs everywhere. Maybe if she was younger or less sophisticated it would seem less conspicous.

I didn't think it was too likely that a very attractive female doctor with that accent and fabulous clothes would be alone or celibate in NYC!

Ding! Ding! See you have gaydar and don't even know it! :-)

#27

lincoln84

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Posted Jan 27, 2010 @ 12:34 PM

___ ____________________________________________
Ding! Ding! See you have gaydar and don't even know it! :-)
__________________________________________________

Ok, now you are making fun of me! :) I guess we'll have some fun discussions about this once the season starts! Going out to Jackie's house in Queens is quite a jaunt from whatever hotel OHara is living in...as drunk as she was in that episode I didn't find it odd that she wouldn't get a cab in NYC in that condition. Again, I have in the past been inebriated enough to sleep at a friend's house but I guess was in college.

Let's say OHara was devastated by her mother running off with her boyfriend (and married him, right?)--she has forgiven the mother enough to fly her to NYC to "get a look at her" in her poor medical state. So something changed--she clearly has hatred for the stepfather but maybe it is a different guy? I was also thinking of OHara's reaction to Coops 2 moms---was there a clue there? She seemed amused by it initially and called one of them the vagina mom, right? I guess i assumed she was kind of making fun of it but maybe it was intuitive?

#28

Kats1

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Posted Feb 3, 2010 @ 2:06 PM

This actress is amazing (Zoey too). What a great cast, so happy I found this show and now know these great actors.

#29

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Posted Feb 16, 2010 @ 4:18 PM

I was also thinking of OHara's reaction to Coops 2 moms---was there a clue there? She seemed amused by it initially and called one of them the vagina mom, right? I guess i assumed she was kind of making fun of it but maybe it was intuitive?

Maybe. And I think that is when I thought my wishful thinking would become a reality. I may still have that epi on DVR and if yes, I'll go re-watch. I wasn't sure I thought she was making fun. I saw it as understanding in a deeper way, maybe.

And you know, often, that intuitiveness comes out in odd ways on tv. You know, how the most homophobic person in the room is most always the furthest in the closet?

But yes, looking very forward to expanding the discussion and in the meantime will re-visit the two-mom epi!

#30

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Posted Apr 8, 2010 @ 12:36 PM

Just caught up on the whole series in a single binge-riffic week. O'Hara may be my favourite character of all time. She and Jackie are House and Wilson, only not boring.

I love O'Hara's interactions with Zoe and Akalitus as well. I could watch her interact with a mop. She lights up the screen. I LOFF HER.

I don't find her caricatured at all, really. The clothes are just funny, she's pretty real about the money and the delicacy of offering it to Jackie's girls. Me, I have lunches at nice restaurants. In fact the class thing between her and Jackie is almost exactly the class thing between dot-com women like me and our friends who are teachers and nurses. It's there all right, but it's no dealbreaker.

What I love, love, love about O'Hara is that she always tells the truth, never the comfortable lie. She's acerbic to the bone. I wanna be her when I grow up.