Man, people are just hating on my fun little hospital comedy! "[J]udging by the season just completed, 'Scrubs' may have been best left out to pasture: Here is a show perpetually pleased with itself and running dry on innovations. J.D. (Zach Braff) and Elliot (Sarah Chalke) continued their non-consummation. Turk (Donald Faison) and Carla (Judy Reyes) continued their hungry sexuality. A baby failed to truly mellow Dr. Cox (John C. McGinley), and a girlfriend failed to sandpaper the rough edges off the Janitor (Neil Flynn).
"As for last week's season finale, well, that was strange, no? Originally scheduled to air earlier in the season, which accounts for the heavy presence of Dr. Kelso (Ken Jenkins), who a couple of weeks ago told Sacred Heart Hospital they could take his job and shove it, it centered on a fairy tale told by Dr. Cox to his young son as a bedtime story. As a narrative innovation, it ranked nowhere near the "Scrubs" musical episode (a hackneyed trick, but a good one) — essentially, it was a regular episode of the show, with the addition of numerous hours of costume and makeup. Not clever, just cute.
"Once, 'Scrubs' felt fantastical even without gimmickry. The humor was quick, and the characters had texture, Braff delivered genuine pathos beneath his simpering exterior, and Faison has been among the most guileless comedic actors on television.
"This season, though, their relationship became rote, and even they knew it. In several episodes, they openly struggled against the very nature of their freewheeling bond, especially since they're both young fathers — maturity may be out of reach for them, but thinking about it isn't. (Plus, the race-baiting jokes are becoming a bit much — y'all no longer get a pass just because Turk is black.)
"Braff's continued work on the show is reminiscent of Ashton Kutcher's labors on late-period 'That '70s Show.' In the acting, to be sure — both boiled their characters down to a few key tics, easy to deliver on cue — but also in the relatively quiet accumulation of wealth while they elsewhere aim for holier artistic pastures. "Garden State" was a moment, but the "Scrubs" checks will never die — it's a pretty good hustle." [LAT]