The Patient – Episode 4 “Company”: Recap & Review
Alan can’t sleep in the fourth episode of The Patient. He breathes in and out quickly because he is afraid of what Sam will do to his new prisoner.
And yet, Alan is very calm when he talks to Sam. Sam talks about how strong the urge to kill the man has been (his name is Elias). But he won’t kill him until he talks to Alan, just like he said he wouldn’t.
Sam wants Alan to help him. It is said that his plan to protect his mother didn’t work, but we have no proof that he tried it. So, Alan suggests that they try to take his mind off of how he feels. He tells him to go to work and go about his day as usual.
Sam leaves against his will, and Alan goes from being a humble therapist to a scared and angry prisoner. Elias finally asks where he is from the other room. Alan tells him that this “lunatic” has both of them in his grip.
Candace stops them for a moment to apologize for Sam. She says that he really does want to change and that his father is not the reason why he’s this way. “He’s always been… just Sam.”
Alan keeps talking with Elias, who is blindfolded and tied up, after she leaves. He doesn’t say who is holding him, but he talks about the room he is in. He tells Elias that his daughter would have noticed he’s gone by now. Elias is also afraid that his parents will call the police.
Alan kills time by talking about his family. About Beth, his wife who died a few months ago from cancer. And his son, Ezra, who became an Orthodox Jew. This made his relationship with Beth very difficult.
Sam has a bad day at work and calls Alan to tell him about it. He can no longer take it. He says he’ll be back to finish what he started.
Alan tells him to stay at work and even go to a concert afterward to keep his mind off things. Sam hangs up.
Elias starts to worry and asks Alan to tell his parents that he loves them if he dies. Alan says yes to his request, barely keeping it together.
Sam comes home with a white noise machine, which he puts in Elias’ room so he can’t hear them talking. He keeps telling Alan that nothing is working and that going to work every day is a stupid idea.
Alan tries to put him at ease. Elias didn’t see the man’s face when he caught him, so he can still figure out a way to let him go.
Alan finally tells Sam to stop when Sam keeps going up to the door that leads to Elias. He shouts out of the blue that Sam needs to go see his ex-wife. Maybe that will give him the emotional shock he needs to stop feeling like killing.
Sam just shakes his head. stops looking at Alan. Steps lead to the bathroom.
Alan asks him to turn off the noise machine in a quiet voice when he comes out, which is a risky move. Sam walks again toward Elias’ room, but it’s not clear what he wants. He then unplugs the machine, leaves the house, and gets in his car.
Elias cries in his room, and Alan sings “Country Roads” in a soft voice to comfort him.
He finally says, “My name is Elias.” “Elias Petraki.”
“I’m Alan. Strauss.”
Review of the Episode
The writing and directing team for The Patient gets better with each episode in how it uses the unique, minimalist style of the psychological thriller to make great tension and drama.
Of course, the cast also deserves a lot of credit. Steve Carell is great. He is very convincing as a calm and caring therapist, and then, at the drop of a hat, he is so compelling as a troubled prisoner who is about to lose it.
The show keeps bringing up interesting ideas about therapy, especially when it tries to show how real therapists are by showing different sides of Alan’s personality in different settings. Still, The Patient keeps its cards close to its chest in many ways.
Will Sam’s storyline be about how anyone can change? Or to say that some of them are hopeless? We won’t know until we see what Sam does.