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ER - The Complete Ninth Season - action adventure DVD / television series DVD / family and children DVD review
ER - THE COMPLETE NINTH SEASON Not rated by the Motion Picture Association of America rating: 4 stars
Actors: Alex Kingston, Noah Wyle, Maura Tierney, Laura Innes, Goran Visnjic, Paul McCrane
  Studio: Warner Home Video
DVD release: 17 June 2008   Runtime: 986 minutes
(6 discs)
Format: Box set, Color, DVD-Video, Widescreen, NTSC
Features: Audio tracks (English), 22 episodes, Outpatient Outtakes (unaired scenes), Cutups (gag reel)

The ninth season of ER hails from 2002-03, the season immediately following the death of Dr. Mark Greene (Anthony Edwards). This box set includes 22 episodes of the show, as well as a few extras.

The episodes included:
  • Chaos Theory-The doctors face a two-week quarantine inside the ER.
  • Dead Again-The closure of another hospital creates gridlock.
  • Insurrection-Metal detectors are installed, Carter (Noah Wyle) leads a walkout to protest the lack of security.
  • Walk Like a Man-Fights, errors, and withdrawal.
  • A Hopeless Wound-A Halloween episode.
  • One Can Only Hope-Themed around hope.
  • Tell Me Where It Hurts-The troubles surrounding Abby's (Maura Tierney) brother.
  • The First Snowfall-A family is the victim of a DUI driver, difficult choices must be made.
  • Next of Kin-More troubles with Abby's brother.
  • Hindsight-A Christmas tale told backward in time.
  • A Little Help From My Friends-Pratt (Mekhi Phifer) brings a gun to the hospital.
  • A Saint in the City-New friendships and beginnings
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished-Lies from all angles. Carter considers going to Africa.
  • No Strings Attached-Promotions, demotions, and increased alcohol use by one doctor.
  • A Boy Falling Out of the Sky-Abby has a great deal piled on her and she gets overwhelmed.
  • A Thousand Cranes-A robbery-homicide at Doc Magoo's hits close to home for the doctors.
  • The Advocate-Weaver (Laura Innes) must make some difficult choices.
  • Finders Keepers-Romano (Paul McCrane) makes everyone's life miserable.
  • Things Change-Romano is out of control.
  • Foreign Affairs-Kovac (Goran Visnjic) wants to perform surgery on a Croatian boy.
  • When Night Meets Day-Alternating time frames-Carter on day shift and Pratt on his last night shift.
  • Kisangani-Carter heads to Africa to join Kovac.
Many episodes also include outtakes, and there is a gag reel included as well.

The show suffers a bit of letdown after Dr. Greene's death and the departure of other main characters (Eriq La Salle as Dr. Benton also left at the end of season eight). However, watching it as a whole, and a few years after the fact, this season fits into the main structure of the show (which most recently finished its fourteenth season) extremely well and is really necessary in order to build on the storylines to come.

If you are a fan of ER and remember season nine as fairly lackluster, I encourage you to give it another shot now that you know what comes next. It really puts things into perspective, and season nine is overall a high-quality one worth watching again. It's quite a feat that this show is still going so strong after so many years. It is truly top-caliber television with an excellent cast, superb writing, and exquisite pacing.

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reviewed by Melissa Parcel
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