We watched Sunday's Grey's Anatomy
last night -- "Band Aid Covers the Bullet Hole" -- a little behind on our viewing.
They did that neat thing that we always love to see, where the character who hasn't been able to deal with something sees someone else with the same problem. Actually in this case, twice. Derek Shepherd ignored his wife, so she cheated; so he has to confront a couple where the wife would rather face imminent death than go back to her pre-aneurysm situation where her husband was ignoring her. Derek hasn't been able to accept that Addison really truly is sorry for cheating on him, so he gets to find out that Meredith slept with George and hasn't been able to get George to accept how sorry she is.
That's always nice. 'Cause we can rarely see ourselves unless we're in front of a mirror.
It's also a neat writing tool. If your character faces a decision and just makes it, it's hard to make that visual and physical. You can give him a voice over, sure, but how much To Be Or Not To Be do you want on TV? But if your character confronts his own story peopled by other characters, then we can see what he's reacting to. And it shows the decision in a more oblique, subtle way that leaves us feeling involved in the decision.