Shaun, Dr. Neil Melendez (Nicholas Gonzalez) and Dr. Jared Kalu (Chuku Mudu) were assigned the case of a Muslim girl who was burned. When they first started to treat her, she claimed to be having a heart attack. However, her vitals did not fluctuate, leading Shaun to believe she was lying.
When they used a camera to look down her esophagus and into her lungs, they also found no burns. Shaun later suggested that exposure to a caustic chemical — specifically Dimethyl Sulfate — could have caused the symptoms.
Shaun shocked Melendez and Jared by suggesting that the patient could be a terrorist. When Shaun told the patient she was exposed to a chemical that is used for chemical weapons, she was also disappointed. She thought someone with autism might understand what it's like to be ostracized.
Later, after saving her life, the patient told them the truth. Her brother took the chemical home from work so she could make perfume. If she told them the truth right away, she was afraid her brother would lose his job.
Unlike Melendez, who admitted to making a mistake earlier in the episode, Shuan did not. Instead, he thought this proved one of his reasons for why people lie — to protect someone else.
Thankfully Shaun was put in his place for making assumptions. But that assumption really shocked Twitter users who previously loved Shaun unconditionally.
#TheGoodDoctor finally got a Muslim character (a patient) and now are mentioning that she might be a terrorist. I swear to God if they ruin another good show by enforcing this negative stereotype, i’m done watching. @GoodDoctorABC— m (@malakayyy) January 23, 2018
One person wondered why Shaun was not forced to apologize to the patient.
So why didnt someone tell Shaun that *he* should applogize to the woman he accused of being a terrorist? #TheGoodDoctor— AmyJParrent (@AmyJParrent) January 23, 2018
Shaun is so wrong of accusing this girl of being a terrorist. #TheGoodDoctor— melly (@tami2205) January 23, 2018
Shaun! I love you, but stop with the terrorist theory! #TheGoodDoctor— Love, Daisya 🏳️🌈 (@DaisyaSpencer) January 23, 2018
#TheGoodDoctor makes artful social commentary, if this was any other show i don't we would have gotten a POV from them patient about Shaun's theory that she's potentially a terrorist.— grabetsi (roll the dice on Thomas) (@WAisendgame) January 23, 2018
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airs on Mondays at 10 p.m. ET/9 p.m. CT on ABC.
Photo credit: ABC/Eike Schroter