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Private Practice - S05E21

Romance . Comedy . Drama

When a patient's partner and father are heatedly divided on his health care, Pete makes a decision that impacts everyone, including himself; meanwhile, Jake offers strength and experience to Amelia when he suspects she's being tempted to substance abuse, Sheldon and Violet treat a family concerned about the father's new sexual appetite, and as baby Henry draws Addison and Sam closer, they struggle to define their relationship.

Episode Title: Drifting
Airs: 2012-05-8 at 10:00 pm
  • David Hinckley

    Private Practice at first glance looks like it's about to die. But by the end of its premiere tonight it has miraculously come back to life, apparently without even the aid of a tall, handsome, mysterious script doctor.

    New York Daily News Full Review
  • Heather Havrilesky

    Ultimately, asking if Private Practice is good is like asking if a Twinkie is good. The answer is "No" and "Of course!" and, also, "Give me another one."

    Salon Full Review
  • Robert Lloyd

    New beginnings can be difficult; there are problems here, though they are not irremediable. By and large the show improves on its pilot.

    Los Angeles Times Full Review
  • Robert Bianco

    Still, for all the show's flaws, here's the good news: Practice is far better than the dismal Grey's episode that introduced it.

    USA Today Full Review
  • Ray Richmond

    The talented cast isn't quite as successful in getting past the shortcomings of a teleplay (from Rhimes, naturally) that's typically light on believability and heavy on the outrageous.

    The Hollywood Reporter Full Review
  • Aaron Barnhart

    I was disappointed by the opening episode, which left me with the distinct impression that Taye Diggs (playing a newly divorced doctor in the practice) and Tim Daly (Walsh’s first love interest on the show, but I’m sure not the last) were simply working off their ABC contracts that began on other, now-canceled shows. The portrayals of alternative medicine were unfortunate and too much forced zaniness.

    Kansas City Star Full Review
  • Brian Lowry

    ABC's eagerly awaited spinoff of "Grey's Anatomy" initially qualifies as a disappointment -- hitting completely familiar medical-drama beats while pursuing a whimsical tone it never fully achieves.

    Variety Full Review
  • Rob Owen

    Kate Walsh seemed like a guest star in what should be her show.

    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Full Review
  • Mike Duffy

    Even with Walsh's star sizzle and an attractive, talented supporting cast that includes Tim Daly, Amy Brenneman, Taye Diggs and Audra McDonald, Rhimes still hasn't found her spinoff's storytelling groove

    Detroit Free Press Full Review
  • Ellen Gray

    The good news is that the show's first non-"Grey's" episode is a decided improvement and recaptures the sense of humor that the mothership seemed to lose last season. The bad news is that as a medical show, it's so predictable that anyone who's watched any David E. Kelley show in the past 15 years or so, from "Chicago Hope" to "Boston Legal," will see certain plot points coming a mile (or two) away.

    Philadelphia Daily News Full Review
  • Charlie McCollum

    Tonight's opening episode is somewhat better than the pilot, although it's clear there is still work to be done in defining the characters and setting an overall tone.

    San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times Full Review
  • Alessandra Stanley

    The premiere showcases seven different women, doctors and their patients, in various states of anger, insecurity and neediness. It’s like a Hogarth engraving of the seven stages of womanly despair, “A Surgeon’s Progress.”

    The New York Times Full Review
  • Ken Tucker

    The pleasure to be extracted from Private Practice--well, not so much pleasure as cringey curiosity--resides entirely in trying to figure out what's really going on inside the actors' heads as they skip through this latest Adults Are the New Spoiled Brats fantasy from "Grey's Anatomy" creator Shonda Rhimes.

    Entertainment Weekly Full Review
  • Maureen Ryan

    The problem is that Private Practice attempts to drum up comedy from things that aren’t funny and to wring drama from situations that are melodramatic, predictable or reek of barely repressed anger.

    Chicago Tribune Full Review
  • Melanie McFarland

    Private Practice manages to turn the viewer off in an entirely different way from the moment it starts.

    Seattle Post-Intelligencer Full Review
  • David Zurawik

    While the series created by Shonda Rhimes brings some outstanding performers like Amy Brenneman and Audra McDonald back to weekly TV, tonight's season opener is not very appealing.

    Baltimore Sun Full Review
  • Glenn Garvin

    Fans of Grey's Anatomy femme fatale Addison Montgomery may find her a little dull now that she doesn't have a husband or boyfriend or intern to cheat on or with in ABC's spin-off Private Practice.

    Miami Herald Full Review
  • Alan Sepinwall

    Addison isn't very strong or decisive in her professional capacity either, spending most of the pilot waffling on whether she should have left Seattle Grace.

    Newark Star-Ledger Full Review
  • Matt Roush

    This lightweight medical drama still needs serious script surgery.

    TV Guide Magazine Full Review
  • Verne Gay

    Private Practice is hugely disappointing, and in so many ways that a mere review can't even begin to do all the problems injustice.

    Newsday Full Review
  • Tom Shales

    Spun clumsily and greedily off "Grey's Anatomy," the new series seems shallow and smirky.

    Washington Post Full Review
  • Doug Elfman

    You can see the script and directional tone holding back the actors.

    Chicago Sun-Times Full Review
  • Tim Goodman

    Private Practice is bad. Not "worse than "Grey's Anatomy bad" in the sense that Rhimes really is good at pulling people's heart strings with melancholy and humor.

    San Francisco Chronicle Full Review
  • Matthew Gilbert

    Private Practice is just plain McLousy, from its stock cast of whiny healers down to the hokey, gimmicky medical cases of the week.

    Boston Globe Full Review
  • Jonathan Storm

    It's amazing there's no orthopedist, since the show's so lame.

    Philadelphia Inquirer Full Review