Get ready for an extra dose of laughs, and enjoy every surreal moment as television's celebrated sitcom hits new heights in its sensational seventh season. Elliot, Turk and Carla may be growing older but they aren't necessarily growing up, even as career changes, family issues and love invade the quirky world of Sacred Heart. The best way to enjoy the contagious comedy of Season Seven is on DVD, complete with exclusive bonus features -- including a behind-the-scenes look at the "fairytale" episode directed by Zach Braff, bloopers and alternate lines. It's off-the-charts entertainment you'll want to watch over and over again.
Scrubs staged a near-miraculous recovery in its seventh season; this despite the usual indifferent treatment by the network, low ratings, and a writer's strike that only allowed for 11 episodes. In this case, less was more. Scrubs regained its footing with sharper writing (Dr. Cox's signature rants are more inspired than tiresome this season, although at one point, nemesis Dr. Kelso threatens to hire an orchestra to "play him off"), more empathetic situations, and meta-fun with such "third-tier" characters as Snoop Dogg Attending (formerly Snoop Dog Intern), Dr. Beardface (pronounced "Beard-fassay"), and new squeaky-voiced intern, Josephine (Scrubs scribe Aseem Batra). Beginning with J.D. (Zach Braff) and Elliott (Sarah Chalke) coming to their senses before they can consummate that sixth season cliffhanging kiss, this season will be one of "weird crystallizing moments." Elliott will call off her upcoming nuptials to Keith. J.D. will be forced to tell Kim ("cute as a button" Elizabeth Banks), whom he impregnated after only their first date, that he does not love her. The "annoying whiny man-child," as Dr. Cox (John C. McGinley) calls him, will finally ponder whether it is time for him to grow up. Dr. Cox will admit that he is lonely without his acerbic wife (Christa Miller) and son when they go out of town. Other developments include the smitten Janitor's (Neil Flynn) initially suspect new girlfriend (can she really be named "Lady?") and on a Scrubsian sad note, Kelso (Ken Jenkins) faces forced retirement when it is revealed he is actually 65 years old. Scrubs deftly blends absurdist fantasy, flat-out silliness and dramatic, emotional moments, as in "My Number One Doctor," in which Elliott must deal with a terminal patient's suicide attempt. The season's most ambitious episode is the finale, "My Princess," a Princess Bride homage in which Dr. Cox transforms one undiagnosable patient's case into his son's bedtime story that is populated by Scrubs characters, with Elliott as a princess, Turk (Donald Faison) and Carla (Judy Reyes) as a two-headed witch, and J.D. as, you guessed it, the village idiot. The ample bonus features include audio commentary for every episode, a fun "Alternate Lines" segment that illustrates the improvisational leeway cast members enjoy, deleted scenes, bloopers, an interview with Ken Jenkins, and a behind the scenes look at the "My Princess" episode. Poised for cancellation, Scrubs got a second opinion from ABC, which picked up the series for an eighth season. That's heartening news for devoted fans who would never pull the plug. To borrow Turk's well-worn catchphrase, "That’s what I'm talkin' about." --Donald Liebenson
Stills from Scrubs: The Complete Seventh Season (Click for larger image)