Kate Walsh delivers a very real and moving performance in the latest episode of ‘Private Practice’ as Addison copes with losing the mother she never felt she really even had. Ironically, Bizzy (JoBeth Williams) requested only one eulogy at her funeral and that it is given by Addison. Addison refuses Sam’s (Taye Diggs) support, and tells him not to come with her to the funeral. When he runs it by everyone at the practice, Charlotte (KaDee Strickland) says they need to get on a plane as soon as possible and be there for Addison. One Flint area viewer was moved by Walsh’s performance. She said, ‘I felt so sorry for Addison. Kate Walsh was just so fantastic in conveying the grief and the numbness she felt surrounding Bizzy’s death. Parental rejection is such a terrible thing to deal with at any age. Kate has really made Addison’s feelings about Bizzy’s coldness so real. It was a very sad episode, because suicide hurts those who are left behind and it can be a very hard thing to sort out in your head.’
Addison has had a lot to process, with learning that her father was not really a cheater in the marriage, that her mother was really living a lie, dreaming to be with her true love, Susan (Ann Cusack). Then Susan gets sick and Bizzy puts it all on Addison’s shoulders to save her life. When things seem to go well, she doesn’t really even thank her. Then Bizzy kills herself and asks Addison to keep it a secret. A person can only take so much.
What is so touching about this episode is that Charlotte and Cooper (Paul Adelstein) have both endured such a huge tragedy themselves and it is ultimately them who help Addison through the seemingly impossible task of delivering a eulogy and lead Sam in finding a way to break down Addison’s wall to let him help her with the grief.
Charlotte tells Addison that she knows about Bizzy’s suicide and she will keep the secret. She also advises her that funerals are for the living and says, ‘Tomorrow is for you. Say whatever the hell you want.’
Addison’s eulogy is robotic and detached. Sam is concerned and Cooper tells him that Charlotte beat him up too. But, in order to help Addison, he has to push back, gently and not for revenge, but to show he is strong enough for her to show her real feelings to him.
In a very difficult scene, Sam finds Addison debating what to do with Susan’s urn and asks her to tell him the real eulogy. She resists at first, but, as Sam pushes, she finally breaks down into sobs. The truth about the suicide and her mother’s indifference towards her really hurts Addison. But, ultimately, she is still a child who has lost her mother and that is what hurts Addison the most. Walsh so beautifully portrays the sorrow surrounding that loss.
Ultimately, Addison realizes that her mother was overwhelmed by life and the thought of living it without her one true love. She tries to comfort her brother, Archer (Grant Show), by telling him, despite everything, her mother wasn’t thinking when she took her own life. She was broken from grief and she drowned and it didn’t mean their mother didn’t love them in her own way. She also tells him if she could have told the truth at the eulogy, that is what she would have said.
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‘Private Practice’ airs in Flint on WJRT TV ABC12 on Thursdays at 8 PM EST.