Five Days at Memorial – Season 1 Episode 6 Recap & Review

45 Dead

Episode 6 of Five Days At Memorial begins with Dr Horace in the hot-seat, ominously declaring that decisions were made after those 5 days that never should have been made.

This spine-chilling opening paves way for the dissonance and tone-deaf response from George Bush to the situation happening in New Orleans. A series of montaged news footage is stitched together over his speech – beautifully edited I may add – before whisking us off to Atlanta, 13 days after Katrina.

Butcher is called over to Baton Rouge to see the Attorney General. He wants to look into what happened in Memorial Hospital. With 45 dead patients inside, it’s flashed up as a red flag and the authorities are intent on investigating this further. And joining him for this is Virginia Rider who works in the fraud department.

Receiving the run-around from those in charge of Memorial, along with news from LifeCare about morphine being injected, the pair realize they need to get hold of these LifeCare records – and Anna – to get to the bottom of this.

With Memorial not opening any time soon, Anna falls on her feet and is offered another position at a hospital in Tennessee. She doesn’t even think about it, wanting to jump straight back into work again. She gladly accepts. Will this investigation derail that though?

In stark contrast, Susan is tasked with phoning the victims alongside Helen and several other nurses, They all go by a script to give this awful news. Speaking of script, we cut to Anna Pou giving an interview on TV about the patients and their deaths, which feels like a big script.

Butcher listens to Anna’s interview and comments how well drilled this seems. Could she have practiced this speech before? Either way, it reaches mainstream appeal and in fact, CNN want to do an interview.

Either way, Virginia and Butcher decide to head down to New Orleans themselves. The place is a desolate wasteland. Cars lay abandoned by the side of the road, the place has been completely destroyed, and they’re stopped from entering the hospital. Apparently they need a warrant and a hazmat suit to get in, but given the security there aren’t even following their own protocols, it raises yet another red flag.

The attention firmly turns to Anna here though, who gets herself an attorney for the upcoming media storm that’s coming her way. No pun intended with the word storm there.

Butcher and Virginia eventually sit down with Diane, who gives a harrowing account of the events for day 5. “The plan is for no living patient to stay alive,” Is what Susan tells her. And for Anna, she’s far more forthcoming, having told Diane that some people will not make it. Some people like Emmett Everett, who was conscious and aware of what’s happening.

Butcher has his doubts over the euthanasian story, feeling like it’s too incredulous to believe. In order to get to the bottom of this, he and Virginia decide to find more nurses, who help to flesh this story out further – including Morphine being used.

The pharmacist has a pretty damning assessment of Anna, including his eyewitness report of her coming out of one of the rooms with the needles in a clear plastic bag. Anna then subsequently asked him to check on the patients – the deceased ones – and pull the sheets up over their head. He’s convinced that the patients were murdered.


The Episode Review

This week’s episode changes tact slightly and instead of the pressure cooker situation inside the hospital, we’re now looking at things from the outside, looking in. Most of the earlier nail-biting tense has now gone and instead, we’re onto the investigative side of things. There’s nothing wrong with that of course, we’ve seen recently shows like Dopesick manage this really well, but we’ll have to wait and see if that keeps up.

As for Five Days at Memorial, the attention is predominantly focused on whether or not Anna Pou actually murdered these patients by injecting them. It’s a tough question, and officially wades into murky morally grey waters, which this show has handled pretty well so far.

It’s clear that things are going to heat up going forward and I’d imagine we’ll be gearing up for a proverbial storm when this whole ordeal comes to a head. Will Anna be found guilty of all this? How will the other doctors and nurses react?

Big questions are afoot and although this chapter feels like a bit of a deep breath, I’d imagine we’re about to plunge further down the rabbit hole in the weeks ahead.

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