“The Good Doctor” is a rare gift in the realm of TV Shows, combining its incredibly talented and diverse cast with creator David Shore’s imagination and steering at the helm, along with an assembly of very accomplished and marvelously unpredictable writers. Fans are thrilled that Season 4 is already a go for the ABC medical drama, but sadly, there will be a noticeable shortage in diversity and talent within the roster of stars, as Jasika Nicole will not be returning in her role as Dr. Carly Lever.Show business is never steady employment, and even the most acclaimed actors accept roles, knowing that their screen lives exist at the pleasure of the higher powers in production.
Still, faithful devotees of “The Good Doctor” are still reeling from the unexpected death of Dr. Neil Melendez, the brilliant surgical mentor at San Jose St. Bonaventure Hospital, so deftly conveyed by Nicholas Gonzalez.Tragic as it was, Dr. Melendez got to say his piece to every person near to him not still saving lives, and proclaim his love to Dr. Claire Brown (Antonia Thomas). The same cannot be said for Jasika Nicole as Dr. Carly Lever, and the star is not keeping silent about feeling “used” and deeply saddened by the decision to not invite the star back as a regular on “The Good Doctor.” The Daily Express related Nicole’s disappointment in separate features on June 26 and June 27. Fans are already emotionally shaken before the first minutes of Season 4 take shape.
Jasika Nicole captivated the heart of ‘The Good Doctor’ and the fansWhile Dr. Shaun Murphy (Freddie Highmore) made it clear beyond all doubt that he had no affection or affinity for the science of pathology, “The Good Doctor” was very impressed by the beauty, dedication, empathy, and direct honesty of Dr.
Lever. The scene of Dr. Murphy at her door, extending “flowers and chocolates” to the woman who is no longer his supervisor, but his intended, is one permanently stored and cherished in the cache of keeper episodes. Her acceptance of a date had fans jumping for joy right along with Shaun down the sidewalk, still holding the flowers and treats.
Immediately, viewers rallied to Jasika Nicole in her portrayal of the “girlfriend” who wanted a real, genuine, and full relationship with her man. She exhaustively studied research on autism and intimacy to ease Shaun from lying side-by-side on a bed, to timed exposure, before their “love parade.”Carly’s patience had a payoff on very lasting levels, but not lasting enough for many fans, who yearned for her to stay and fight for the future that she and Shaun could create. Instead, she insisted that he declare his love to Lea (Paige Spara) after feeling that she could not contend with the “something” she knew was alive between them at a karaoke date.Nicole was introduced as the pathologist in Season 1 and became a series regular in Season 3.
David Shore announced that she would not be returning in the coming season after Season 3’s finale. The actress did not conceal the sting of the blow, nor its reasons.“Unfortunately, I was not asked to return to the show next season,” answered “The Good Doctor” star to one enthusiastic fan. Jasika Nicole continued that the situation was “very disappointing” and that she feels that “I was used ” as a “prop” to push forward the other white characters’ narratives.”Why is ‘The Good Doctor’ dissecting inclusiveness?Jasika takes note parenthetically that she sees a “trend” to allow a POC (person of color) actor to join in a cast for a certain purpose, and then, suddenly become expendable. In a follow-up, she states that she never felt misled by “The Good Doctor” because she doesn’t think that the production purposely intended to end her role as a regular after one season.
She also describes the cast of the drama as “supremely talented,” and she certainly fits into that category.The entire spectrum of storylines and characters that are interwoven into “The Good Doctor” encapsulates inclusivity. But, in the case of this star, Jasika Nicole was barely able to scratch the surface of all Carly could offer, and the actress yearned to go deeper between her character and Shaun Murphy, “beyond the romantic relationship.” She also looked forward to storylines involving several other characters at the hospital, and so did the viewers.
Nicole cautions that while it was not specifically her experience on “The Good Doctor,” POC actors can fall into the trope of “magical characters,” meant to impart wisdom or some other gift to the main character, appealing to white audiences, only to vanish in short order.She consistently stands as an advocate for inclusivity on a true, real, human level, without mythology or concession. Just as Carly guided and appreciated Shaun as a whole, valuable human being, not only for his impeccable savant skills in medicine, and never as a novelty. She wants to be appreciated on-screen and off as a woman with the full range of human purpose and attributes. Let’s hope that “The Good Doctor” may reconsider Jasika Nicole for the future.
Jasika Nicole isn’t the only star from ‘The Good Doctor’ who’s doing something differentEven with her shifting vocational status at the moment, Jasika Nicole has many reasons to be contented. Before “The Good Doctor,” she was Astrid Farnsworth in a long-running role in “Fringe.” Guest-starring roles are sure to be amassing for the 40-year-old from Birmingham before the next role as a regular arrives.Jessica has been married to the artist, Claire Savage, since 2013, and loves designing clothes for her wife. Nicole is also an illustrator in her own right.Any fans who are concerned about Nicholas Gonzalez can put fears to rest. The actor is alive and well in real-life, and these days, frequently making appearances on MSNBC on behalf of the Masks4 Farmworkers Campaign.
Since the initial outbreak of the coronavirus, Gonzalez has been the impassioned spokesperson for the vital cause for personal protective equipment for agricultural workers who have no means to procure needed items. It’s refreshing to see the human side of those who only portray characters on TV, whether on “The Good Doctor” or some other popular series.In any case, it’s likely to be a while before Season 4 of “The Good Doctor” is ready for prime time. It’s nice to know that stars like Jasika Nicole and Nicholas Gonzalez have found a deeper purpose in the downtime.