The Patient season 1 episode 6 recap & review: Charlie

Episode 6 of The Patient sees Alan try out a different approach to treat Sam’s condition while trying to keep it together himself at the same time. The episode is now streaming on Hulu.


Sam brings supplies to help him get rid of Elias’s body now that he’s killed him. His mother scolds him for not keeping his cool and tells him that she was so close to calling the police this time. She insists that he not give up on therapy just yet.

As Sam begins digging into the ground of his storage room with a jackhammer, Alan dissociates and finds himself in a room with his former therapist, Charlie. Alan talks about his situation while Charlie tries to guide him through this difficult time.

Charlie brings up the fact that Sam chose to bring Alan to his house to work on himself and Alan believes that deep inside there is a shred of empathy to work with but he just feels so helpless.

Sam begins digging with a shovel once he’s done with the jackhammer but stops once he starts getting blisters on his palms. He goes out and blames Alan for him becoming one of those people who bury people on their own property.

He tells Alan to get up and keep some distance while he unlocks the chain. He then takes Alan into the storage room and makes him dig the hole. Alan remembers a time when he spoke to a patient about his wife’s funeral and how the experience felt.

Alan also finds himself imagining a holocaust gas chamber with other prisoners. A scene of him talking to someone on a college campus soon after his wife’s death takes place. He notices a flier promoting a Nazi rally against the “radical Zionist agenda’.

Alan drifts off for another session with his therapist who is actually dead. He talks about how unfortunate his life is at the moment but Charlie tells him not to be so pessimistic.

When Alan tells Charlie the different techniques he used to help Sam, Charlie tells him that he needs to consider the fact that Candace is partly responsible for the abuse that Sam went through but Alan says he’d need 5-6 years to unpack all that.

Sam gets back and chains Alan back near the bed. Alan asks Sam to sit down so that they can talk for a while. He asks Sam to consider dropping Elias’ body somewhere it can be found.

Sam says that he’s worried that any DNA or fibres that will be found could trace back to him but Alan uses sound logic to convince Sam that his getting caught would be highly unlikely since he doesn’t have a prior criminal record.

His reasoning for letting the body be found is to give his parents a proper way to grieve. Alan talks Sam into tapping into his empathy and putting himself in Elias’ shoes so that he can think about how his parents would feel if their son died and they had no way of knowing how or when.

Sam takes in all that Alan says and agrees to it. As soon as he goes to the washroom, Alan hurriedly scribbles a note on his pad and stuffs the paper inside Elias’ mouth.

Sam comes out and asks Alan if he’s going through something after noticing him being very shifty. Alan tells him that he just feels the weight of the whole ordeal and thanks Sam for asking that question.

Sam wraps Elias’ body and drags it out to his truck so that he can dump it as Alan sits in hope that someone will eventually find his note and save him.


  • There are snippets of Alan’s life that are brought up but not explored enough to make an impact. First, it was the tension between his wife and son and now they’re exploring anti-semitic incidents that Alan must have gone through.
  • Unless that is given proper context, it’ll just feel like another issue tacked on just to fill time.
  • Alan chatting with his former therapist is a nice idea and is hopefully revisited a few more times before the end. Steve Carell and David Alan Grier have good chemistry and that should be showcased more.
  • The editing in this episode is especially great as the transitions between reality and Alan’s memories or imagination are seamless. The image flits back and forth but does not feel abrupt or jarring in any way.
The Patient season 1 episode 6
The Patient season 1 episode 6 recap & review: Charlie 1

Director: Gwyneth Horder-Payton

Date Created: 2022-09-27 09:30

Editor's Rating:

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