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"Never Say Never"
Season 8, Episode 4
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Air date October 18, 2001
Written by Dee Johnson
Directed by Félix Enríquez Alcalá
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"Never Say Never" is the fourth episode of the eighth season of ER. It first aired on NBC at October 18th, 2001. It was written by Dee Johnson and directed by Félix Enríquez Alcalá. Sherry Stringfield marks her return as Dr. Susan Lewis since her departure in the third season episode "Union Station". Susan comes back to Chicago looking for a job and has a lunch date with Mark Greene while Kerry Weaver and Jing-Mei Chen clash over management issues which causes Chen to make a drastic decision.


After a five year absence, Dr. Susan Lewis returns to Chicago and meets Mark and her fellow colleagues which leads to Susan getting a new job at County General. In the aftermath of the incident in The Longer You Stay which had Chen and Malucci accidentally kill a patient, Chen is brought before a risk management meeting with Weaver going to great lengths to cover herself as well which later results in Chen making a drastic decision.

Abby's attempts to make peace with Luka are jeopardized by the arrival of Luka's mysterious female friend, Nicole.

When a injured man arrives into the OR, Benton faces a crisis as the man wishes to die, believing his death will improve his family's financial future with Benton being left stranded in surgery and as he battles to save the man's life, Benton contacts Roger for help.

As this goes on, Mark and Elizabeth treat a six-year old boy who is suffering from Edwards Syndrome and who is also a Trisomy 18. Elizabeth attempts to help the boy recover, only to discover too late that the youngster's parents have secrets of their own.

NBC Description

'ER' ALUM SHERRY STRINGFIELD RETURNS TO COUNTY GENERAL: Former County General alumna Dr. Susan Lewis (Sherry Stringfield) returns to Chicago looking for a new job and swings by her old digs to renew friendships especially with Dr. Greene (Anthony Edwards) while a nervous Dr. Chen (Ming-Na) is accompanied by Dr. Weaver (Laura Innes) to a "risk management" review of her treatment of a deceased patient.

Elsewhere, Dr. Benton (Eriq La Salle) is caught between a life-saving surgery and the need to pick up his young son before his school locks up.

Dr. Corday (Alex Kingston) meets Dr. Lewis and struggles with the parents of a young boy with a rare and chronic disease who have grown discouraged with his long-term prognosis.

Dr. Kovac (Goran Visjnic) is surprised when a beautiful French waitress (guest star Julie Delpy, "Killing Zoe") shows up in the ER and asks for him. Noah Wyle, Maura Tierney, Paul McCrane and Michael Michele also star.


Guest Cast


  • David Hewlett who appears in this episode as Mr. Schudy would later go to play Dr. Rodney McKay in the Canadian/American sci-fi TV series, "Stargate SG-1", "Stargate Atlantis" and "Stargate Universe" while Matt Craven (Gordon Price) would later on to go to appear in the highly popular American crime drama series, "NCIS" as Clayton Jarvis, the Secretary of the Navy.
  • Both David Hewlett and Alex Kingston are originally from the United Kingdom with both actors also hailing from the small English county of Surrey.
  • During the episode, Carter and Abby both reveal that tomorrow is Friday, suggesting that the events in this episode take place on a Thursday.
  • In this episode, Erik Palladino's final appearance in the series, he does not speak at all.


  • Nikka Costa: "Everybody Got Their Something"