One Chicago performer of the week: Norma Kuhling, Chicago Med

CHICAGO MED -- "Shaky Ground" Episode 309 -- Pictured: Norma Kuhling as Ava Bekker -- (Photo by: Elizabeth Sisson/NBC)
CHICAGO MED -- "Shaky Ground" Episode 309 -- Pictured: Norma Kuhling as Ava Bekker -- (Photo by: Elizabeth Sisson/NBC) /

Our One Chicago Performer of the Week for the week of March 27 is Chicago Med star Norma Kuhling for her work in the episode Best Laid Plans.

It’s time to name another One Chicago Performer of the Week, and the star who impressed us the most this past week was Chicago Med‘s own Norma Kuhling.

Norma’s performance as Dr. Ava Bekker in Tuesday’s Med episode “Best Laid Plans” was a lot of things—determined, infuriated, bewildered—and showed us a few more shades of the newest doctor at the hospital.

Ava’s been a hard character to get a read on, because we just don’t know a lot about her yet; she has mostly been used as a foil, and now love interest, for Dr. Connor Rhodes (Colin Donnell).

But in the latest episode, and the one before, we’ve gotten to see more of Ava’s true colors even if we still don’t have a lot of her backstory.

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“Best Laid Plans” pitted Ava against Connor in a surprising and painful competition, where two of their patients needed a donor heart and only one was available.

While Ava advocated for giving the heart to their first patient, whose body had just rejected his last donor organ, Connor was determined that it go to one of his other patients who was in even more dire need. And the two spent the whole episode trying to do what they thought was right.

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We’ve seen Ava fight with Connor before, but it’s usually because she just wants to start a fight and/or tweak him a little bit. She’s competitive, and she’s also outspoken, and so many of their spats have been more frustrating than compelling. But in this episode, she was going after him to try and save a life.

Norma Kuhling’s performance was just as aggressive as we’ve come to expect from Ava, but there was also a compassion and even a little bit of vulnerability that we saw. Yes, Ava was angry with Connor and that was very clear, but we could also see how much she cared for the patient that she was advocating for.

After Ava’s operation on her mentor in “On Shaky Ground” (as seen above), “Best Laid Plans” was the second time we’d seen her truly blindsided. She was really baffled by how far Connor went to win the transplant war, and Norma Kuhling was wonderful at communicating that—showing us an Ava who was on the back foot, who finally didn’t have a quip, and who we actually wound up feeling a little bit bad for.

There’s no denying that Dr. Ava Bekker is a polarizing character, but what matters to her most is patient care, and we saw that this week. With more episodes like this, we might wind up rooting for Ava in the end.

Next: Read our interview with Norma Kuhling

Congratulations to Chicago Med‘s Norma Kuhling for being our Performer of the Week! Which One Chicago actor stood out to you this week? Let us know in the comments.

Chicago Med airs Tuesdays at 10/9c on NBC.