Colin Donnell, Norma Kuhling not returning in Chicago Med season 5

CHICAGO MED -- "Play By My Rules" Episode 408 -- Pictured: (l-r) Colin Donnell as Dr. Connor Rhodes, Norma Kuhling as Dr. Ava Bekker -- (Photo by: Elizabeth Sisson/NBC)
CHICAGO MED -- "Play By My Rules" Episode 408 -- Pictured: (l-r) Colin Donnell as Dr. Connor Rhodes, Norma Kuhling as Dr. Ava Bekker -- (Photo by: Elizabeth Sisson/NBC) /

Chicago Med is losing two stars, as Norma Kuhling and Colin Donnell will be exiting the series and not returning for Chicago Med season 5.

Two Chicago Med doctors are checking out of the hospital. Colin Donnell and Norma Kuhling are leaving the show at the end of this season, meaning that their last episode will air in just a few weeks.

According to Deadline, the actors didn’t choose to leave; rather, they were written out for “creative reasons related to the characters’ story evolution.”

That means the writers didn’t feel they had anything else to write for Dr. Connor Rhodes and Dr. Ava Bekker, after a tumultuous and controversial season for the two characters.

It also means that the hospital won’t have a cardiothoracic surgery department next season, since the Connor and Ava characters were the two regulars who represented that department. And who knows what will happen to Connor’s brand-new hybrid OR?

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But this is a shocking development for Chicago Med, after what’s been a dramatic season. Colin Donnell is one of the show’s original cast members, and he’s also one of the best actors in the entire ensemble; to not bring him back is losing a major piece of why the series works.

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As for Norma Kuhling, she’s only been on the show for two seasons, and her character has been written into a corner recently, so her dismissal is a bit more understandable. It’d be harder to explain Ava staying at the hospital with her current behavior, but that’s not the actress’s fault.

And how will they be written out? Together or separately? Or will they even get an exit storyline, since this news is breaking after season 4 has finished filming?

They become the second and third cast members to be written out of Chicago Med this season; it also saw the exit of Rachel DiPillo as Dr. Sarah Reese, though it’s never been clear if she chose to leave or was also let go.

No word yet on if the show will hire new actors to replace them, or if the show will just continue with more focus on the Emergency Department. It’s already scaled back its amount of psych plots since only Dr. Daniel Charles (Oliver Platt) is left from that team.

Donnell addressed his departure on Twitter, while One Chicago fans will continue to reel from the news. His last episode, along with Kuhling’s, will be the season 4 finale on May 22—in less than a month.

Next. How Chicago Med created an Ava problem. dark

For the latest Chicago Med season 4 spoilers and news, plus more on the entire series, follow the Chicago Med category at One Chicago Center.