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Chicago Med's Norma Kuhling Doesn't Try To Judge Ava Bekker

Chi-Hards who've been deep into NBC's "Chicago Med" for long enough are well acquainted with Norma Kuhling as the polarizing Cardiothoracic Attending Physician Ava Bekker. Exiting the series by shockingly taking her own life in the Season 5 episode "Never Going Back to Normal," Dr. Bekker remains one of the most indelible and controversial characters to appear on the show.

The truth is, Kuhling's story arc as Dr. Bekker in this popular One Chicago medical drama creates a character that seems custom-made to leave fans confused and angry. While Bekker's story begins innocently enough with friendly competition between her and Colin Donnell's former Dr. Connor Rhodes, the love affair that heats up between them soon goes ice-cold.

At that point, Ava turns into a scorned woman who refuses to accept reality, with dire consequences. But as Kuhling explained to One Chicago Center before her character's startling demise on the show, the actress was careful not to over-internalize Ava's behavior. "Ava's such an interesting person to get to know," Kuhling said, then added, "I try not to pass judgment on her personally. You don't want to judge the people you're playing because you're not being them, you're being you."

If you or anyone you know is having suicidal thoughts, please call the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline​ at​ 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

Norma Kuhling wanted to merge her own take on Ava with the scriptwriters' vision

As noted above, in her final few episodes on "Chicago Med," Norma Kuhling's Dr. Ava Bekker finds herself unable to sort fact from fantasy in her doomed affair with Colin Donnell's Dr. Rhodes. And as Bekker's desperate attempts to regain Rhodes' affections grow increasingly unsettling, she presents as a dangerously disturbed individual clearly heading for disaster.

But as Kuhling went on to reveal in the One Chicago Center Q&A, the actress was always eager to see how this challenging character was developing on the show, saying, "Every time I get a script I'm like, what is she going to do now?" Kuhling also touched on how she had formed her own detailed conception of Ava's personality, which she attempted to integrate with the character as presented on the page by the series' writers. "I have an idea of who I think she is," Kuhling said. "And it's been interesting to have my idea of who she is and how that matches up with the scripts I get every week, and try to marry the two ideas of the way the writers see her and the way I see her."