Nothing in this world that's worth having comes easy.Dr. Kelso

"My Boss's Free Haircut" is the twentieth episode of Scrubs' fourth season. Turk and Carla suffer marital problems. J.D. and Elliot try to help their troubled friends. Dr. Kelso has an extremely difficult patient.



Dr. Kelso breaks down the door to get to his patient

Dr. Kelso is angry at Dr. Cox after he continues to treat patients with little respect. Trying to set an example, Dr. Kelso decides to treat a patient himself. Kelso attempts to be polite to this very difficult patient, Miss Goldman, who reacts by locking him out of her hospital room. Dr. Kelso recommends that she create a diet and workout plan to help her lose weight and combat her illness, but she defies him and schedules gastric bypass surgery.

J.D. tries to solve Turk's marriage problems by taking him to a bar to loosen him up. The next day, Turk oversleeps when he and Carla are supposed to meet for brunch. J.D. covers for him by apologizing over the phone to Carla through Elliot. However, after the phone call, Turk confesses that he just didn't feel like going to the brunch, so he missed it on purpose.

Carla crashes at Elliot's place while having marriage difficulties and realizes that soon it will be the two-year anniversary of her mother's death. Elliot tries to cheer her up with a little party, leading to Carla hearing her mother's voice on an answering machine. Unfortunately, the message complains that Carla doesn't call her enough, which leaves Carla in tears. Elliot tries to rescue the situation by taking Carla to the graveyard to talk to her mother.

Eventually, Dr. Kelso confronts Miss Goldman by telling her, "Nothing in this world that is worth having comes easy," and the patient starts to realize what she needs to do. Kelso's speech also makes Turk realize what to do about Carla. He meets her at the graveyard and comforts her as she speaks to her mother. Carla isn't ready to move back in yet, but they are now making progress with their relationship.

Elliot falls into an empty grave, and the episode ends with her trapped there.

Recurring Themes

     More: FantasiesFlashbacksJ.D.'s girl namesJanitor's pranks and lies


A very drunk Janitor tries to avoid doing work


  • J.D. imagines the word "carnival" above his head and turns it into "Carla".


  • J.D.'s sixth-grade girlfriend teaches him that when a woman needs space, you give her that space, ramming the message home with a kick in the crotch.
  • Dr. Kelso is being a kind and supportive doctor, but then unceremoniously ditches his patient when he is appointed chief of medicine.
Now, you listen to me, Betty. Now matter how long it takes, we are gonna get through this.Dr. Kelso

Congratulations, Bob, they just named you chief of medicine.A Doctor
Bingo! Smell you later, Betty.

Janitor story

He's drunk and can't do a thing, afraid that he will pass out or puke. He does manage to move up to the ward, but can be seen passed out on the ground in the background in later scenes.

Can you open that door?Dr. Kelso

[OK, you made it up here without passing out or vomiting. Now, calmly and eloquently explain that you can't open the door right now, and he'll be on his way.] Gilvenrto... [Well done.]Janitor's narration/Janitor

J.D.'s Girl Names


Dr. Cox makes Elliot call J.D. "Betty".

  • Betty
Ask Betty why he's such a girly-girl.Dr. Cox

Not now.Elliot
Do it now, do it now, call her Betty.Dr. Cox

You're insane.Elliot
Betty, Betty, Betty, Betty, Betty, Betty, Betty.Dr. Cox


Oh my God, it worked!Elliot

Episode Running Gags

  • J.D. and Turk begin messing with Hooch, who becomes more and more angered whenever he hears his name and thinks people are talking about him.
  • Miss Goldman locks Dr. Kelso out of her room, and he is forced to break in by knocking down the door. Later, he does it again, although the door was unlocked.

Guest Stars


     List of music featured in Scrubs

  • "Collide" by Howie Day
  • "Until You Are Here Lyrics" by Tyrone Wells, replacing "Collide" in the iTunes version



"Hooch is crazy." — J.D.

[On phone] What do you mean, "Say Hooch"?Elliot

Oh my god! What?! I'm a little busy!Hooch
Uh... I'm sorry, I'm not really sure what's happening right now.

Well, of course you're not! Because in your head, it's all about you, isn't it? Well, no more! Say "hooch" again, it will be the last thing you ever say!

Why can't Carla just let this go?J.D.

Wouldn't you be mad if you caught your husband talking to his ex-girlfriend?Elliot
Yeah, but... mostly because I had a husband.

...But, since I'm here to heal, not judge, I'm gonna go ahead and write you a couple of prescriptions. You'll find that this first one is for an extra large mallet to help you pound some sense into yourself. The second one is for a big, floppy hat that you're now to wear every single time you leave the house. Have a great day, ya look like a purse.Dr. Cox to Mr. Warner

Guy, it's so on.Dr. Cox

What's on?Turk
Who cares, he referred to me as a guy.


"Skin doctor coming through! I gotta get somewhere, STAT!" — Dr. Johnson

You see a lot of sad things in a hospital, but nothing's quite as sad as a dermatologist that's just been paged, milking it for all it's worth.J.D.'s narration

All right everybody, watch your backs! Skin doctor coming through! I gotta get somewhere, STAT!Dr. Johnson

It's weird. I mean, I want his marriage to work out, but it's nice to have Turk all to myself again.J.D.'s narration

[J.D. pats Janitor on the back, passing on his narrating duties]

[Leaning against his mop in front of the main door and looking unwell] It's weird. I want to follow him down the hall and crack him over the head, but I'm so drunk right now, I know I'll collapse if I even move an inch.Janitor's narration

Maybe because I graduated first in my class at Stanford in 1972?Dr. Kelso

[Reading off her phone] You graduated twelfth in your class in 1968.Miss Goldman, before showing him the phone
She Googled yo' ass.Laverne
Laverne, I am not interested in your street lingo. What I am interested in is where she found that magic phone that keeps making me look like an idiot!

Carla, you can totally talk to people once they're gone. I used to talk to our maid, Consuela, all the time.Elliot

When did she die?Carla
When I was 11. At least, that's what my dad told me. I mean, I found out after college that he had her deported for putting knives in the fork drawer.

Y'know, Elliot, you're a lot more normal than you should be.


Carla is upset after hearing her mother's messages

Okay... You know, I was skeptical, but it's been kinda nice reminiscing about my mom.Carla

It's about to get a whole lot nicer.Elliot
Hi sweetie, it's Mom! I just called to tell you how much I love you!Carla's mother on the answering machine
It's J.D.'s old answering machine.
Hi Carla! I sure wish you would call me once in a while!
Hadn't heard that one. [unplugs the answering machine] So, uh, what other stories do you have about your mom?
Carla! It seems like you never have time for me anymore!
God, there's batteries!

My first patient today was a snot-nosed little punk who wouldn't let me give him a rectal exam unless I said "pretty please" first, and I'm just not big on asking strangers if I can put my hand up their butt. Not even in my private time.Dr. Cox

Every mother wanted me to marry their daughter because I was a doctor, and I used that to sleep with all those mothers, because that's what "house call" used to mean.Dr. Kelso

Those were the good old, incredibly disturbing days, Bob.Dr. Cox


  • Dr. Kelso reveals to Dr. Cox that Enid was recently paralyzed and is now in a wheelchair.
  • In J.D.'s voiceover, he alludes to the fact that Dr. Kelso was incarcerated for his attempt to run from a barber in order to keep from paying for his haircut.
  • Dr. Kelso's list of names that Dr. Cox has called patients includes "tokers, smokers, and jokers", which are lyrics to the song "The Joker" by the Steve Miller Band.
  • First appearance of Hooch.
  • J.D.'s girl name is the same name as Dr. Kelso's patient in the flashback where he was named Chief of Medicine.
  • Janitor's internal monologue while he is drunk is initiated by physical contact with J.D. (after J.D. pats him on the back), similar to the His Story/Her Story episodes.
  • While Elliot is stuck in the open grave, she says "Things could be worse" before hearing thunder. A possible reference to the Mel Brooks film Young Frankenstein, when Dr. Frankenstein and Igor are digging a grave and Igor says, "Could be worse. Could be raining," before hearing thunder.