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Shaun’s savant syndrome gives him a leg up in the knowledge department, but he needs other people to give him cues and clues so that he understands behavior that’s not straightforward.Thus far, he’s been shown to acquire new understanding of sarcasm.We haven’t seen him do this in adulthood, but sometimes when he’s anxious, the character fiddles with his hands or the toy scalpel he had as a boy. If anything, this inconsistency shows that obsessive, blinkered behavior isn’t an absolute. Hopefully “The Good Doctor” has allowed audiences to learn new ways of thinking about people who have autism. The show is an early ratings hit; check back with Indie Wire to see how someone in the autism community assesses the show. His interest in the machinery makes the accompanying noise just part of the package.
Shaun appears to be aware of his attractive neighbor Lea (Paige Spara), so it will be interesting to see if he will attempt to learn how to have a non-platonic relationship with her or perhaps another woman.
While it’s true that Shaun has had moments where he cannot understand someone, and therefore either acts inappropriately or has to ask what something means, that does not make him without empathy.