THIS IS AN ANIME ONLY DISCUSSION POST. DO NOT DISCUSS THE MANGA BEYOND THIS EPISODE.
I was quite bemused at Dr. Blackjack’s reasoning to try and bring a boy back from a 65 year coma. The doctors plead with Blackjack to operate on the boy to potentially wake him from his slumber. However, negotiations end after the doctors are unable to pay Blackjack’s $200,000 fee. Absurdly, Blackjack only agrees to do the operation after he finds out the boy is scheduled to be painlessly euthanized by a doctor he himself disdains. Doesn’t this seem like not only a conflict of interest but self-gratification on Blackjack’s part? He doesn’t even consider that death may be the best option for the boy; after all without this operation the boy would’ve stayed in a vegetative state indefinitely anyway.
So Blackjack does the surgery and the boy is revived against all odds and inquires about his family whom are long dead, he screams, “Why did you wake me up…I have no home to return to” rapidly ages and dies. You would think Blackjack would be doing some serious reflecting right now, but the series is too plot-driven to allow any time for such novelties. Anyway, surprisingly as a last slap in the face the boy’s last living relative thanks Dr. Blackjack for giving her a measly 3 seconds to chat with her uncle even though it would’ve been a lot better to just let him die to begin with, instead of letting him face the harsh reality of his fate and than dying screaming in despair.
Black Jack is opposed to the man's life being deliberately ended by others. Refusing to perform an operation with a very low chance of success as a matter of professional practice doesn't really contradict that. He performs the operation anyway because it's the only way for the man to even have a chance to keep living.
I think Black Jack's character is often pretty flat, but his conviction in not giving up on life works because he was once on the verge of death himself...although it doesn't really explain why he's so often intractable about money.
Seeing him react more to the horrible way things turned out would have been interesting, but I believe the character was written to be static, so I don't know if there's really anywhere it could have gone.
I appreciate that something finally went wrong for Black Jack, though. He's usually so invincible.