In season four's premiere, viewers were stunned to see the return of Nicholas Gonzalez's Dr Neil Melendez, following his tragic death in the season three finale. In emotional scenes, a grieving Claire Brown was comforted by a vision of Neil, who reassured her that things were going to be okay.
Reflecting on Dr Melendez's fleeting return to San Jose St Bonaventure Hospital, Freddie Highmore – who plays Shaun Murphy – told TV Guide that it was "lovely" to have the character back.
"It was lovely to see [Nicholas] and lovely to have him back. At the end of season three, we're all hoping that this isn't the last that we'll have seen of Dr Melendez," he said. "Certainly, I wanted more of that story. And I feel like more people did."
Highmore went on to suggest Dr Melendez's return was part of Claire's "character development" and grieving process, before hinting that his comeback (of-sorts) will have a lasting impact on the rest of The Good Doctor's fourth season.
"These first two episodes show that there's a definite possibility [for him] to remain a part of the show in certain ways, so absolutely," the actor said, when asked if another spiritual visit could be on the cards.
"As we would have said at the end of season three, I think that still stands today... hopefully, he will continue to be a part of [the show] in whatever way possible."
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