STATUS: Main Character
First Appearance: “Pilot”
Voice Actor: Sarah Chalke
Beth Smith had the potential to be someone great. As the daughter of Rick Sanchez, she’s inherited many of his traits. She’s no super scientist, but her intelligence and dexterity has given her the necessary skills to be a competent surgeon. Unfortunately she feels her talents are wasted treating horse hearts instead of humans.
At the age of seventeen, Beth made the decision to keep her child and marry Jerry. While she lives a normal, comfortable middle class suburban life, she often dreams of what could have been. Stuck with a hapless husband who constantly embarrasses her with his neurosis; a father who only recently came back into her life; a severe drinking problem (also inherited from Rick); and a degrading job, Beth’s life is stuck in a rut. She’s extremely bitter and often in denial of her problems. Whenever confronted with them, she often drinks or takes it out on her husband, demeaning him through her superiority. This often gives the impression that she’s cold and standoffish. Her need to be the very best is also a cry for her father’s attention. Rick left her many years ago for reasons she can’t comprehend (and he isn’t talking), leaving her with abandonment issues. No matter what Rick does and how bad it can get, Beth will often excuse her father just so he won’t have a reason to leave, soaking up whatever praises he has.
While Jerry has shown something of an emotional need for Beth, the latter often thinks about leaving him to pursue her goals. No doubt their lives would be fulfilling without their co-dependency on each other, but it’s ironically what keeps them sane. Jerry may not be half the man Beth thinks he needs to be and her issues could fill the Grand Canyon, but the two are very much in love. When they’re especially prompt, they tend to bring out the best in each other. If they can just get past their ego and victim blaming, Beth and Jerry might still have a future after all.