“Puttin’ on the Ritz” – Grey’s Anatomy

Screen Shot 2013-10-13 at 1.30.20 PMA thoroughly enjoyable episode from Grey’s this week, but one in which very little of note happened. “Puttin’ on the Ritz” took place on the hospital’s fundraising night. It offered a lot of humor – Yang’s enjoyment of the fundraising competition set by Avery, the personal competition between Derek and Meredith, Arizona and Kepner getting drunk in one of the closets at the hospital – but the humor was the least important bit of it.

Important arcs moving forward will be Yang taking Ross under her wing (he’s a shark), Ross’s potential feeling for Steph, Owen possibly dating Emma Marling (Marguerite Moreau, The OC, Shameless) and, most importantly, Alex finding his dad after 20 years. This story will be two-fold. First and foremost, Alex will have to get to know his father (a heroin junkie). Secondly, he’s going to have to deal with feelings of resentment towards Wilson for telling him when he didn’t want to know.

Our only problem with the episode was one we also had last week – where is Ross’s guilt for killing Brooks? Or is being fearless the way his guilt plays out? Maybe he will become more and more reckless until he puts someone’s life in danger. It’s a possibility. We just wish we were seeing some manifestation of his guilt now. This all feels a bit swept under the rug. – K

Quoteworthy: “That’ll do, Sharky. That’ll do.” – Yang

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“Everybody’s Crying Mercy” – Grey’s Anatomy

Screen Shot 2013-10-07 at 5.09.17 PMAnother disappointing episode from Grey’s Anatomy, and Season 10 isn’t off to a great start.

The main focus of “Everybody’s Crying Mercy” was Richard’s recovery, and that was something we could be glad of. It meant we didn’t have to focus too much on Callie and Arizona’s bitter separation, Derek and Meredith’s exhaustion or Alex and Wilson’s sex life. Though these were all touched on, it was blessedly sparing. Enough to let us know that certain storylines are continuing. What more do you need?

The real disappointment came in Shane’s arc. Though he had a few nice interactions with Bailey and Meredith, and one fantastic scene (and monologue) with Richard, we felt that this was overlooking the most important takeaway from the double-episode season opener – it is his fault that Brooks is dead. He is wracked with guilt. Why didn’t we see that this week? We saw him, yes, a little more serious than normal, and a little less inclined to crack a smile. But Continue reading

“Seal One Fate” and “I Want You with Me” – Grey’s Anatomy

Screen Shot 2013-09-30 at 10.15.16 PMThis was almost exactly the episode of Grey’s we would have expected after last season’s finale – an upswing in drama and disaster (but nothing the characters couldn’t deal with), relationship issues, emotional revelations, just the right balance of lying and bare-bones honesty. If anything surprised us it was that the writers didn’t really deliver an emotional gut punch. That has been Grey’s Anatomy’s standard operating procedure up ‘til now and not only was it shocking that they didn’t follow through, it was a little disappointing, too.

Twilight detractors (bear with me, I’ve got a point) have always pointed to Stephanie Meyer’s lack of lady balls as one of the saga’s main failings. Her inability to kill off ‘beloved’ characters is without parallel. That’s not something that one could ever say about Grey’s Anatomy, until now. Yes, most of the cast has survived a lot of horrendously tragic season finales, but look at everyone who didn’t survive. George, Sloan, Lexie, Denny… Beloved characters to a one. And now, at this crucial moment, with this one death that could have really mattered, the writers pull their punches.

Yes, folks, you’re reading it right. Webber survived. Who didn’t? Continue reading

“Perfect Storm” – Grey’s Anatomy

Screen Shot 2013-05-22 at 11.08.25 AMThe Grey’s Anatomy finale surprised us, if only because it was actually fantastic. It wasn’t true edge-of-your-seat drama. Come on, let’s be honest. We were all 99 per cent certain that Meredith would survive. But it was still tense enough. There were some fantastic moments – Meredith talking Ross through her own splenic dissection, for one – and some beautiful moments from the characters surrounding her less than easy delivery.

Our biggest disappointment was that they called the kid Bailey. Like, it’s a great name in a ‘James Stewart running down the streets shouting Merry Christmas’ kind of way, but poor Ross is going to be so upset. We know we weren’t the only ones thinking that’s what she meant when she said she knew what she was going to call him. Ross Shepherd has a nice ring to it, too. Bailey Shepherd? It sounds like a drink.

Honestly, though, it was the peripheral stories that most gripped us. Yes we know we were supposed to care about Meredith Grey, but when she’s the central character there’s no need. The characters around her, on the other hand, are relatively dispensable. Which is why our hearts were in our throats for Jackson. His near death scene was predictable, yes – from the moment he started clambering all over that bus crash we knew something was coming – but still got us right where our emotions live. Kepner’s reactions, first to his death and then to his majestic and remarkable reappearance, were perfect and more than enough to make us sure that there’s no way she’d go through with the wedding to Matthew. This is where the first cliffhanger came in, though. As Kepner told Jackson she wants to be with him, and asked him to give her a reason to leave Matthew, the action cuts away. We’re going to have to tune in in the Fall for his response.

The other storyline we loved was, of course Continue reading

“Readiness is All” – Grey’s Anatomy

Screen Shot 2013-05-15 at 2.23.15 PMPretty standard fare from this week’s Grey’s, but sufficient to tee us up for a tension-filled and possibly fatal finale. The big stories of the week remained Bailey, Karev and Wilson, and Owen and Ethan. There were no real surprises in any of these, with the exception of the revelation that it was Wilson who almost beat Jason to death, not Karev. Richard got Bailey back into surgery. Owen finally admitted that he wanted to adopt Ethan so, predictably, Yang fixed Ethan’s dad.

The will-she-won’t-she cheating arc came to a head by episode’s end, with Arizona and Lauren wrapped in a steamy embrace in an on-call room. The big surprise of the episode came in the form of Matthew’s flash-mob proposal to Kepner, which she accepted. As the episode closes, each of our characters (with the exception of Alex and Wilson who have finally realized how they feel about each other and are at Alex’s house) is confined to the hospital, with a storm raging outside. The generator is on the fritz. Meredith has gone into labor.

Predictions for the finale: Continue reading

“Do You Believe in Magic” – Grey’s Anatomy

Screen Shot 2013-05-04 at 7.12.10 PMOverall, we didn’t love this week’s Grey’s. It wasn’t bad. Not exactly. It just felt exactly like every single episode we’ve watched in the last five months. Which is why this review starts with almost exactly the same sentiment as last week’s. We’ve seen all of this before. Jackson and April? Old news. Owen and Ethan? Old news. Case inspires doctor to solve something in their personal life? Old news.

There were a scant few aspects of “Do You Believe in Magic” that rose above the usual to pique our interest. First among these was the episode’s arguable core – Bailey. Throughout the episode, she remained holed up in her lab, ignoring everyone. They all thought she was pissed at them. We saw through that. She was clearly afraid to go back into surgery in case she hurt anyone else. But it took the arrival of husband Ben to get her to admit that, even to herself. This was an interesting side of Bailey for us to get a glimpse of. We’ve seen plenty of her neuroses – most notably, this year, in relation to her wedding – but have never seen her lose confidence about surgery. That was something new.

We also got introduced to a potential affair for Arizona. We can scarcely believe we’re writing those words. She’s always seemed so clean cut and innocent and pure. Like a less annoying Kepner. But the vibes are definitely there. Visiting doctor Lauren Boswell (Hilarie Burton, One Tree HillWhite Collar) is turning the flirting way up. She knows that Arizona is married and she doesn’t care. Arizona seems more than flattered by the attention and, with Continue reading

“Sleeping Monster” – Grey’s Anatomy

450x254xgreys-anatomy-sleeping-monster-clip-i-need-you-there_450x254.jpg.pagespeed.ic.7l9263XyidThis week’s Grey’s was a strange one. While watching it we enjoyed it but, now, looking back, it feels static to us. It didn’t give us anything new, aside from Bailey’s simultaneous accusation and exoneration (she was a carrier for the infection, but it was the gloves brought to the hospital by Pegasus that caused the disease to spread). Owen was still really interested in Ethan (in a non-creepy way). Alex realized he’s in love with Wilson, but that’s not really news to us. Yang realized that she’s going to lose Owen, which we saw coming a couple of weeks ago. April and Jackson were fighting, no one trusted Jackson to lead, and April got back together with an ex. Even Bailey’s fight with Webber didn’t excite. The Grey’s staff are always fighting. It never lasts. Call us when something important happens. Right now, it feels like we’re stuck in one place. In some cases – like with Kepner and Matthew, and Alex and Wilson – it even feels like we’ve gone backward a few steps.

Honorable mention for the family reunion storyline. It gave us two characters we actually enjoyed seeing on the screen: teenage journo Frankie (Abbie Cobb, 90210,Suburgatory) and sad sack Uncle Al (Mike Hagerty, FriendsWayne’s World), both of whose stories we found compelling. – K

Quoteworthy:

“She’s my friend.”

“ You sound stupid when you say that.” – Alex, Cristina

PS What is Wilson doing moving in with someone when she hasn’t told him about her past? Idiot.

“Transplant Wasteland” – Grey’s Anatomy

       

This is a prime example of a case where the episode’s title is far more exciting than the episode itself. “Transplant Wasteland” sounds like an epic movie along the lines of Repo! The Genetic Opera but, y’know… not terrible. There’d be a bunch of explosions and a central love story between a dorky teen and a hot girl who’s being hunted for her liver. Michael Bay would probably direct it. That’s not this episode. This episode should probably just have been called “Teething Issues”. That way, we wouldn’t have gotten our hopes up.

It’s not that the episode is bad, per se. It’s just that it doesn’t live up to Grey’s usual standards. It all felt a little like an interim episode. One that they only needed to bridge the gap between one state of being and the next – which is appropriate, given the subject matter of the episode, but takes much of the enjoyment out of it.

The episode centered on Avery’s transition as head of the Board of Directors, everyone’s inability to run the hospital without Owen, who quit early on, Alex and Jo’s continuing sexual tension, and three simultaneous organ transplants. Though the plot should have kept us on the edge of our seat throughout, it was disappointingly predictable from the offset. Of course Avery would be a mess until he stood up to the Board and to his mother, winning over the Board in the process. Of course Owen would come back to the hospital. Of course Jo would start falling for Alex. Of course the organ transplants would go perfectly. It couldn’t have been any other way.

The one bright spark, ironically, was Kepner’s arc. As she dealt with the voluntary death of a friend and former co-worker, we got some of the touching and emotional fare Grey’s is so good at.

And a final touching moment came with (yet another) new name for the hospital, one that was all Avery: The Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital. It has a nice to ring to it. – K

Quoteworthy: “I thought she might cut someone to get you that kidney.” – Meredith, to Alex, about Jo

“The End is the Beginning is the End” – Grey’s Anatomy

“The End is the Beginning is the End” saw the plane crash storyline come to an end… oh wait. It didn’t. Can it soon, please? It has now surpassed the shooting in terms of repercussions. And I know that a plane crash that nearly killed off all of the hospital’s best staff members is a big deal, but can we please move onto something new now? Yes, Grey’s does need a deep and recurring plot point every season – something to make us forget that nothing happens in the hospital except for call-room sex and partner swapping – but I think, at this point, it might have been okay just to have a simple resolution and move on to the next disaster. Could everyone not just have been happy with their $15 million each for a few weeks?

No. Apparently not. Because apparently the hospital’s insurance is refusing to pay due to a technicality, and Seattle Grace Mercy West is going to have to declare bankruptcy and close its doors to pay the settlements. So now we’re going to be subjected to a minimum of three weeks of everyone (with the possible exception of Callie, or maybe Derek) refusing to take the money and Owen refusing to not pay it. And then either someone else will buy the hospital, the ‘victims’ will use the money from the settlement to buy the hospital, or they’ll finally convince Owen they don’t want the money at all. Why couldn’t we just have done all of that in this episode?!

Other things that happened: Jo and Alex’s ‘friendship’ grew (they’ll be friends for, at most, another month before it turns into something more than plutonic); Meredith finally announced that she’s pregnant; Derek and Shane played ping-pong; Kepner regretted not marrying Jackson (he and Steph probably won’t last, though, so she has nothing to worry about); Jackson stepped out from under Sloan’s shadow; and Webber felt guilty for all of a week about cheating on Adele, then went back to Catherine.

In conclusion: please let the countdown begin to the end of this disaster, and the beginning of the next one! – K

Quoteworthy:

“Mo’ money, mo’ problems…”

“I should’ve been on that damn plane.” – Cristina, Alex

“Things We Said Today” – Grey’s Anatomy

This was a medical case (finally) that I cared about! But how could you not? I mean, who doesn’t love biker gangs and contravening expectations! When the gang leader didn’t kill the accountant who nearly killed them all, instead offering to let him join the club, it was actually quite sweet.

The rest of the episode unfolded in more or less predictable fashion. It was a nice break from the overly serious, though, as talk of the plane crash was basically shelved and the unconsciousness of Shepherd meant we didn’t have to deal with Meredith’s usual handwringing and his recent sulking. With the exception of Adele’s surgery, it was about as light-hearted as Grey’s gets – just what I needed.

As the wedding is put on indefinite hold while Bailey is in surgery with Adele, the couples peel away and we get a chance to see them all interacting. Torres and Arizona are getting back on track and are cuter and closer than ever. Jackson and Stephanie totally hook up. Shane completely misreads Kepner and completely embarrasses himself. But I’m on his side. I’m seeing sparks, too, and I don’t think it will be long before they’re an item. Cristina and Owen signed their divorce papers but have by no means broken up. Owen finally realized that they were perfect before their wedding, and that it was trying to put their relationship into a tidy little box that killed it. No marriage, no problem. I’m excited to see the next leg of that particular tumultuous love affair.

Hands down, though, my favorite new/potential couple of the week has to be Alex and Jo. As they compete over whose childhood was shittier and use “the number one weapon of the street child” to get free stuff, I couldn’t help but laugh along with them and hope, more than I ever did before, that these two end up together. Jo is everything that Izzy wasn’t, and might be just the person for Alex. Finally. I’ve always kind of rooted for him.

I also suddenly loved Bailey’s fiancée, Ben, as he reassured her, and us, that her ambition would never get in the way and that he would love her forever, even if he only gets to see her for five minutes every couple of months. He’s actually kind of adorable.

But this is Grey’s, and no amount of happiness and joy can get in the way of a real downer! As Bailey and Ben enjoy their first dance, Webber arrives at the wedding and tells Meredith that Adele has died. As the image of Bailey and Ben fades to one of Adele and Richard dancing, and as the music changes seamlessly from Ed Sheeran’s “Kiss Me” to “My Funny Valentine”, Grey’s has once again moved me to tears. Damn it. ­– K

Quoteworthy:

“Do you want me to put it back on?”

“Are you kidding?! Don’t ever put it back on!”

– Jackson, Stephanie