After two harrowing hours to open the season, Grey's Anatomy
returned to more traditional form in "Love The One You're With". This was a perfect example of a transitional episode in which a lot happened and yet there was very little forward motion. Instead, the greater purpose was to set up storylines for the foreseeable future.Getting Her Hand Back
It's striking that all of the characters that mean anything to us (sorry new interns, but for now you're just glorified guest cast) are wearing navy scrubs. Well, except Cristina, but we'll get back to her later. Anyway, Meredith and Alex and Jackson and even newly-returned April are Attendings. They're in charge of cases. They take the lead. They have interns for the day. They even get to hang out, much to Miranda Bailey's dismay, in the Attendings' Lounge. Yes, the babies are all grown up and it's both starling and kind of wonderful to see. I had to laugh when Miranda grumbled about not being used to having all of them hanging around, especially given their usual shenanigans. But leave it to Richard to inform Miranda that he's still getting used to HER being an attending! Priceless.
It wasn't all fun and games, though. Miranda's feeling a bit lost. Her little boy was off to school without drama. Her pupils are Attendings in their own right. Even her fiance, Ben, is enthusiastically pursuing his own surgical internship. Meanwhile, Miranda feels stuck and left behind. She's lost her mojo. This really resonated with me because I think a lot of women (myself included) have felt this way. You dedicate your life to people who then move on without you. And Richard once again gave stellar advice. Yes, he reasoned, Tuck let go of Miranda's hand, but the upside is that she now has that hand back. He encouraged Bailey to try something new and find something that excites her again. I hope we get to see that story unfold.
I'm Here Now
Speaking of venturing into new territory, Cristina Yang is flailing around at The Clinic in Minnesota. Things aren't going well at all. She doesn't fit in at Mayo and she's clearly distracted by the aftermath of the plane crash. For heavens sake, she doesn't even seem to care about the settlement offer! Cristina is closing herself off from everyone and everything that means anything to her and yet there were two important developments.
First, she's finally gotten some insight into Dr. Thomas (played beautifully by veteran William Daniels). It turns out that he's not just a bumbling old man past his prime. Instead he's made it his life's work to develop a "signature" procedure and he encourages Cristina to do the same. He also survived a plane crash. What do you know? Cristina has gained both a mentor and a friend.
Second, Cristina and Owen shared a series of lovely yet heartbreaking telephone conversations (how do Sandra Oh and Kevin McKidd do so much with so little?). They're clearly still deeply in love with each other, but neither has the foggiest idea of what to do. Owen no longer knows how to reach out to Cristina. Cristina keeps sending mixed signals to Owen, probably because she knows that even hearing his voice means she can't think straight. Didn't you love it when Cristina was talking about April but really about herself? She insists the calls have to stop. He agrees. Her life is in Minnesota now. He agrees again. But are things really over for Owen and Cristina? Magic Eight Ball says, "NO".And In Other News
April's back and is stunned to discover that Jackson didn't go to Tulane. Awkward. Now she wants to pretend that they never happened but Jackson's not having it. Any bets on how long April stays re-virginized?
Alex Karev is back to his bad boy ways, bedding every intern in the hospital. Well, except one, Jo. I'm going on the record right now and saying that I do not want Jo to be Alex's new love interest. Seriously. I know the man deserves happiness and Grey's Anatomy
creator, Shonda Rhimes, has indicated that he will finally get a love who will not leave him, but really. Jo? NO! Alex needs an equal. He needs a woman who is both worthy of him and will not put up with his crap. Not Jo the Intern. There. I said it.
Finally, there's a big subplot about the settlement offer I mentioned earlier. There's a lot of money on the table. Change your life, never have to work again, travel the world, college is paid for, future is secure, mega amounts of money. And, of course, the decision must be unanimous. Setting aside momentarily the notion that if they take the money there will no longer be a show because everyone would give up practicing medicine, it's no surprise that Derek convinced the group to not settle.
Lexie's dead. Mark's dead. Arizona's lost a leg (man, did Jessica Capshaw and Sara Ramirez rock that shower scene or what?). Cristina is seriously messed up. Derek can't operate and apparently MerDer have to sleep with the lights on because it's still too scary to sleep in the dark. The money is tempting, but I think McDreamy's right. The losses have to mean something. And our doctors have an obligation to try to make sure that this doesn't happen to anyone else. So they ignore the lawyers. Now let's see what happens.Grey's Anatomy
returns next week with an all-new episode, "I Saw Her Standing There", directed by Kevin McKidd
, on Thursday, October 25 on ABC.