It’s been a while since the last new episode of Grey’s Anatomy, so here are the things you should remember: Derek and Meredith got engaged, Izzie is dying of cancer, Hunt and Cristina broke up because he almost choked her to death in a PTSD-induced nightmare, and Callie and Arizona are officially a couple.
Tonight’s Grey’s Anatomy begins with Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) examining her shiny new engagement ring in bed next to Derek (Patrick Dempsey) who is still asleep. When he wakes up, she tells him that she’s not really a ring person, so she doesn’t want to wear the ring. She’s also not a poufy white dress kind of bride. She and Derek joke together that they’ll get married in scrubs with a bouquet of scalpels and clamps. They walk out into the living room where Lexie (Chyler Leigh) and Mark (Eric Dane) are making. The air immediately gets frosty because Derek and Mark are still on the outs.
In the hospital, Izzie (Katherine Heigl) is recovering from her successful brain surgery (with a full head of hair, no less) by poring over bridal magazine. Also, Callie (Sara Ramirez) and Arizona (Jessica Capshaw) kiss on the stairs, in full view of the hospital staff, so obviously their relationship is going well. Bailey (Chandra Wilson) has the day off, but she is at the hospital because she wants to watch Arizona perform a certain surgical procedure. Arizona starts to tell her about her relationship, but Bailey’s all, “Don’t do that thing where you tell me about yourself.” Their conversation shifts, and Arizona susses out that Bailey hasn’t yet told her husband that she wants to do a peds fellowship.
Izzie is pacing in her room back and forth, talking to purveyors of bridal stuff on her Bluetooth, capitalizing on her cancer to get them to deliver the dresses. Dr. Swender, in about the two seconds that she appears in this episode, is worried that Izzie should be conserving her strength because after her chemo treatment today, she’s really going to want to die.
Hunt (Kevin McKidd) is now seeing Dr. Wyatt (Amy Madigan) for psychotherapy, but he is refusing to connect his Cristina-choking episode with his feelings about his platoon in Iraq. She wants to help him put a name on the feelings he is having in order to start making sense of them, but he is a recalcitrant patient.
Callie’s dad is visiting, and she wants to introduce him to Arizona and, thus, to the fact that she now swings the other way. When Mr. Torres (Hector Elizondo) walks into the hospital, he finds George (T.R. Knight) and throws him against the wall with his hands around his neck for cheating on his daughter. Callie steps in and says that technically, she also committed adultery too, with Mark. So Mr. Torres switches gears and throws Mark against the wall. Callie again steps in and finds the courage to introduce him to the new person she is dating, who, as it turns out, is not a gentleman suitor. Daddy is not going to like this.
There are two trauma patients who come in. They were involved in a traffic accident: one was a pedestrian who was struck by the other patient’s car. Hunt assigns George to report to Alex today, who is more than happy to boss him around. Mark and Derek work the patient who was driving the car, and Lexie is caught in the middle of their personal feud. She overeats to overcome the stress. I guess this is how they are explaining away Chyler Leigh’s pregnancy pounds? I like Lily’s hot dog eating contest much better in How I Met Your Mother.
George notices that the pedestrian who was hit by the car has injuries that are not consistent with the story. He wants to order a psych consult, but Alex thinks that he’s wasting his time. George orders the consult anyway.
Bailey and Arizona have a young patient named Jessica who has a terminal condition and will likely die in the next few of hours. The child’s father desperately searches for experimental Mexican stem cell treatments as a last-ditch effort to save her life, but Arizona tries to convince him that he can’t do anything and to just be by his child’s side. The father shames her for giving up, and tries to figure out a way to get the child to Mexico that night.
Meanwhile, Richard (James Pickens Jr.) has a special assignment for Meredith today, and that is to go try on wedding dresses for Izzie, who has turned her room in the oncology wing into a veritable bridal shop. Meredith whines to Derek that she doesn’t do dresses, but she can’t bear to look into Izzie’s cancery, wedding-loving eyes and tell her that. But if someone doesn’t intervene now, they’ll have to say good-bye to scalpal and clamp bouquets, and hello to poufy dresses for her and a top hat and morning jacket for him. Derek dutifully goes to talk to Izzie, but learns that the morning coat is non-negotiable, and they’ll have to take ballroom dance lessons as well.
Cristina (Sandra Oh) sees on a monitor that Izzie has lost consciousness and rushes to order a crash cart. Once she races to her side, Izzie starts cracking up. It’s all a joke, but she actually does need Cristina for something: she needs her to page Meredith to get her to try on dresses. Cristina is not happy about this, and I start getting stressed out about “Boy Who Cried Wolf” storylines. Meredith finally succumbs, and very reluctantly tries on a very poufy dress. She tries to tell Izzie that she’s buffalo-wings-at-the-reception person and not a tiara-with-a-veil person, but Izzie guilt-trips her into trying on the tiara, staring her down with her cancery eyes.
Mr. Torres wants Callie to quit her job and come back and live at home with him. He says that he’ll talk to the chief and arrange everything. Naturally, this doesn’t sit well with Callie who indignantly tirades in rapid-fire Spanish to Arizona about it. This reminds me of the episode of 30 Rock, in which Selma Hayek’s character tells Jack Donaghy that rapid-fire Spanish is very soothing for gringoes to listen to. Only, in this case, Arizona doesn’t look very soothed. Mark steps in to allow Arizona to go back to work, and Callie explains to him that her father has provided everything she could possibly want for her, including paying for all of her education and setting up a huge trust fund for her. Mark reminds her that providing for someone is not the same as respecting them.
Bailey’s patient Jessica wants her dad, but her dad is out researching illegal Mexican stem cells. Bailey does her supermom/superdoctor thing by sitting with the child in the rocking chair and stroking her hair.
Alex brings over a cheeseburger and fries from Joe’s bar for Izzie while Meredith tries on more dresses in the bathroom. Lexie comes in, scarfs down some fries and asks Meredith to please intervene with Mark and Derek. Izzie pretends to choke on a fry. (Cristina gets mad at her again for pretending.) But actually, as soon as everyone leaves, she gets nauseous and vomits into a bucket. She is pretending to be strong for her friends, but she is beginning to feel the effects of her chemo.
The patient who was driving the car has a whole bunch of stuff messed up about him. He tells Hunt and the other doctors bitterly that this was no fault of his own. He was just driving to the bank when the pedestrian dove under his car, with his arms out like Superman. Clearly, the pedestrian was trying to kill himself.
Hunt finds Alex roaming around after delivering the cheeseburger, and reams him out for not keeping an eye on the potentially suicidal patient. George discovers that the patient is no longer in his bed in the pit, so he and Alex run outside to look for him. This turns into a big fight between them. George says that Alex didn’t even want to do the psych consult, and he doesn’t see what Hunt or Izzie sees in him. Alex rebuts that he has tried to respect George because he’s Izzie’s friend, but he’s done trying. Right at that moment, they hear an ominous glass-crunching sound overhead. The suicidal patient jumps out from one of the upper floors, crashes through the window, and lands on a car.
George and Alex bring the patient in, and because George is more knowledgeable about how to proceed, Hunt lets him scrub in instead of Alex. Meanwhile, Alex can only say lamely that the dude’s esophagus looks messed up. During surgery, Hunt tells George that he would make a perfect candidate for trauma surgery because he is always thinking five steps ahead and gets calmer as things around him get more chaotic.
Meredith scolds Derek and Mark and orders them to make up, if not for their friendship, then for Lexie’s waistline. Derek says that the chief is going to be the best man, which infuriates Meredith since the chief is the one who had an affair with her mother, ruined her parents’ marriage and made her childhood miserable. In surgery, Derek and Mark bicker some more about everything they’ve ever fought about, and it looks grim until Derek admires the quick way Mark was able to stitch up a bleeder.
A nurse checks up on Izzie who is looking very weak. The nurse accidentally knocks a wedding dress off the rack on his way out, so she decides to walk across the room to pick it up. But when she gets there, she collapses. Another nurse rushes in to attend to her.
Mr. Torres sits down with Richard to discuss Callie. He offers to write a donation check in whatever amount Richard wants if he can get Callie transferred to a hospital in Miami. The chief says, with all due respect, that Callie is a grown woman and should be allowed to make her own decisions. (I think this is out of character for Richard, though. He’s usually such so hung up on hospital prestige and rankings and what not that I would have thought he would have jumped at the chance for an economic stimulus. Hmph, I guess people surprise me.). Anyway, all that talk about Callie being a grownup means nothing to Mr. Torres. He says that your child never stops ceasing to be your child, even if they grow up and make decisions that you can’t recognize. You still love them, no matter what, and you never stop fighting for them. (This storyline actually hits very close to home for me. I’ve had a very similar kind of argument with my own parents recently.)
In a nice contrast, we cut to Bailey’s patient Jessica, whose father is still at wits’ end trying to find a way to Mexico. She emotionally talks him down until he takes her place next to the child. As the father tearfully talks to his daughter, her monitor stops beeping and she dies.
Cristina optimistically tells Izzie that she is doing alright, but Izzie’s cheerful mask is finally off. She says that she thought today would be fun and funny, making Meredith try on dresses that she’ll definitely, but she knows that she is terribly sick and she is just another cancer patient. Cristina tells her that all the vomiting and all the painful stuff is absolutely normal for the kind of treatment she had today.
Mr. Torres gives Callie an ultimatum: either she move back to Miami with him (and give up her Sapphic ways), or he will take away her trust fund and cut her out. In response, Callie cuts him out of her life. (We watch their fight through Arizona’s eye as she stands outside the room where they are fighting, once again in decidedly unsoothing, rapid-fire Spanish.) After her father leaves, Callie breaks down in Arizona’s arms.
In therapy, Hunt somehow draws a connection between his two trauma patients with his relationship with Sandra. I don’t really get it, though. Maybe Cristina was driving to the bank, but he dove under her car? Trying to kill himself caused her to get hurt too? I guess that kind of works. Anyway, he finally admits to Dr. Wyatt that he feels shame with what happened with Cristina, and she encourages him that this is a good start on the road to recovery.
Derek and Mark finish up the surgery and save the man’s life. While they tell the man’s wife that he’ll be find despite his many injuries, Derek says that Mark’s quick actions in the OR directly saved his life. There are only a few people who can cut off bleeding the way Mark did in there. Awww, does this mean that Mark and Derek made up? Why yes it does, evidenced by the fact that they begin bickering on the true nature of compliments. A bromance made in heaven!
Arizona tells Bailey that what she did today with Jessica, the little girl who died, was truly heroic, and advises her to go home and tell Tucker that peds is way more than just cutting people open.
Meredith tries on another dress as Cristina wipes off Izzie’s cancery brow. Meredith finally cracks a smile as she spins around in the dress that will be her wedding dress. Back at home, Meredith tells Lexie that just because their respective manfriends are having a tiff, it doesn’t mean that Lexie will be barred from the wedding. In fact, Lexie will be a bridesmaid, but she shouldn’t get too excited it about it because she has yet to see the bridesmaid dresses that Izzie picked out. Meredith has resigned herself to have the big wedding of Izzie’s dreams, but she doesn’t seem unhappy about it. The Grey sisters’ conversation is interrupted with the boisterous return of Derek and Mark, who are back to being BFFs. All is right in the world again. Oh, except that Izzie is still dying.
Over at Joe’s bar, Alex gives George props for kicking his ass in surgery today. Alex admits that George is much better at handling himself in a crisis, and Izzie being very sick is a big crisis. He doesn’t say it, but it’s understood that he needs George to be there for him during this crisis.
-Debbie Chang, BuddyTV Staff Writer
(Image courtesy of ABC)