Well, thank goodness that’s over. For what seems like forever our residents have been singular in their focus: preparing for and passing their board examinations. Don’t get me wrong. I’m well aware that this test is no small matter. It practically exemplifies the phrase, “It all comes down to this.” Yep. Here is where careers either take off or implode. In “Let The Bad Times Roll” four residents got the news they wanted to hear, while a fifth saw her dreams collapse. Meanwhile, back at the Mother Ship, the attendings were dealing with their own problems.

San Francisco

In a fun change of pace and structure, we began after-the-fact as the residents grumbled, panicked and shell-shocked, about what they had just endured. All were convinced they’d failed and, truthfully, one could see why. As their examinations were revealed in flashback, not a single one of them had calm sailing in the biggest test of their lives.

After a terrible night, Meredith was still vomiting like crazy and it didn’t help that all of her questions were of the icky variety. Still, all of the training she did with Callie seemed to pay off because after a desperate call to Derek, Mer pulled herself together and passed. Yay!

Cristina got a proctor who threw her for a loop. Played to crusty perfection by guest star William Daniels, the examiner questioned everything Dr. Yang said, which not only exasperated her but also threw her off her game, I think. In the end I suspect that while Cristina’s manner was abrasive and arrogant (as per usual) her medical chops couldn’t be denied so she, too, passed. Thank heavens. If Cristina chooses to give her marriage with Owen another go (and I hope she will) it can’t be by default. Professionally she’s on solid ground, now what will happen personally? If there is to be growth (which GA creator Shonda Rhimes has promised in this storyline) then we need to see actual life balance for once, yes? There’s no reason why Cristina can’t have her career and her husband.

Alex Karev. He missed the entire first section of the test because he chose to stay with Baby Tommy and Morgan. That meant he basically had to ace sections two and three and, despite one tiny misstep on a ‘trick’ question, he did just that. Yes! Despite his shortcomings, Alex has developed into a terrific doctor. So will all three of our Original Interns in the clear, that brought us to…

Jackson and April who were both caught up in the fallout of their encounter the night before the test. Plus Jackson was feeling the pressure of being an Avery and also wigging out over his mom’s hookup with Dr. Webber. Then there was April who still regretted violating her religious beliefs by sleeping with Jackson, but apparently not enough to keep her from doing it again. In the men’s bathroom. They both calmed down considerably after that. Jackson returned to his cool-as-a-cucumber self and passed, but for April it was too little, too late and she failed! Way to go, Jackson! Poor April! And, really, what is this? A horror movie? The deflowered virgin dies, so to speak? Really? I was really glad it wasn’t Cristina or Alex or even Meredith, but I felt bad for April. What now?


Back on the home front attendings were wondering how their residents were doing while “wooing” residents to replace them should they accept offers from other hospitals.  Bailey played the game for awhile as a favor to Owen but eventually couldn’t make herself “grovel at the feet of bread sniffers”. Classic.

Meanwhile, Arizona’s childhood friend turned up and, because of waiting way too long to seek medical attention, was basically a dead man walking. Let that be a lesson to us all.  Don’t wait six years to get a tumor treated!

Speaking of waiting, Lexie found out that Julia wanted to have Mark’s baby and that was finally enough to make her spill her guts about loving him. I’m sure the Mexie fans were ecstatic, but I’ve got to say I found the whole thing a little desperate and off-putting. Sorry. I did like Derek and Meredith’s phone conversation and Derek as-big-brother-to-Lexie and the Derek/Miranda playful-banter-between friends while discussing the merits of metaphors.  It was a good week for Derek.

Final Stretch

OK, kids, so that’s about it for this week. Only two more installments remain for the season. Who will stay? Who will go? Who will reconcile? And who will die? That’s right, someone is toast in the season finale and almost everyone’s future will hang in the balance in some way. Just another week at Seattle Grace Mercy West!

The next all-new episode of Grey’s Anatomy, “Migration”, airs Thursday, May 10 on ABC.

Janalen Samson

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV