In this week’s Grey’s Anatomy, Meredith reminds us in her signature voiceiover that doctors sometimes give good news and sometimes bad news. It’s part of practicing medicine. And so it is, too, in “Both Sides Now,” a solid – if not spectacular – outing in which there is too little Alex Karev and way too little MerThan. On the upside, I particularly enjoyed the character groupings this week as well as the return of focus to actual…wait for it…patients. Plus, any episode which features multiple scenes of Owen Hunt taking care of Baby Harriet is A-OK in my book.
A Glorious Day
As we begin, Miranda Bailey proclaims the day to be a glorious one. Today, she gets to tell her patient of five years (a lovable 80-year old grandmother named June) that after three years on the transplant list, she is getting a new liver. Today, Miranda feels like “Ed McMahon with a big check.” Knowing Andrew has had a rough time of it lately, the Chief pulls DeLuca into her orbit to share the joy and quicker than you can say “human sunflower” (Granny June is just that awesome) he’s presented with a box of homemade Snicker-doodle cookies and being warmly (and literally) embraced by June’s grateful extended family.
Unfortunately, this day is not so glorious for Chelsea, a young woman who is suffering from a heat stroke so severe that it – you guessed it – is causing her liver to fail. This actually doesn’t seem like an insurmountable obstacle because Chelsea has a twin sister, Chandler, who is eager to donate a piece of her liver and, since they are identical twins, they should be a perfect match. But there’s a twist. Chandler turns out to be pregnant so she can’t be the donor. What to do?
Fortunately, Meredith Grey knows just how to solve this problem. Chelsea (who will be dead in a day without a new organ) can have the liver that’s been earmarked for June (who could likely wait a little bit longer for her transplant). All they have to do is get June’s permission to make the change. Much to everyone’s shock, June flat out refuses. Though she feels badly for the “poor lamb,” June has waited a long time for this liver and “Granny’s going to get a liver today.” Meredith is horrified but Miranda is thrilled. She needs her one day of joy.
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So, This Isn’t Real?
Meanwhile, Amelia – fresh off the decision she and new husband, Owen, have made to try for a baby right away – realizes that she’s late. And she’s never late. And, being Amelia, she immediately tells pretty much the whole hospital (Meredith, Maggie, April) that she’s pregnant! Meredith, ever the realist, points out none-too-gently that it’s not a real thing until Amelia takes a pregnancy test and confirms that she’s actually pregnant, not just “maybe- because-I’ve-got-a-feeling-I-must-be” pregnant.
Amelia dithers around the whole day without taking the pregnancy test. She seems particularly worked up about telling Owen about the pregnancy. She asks Meredith how Meredith told Derek when she was pregnant. To review, with her son, Bailey, Meredith gave Zola a “Big Sister” tee shirt to break the news. For daughter, Ellis, she dodged it completely because Derek was dead. Yikes! “That was fun for a minute,” Maggie astutely remarked.
But just as Amelia began to get on my last nerve (which hasn’t happened in at least four or five episodes – a new record!), the truth finally comes out. I had stopped watching Private Practice by the time Amelia showed up on that program, so I only had a sketchy idea of her back story. I knew she had a baby who died. I knew the father of that baby had overdosed in Amelia’s bed. What I did not know was that he died before he knew Amelia was pregnant. Suddenly Amelia’s hesitation to tell Owen makes a whole lot more sense. “I didn’t have to do this last time. Because he was dead.” Eeeeesh.
At the end of the day, Amelia decides to tell Owen the truth: she might be pregnant. Owen, having spent the day taking care of Harriet (in some absolutely adorable scenes with Alex, Ben, and Nathan) can’t contain his excitement. After all, as Nathan pointed out earlier in the day, Owen’s always wanted a “pile of kids.” For now, though, that dream’s still on hold. Amelia takes the pregnancy test. It’s negative.
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Odd and Ends
* Maggie and Amelia spend the day grappling over the “best resident,” Stephanie. Though Edwards spends most of her time with Amelia in Neuro, today Maggie wants her for a very rare and complicated cardio case for a patient named Andy, a former astronaut, who is full of charm and not afraid of risk. Despite initially seeming stable, Andy throws a clot and dies post-operation (bad news). But one reason Andy came to the hospital for a long-shot procedure was so he could still be an organ donor in case that procedure failed (good news). Despite Granny June being an “organ hog,” Andy turns out to be a match for Chelsea, so the liver problem is solved! Meredith is relieved and Miranda has the decency to feel torn about the whole mess, “I swear, you try to have one day damn of joy around here…”
* Andrew and Jo continue to grow closer as she gripes about being passed over for recognition or appreciation of any kind. Stephanie gets the one in a million cardio case. Andrew gets the liver surgery, cookies, and a new hand-knit scarf. What does Jo get? Nada! Except “hottie” Andrew calling her out on her crap and being sort of flirty in the process. I kind of like these two together. Sorry, Jolex peeps!
So, what did you think? Granny June – selfish monster or deserving matriarch? Are you hoping for an Omelia baby? Should Jo get back together with Alex or start something new with Andrew? And will Nathan finally wear down Meredith’s defenses or are they destined to remain colleagues? Hit the comments!
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Memorable Moments and Quotes
Miranda: “You’ve had a rough few weeks. I thought you’d like some unmitigated joy, so today you’re going to be Ed McMahon.”
Andrew: “I don’t know who that is.”
Meredith (to Amelia): “I hugged you and you haven’t even peed on a stick?”
Owen (after Karev calms Harriet): “What did you do?”
Alex: “I don’t know. Maybe it’s you. Babies can tell when you’re tense or freaked out. Maybe you’re not a baby guy. Babies just don’t like some guys.” [Karev hands Harriet back to Owen and walks away]
Owen (to a crying Harriet): “It’s okay. The bad man’s gone. I’m a baby guy. You can see that, right? You like me. You like me!”
April (to Amelia): “Make sure Owen is the first to know. You can avoid a lot of aggravating Family Court that way. True story!”
Maggie (to Amelia in front of Stephanie): “I am not stealing Edwards. I am borrowing her. We do this all the time. Like when I got that sweater and I needed your cute shoes.”
***Alex and Meredith on the bench in the ambulance bay. Perfection.
***The thaw in the Owen/Nathan relationship. There’s a real vibe between Kevin McKidd and Martin Henderson. I totally buy that these guys were once like brothers. Maybe they will be again one day? I need some Bromance!
Owen (to Nathan, after Harriet’s blow-out diaper): “Damn it! More wipes!!!”
Meredith (about Amelia the possible liver for Chelsea):
“Are you sure? I don’t want to get excited if this isn’t real.”
Grey’s Anatomy airs Thursdays at 8/7c on ABC. Want more news? Like the Buddy TV Grey’s Anatomy Facebook page.
(Image courtesy of ABC)