“To someone he was everything…” ~ Penny Blake, speaking of a dead patient
In this week’s installment of Grey’s Anatomy, we were reminded of how irreplaceable each of us is to the people who love us, how smoldering hurts can come roaring back to the surface at the most inconvenient of times, and how old habits die hard. As we head into next week’s winter finale, the episode, “Something Against You,” functioned as a truly penultimate episode answering some questions and asking new ones all the while laying the foundation for what is yet to come.
Do We Hate Him?
Owen Hunt and Meredith Grey have always had a complicated relationship. Cristina Yang was, is, and will always be dear to them both. This often put them at odds over the years. They didn’t seem to understand each other, despite wanting the best for Cristina. They did have moments of detente, however, as when they surprised Cristina by turning up at the Harper Avery Award ceremony. Cristina’s departure for Zurich came hurt and breakage for them both and, I dare say, some mutual compassion. Or at least a peculiar sense of protection. Meredith promised Cristina that she would look out for Owen and this week she made good on that promise by offering Owen solid support. She also ended up giving Riggs the cold shoulder because she is Owen’s friend. This may all fall apart eventually if Riggs does indeed turn out to be, as rumored, Meredith’s new love interest, but for now I was refreshed and grateful to see her take Owen’s side just out of loyalty.
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By all appearances, Nathan Riggs appears to be a great guy. He’s smart, charming, and an impressive enough as a doctor that Bailey hired him! So much for leaving town. But, as Owen explained to the the “Intern-Whose-Name-I-Do-Not-Know” (Sorry. Not Blonde Bambi. Not Hottie Andrew. The Other One. A little help here?) people are not always what they appear to be. This is significant because Owen Hunt is pretty much the embodiment of someone who is fair and kind. He is someone who knows that people make mistakes and doesn’t hold those mistakes against them. Case in point: Owen was not happy when Aforementioned Nameless Intern seriously messed up and put a patient in jeopardy, but he turned the incident into a teachable moment and even let the kid help with the surgery necessitated by his own screw up.
Yet Owen Hunt clearly loathes Nathan Riggs. So much so that we can see that it is taking every ounce of restraint for him to not deck the guy. So much so that when Meredith flat out asks (in a moment of solidarity that just about made my heart burst) if Riggs is someone they hate, Owen says “Yes!” That admission, coupled with Owen’s meltdown in front of this peers at the OR board and his secret PTSD flare up, means that something very, very important is going on…and I can’t wait to learn more about it.
Riggs said he and Hunt go back a bit. How far exactly? We’re being led to think they met in the Middle East, but my money is on Seattle as kids. And for Owen to be this upset? Something big went down. “What’s done is done, right?” Oh, Owen. That does not sound good.
A Short Leash
Trying to backpedal from her tyrannical behavior towards Penny in the last episode, Meredith overcompensates this week and gives Penny fairly meaningless tasks and assignments. Callie butts in and is told, rightly, by both Penny and Meredith to back off because this is neither her problem nor her fight. Still, Penny finds the courage to confront Meredith in a respectful but very firm and unmistakably clear way, telling her to either teach her or set her free. Point taken.
In other news…
* Ben finally works up the nerve to tell Jackson that he needs to find a new place to live.
* Jackson and April have dinner. She thinks it’s about mending fences. He thinks it’s about getting a divorce. Before they talk about the serious stuff, she gets paged. They make plans to have dinner the next night and end up sleeping together!
* Jo is put out because she thought of a great way to help at patient but got no credit and lost out to Penny in caring for the patient, so lose-lose. (I’m trying to muster sympathy. Nope. I can’t. Sorry.)
*Amelia and Maggie have on ongoing conversation about race. Some of it worked. Some of it didn’t. Best Line: When Maggie asks if Amelia is talking to her about this because she is her “sister” or her “sistah”…ROFL!!!
* Alex warns Intern Dude about a mom who’s a Doc-Knocker. It’s a thing. For real.
* Arizona wants to date again and needs a wing man. Richard (!) steps up. And is awesome. Obvi.
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MEMORABLE MOMENTS AND QUOTES
Miranda (on Jackson): “This was his last night in my house.”
Ben: “You just made the man pancakes!”
Miranda: “Because I am a benevolent leader and good host.”
Owen (to Nathan): “What the hell are you doing here?”
Amelia: “I fix brains. I give you the soft, gooey center. The hard candy shell is your department.”
Maggie: “I’m gonna have to train another alpha male not to pee all over the place.”
Meredith: “I hate it when they pee.”
Miranda (explaining to Ben that he won’t get any action until Jackson has left the premises):
“He could come back here any minute in the middle of…stuff!”
Richard: “Did you know that Henri Giffard built the first powered airship in 1852?”
Richard: “I did. And I’m free tonight. I’m always free for trivia night.”
Intern (re: the Doc-Knocker): “I didn’t see that.”
Owen: “Of course not. You’ve only been a doctor for five minutes.”
Meredith: “I made a promise to Cristina that I wouldn’t let you go dark and twisty. That I’d be your person if you needed one.”
Owen: “I don’t want to talk.”
Meredith: “Okay. You don’t have to. But just tell me. Do we hate him?”
(Owen pauses, then nods) “We hate him.”
Meredith: “Okay, then, we hate him.”
Meredith (shutting down Nathan): “I’m a friend of Owen Hunt.”
Grey’s Anatomy airs Thursday on ABC.
(image courtesy of ABC)