Well, that was pretty unexpected.
It’s been a relatively low-key season of Grey’s Anatomy so far. Switching the focus onto the Grey sisterhood was a wise choice from a writing perspective, but the past three episodes have definitely been lacking something. Apparently, what’s missing was a Derek-related storyline.
I love Meredith Grey more than everything and everyone on this show, and Old Time Rock and Roll proved why she is such an incredible heroine. The speech she delivered to the interns about breaking bad news to patients’ families was a fantastic sequence, made all the more special by that haunting music the show previously used in How To Save A Life, the episode where Derek died last season. But it was Ellen Pompeo’s raw, powerful performance that made the scene such an incredible thing to watch. What an amazing, unforgettable moment. And to end the hour by revealing that Penny, Callie’s new girlfriend, is the same doctor who delivered the bad news about Derek to Meredith was quite the jaw-dropper. I have no idea where that storyline is going, but I can’t WAIT to see how it transpires.
Sadly, I wish I can say the rest of the episode was up to par with Meredith’s powerful scenes because I found myself bored halfway through the hour. The reveal that Stephanie was medically poked, drugged and experimented on as a child should have come off as slightly more shocking or interesting but I still don’t see how this character is connected to everything else on the show. It was a very random, sudden subplot that seemed to be misplaced and would have had much more impact if Dr. Edwards was better developed. Plus, that little feud she’s about to have with Jo already feels exhausting.
Owen forcing the interns to tell dead patients’ families bad news seemed like it would have potential, and I would have enjoyed how comical they turned this story if the topic itself wasn’t such a serious one. Still, I liked it because it led us to Meredith’s speech which later on paralleled with the shocking cliffhanger of course. Maggie’s one-night stand also seemed to parallel with Meredith’s one-night stand with Derek in the pilot (the two scenes look awfully similar), but it was predictable that she would end up falling for the intern by hour’s end.
Still, that ending holds promise if only because how dramatic and intriguing things must get soon. Let’s hope Penny sticks around for a while and also hope that dinner party ends up being the most awkward and uncomfortable thing ever.
Bits & Scalpels
– Jackson mentions Mercy West in this episode. Remember when that was a competing hospital that invaded our Seattle Grace? Ah, good times.
– I wish there was more focus on Stephanie and Amelia’s patient because everything we saw about her was heartbreakingly good.
– The old patients who weren’t but just “shacking up” were also really heartbreaking to watch.
– I LOVED Meredith and Maggie’s scene talking about sex, which leads to Meredith realizing that she doesn’t need sex in her life anymore. Also interesting to note that she remembers the last she and Derek did it, a scene we’ve watched in flashbacks last season.
– The blond intern was pretty damn stupid to tell that patient’s son that his father died if he knew he didn’t have the authority to deliver that kind of news. So lame.
– I wanted to scream into a pillow when April started crying. Oh dear lord.
– We saw a lot of brains this week. Very unexpected but I could have lived without the image of Richard slicing the brain into pieces.
– Meredith screaming at the intern (the same one Maggie slept with) about the “four Ls” was hilarious.
– Still not feeling the music this season which is sometimes distracting to be honest. When Meredith started delivering her speech (found below) and that chilling music began playing, I realized how much I missed season 10’s music.
Meredith: When you walk into a room to tell someone that their loved one has died, it’s more than just a list of bullet points you’ve memorized. Yours is the face they will remember for the rest of their life. They were fine before they met you. They picked up their children from school, they made dinner, and they got a call. The police showed up at their door and brought them here with those children to this room so that you can give them the worst news of their entire life. You are changing this person’s life forever. You are responsible for this moment. For the instant that person goes from wife to widow is you. All you. Nobody but you. So this person isn’t an inconvenience. They not a box on a list to be checked off. You are a part of their life now. Your words, your face. So take that seriously and recognize the important of your role. And respect the fact that that person’s pain is the biggest thing in the room.
Meredith: I’m happy, and I never thought I would be again. But I am, and that’s all I need.
Halo by Kris Orlowski
A mediocre episode that improved when Meredith took the spotlight and got even better with that unexpected cliffhanger.