“Oh. Can I show you what I’m proudest of?”
As Grey’s Anatomy is about to enter its 14th winter finale, last week’s 300th episode marked an homage to exactly what we’ve been missing in recent years.
Though Grey’s Anatomy has been undoubtedly progressed to newer, mature levels necessary to keep a show on air and characters 3-dimensional over the years, last weeks 300th episode made us wish that some landmark traits for the series’ earlier days would make a permanent return.
Whilst Krista Vernoff’s return has already seen significant improvements to some of the frustrations the show had ignited in viewers (Nathan’s sudden departure excluded), “Who lives, Who dies, Who tells your story” definitely had resident Grey’s fans wishing our once fresher faced doctors could shake off a little bit of baggage with the permanent return of the tunnels, to say the least.
Whilst I honestly thought the use of a look-a-like George, Izzie and Cristina’s in the promotional footage of last week’s episode was a bit of a reach for the episode, it soon became clear that it didn’t matter who these characters (who just so happened to be Interns) looked like, but rather the emotional havoc the wrought on our long-standing characters.
Bailey’s reaction to both George’s doppelgänger and Ben’s news of joining the Firehouse (and Shondaland’s Grey’s Anatomy spin-0ff) as she tentatively touched her stomach has me wondering if she will be pregnant much like her season 2 self (wherein George helps her deliver). Though it seemed the story may be leading in this direction as she doubts whether Ben can commit and be there this time, it might be me whose reaching.
Elsewhere in the hospital, Alex and Jo’s relationship continued to show great maturity and take even greater strides, as his relationship with pseudo-Izzie had no consequence or toll on their own during the episode. Instead, Alex helped the pregnant intern with ease; having long ago, privately gained closure on Izzie’s life without him.
It’s safe to say then – with the added consideration of Katherine Heigl’s strained relationship with Shondaland – that she will not be returning to Grey’s anatomy. However, whilst Cristina was present in spirit as Meredith took a one-sided phone call with her towards the end of the episode, I have no doubt that Sandra Oh will return, should the series ever come to an end and call her back for its series finale.
One surprising return, was that of Ellis Grey – or her ghost – as Meredith finally won a Harper Avery. Though the moment was touching and perhaps just slightly tear-baiting to viewers, as Avery’s speech called upon memories of Lexi and Derek’s deaths, my brain worked overtime. Whilst we can hope writers did this in the spirit of the show’s 300th episode, the last time this happened, Izzie had a tumor and Meredith drowned.
In less cynical news, the episode finally brought back the classic opening titles of the series, and though in my nostalgic mind I had failed to see how dated they had become until now, I am not against the return of a full-length opening sequence.
With new interns, Owen and Carina’s naked-chef antics and of course, the tunnels marking themselves as further landmarks of nostalgia – the series definitely achieved its goal in drawing both laughter and tears from its fans last week; thankfully avoiding the use of flashback scenes to flesh out the episode, no matter how much we wanted to see Derek again.
Check out a tribute to every single episode of Grey’s Anatomy below:
Tonight’s episode concludes the season with the winter break as a cyber attack shuts down the hospital, leaving the lives of patients in peril. Whilst the topic has been widely explored in both reality and medical dramas alike, I have a feeling no one has done it like Grey’s is about to.
Grey’s Anatomy airs tonight at 8|7c on ABC!
[Courtesy of ABC/Mitch Haaseth, Source Content for Gif: Grey’s Anatomy, ABC 2017 ]