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Grey’s-Anatomy

"Grey's Anatomy" Recap: Episode 17, "Some Kind of Miracle"

Posted By Entertainment on Feb 23, 2007 at 11:33AM

Well, there's nothing I can say about this week's "Grey's Anatomy" without it being a spoiler, is there? So let's briefly recap what's happened so far: First, Meredith tried to drown herself in the bathtub. Then there was a ferry crash and Mere went tumbling into the water. Derek pulled Meredith out, but she flatlined at the hospital. And the big question going into Thursday's episode was whether Meredith was actually dead.

Well, now we know, so if you want to talk about it,

Meredith's alive. Meredith's alive, and I am angry.

It's not that I really wanted her to die; I never sat around and said, "Wow, this show sure would be better if that stupid Grey girl weren't in it."

It's that Shonda Rhimes, Ms. "I-Don't-Play-By-The-Rules" ... played by the rules. Yes, it would have been tough for the biggest drama on TV to kill off its main character. But it would have been gutsy, and no matter what happened, I would have respected the risk. Instead, Meredith's alive, her mom's dead, they had a freakin' conversation in limbo, and everything's going to be fine. And because most of us suspected Meredith would come back, it was hard to care about her "death," which sucked most of the tension out of what should have been a strong episode.

Now, I do believe "Grey's" can still redeem itself. It is intriguing to find out that Mere, who I always thought was just whiny, was actually vaguely suicidal; she didn't want to kill herself, exactly, but she also didn't see the point of living. Shonda has said on her blog and in her podcasts that this is an important journey for Meredith, and so maybe Mere will change as a result. But if the show just moves on from here, assuming Mere has now learned her lesson, I will be even angrier than I am right now, and trust me, nobody wants to see that.

Before I go much further, I should point out a couple of things I actually liked about "Some Kind of Miracle":

  • Denny and Dylan bickering in Meredith's afterlife. Their banter was funny, not to mention smokin' hot.
  • Cristina. Burke was right; the most important thing in this episode was the relationship between Cristina and the woman she calls "her person." And learning that her dad died in front of her when she was 9 helps to explain why she's so tough.
  • George and Callie finally telling off Izzie. I've been a defender of Izzie's, but I'm honestly glad someone finally told her to shut it.

We spend most of the episode flipping between Afterlife Meredith and actual Meredith, who's dying on the table as the episode begins. Dylan and Denny are there to greet Afterlife Meredith, but they're not the only ones: Doc the dog shows up, too, along with Liz Fallon, her mom's former scrub nurse, and Bonnie, the girl who died after being impaled in the train wreck. I think the idea was to bring back patients who had meant a lot to Meredith, but I thought Liz was more of a learning experience for Cristina, and I had to look up who Bonnie was.

Anyway, they tell Afterlife Meredith that she's a little too happy to be dead and ask her to explain what happened in the water. She keeps insisting she fought, and finally Denny asks her about the bathtub. (Mere: "You see me in the bathtub?" Heh.) Dylan reminds Meredith that he died saving her, and Denny tells Meredith she has to decide to live: George needs her, and Izzie needs her. Once you're dead, Denny says, there are no more moments with the people you love.

Back on earth, the chief is trying to save Meredith like she's his own daughter, which I suppose she almost was. Cristina can't handle the possibility of Meredith's death and instead goes shopping at the dollar store, ending up drunk at Joe's bar with a stash of hand lotion and tiny plastic chairs until Burke finally convinces her to be there for her "person." Izzie gets snotty with Callie, and Callie tells her that she has a choice: accept that George wants Callie around, or become "that person George used to know." And Derek yells at Ellis, saying everything good about Meredith happened despite Ellis.

Afterlife Meredith decides she's ready to go back. "I had intimacy issues!" she says. "You know how stupid that seems now?" But the peanut gallery of patients tells her she might be out of time. The one who's really out of time, though, is Ellis, whose heart fails while Burke is downstairs trying to save Meredith. Ellis and Afterlife Meredith meet in the Afterlife hallway, Ellis tells Mere she's anything but ordinary, and Mere runs back toward the land of the living.

The doctors are about to give up on Meredith when Cristina bursts into the room and yells at the doctors to try again. And of course they do, and of course soon there's a heartbeat. Cristina pleads with Mere to say something, to prove her brain works, and when she eventually does, Cristina blurts out that she's marrying Burke.

Derek and Meredith's reunion is pretty dull by comparison, but Addison watches from the hall and says aloud that Derek never loved her that way. Mark says he did, and Addison says maybe she'll give him another shot if he can go 60 days without sex. He says Addison has to go without sex, too —

— and speak of the devil, there's Alex! He spent the episode bonding with the Jane Doe, who can't remember anything from before the crash. He's been very gentle and kind with her, and I hope they don't just leave that story in the dust.

Meanwhile, Izzie tells George she knows she's let him down, and George just walks away. Richard says his final goodbyes to Ellis. And Izzie stops still in the hallway and the camera takes a little spin around her, showing that Denny is there.

Were you satisfied with this arc? Are you baffled as to why "Grey's" thought it needed a stunt like this, or did it teach you something big about Meredith? And where does the show go from here?

Photos copyright 2007 ABC, Inc.

"Grey's Anatomy" Recap: Episode 16, "Drowning on Dry Land"

Posted By Entertainment on Feb 16, 2007 at 10:12AM

I can only think of two words to describe this week's episode of "Grey's Anatomy," and I think you "Grey's" fans know what they are: Seriously? Seriously??

On the one hand, this was the most obvious direction the story could have taken. On the other, I'm still not convinced I know where it will end. Spoilers ahead, of course, but we can discuss if you

So Meredith dies. Maybe. We're not sure. My instinct is to say she's coming back, because that's what happens on TV. She woke up in a flash of light, sandwiched between Dylan and Denny; it seems like a plot device we've seen since television began.

And yet, maybe she's really dead. Right?

If what comes out of this story line is that Meredith's just fine, and her "death" was only a sweeps-week fakeout, I'm going to be disappointed. "Grey's" doesn't need a stunt; it's a better show than that.

But I don't want to project my (possibly premature) disappointment in the whole story onto this episode, because as pure entertainment, it worked for me. It hit at that slightly giddy place people reach during a tragedy: Izzie giggling after she drills into the guy's skull on the boat; George saying Bailey might change her son's middle name to Tupperware or Elvis if he doesn't find their patient's child. We know something big has happened; we see Derek pull Meredith out of the water, limp and blue. But the other doctors don't know that; they're satisfied with their small victories — Izzie and her drill, Alex and the families, Addison and her Jane Doe. Even Cristina's whining about not being able to find Meredith felt poignant — she doesn't know her "person" (remember that from season one?) is in the water.

The action picks up straight from last week. Izzie is about to give up on the man on the ferry (and, essentially, on herself as a doctor), but she decides it's worth another shot. She phones the Chief, who along with Mark talks her through drilling holes in the man's skull. The Chief takes her off probation, which felt both sudden and expected, but it was good to see tough Izzie back.

Alex hits on an effective, though ghastly, way to help the waiting families get information: He takes Polaroids of the patients in surgery — and later of the ones in the morgue — and asks people to identify anyone they recognize. He's cold and detached until he finds the man he thinks is the husband of the Jane Doe he saved; he really wants that story to have a happy ending. Addison, meanwhile, seems to be realizing how alone she is, wondering aloud if anyone would notice if she disappeared — and Alex ultimately says he would.

George tells his patient he's found her son, which is a total lie. Bailey yells at him for again making promises he can't keep, but George says if his lie saves the woman's life, he doesn't mind. In the end, he learns the boy has been in surgery with Callie the whole time.

And then there's Derek. The creepy girl points Derek toward the water, and he pulls his "knight in shining whatever" move by diving in and dragging Meredith out. I loved Derek tonight; he looked so broken as he tried to literally breathe life into Mere. And watching all of the other doctors learn what had happened to Meredith was one of the most powerful parts of the episode — they go from celebrating the lives they’ve saved to crashing in the most spectacular way.

There are some small moments from the end of the episode that will stick with me: Derek getting kicked out of Meredith's room; Addison urgently trying to save the woman who broke up her marriage; Mark squeezing Derek's arm. It didn't matter who'd ruined whose relationship or who was going to be chief; bigger things were happening.

The vulnerable Cristina will stick with me, too; she really wanted to believe there had been a mistake and Meredith was fine, which is the sort of thinking she usually ridicules. I loved Izzie saying that believing in survival is what makes us survive — but her speech lost me when she told George he'd made a mistake in marrying Callie. I think she was having a "life's too short" moment and wanted to make her feelings known. It's in character for Izzie to not realize the timing wasn’t right, but her insensitivity took me out of the moment.

And the moment matters, because while Derek waits in the hall, Meredith's heart starts to fail. And though she seems to be technically still alive, she snaps awake on a cot between Dylan and Denny, who inform her that she is, indeed, dead.

Or is she? Is it a fantasy, a dream, an alternate reality? Could it be real? Your theories, please.

Photos copyright 2007 ABC, Inc.