I really really enjoyed this episode even though there wasn’t any “big” or overly special thing happening. I guess I enjoyed it so much because for a first time in a long time I wasn’t annoyed by a single storyline or character.
I usually start writing about the things I didn’t like or not liked much, so I’ve got a hard time to choose how to start this review. I basically liked/loved all of the episode. I’ll start with Callie and her tree-friend-patient. Even if this tree-girl was kind of crazy it was refreshing and entertaining to see her talk about her cause. And since they ended their strange sex-friends stage I really enjoy the Mark/Callie friendship. They know each other so well and she definitely brings out the good sides in him. He is a great friend. Well he can be, when he’s not sleeping with your wife *g* I liked the patient’s storyline and how it mirrored some of Callie’s issues. Standing up for what you believe in, even if it’s difficult, even if it may hurt you. Wether it’s protecting trees or being able to be the person you love. And once more I have to say how much I love Arizona. In every new episode she is doing something that makes me love her even more. In this case it was the scene in the OR, when she told Callie that she would still love her even if Callie denied their relationship to her parents.
Bringing in Izzie’s mom from the trailerpark was an awesome idea and the actress did a great job playing this character. Slightly trashy, but good-natured and clearly loving her daughter. It was a lot of fun to watch, but also very sad to see Izzie trying to explain her condition to her mom and having to comfort her. Very, very sad. But it was great to see where Izzie comes from and it is obvious why she turned out to be the perky, loving woman she is. Her mom’s attempts to flirt with Alex were hilarious. I also liked Bailey a lot in this episode, the way she took care of Izzie, medically but also personally. She is the best resident the fabfive interns could have asked for. And I didn’t mind Izzie going Bridezilla (quote from next week’s promo) in this episode, because she wasn’t doing so much of wedding planning this week. And the morningcoat scene was great nonetheless.
I really like where they are taking George’s character and I hope that the spoiler about George leaving the hospital at the end of the season are not true. He finally got some sort of storyline and a purpose and a calling. He is going to be a trauma surgeon! I liked that Owen is so willing to teach him. The whole Owen and Cristina story broke my heart. I never thought I would feel so strongly about anything Cristina-related, because I can’t relate to her character the way I can relate to Meredith. But it was so obvious that she is troubled by Owens behaviour, a behaviour I couldn’t really explain myself. It’s obvious that he tried to stay away from her, but his 3-word-sentences sounded forced. And they were and it was so sad when he told Cristina how he and his shrink came up with these sentences, when he can’t say “I Love You” because he thinks she better not get involved with him. And she so much wants to get and be involved and not be let off the hook. It broke my heart when Cristina said “Take care now” because it felt like she meant the unspoken three words as well. And she was crying. Cristina Yang does not cry! Oh my it was so so sad. I’m surprised about myself how much I get invested in this storyline and I really hope they can make it work somehow.
I was surprised that Thatcher Grey actually came to talk to the chief and somehow asked for his help and advice. But being an alcoholic is indeed something they have in comon. Besides being in love with Ellis Grey and wrecking Meredith’s childhood. But I actually liked that he showed up, sober and trying to make amends. I was happy for Lexie, because she obviously missed her dad, the dad she grew up with and with who she shared the loss of her mom. She loves and knows him and therefore could easily forgive him and didn’t mind that he had to read out his apology from a “alcoholic recovery guide book”. She probably knows that he is not big on personal speeches :-) I totally get that Meredith had a harder time to accept his apology, because she really deserved more than a read off standard apology. I liked the grown-up way Meredith handled it though. She didn’t start a fight and she didn’t stay silent. She said her piece and that’s more than I expected from her.
And then Lexie asked Mark to meet her dad and Mark was kind of freaking out about it, which was really cute. He always acts so sure and arrogant, but every once in a while it’s obvious that deep inside he is still a insecure little boy :-) It was like that with Derek in the OR last week, when he talked about being the “charity case the Shepherds took in” and never having had Derek’s respect. But then he came to dinner anyway and he seemed so nervous. Cute.
I disliked the chief for most of this season, because he was meddling too much and he was doing a bad job running the hospital. He still does a bad job running the hospital and he is still meddling (when he almost forced Meredith to talk to Thatcher) but now at least I understand why he did and I’m willing to forgive him for that. I really really liked the way the conflict between Meredith and the chief was adressed in this episode. Because he definitely is treating her differently than the other residents and he is holding her to different standards and he is moody about it all, which makes it even worse. Some times it fet like he was blaming Meredith for reminding him of all the things he did wrong (in the episodes with Anatomy Jane) and then there were times when he tried to act like the father he clearly is not. And I can’t blame Meredith for being indecisive about how to feel about him. He is part of her past, he is part of the reason her family broke apart and she had her terrible childhood. He was definitely part of the reason she had to sit in the pool of her mother’s blood. Even though that was Ellis fault, it’s no wonder Meredith probably blamed the chief for his role in that.
With all this in mind it was no wonder Meredith stood up for that little girl, because she knows how it feels to have no one to stand up for you. And Meredith was pretty awesome in this scene. Everybody else seemed to be ok with the way the girl’s mother wanted to deal with the situation and Meredith was the only one who saw how that would have effected the girl. This little girl tried to protect her mother from the clearly abusive husband and then her mother wants to make the girl to apologize for this action? Apologizing for trying to protect her mother? That would have been so wrong and I’m happy Meredith stepped in. She might have done that in a more professional way, but she’s just a 2nd-year resident and she’s got her own parent issues, so it’s no wonder she reacted that way.
The blow out with the chief was long overdue and in that moment I could have strangeled the chief, because his behaviour was so typical and out of line. I loved that Meredith talked back the way she did and how in the end she stood up for her beliefs and accepted to be suspended for talking to that family again. It was great to see Meredith and Derek deal with this conflict in the grown up way their relationship has evolved to. They are actually communicating. And Derek is on her side. Meredith was adorable the way she ranted about the chief and how the chies was not “Derek’s Cristina” and how she herself had to be at the wedding, because she is the bride :-) I loved how calm Derek stayed in all of this and how naturally he was supporting her and stayed on her side in this conflict. It is a good thing that he stayed calm in this and how he was able to explain to the chief why the chief’s behaviour is a huge part of the problem. Derek was the totally perfect boyfriend in this. McDreamy, plain and simple.
The Meredith / Chief scene in locker room was just as overdue as the fight before. I guess until Meredith had to deal with the little girl she hadn’t realized or she had blocked out how much she had missed a parent / friend /grown-up / anyone standing up for her and taking care of her emotional and physical well-being as a child. And the chief was one of those grownups who stood by and did nothing. Of course she was pissed at him and she had every reason to be especially when he started to act all fatherly now. More than 20 years too late. But finally, finally the chief apologized and it was clear that he really meant it and that probably was all Meredith needed to hear. By the way, the chief’s apology sounded much more sincere than Thatcher’s earlier in the episode. And I loved that Meredith is ready to leave her horrible childhood and all her mommy issues behind and get rid of all the diaries. It’s a nice gesture to give those to the chief. Wow, this girl has grown so much recently :-)
So all in all a wonderful episode which I enjoyed watching from start to finish.