Grey's Anatomy 5.18 – "Stand By Me"

It probably would be wiser if I’d gone to bed right after I have gotten home a few minutes ago. I’m so exhausted. But obviously not exhausted enough to postpone writing this review till tomorrow afternoon. But I just have to get that out of my system :-) I very much enjoyed this episode. And I usually start my review with the things I didn’t like and end with the things I love. This time I have to start with the thing that left me thinking for a while. Meredith (and Derek)

I really love Meredith with all her flaws and all her dark & twisty-ness. And I couldn’t blame her for not going out to the woods to check on Derek for a few days. Because he had said some nasty things to her and he had batted the ring away and all that. So I understood that she wanted him to make the first move to reconcile with her. That didn’t in any way mean that she had given up on him. But she really doesn’t have to endure being yelled at to prove it. So I actually was on her side.
But when she went out to the trailer she really pissed me off. Not for long, but at least at the first moment.
Derek said “I love you” and it wasn’t just a declaration of love but much more an apology for all the things he did and said. At least I took it that way and I’m sure so did Meredith, because she didn’t reply with the “I love you, too” but with a simple “I know.” But then Derek asked that crucial question and I screamed at my TV when Meredith answered: “No. (I wouldn’t still love you if you weren’t a surgeon).” I thought: WTF?!?! Way to crush his spirit. Mer, you are a crappy crappy girlfriend! Her next words smoothed that over a bit, but I was still pretty disappointed about what she said and probably more important how she said it.

When I spent some time thinking about that (during the 3 hours at a doc’s waiting room with just old and stupid gossip magazines to read), I started to understand why she said what she said. And I started to agree with her. I just wished she had said it a bit nicer :-) The point is: She was right. And it wasn’t about blackmailing him into doing Izzie’s surgery or anything like that.
The man she fell in love with, the man she loves is a neurosurgeon. And that’s not just what he does, it’s what he is. He is not just talented and gifted, but he used to be a guy who really wants to save his patients. Who fights like hell to save them. Who uses all his talent to save them. Not being a surgeon would be more than not just operating anymore. It would mean he wouldn’t want to save patients and wouldn’t want to fight for them anymore. Plus, he would throw away his gift, which might lead to people dying because he doesn’t operate. And that’s not really that much better than having them die during an operation. It’s worse actually, because with an operation he at least tried and fought. I’m sure it would be different for Meredith if Derek couldn’t operate anymore, due to some injury like Burke had. She would still love him, if he stayed the same man who wants to save lifes and fight for his patients in any way.

And then of course there was the whole Izzie situation to consider, because Meredith just found out that one of her friends (her family!) has a 5% chance to survive cancer and one of the few people who might be able to save this friend, thinks about not doing it. It kind of explains why she had a hard time to say “I love you”. Such a bad timing for Derek to ask this question. Such a bad timing for Izzie to get sick :-)
Seriously, Meredith was barely holding it together in this scene and just before she got up and left, it looked like she wanted to kiss or hug or touch him, but she didn’t. Well, maybe I’m just imaginging things. But the whole scene was heartbreaking. I’m glad I already know some stuff about the next episode, so I can look forward to that rather relaxed. And very excitedly to be honest I can’t put this behind another cut, so I hide it in a different way. You have to mark this to read it…

The promo and the first sneak peek show Derek back at the hospital, in scrubs. Still not shaved, still looking scruffed and still insecure, but he does operate on Izzie. Yay! And I’m pretty sure that this operation will be a success. I don’t know if Izzie survives in the end, but I can’t imagine she’d die of any of the cancer cells in her brain. The writers wouldn’t put that on Derek’s conscience, not after what he just went through.
The episode is called “Elevator Love Letters” and I think it’s confirmed, that the proposal will happen in that episode. So, yes, I’m very, very excited about all of that.

And now I also have to talk about Derek for a bit. I love him in his brooding, drunk and devasted mood. I should feel sorry for him, but I can’t help it, he looks sexy. Well, maybe the “I want to hug and comfort him” feeling attributes to that :-) I LOVED what morgenwrites has dubbed the “gloomy surgeons club”. It was wonderful to see all these doctors trying to bring Derek back and just ending up stranded on his deck, trying with all the lives they couldn’t save or even worse ended through some mistake. When he asked Callie I got the feeling that he really really wanted to understand how she coped with it. To be able to cope the same way and continue operating. Because I’m sure Derek doesn’t really want to give up surgery. He IS a surgeon… (see above *g*)
I was so happy when Derek yelled at the chief and called him on his crap. This was long overdue, because the chief sucks! He usually sucks. I have to admit I liked how he yelled at Derek inside the trailer, because Derek needed that. It broke my heart to see him sitting there in the end asking “What am I going to say?”

I should insert a short paragraph about what I didn’t like that much in this episode. There wasn’t that much to dislike. I didn’t really care that much about that face-transplant patient / case, maybe it was too much for me. I really missed Arizona. And for some reason I even didn’t care much about Mark and Lexie this time. Maybe because they didn’t have that much screentime alone together. The “ugly/beautiful” line after the kiss was so so bad. I actually cringed. And why was she kissing him in the middle of the hallway anyway? Very unprofessional and I have to agree with Meredith and George: They never were THAT unprofessional during their intern year :-) I absolutely didn’t care about the whole intern drama among Steve and whatever their names were. I just don’t care about these people.

But I liked how the whole intern-love-drama affected Meredith and George. It was so good to see them back working together and even if they were just working on ignoring their interns’ private lifes :-) Meredith kicked ass dealing with that in the end and I loved how George said “Very Bailey” to her. Because Meredith was doing a pretty good Bailey-job there. Maybe she – and not Cristina – will be the new Bailey after all.
Talking about Bailey: She was awesome in this episode as well. In the beginning I was wondering, why she didn’t drive out to talk to Derek herself. And I still haven’t figured out a reason why she didn’t. But I love that she cares so much about him, that she send some other doctors after him. Both scenes – with Callie and Hunt – were brilliant, especially Hunt’s “People don’t really say ‘No’ to you, do they?”. So so true.

Which leaves me with the one thing that I probably loved most about this episode: The “fab five” interns are finally back to being that close friends they were in the early episodes/seasons. It’s sad that it’s such a horrible occasion and I really hope Izzie will make it in the end, because I don’t think I could bear to see Alex devasted by Izzie’s death.
I can relate to Izzie to some extent. Not about refusing treatment, but about her reluctance to tell her friends or anybody. I know how difficult it is to announce to somebody (family, friend, coworker) that you are sick. Seriously sick and not just a flu or a broken ankle. I’m always reluctant to tell people about my MS and I choose those I tell rather carefully. Ok, I write about it on the internet, but that’s different, because you don’t know me in real life and I don’t have to see your shocked or pitied looks when you read about it :-) But, yes, I do understand Izzie.

Cristina was awesome in this episode and so not a robot. She is trying so hard to help Izzie in all the ways she can think of. And she cares. She cares so much about Izzie. Much more than I ever thought. The moment on the bench outside was so wonderful. Sad, but wonderful.
George probably cares even more, but he doesn’t know what is going on, even though he sees that something clearly is going on. I so enjoyed the cafeteria lunch scene, because it was such a typical Grey’s moment.
In the end they all know about Izzie and all of her friends are at her side, helping her to fight this. Another thing I can relate to. Once you’ve found the courage to tell someone about your medical or any other kind of problems, you are surprised how much help and support your family and friends are able to offer. This was such a sweet, sad, but sweet scene at the end. It reminded me a bit of the episodes in early season 2, when Cristina had the miscarriage. There was this wonderful voiceover, which would have fit perfectly for this scene too.

There’s an upside to free falling. It’s the chance you give your friends to catch you.

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