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Grey's Anatomy recap: Clearing the Air

Owen gifts Cristina with a cardio god, the Chief struggles with an inner demon, and oh, Izzie’s back … for a bit

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Greys Anatomy
Randy Holmes/ABC

Grey's Anatomy

TV Show
run date:
Ellen Pompeo, Chandra Wilson, Justin Chambers, James Pickens Jr., Kevin McKidd, Jessica Capshaw
Current Status:
In Season

This episode had me thinking a lot about old versus new, borrowed versus blue… well, not that, but certainly how much Grey’s Anatomy can stand to change and how much it can stay the same. Do we like the new characters who’ve joined this season? Which old ones are we over? Here, a look at a few key moments in past, present, and future Grey’s:

Izzie returns

She’s been gone for weeks, and what brought her back? Not her cancer treatment, nor her super-hot husband, but her high school science teacher, Dr. Singer (Joel Grey!), who had Alzheimer’s, but maybe something more. So naturally she brought him to Seattle Grace, having kidnapped him from his nursing home.

Were we happy to see her? I vote no, honestly. Her hair looked great, and I loved her cardigan sweater, but her existence actually seemed to bog things down at this point. Sure, she’s only on her way out again for another personal leave — now to spend some more exclusive time with her new baby — but she felt like a real drag at this point. Even the two new docs who aren’t all that thrilling — Reed and Charles — felt more at home than she did. And that’s despite Izzie deliberately berating Charles and threatening to tell Reed he likes her. (Irony alert! Reed likes Alex, to whom Izzie is supposedly still married!)

Dr. Singer, in his dementia, continuously made reference to Izzie being knocked up, but then again, he seemed to think she was also still in his high school class. Is she really preggers? What do we think? How would we feel about that? At any rate, it turned out he had a condition called NPH — which is neither here nor there, except to say that it was relieved once Charles saved the day with a spinal tap (and it, of course, shares initials with our favorite Emmy host). Derek agreed to do some pro bono surgery on the fellow, saving the day for approximately the 962nd time in the past year. And, of course, he saved the day, once again.

Izzie and Alex, however, were another story. She blamed him for getting her fired, because he’d told the Chief he had doubts about Izzie getting back to work so soon after her cancer treatment. Major stretch, I’m afraid. This is not the sign of a good marriage.

Owen gets Cristina a present: a new cardio attending!

After all the tortured ”you don’t love me because you’re mean to me in surgery” drama, Owen decided to fix things once and for all between himself and Cristina by getting her a little gift. What to get the girl who has everything? ”I didn’t just get you a cardio trauma,” he explained, ”I got you a new cardio god — or goddess.” Yes, that would be one Teddy Altman — a hot former-military cardio surgeon he served with, played by Kim Raver. Gee, he shouldn’t have. How Cristina continued to resist Dr. Hotness Monster amongst all of this, I do not know. Perhaps she was too busy worrying about what Dr. Altman meant to her. ”According to Google,” Cristina told Teddy, nonplussed, ”you don’t exist.” If only. Clearly, Cristina was having none of this particular present: ”You need to take it back and exchange it for a real cardio god,” she snarked to Owen. We knew at that point it was only a matter of time before Cristina warmed up to Ms. Formerly-of-Lipstick Jungle. Bailey accused Cristina of having run off every former cardio attending, but I’d hang only Burke on her, and even that’s pushing it. (That one was really on Burke — ahem, Isaiah Washington and his runaway mouth behind-the-scenes.) There was that awkward Asperger’s situation with the doctor played by Mary McDonnell (Dr. Virginia Dixon, in case, like everyone else, you chose to forget), and that awkward lesbian situation with Dr. Hahn. None of that is on Cristina — just unfortunate character plotting.

NEXT: Work wives and work husbands