Meredith is trying her best to rise above — and that’s not working out so well for her in this episode, which features Penny Blake kicking off her stay at Grey Sloan Memorial. On Meredith’s service. Because that sounds like a good idea.
Their interactions go exactly how you’d expect them to go. Meredith is hypercritical and Penny… Well, Penny tries not to be crushed in the process of being Mer’s punching bag, which is definitely not an easy task.
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Here’s the thing: Meredith is being super harsh, but expecting her to be friendly to Penny is also asking a lot of her. The solution here is to just have the two avoid each other for the rest of their lives, something that might work in the real world but will sadly — for both them and the viewers — never fly in the world of Grey’s.
This plotline might eventually gain some steam and become something iconic or, at the very least, entertaining. But for right now, it seems unnecessary and clumsy — especially during the parts when Callie pins the blame on Mer for acting the way she is acting toward Penny. Again, Mer is undoubtedly being tough on Penny, but let’s not forget she is grieving her dead husband who Penny failed to save. A ton of people (Callie included) would probably act the same way if they were suddenly forced to face someone who contributed to a loved one’s death on a daily basis. It’s a hard thing, a hard thing that isn’t necessary for anyone to do.
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And this is why I’m not buying that Richard hired Penny despite knowing she was on Derek’s case the day he died. Richard is a protective paternal figure to Meredith, one that wouldn’t want to inflict even more pain on his traumatized daughter figure. Sure, he can claim he was trying to teach her a lesson, but does everything really need to be a lesson? No. Definitely not. Especially when it involves exposing someone to something horribly painful.
Meredith is eventually going to grow from this, and she and Penny are probably going to end up becoming best buddies or something (even though I really hope she doesn’t become the new Cristina because I’m already tired of her constant look of helpless despair, and she’s only been on two episodes). Until then, though, it’d be nice for everyone to have a bit more empathy toward Mer.
NEXT: April lies to Jackson