”Grey’s Anatomy”: Verbal adultery
Not to be snippy the first time EW.com does a TV Watch on Grey’s Anatomy, but man, this week was slow. This episode was supposed to be about fresh starts and resolutions and all that goes along with a new year. So why did it rehash every issue from the last? Sexorexic Meredith (whose rasp at the beginning of the episode sounded alarmingly like Marge Simpson’s chain-smoking twin sisters, Patty and Selma) insisted that she is over Derek and said it to his face, but this was while they were making eyes at each other, locked in one of their many moony elevator encounters — only to be interrupted by the stern queen of the ”land called Passive-Aggressiva” herself, Addison. (When did she become passive-aggressive? Did I miss something?)
Ugh, Meredith. I just can’t take that skeletal woman seriously. She’s like that girl who wears a white shirt with nothing underneath and hovers precariously near the edge of the pool, yelling that she doesn’t want to get thrown in. Everyone and their estranged wife knows that Meredith still wants Dr. Shepherd, and yet she continues to proclaim she has moved on. And while trout-fishing, trailer-inhabiting Dr. McDreamy does present an attractive reason to starve yourself and whine, this on-again, off-again, I-love-you, I’m-over-you back and forth has really reached its breaking point. Eventually you’ve got to breathe some new life into that story line or it’s a big DNR, you know?
Same with Izzie and Alex. How long is their tension going to last? When are they going to finally get together? She did have a sweet little flirtation with an ailing heart patient that got her to soften up a bit toward the philandering, internally conflicted, am-I-really-cut-out-to-be-a-doctor Alex, but at the end of her shift, she was right back to love-hating the resident syphilis spreader.
Things need to move. Or we need to find out more about the characters, get some more insight into their lives. As we did with Burke and Cristina. His confronting her about what she had planned to do about their baby added some much needed gravitas (and momentum) to their relationship and the show. Also adding a nice counterweight to the relationship schmaltz was no-nonsense Dr. Bailey and her confession of her initial indecision about whether to keep her own baby. Why can’t we have more of her, always? And a little less of plotlines like, say, the novelist who got mercury poisoning after eating his own book because he thought it was crap. (What?)
As for George — well, he was stuck moderating the discussion between teenager Bex and her parents when it was discovered that the child is a hermaphrodite. The parents freaked out and tried to persuade Addison to perform surgery and ”fix” Bex without explaining her condition to her, but good old George, in that aw-shucks, nonthreatening way that borders on exasperating, went against their wishes and arranged it so that Bex could find out the truth. It was nice to see soft George develop more of a backbone, and his discussion with Bex about the perils of high school (it ”sucks for anyone who’s the least bit different”) seemed genuine (and so true!). But having Bex come to terms with her new identity and her parents learn to support her, all by hour’s end? Seems just a little too after-school-specially convenient, even for this drama. Hi, I’m a girl who just found out that she also has boy parts! Mom, help me cut my hair! (Jeffrey Eugenides explained it so much better in his novel Middlesex.)
Frankly, I would have liked to have seen Izzie dye her hair or George cut off some of his moppety locks instead of merely hearing them talk about it. Then there would be proof that something actually is happening on the show, to bear out the squeaky voice-over telling me that it is. As for now, most of the characters are locked in some purgatory of sustaining hearts and fixing superficial wounds.
What do you think? Which relationship is worth pursuing, and which one needs to be dropped? And do Meredith’s voice-overs need to be dropped too?