Thursday’s Scandal, in which a woman wearing a bomb vest takes nine people hostage, instantly reminded us of Shonda Rhimes’ mega-memorable bomb scare from Grey’s Anatomy — a two-episode weep fest in the middle of 2006’s season 2. Thanks to the magic of Netflix and my raging insomnia, I stayed up to re-watch “It’s the End of the World” and “As We Know It” — effectively shooting a bazooka into my heart. It was an accident! I feel fine.

I highly recommend revisiting these eps at a more reasonable hour, if only to remind yourself, while sobbing, that ugh, Grey’s Anatomy used to be SO. GOOD. (Video below.)

I don’t need to harp too much on how present-day Grey’s Anatomy feels like it’s on autopilot; suffice it to say that after recapping another fragmented season 10 hour, I pretty much lunged at the Netflix button for the chance to remember the series’ early-years glory. I’d forgotten so much — namely, here, the specifics of the “human bomb” patient, whose chest contained live, unexploded ammunition after he’d accidentally shot himself with a bazooka. And that guest star Kyle Chandler was the bomb squad leader. That Meredith had to replace Christina Ricci as the hospital’s only bomb-grasping hope after that anesthesiologist bailed (shudder). That Webber had an anxiety attack, not a heart attack (why does it feel like I’m posting spoilers?). The dignified calmness of Preston Burke and his restrained power struggle with Derek Shepherd. Izzie and Alex’s constant stress-sex. GEORGE! Baby George! (Not “O’Malley, stop looking at my vajay-jay,” because no one could ever forget that.) And most of all, the sheer terror and exhilaration I used to feel during a particularly high-intensity episode of Grey’s.

A bit of bizarre Scandal foreshadowing — in “As We Know It,” when Meredith, Burke, and Coach Taylor prepare to wheel the human bomb away from the hospital’s main oxygen line, Meredith looks up with a vulnerable yet steely gaze and barks “I’M. HANDLING IT.”

It’s like she knew Olivia Pope was going to happen!

“CODE BLACK.” Pink mist.

I’d also forgotten how much will they-won’t they suspense there’d been for Meredith and Derek, the Olivia and Fitz of Grey’s. As on Scandal, the romantic suspense is somewhat frustrating but mostly delightful; you take what you can get, in small doses. It was always obvious that Meredith and Derek should be together, but reality (Addison) dictated that they might not. It was a marvel to see these two eye-loving each other with just their gazes and pregnant pauses (so understated compared to Fitz and Liv’s explosive fierceness) as Derek stopped by Meredith’s big ol’ creaky house to tell her he was glad she didn’t die that day. Knowing what we know now — that they did end up together — made it that much more poignant when McDreamy spun back around, took the bait and told Meredith he did in fact remember their last kiss. “It was soft, it was quick, kind of like a habit — you know, like we’d do it every day for the rest of our lives.” AGGGGHHH. So there is a solid chance Fitz and Liv can build their dream house in Vermont and make jam. Mer and Der made a freaking baby! In the woods!

WOW I’ve gotta go to sleep.

Anyone else planning to revisit the bomb scare eps after seeing Scandal?

And what do you miss most about early Grey’s? The ecstasy…

…or the agony?



Episode Recaps

Grey's Anatomy

Meredith. Alex. Bailey. The doctors are definitely in on Shonda Rhimes' hospital melodrama.

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