The doctors argue over who exactly is boss -- especially in the case of patient/doctor/father-figure Richard Webber
Credit: Eric McCandless/ABC

Only on Grey’s Anatomy can you get a philosophical explanation of a playground game, a thumping rap song (Kendrick Lamar’s “Swimming Pools”) in the background as a lady dies on a table, and a hearty helping of existential dread to finish off the hour. “You can cry ‘Mercy!” all you want,” explained ye olde Meredith Grey’s voiceover. “But nobody’s listening. It’s just you, screaming, into a void.”

Agggggggh! So angsty! But she’s right! I’m surrounded by death, yet I feel so alive!

Gotta love it.

We’re not kids anymore, said the Voice of Mer, so the simple rules of Mercy no longer apply (not to mention the hospital is simply not named that anymore). Just because someone says “Stop” don’t necessarily mean the other grown-up kid will comply. It’s not a game anymore, after all. It’s a pretend hospital.

Cristina had to tell her sex buddy and — come on, it’s always going to be true — partner-in-love, Owen, to stop gazing longingly into her eyes and passionately kissing her for good luck before her surgeries. He is now only allowed to touch her on the arm, as if they’re freaking strangers or something. It’s just going to be too hard otherwise. A swipe of any other body part will lead to sex. Every single time. We’ve been over this. (This literally took place last week. Feels like the same conversation. It’s just you two again, screaming into a void!)

“Let’s…date other people,” Cristina choked out, in tempered disgust. “It’ll suck, and it’ll feel forced — but maybe it will help.” Meanwhile, she occupied herself with Alex’s burgeoning relationship with Jo, which has a long way to go before facing imminent ruin after years of not quite working. Cristina kept poking fun at her roomie, giggling with delight while munching on Heart Happy (tsk tsk) cereal in his bed.

But eventually Cristina stopped mocking Alex and just got real ‘n’ raw: “She’s the thing that’s special, you dumbass,” she yelled, frustrated at his hesitation to rip a willing/desperate love interest’s scrubs off. “God, you have the right person, right there. You both want the same thing.

And that’s the problem, of course, with Cristina and Owen. But “don’t go too deep,” Alex suggested. He was only partly talking about the surgery at hand.

NEXT: Should I be polite and stop calling Gaius Charles “Dr. Smash”?It’s not really fair to non-Friday Night Lights fans for me to keep calling Shane Ross “Dr. Smash.” I guess I’ll call him Shane, or Ross. Would anyone object if I called him Smashane? Be honest. It’s fine if the answer’s no. It kind of makes him sound like a sassy lady. I actually think that’s appropriate.

Anyway, Smashané (even sassier!) had to be the one to say “Stop” to the Richard Webber situation. The former chief of surgery was having trouble swallowing and losing too much weight. Once again, he was about to die. But Non-Vomiting Bailey couldn’t bear to give him a feeding tube because of the psychological devastation involved. Meredith arrived, staples in her stomach and Vomiting Bailey’s human excrement in her hair, to once again save Richard’s life.

But Smashané took it upon himself to dramatically sweep in and insert Richard’s nasogastric (NG) tube instead. And get this: He didn’t want it. He resents being brought back to life at the point when he was all but dead. Not only that, but he was now able to verbalize to Meredith that the reason he’d named her power of attorney wasn’t because he considered her family. “I’m not your father. I chose you because I thought you could put emotion aside and make the right call,” he said. “I was wrong. I chose the wrong person.”

Whoa. Also, Mer’s boobs hurt and she smells like an old couch. No mercy.

Owen, who understandably feels like the only non-hospital-owning sucker in the joint, had to step it up and say “Stop!” to the wealthy benefactors practicing medicine all around him. The hospital needs both doctors and board members, he kept sputtering to anyone who would listen. So upon Jackson’s suggestion, Owen had to grind his teeth, stoop to a lower caste level, and become a “traffic cop,” putting the kibosh on pro bono surgeries until the profitable ones (liposuctions, obviously) could pay for them. This seriously is like a toy hospital sometimes. I keep picturing it as a board game, for simplification purposes. I recommend it; it helps.

Anyway, Owen tricked his peers into showing up for a late-night meeting to plan stuff. I bet the three young children of the wealthy benefactors were super pumped. If these kids could talk, they’d all cry “Mercy.”

NEXT: Did April pass her boards? Do you have a case of the boreds? Callie spent the episode lashing out at her fellow docs — because someone had to pay for Arizona cheating on her, and Callie still wasn’t speaking to Arizona. She had a smashed clavicle to deal with after April and Leah (who let those two anywhere near an operating table?) attempted to save the life of a woman speared in the chest with a baseball bat — a woman who’d admitted to Leah before losing consciousness that she had cheated on her husband with her husband’s brother.

Callie had no sympathy for the cheating situation, obviously, and was about to force Leah to tell Batwoman’s family the truth after the gentle beats of Kendrick Lamar had serenaded her to death. But she had a change of heart at the last minute, interrupting Leah to tell Batman, “She loves you… She told us to tell you that she loves you.” Callie looked defeated.

She finally went home to Arizona and said she’d ben wishing Arizona hadn’t told her about the cheating, “and that we could go back to our life. Being happy. Except we weren’t… happy. At least you weren’t.” And then she basically told Arizona, screw you, and also go ahead and screw anyone you want, for now. Callie refused to join Nice Haircut, Red Dress for couples therapy.

Stop reading this sentence if you don’t want your brain to dissolve, but maybe the Calzone-ugh relationship is like Batwoman’s clavicle, which Callie couldn’t repair once April had broken it. There just isn’t enough “surface area” of good (leg?) bone to save it at this point. I apologize for even attempting to go there.

Oh, and April passed her boards. Yippee! After thanking the real person responsible — God — April lurched monstrously towards Jackson (whom she’d asked to open the email) in clear desire of a warm embrace. Too bad you’re engaged, suckah! April had to settle for an awkward high five. At least Cristina would approve. The rest of their arms never even touched.

Will Richard survive — and do you want him to at this point, or should he be gently released from this earthly misery? Do you have to say “Nice haircut”? Would Derek Shepherd’s nipples be of any use to you?


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Grey's Anatomy

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

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