An explosive cliffhanger sets up next week's season finale.
Credit: Richard Cartwright/ABC

Let this be a lesson to all of us — when Shonda Rhimes says a season finale will be “on fire,” she’s not kidding around. As in, we’re gonna go into next week’s episode with the hospital actually ON FIRE.

And leave it to Grey’s to have a literal explosion not be the only shocker of the night. Let’s just scrub in and get right to all of it…

Alex tracks down Jo’s husband
Alex Karev has a particular set of skills, and he’ll use them to locate the abusive estranged husband you’re hiding from and fantasize about punching him in the face. Alex has indeed found Dr. Paul Stadler (Glee alum Matthew Morrison) and is lurking around the hotel where he’s attending a medical conference, conflicted as to whether he should approach the guy and what he should do. First, he imagines chatting Paul up at the hotel bar, introducing himself with a fake last name and getting drunk with him before throwing punches at him outside. But that daydream ends with police sirens and Alex in jail, and nobody wants to worry about him getting arrested again (raise your hand if you were glad that was just imaginary, because I’m right there with you).

Then, he imagines doing his best Liam Neeson/Taken impression to the guy before he gives a speech at the conference, casually walks over, and warns that he’s watching him, and how if he ever goes near Jo again, he’ll find him and kill him. That scenario also takes a nightmare turn when he imagines coming back to Seattle to find Paul strangling her. (Raise your hand if you were glad that was imaginary, too.)

But then we see the non-imaginary, no-one-dies-or-gets-arrested scenario play out: Paul cuts in front of Alex on the street to get a cab, then apologizes and offers to share it, if he’s heading to the airport as well. Our dear Dr. Karev stares at him, but ultimately doesn’t say anything about Jo and lets the cab drive away. Much less dramatic, but is this the last we’ll see of the two of them in the same place?

Owen’s shocking sister news
When Owen gets a knock at the door and two Army officers are waiting outside, it doesn’t look like the news is good. And at first, we think it isn’t – all we hear is that it’s news about his sister, and then Owen goes into work in a shell-shocked daze. When a mother tearfully thanks him for stopping their baby daughter from choking, he’s abrupt and non-Owen-like with them and walks off. Amelia sees this and goes after him, and once they’re alone in one of the supply closets, he tells her they’ve found his sister… alive.

He tells her Megan Hunt was found in a basement in a rebel-held neighborhood and she’s now in an Army hospital in Germany. He’s still in shock and can’t bring himself to believe it’s really her, and Amelia calmly says they’ll find out for sure.

After getting on the phone with Dr. Altman (Teddy! Kim Raver!) — and showing off some impressive conversational German — Amelia learns Megan is being transferred to the U.S. and asks if she can be brought to Grey Sloan once she’s stateside. She also tells Owen she’s called a PTSD expert, not just for Megan, but for him as well.

For Owen, the news his sister is alive and coming home has him wracked with guilt. He thinks about how he got married, divorced, and married again, going on with his life for the past 10 years while she was being held captive and tortured. “I stopped looking,” he says, breaking into tears in Amelia’s arms. “I gave up.”

What does Megan’s return mean for Mer and Riggs? Well, Mer had just decided to take another huge step with Riggs — letting him meet her children and sleep over for part of the night — when she comes home to Amelia sitting with a sleeping Owen on the couch. Amelia tells her about his sister being alive and how she’ll be arriving in Seattle in the next few days, and Meredith asks if Riggs knows yet. He doesn’t, because Owen hasn’t told anyone else yet, not even his own parents. Mer decides she has to tell him immediately — because if Derek were alive, she’d want to know as soon as possible.

Up in flames…
Edwards decided three whole therapy sessions were enough to get her back to the hospital and ends up having one of the worst workdays in this hospital staff’s history (which is saying something when you think of the everything they’ve all been through these past 13 seasons).

She solemnly swears to Webber that her tablet-throwing days are over, and he agrees to sign the form allowing her to return. Cleared to be back in the saddle, she starts working on a case alongside Bailey, Maggie, Jackson, and April — a car went over a cliff with two people inside, who are now both unconscious and missing various items of clothing. From the looks of it, the two were getting frisky in the car, and someone accidentally put it into gear. Was it a new relationship? A secret affair? The doctors debate the possibilities as they work on the pair’s various injuries.

The woman, Allison, wakes up but has severe internal bleeding and is whisked off to surgery. Minnick, none too pleased that Edwards is back so soon, benches her from the OR and tells her to stay back with Jackson and the other patient, Keith, who wakes up and immediately asks about the woman he was with and if she’s okay. Sweet, huh? That’s what they think at first…

Jackson leaves Edwards to keep an eye on the guy solo, and he begs her to take him to Allison so she won’t be surrounded by strangers when she wakes up. He has a liver injury and shouldn’t be moving around at all, but the #romance of it all convinces Edwards to make an exception.

When Allison comes out of surgery, her first question is if the guy in her car is dead. But she’s not asking because he’s her husband, boyfriend, or lover — turns out, romantic Keith abducted her at knife point and made her drive into the woods in order to rape her, which is why she hit the gas on the car. So, yeah, that story took a sharp turn from romantic into all kinds of horrific. And Edwards is bringing him over in a wheelchair to come see her — or she was, until he spies security walking past them down the hall, pulls out his knife, and holds it to Edwards’ throat, telling her to get him out of the hospital pronto.

Bailey calls for a hospital-wide lockdown once they discover Edwards and Keith are both missing, as Avery laments that he left the two of them alone. Edwards tries to take him down the stairwell, but when they spy another doctor coming up the other way, he pulls her onto one of the floors and the door locks behind them. But they’re not alone there, either — the older sister of the baby Owen saved earlier has been sneaking off from her parents and wandering around the hospital all day, and she now finds herself face to face with the two of them and no way out.

The lockdown, Edwards explains, means the doors won’t open until security calls it off or another emergency takes place, like a fire — which means Keith wants them to start a fire so he can escape. The kiddo (who was rifling through ER carts and causing general annoying mischief earlier in the episode) happens to have found something that can make sparks, and with that, some alcohol, and a surgical towel, Keith has everything he needs to do it. While he’s distracted trying to get the flames close enough to set off the sprinklers, Edwards makes a move and douses him in the remaining alcohol, and when an ember from the towel he ignited hits his hospital gown, he goes up in flames FAST.

Edwards grabs the little girl, and they get to safety in a room off the hall, but then she sees the man is dangerously close to a cylinder of something flammable. She warns the kid to stay put and runs out to try and prevent it, but she’s not fast enough. Cue the explosion, shocked faces on Grey’s fans everywhere, and an anxious countdown to next week.

Episode Recaps

Grey's Anatomy

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

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