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The team scrambles to save Owen's sister and the hospital as it recovers from last season's explosion

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September 29, 2017 at 02:09 AM EDT

Grey’s Anatomy is back! The season premiere opens with Owen and Amelia still at Madigan Army Medical Center, waiting for his sister Megan (Abigail Spencer) to be wheeled off an Army helicopter. Owen rushes to Megan’s side, but when she looks at him, she asks, “Who are you?” Before he knows what to say, Megan breaks into a huge smile and says, “Sorry, I had to do it.”

And so kicks off the 14th season, which the cast promised would be “lighter, funnier, and sexier,” and hooah — did they deliver.

Once Megan is set up in her temporary room at Madigan and is chatting with her brother and Amelia, it isn’t long until Nathan shows up. “Hey stranger,” Megan offers her estranged fiancé by way of a rather casual greeting, considering they haven’t seen each other for 10 years. They hug and he apologizes to her before Megan tells them all that there had been a bombing and she took some shrapnel in Iraq. “It didn’t heal so well,” she says before lifting her gown to show us what an incredible understatement that is.

Back at Grey Sloan Memorial, Bailey is addressing the staff as she stands on the stairs between the fourth and fifth floors, thanking them for keeping their heads during last night’s explosion, complete with crispy rapist. As she continues to rattle off the considerable damage done to our beloved hospital, Arizona and April chat about Minnick’s firing.

Jo walks into the meeting late and tells Alex that Stephanie was airlifted to a burn center in Texas. Owen also shows up late and tells Webber that his sister was airlifted to Grey Sloan Memorial, and she’s being taken to CT. As Bailey is wrapping up, she tells people to stay away from the neuro wing as it’s unstable — just before part of the ceiling above them comes crashing down in splendid fashion. Hospital makeover time!

While Nathan is running Megan’s CT scan, she asks him if he’s met anyone significant. In what will continue to be a theme throughout the premiere, Meredith exhibits wonderful timing by entering at that exact moment to find out how Megan is doing. After she leaves, Nathan tries to avoid the question, but Megan presses before he finally admits, “I did meet someone. She’s not you.”

Amelia is finally back at work, examining a young ER patient with DeLuca. Beau Martinez is having serious head pain that no amount of drugs will take care of. His dad tells Amelia and DeLuca that people think he has a drug problem. Spoiler: He doesn’t.

After Meredith, Bailey, and Webber talk it over, they all go to Megan’s room with a plan to reapproximate the abdominal wall, take down her fistula, and reverse her colostomy. Megan’s mom states the obvious about how risky this all sounds, but Megan tells them she has to get back to Iraq, and she’s not going to be able do it with an open abdomen wound. And why is she desperate to get back? She says she has a child, named Farouk, whom she took in six years ago when he was 4. Nathan asks her why she didn’t bring him with her, and she snaps back, “Tell that to immigration laws.”

Meanwhile at the OR board, a blossoming friendship is developing between Ben and Jo, who is desperately seeking a replacement for her bygone BFF Stephanie. Alex interrupts them to whisk Jo away so she can meet his 7-year-old patient, Max, who needs a Ladd’s procedure. Likely still feeling guilty for tracking down her abusive ex and hiding it from her, he tells her that she can do the surgery on her own.

The hospital hierarchy is something we’ve seen in play since season 1, but just when we thought there was nothing lower than an intern, we meet the sub-interns, a.k.a. sub-Is. Back in the role he loves best, Webber tries to take them under his wing, but the old-school in him is confounded by their new-school technology dependence.

Arizona goes to Minnick’s apartment to check on her after her firing, only to find out that she’s ghosted — “no note, no text,” as she later explains to April in the cafeteria. Ouch — wonder if she can get that burn treated? But not to worry, because guess who’s back? Teddy (Kim Raver) is back, back again. And Arizona isn’t the only one who’s happy to see her. Owen is thrilled to see his old friend, who had gone back to military duty after her husband died. Teddy tells Owen she came back because of Megan, but we all know it’s because she still has feelings for him. (Recap continues on next page)

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