“Grey’s Anatomy” is still just beginning its lucky thirteenth season — and Meredith’s Nanny has seen it all. This week: Yet another maybe-baby, a liver donor shell game and Meredith drops some casual darkness bombs with the aplomb and professional accuracy of her Season 1 self…
Before I became Meredith’s (Ellen Pompeo) nanny and was still working at Joe’s Tavern, I used to hear her getting drunk with Christina (Sandra Oh), joking loudly about how “dark and twisty” she was. I remember rolling my eyes: From the outside, it’s hard to believe this beautiful, wealthy woman could have an ounce of darkness inside of her. But the widowed mother of three — whose job includes watching her patients die on the regular — has a serious dark side, and Thursday (Oct. 20), that twisted humor of Meredith’s was back in full force.
Personally, I think it’s awesome. I love it when she makes a comment even her twisty sisters (Kelly McCreary and Caterina Scorsone) can’t handle — and I think Mer also gets a kick out of it, too. She can silence an entire room with her “Did she really just go there?” kind of jokes. What people may not understand, as they shake their head to what may be misconstrued as heartless and crude comments, is that this is how Meredith copes. This is how we know she’s doing okay.
In this case, Meredith made light of how she got out of telling Derek she was pregnant with their third child because he was dead — and related it like she was mentioning how she wanted to pick up a pumpkin for Halloween that day, but the store was all out.
When Karev (Justin Chambers) told me he had to reel Meredith in after she was griping near the ER that not enough people were dying (she just wanted her patient to get a liver!), we shared a laugh — it’s just too on-brand for Grey. She’s been through enough trauma to last 10 lifetimes, she’s dark and twisty, and we love her as such.
Of course, her sister Amelia has some darkness in her past — have you heard? — so if that weird little Meredith moment helped her finally grow up enough to at least admit to her husband, Dr. Hunt (Kevin McKidd), that she might be pregnant — good. What really impressed me is how she told him before she took the test. So many women feel the need to wait until they know for sure, trading that momentary bravery for suffering the “Am I?”/”Aren’t I” freakout all alone. So Hunt was right there to console her when the test only showed one line.
Amelia is not pregnant, yet — but if April (Sarah Drew) could keep kicking to get a bun in the oven, not to mention Meredith’s own adventures in IVF sudden blindness, so can the youngest Dr. Shepherd. Owen’s made it very clear to all of us that he is just happy to be here, and if she’d seen him go from loving babies in theory (always the best thing about him, even if it did drive Cristina away) to being great with them after a day of practice with Harriet… Maybe that would kick some eggs loose:
To the extent that either Drs. Shepherd-Hunt matter, they’ve both been through the wars and they deserve to be happy — and frankly there is nothing else life can do to Amy at this point, so just give her the W. Even if it means I have yet another baby to take care of.
Amelia always runs at the first sign of adulthood, which is what made her iffy marriage with Dr. Hunt such a mature move in the first place — but her look of transcendental relief at finding out the oven’s empty means we’re only just beginning her negotiation with this new phase of life. Perhaps every week we’ll get to witness some new adulthood-avoiding strategy come crashing down, and eventually — like sister Meredith, long before we even met Amelia — out of that wreckage will emerge an actual person.
These women are tough: Kepner’s still clawing her way back into the hospital, Bailey was ready to sacrifice a 25-year-old woman to save her own liver patient and Robbins is so over it, she barely stopped moving long enough to chuckle and babble her way through a single scene. And after tussling all episode with Amelia about who gets neuro-loving Dr. Edwards (Jerrika Hinton) for their second in command, Maggie lovingly sent her back to neuro with a dark zinger of her own — this one, regarding an astronaut who’d just died on the table and the dumb joke from Edwards that might have killed him — that shows Ellis Grey’s blood runs just as strong in Maggie’s own veins… Whatever sunny-side-up demeanor she’s developed in her own life.
And if I was tougher, I would’ve made Meredith tell Maggie about her hook-up with Dr. Riggs (Nathan Henderson) already. Especially since he is still pursuing her. Men love crazy, but not as much as they love rewriting reality to make themselves romantic heroes. Mark my words, as cowardly as Meredith’s being about the Riggs hookup, it’s Riggs’s own Nice Guy Friendzone BS that’s going to bring things crashing down around Meredith, Maggie, and probably the whole hospital.
Since this is “Grey’s,” I’m bracing myself for this dirty secret to rear its ugly head during the worst possible time. Like the annual, horrific Thanksgiving dinner! Thank God I’ll be sitting at the kids’ table…
“Grey’s Anatomy” airs on Thursday nights at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.