“To really be efficient, you have to eliminate what doesn’t work. You have to figure out what is important and hold on tight to the things that matter most.”
Grey’s Anatomy 9×14
First of all, I must apologize for the lack of recaps. I’ve had a major case of writer’s block with them, and finally my sister yelled at me this week, saying “WHY HAVE YOU STOPPED RECAPPING GREY’S?!”. So here we go. I’m back
Much has happened since we last discussed Grey’s on Head Over Feels. Bailey got married. Adele Webber died. Cristina and Owen got divorced yet are still somewhat together and happy. The Airline crash case was settled, and Meredith, Derek, Cristina, Arizona, and Callie (in Mark’s stead, representing Sofia) are all now $15 Million richer (EACH). The settlement was not covered by the hospital’s insurance because of a technicality, so SGMW was responsible for the payout, bankrupting it. In an effort to save the hospital, efficiency expert Dr. Cahill (who was once one of Webber’s students) has been brought in to streamline operations, starting with shutting down the hospital’s emergency room. And lastly, Meredith has made it through her first trimester and has gone public with her pregnancy. Which brings us up to this week’s episode. Whew.
First of all, Miranda Bailey was EVERYTHING in this episode. I love how she constantly reveals that she is a super pop culture nerd, from loving Star Wars to all the references to The Hunger Games in this episode. This is the Bailey I’ve loved for 8.5 seasons: competitive, snarky, kick-ass and ultimately a big ball of compassion. I’m so glad to have her back.
Even though we’ve seen this surgery competition storyline before with the Chief and Cristina going head to head in the skills lab with new and old techniques (“That’s why they call me the CHIEF!!” Also do you want to feel old? That was way back in SEASON TWO), I still enjoyed it. Bailey, Meredith and Webber were all on fire with their various quips and competitiveness as they fought to win a freaking hoodie for mastering the new and “only acceptable way” to fix hernias.
Of course, Webber would have the most trouble with this “standardization of procedure” as he is the one who clings the most to his old school ways. And the whole thing WAS distressing, especially when the teacher finally exploded at Webber that “the patients don’t even matter”. No one wants to go to a doctor who deals with you like you are customer number one billion at McDonald’s. It’s not a comforting thought and I love how all the doctors in the skills lab revolted at that moment. It shouldn’t be about doing it one way. It should be about each individual doctor operating the best way they know, it’s better for them, and ultimately it’s better for the patient. And while Bailey won the competition, she knew it was a hollow victory for her and the hospital as a whole. And her prized hoodie? It itched.
Owen, Derek and April spent the episode trying to find ways to save the ER from being shut down. Owen looped Cahill into a grisly trauma case involving a man who had met the wrong end of a saw in hopes of showing Cahill what exactly the hospital was losing if the ER shut down. I thought it was a very shrewd move of him to get her involved in a surgery. In both this week’s episode and last week’s, Cahill, who IS a surgeon, has shown an aversion to get into the OR. What exactly is her story? Does she have some sort of massive screw-up in her past that scared her out of operating and into this business of cost cutting and making hospitals more efficient? WHAT ARE YOU DOING SHONDA?? For most of the episode it seemed that Owen’s ploy was working, especially as he had Cahill stay with him all the way to the end of the case and bringing her in as he told the family that the patient was going to live.
(Also, the whole carotid artery blowing thing was much better when it was Seth Green’s artery blowing and Lexie Grey stepping in to try to save him. I’ve been watching this show too long guys.)
While Owen worked on Cahill, Derek and April were outlining aspects of the hospital’s budget that could be trimmed in order to save the ER and then going around and asking Attendings and Department Heads to give various aspects of their program up. And let’s be honest. Who can say no to Derek Shepherd and his McDreamy face? No one, that’s who.
As it turns out, all their efforts were for naught. When Derek and April gleefully tell Cahill (who I am now convinced has no soul) that they have found the money to keep the ER open, she basically laughs in their faces. It turns out that no amount of money or budget cuts will save SGMW. Cahill is there to get the hospital ready for a buyer and is “staging” it to make it look the most appealing. “The ER,” she says, “is the shag carpet. It has to go.” And then she thanks Owen for the great day in the ER and then saunters off to her black hole of doom and share celebratory drinks with hernia teaching guy as they toast the impending demise of another hospital. Or at least that’s how it goes in my head.
Owen then does the only thing he can do. He closes down the ER for the final time. And then, in a very touching moment with Cristina, says he’s going to go get very drunk. Because, for now, that’s all he can do.
I remain intrigued as to where Shonda is going with this storyline. The obvious solution is for all of the plane crash victims to give back some of their settlement and pool it together to buy the hospital back. But that just seems like a weird place to go logistically. We’ll see.
– Oh ABC promo department. You are the most tricksy. Playing on the entire fandom’s fears of something bad happening to McBaby, they really played off Meredith’s freak out as something bad actually happening when in actuality, it was just her baby kicking for the first time. I did love this moment though. It is so typical of Meredith to instantly jump to the worst possible outcome whenever anything happens. It was a very sweet scene between her and Bailey as she realized that everything that was happening was GOOD. I love that even though they are technically peers now, versus student/teacher, Bailey will always view her former interns as her babies. She was such a proud mama in that moment and it was adorable. Also adorable? Mer and Der in bed at the end of the episode feeling the baby kick.
– The whole Big Brother thing with the remote doctors observing procedures was SUPER creepy. How much would that freak you out as a patient if a voice started correcting your doctor’s advice. I love that Cristina went off on him about that. But I also loved that Bob (the displaced voice) showed some compassion for Cristina and Leah’s patient, a severely injured boy who was a Jehovah’s Witness. I had no idea that Jehovah’s Witnesses didn’t believe in blood transfusions, and this belief essentially sentenced this patient to death from the start. I understood Leah’s sense of helplessness, especially when it was evident that the kid would have lived if he could have gotten blood. Sure, the fact that she tried to secretly give him blood was reprehensible and she was stopped by Cristina, but it was nice that Bob ultimately recognized that it was out of compassion, so he didn’t turn her in.
– The Alex/Callie/Arizona case, while it had some fun moments, felt like filler to me. Though it was nice that the patient didn’t turn all weepy and inspired when she saw that Arizona had a prosthetic leg. I was expecting it to go there, so I was pleased when it didn’t. Sometimes you just need to be yelled at in order to do something (Ahem, me with these recaps), so I liked that the yelling and “I’m not taking anymore of this crap” attitude is what finally worked.
– “The baby won’s stop kicking actually.” “Jerk.” = priceless Meredith and Cristina dialogue.
That’s it for this week, Grey’s fans! Next Friday I will be on a plane to Los Angeles for the first annual CommuniCon (!!!!!!) so there may not be a recap next week. But I promise. I’ll be much better about these going forward.