‘Grey’s Anatomy’: No-Ear Boy Teaches the Importance of Listening

Learning from patients makes us happy! Photo: Courtesy of ABC
Episode Title
Haunt You Every Day
Season
4
Episode
5

This week's episode starts out promisingly with a dream scene in which Meredith, dressed all in white, looks back at important moments of her life. She almost drowned! Her mother told her she was mediocre! McDreamy broke up with her! Could it be? Is our lifeless heroine actually … lifeless? No, she wakes up and tells us that surgeons are always haunted by something or someone. And the formula haunting this show, of course, means that the doctors are paired with patients who somehow reflect this truth back. Let's see who they are this week!

Meredith gets: A little boy with deformed ears whose mother forced him to beg for free plastic surgery. As a child on a TV drama, No-Ear is wiser than the surgeons who help him. He advises Meredith to lay her own mother to rest (Meredith’s been toting around her mom’s ashes all day).
What it means: Meredith has to prove to herself that she’s not like her mother, who was mean. (We were just kidding about the listening part in the headline.)
The outcome: No-Ear boy gets ears after Meredith wrangles enough resources to perform the surgery for free. Meredith then, in what might be a symbolic move, washes her mother’s ashes down the sink.

Callie and Christina get: A crazy man who tried to cut off his “haunted” foot.
What it means: The guy is crazy, and Callie and Christina, both recently rejected by their significant others, are too.
The outcome: The foot is amputated, and Callie and Christina move in together. Not like that!

Alex gets: No-Face (no relation to No-Ear!)
What it means: “Ava,” who returns to find Alex, is angry that he didn’t chase after her when she left at the end of last season. They have sex. She tells him not to chicken out this time.
The outcome: Alex chickens out. No-Face flees without saying good-bye, although she leaves her shirt behind for him to smell.
Unresolved aspect of the outcome: What did No-Face wear home? A jacket over a bra?

George gets: A woman who was hit in the head with a brick, and, subsequently, is now brain-dead. In an absurdly convenient twist, the woman’s father is already in the hospital waiting for a heart transplant, so he has to decide if he’ll take his daughter’s heart.
What it means: George says he would have given his own heart to save his father, so the guy should take his daughter’s organ and run. George is obviously still dealing with his father’s death; this thread exonerates George of his cheating on Callie by reminding us that he married her too quickly.
The outcome: The guy takes his daughter’s heart. George realizes that not everything is black and white, and that cheating on Callie doesn’t make him a terrible person.

Next week: McDreamy starts to date! Let's hope we’ll encounter only patients with ears, feet, and face intact. —Emma Rosenblum