Oh, okay, look at Grey’s Anatomy coming in hot this week with a great little double-surgery montage. When in doubt, Grey’s, put these hot doctors in the OR! It always helps!
The main event is, of course, Meredith’s groundbreaking cell-therapy surgery on Dr. Hamilton. Meredith, Amelia, and Kai have been prepping for this day and Dr. Hamilton isn’t lying about bowel obstructions anymore and everything is a go for curing Parkinson’s. Even Tom Koracick shows up to assist Amelia. Bailey may not be too happy about it — “Is he here to give me another heart attack?” — but I am. We need Tom Koracick’s sass on this show. I mean, this man walks into Grey Sloan and within seconds is cracking an inappropriate joke about residents killing patients. This is the energy this sad hospital needs. Anyway, everyone who actually knows what this supersecret surgery that will change the face of medicine entails is pretty pumped about it. Those not part of the inner circle? Not so much.
After listening to sister whine a little bit and seeing the sad, pathetic faces of the residents who have been dealing with a lot of stress and low morale post-Schmitt, Meredith decides she’s over it: “In my hospital, we teach,” she tells Hamilton in a moment that honestly is so empowering it made me want to do push-ups. You don’t really know me but, like, I never want to do push-ups, so this is a big deal. Meredith is no longer keeping this supersecret surgery a super secret. They were already filming it for posterity’s sake, so Meredith wants to not only open up the surgical gallery and let everyone at Grey Sloan watch live if they want, but also broadcast the whole thing. “Why not teach the world?” Meredith asks, and okay, so, maybe her power has gone to her head a little bit, but overall this makes the whole thing much more fun. Let the people see!
The surgery is going smoothly — those cells are viable, baby! — until the exact moment Amelia is about to inject the cells into Hamilton’s brain: She gets paged because Owen is leaking spinal fluid and has been rushed to the OR. It’s just like Owen to try to ruin a momentous event in the career of an ex, isn’t it? Amelia hesitates for a moment, deciding whether or not she wants to walk away from this surgery to help Owen. Kai is baffled that she would even consider it, and Kai doesn’t even know Owen, but I think just intuits that Owen sucks. Meredith has to remind Amelia that their FDA approval to do this surgery is very specific, and if Amelia isn’t the one putting the cells into Hamilton’s brain, the whole thing is a wash. Thankfully, Amelia makes the right choice and asks Tom to go help Owen; he begrudgingly agrees, which is hilarious since those two guys hate each other, and Amelia stays to perform a groundbreaking surgery. It’s a success! Everything goes according to plan, and hey, in the end, the whole Owen thing (he is fine, by the way) only brings Kai and Amelia closer because Kai is very impressed that Amelia loves her people as fiercely as she does. I guess that’s one way of putting it. The other is that Amelia lives for drama and is an agent of chaos, but whatever floats your boat, I guess.
While the Hamilton surgery is the showstopper, the second big surgery of the episode is the emotional one. Hey! Look at Dr. Nick Marsh getting his own story line! They even have this handsome doctor out here riding a bike to work in a cute li’l helmet! What a time we are having!! Here, we get to watch Nick do what he does aside from making Meredith Grey’s knees buckle: transplant surgery! He has a young patient, Arthur, who has been on the liver-transplant list for 137 days — finally, they found him a liver. The scene when Nick tells Arthur and his mom the news is the sweetest. But wait! Nick Marsh, Transplant Surgeon, is going to do more emotionally stirring things for us.
While waiting his turn to take the liver from the donor, another doctor makes a callous remark to Nick about steering clear of the grieving donor family. Nick’s not having that. He decides to go out into the waiting room and talk to them about their son and brother. They tearfully tell Nick about how James loved to sing opera and how he had auditioned for the San Francisco Conservatory with the aria “Una Furtiva Lagrima,” and Nick tells them that he’ll be thinking about James while he operates. He makes sure to impress upon his resident, during both the procurement and the transplant surgeries, that this isn’t just a nameless donor. James is a person who lived a life and is giving “the greatest gift you can give another human being.” And yes, he plays “Una Furtiva Lagrima” while he operates. It’s an emotionally effective moment, for sure, but it is also smart to finally give Nick his own story line — if he’s going to stick around as Meredith’s love interest, which it certainly seems like, he needs to stand on his own as a character, and this little sojourn alone with him proves that he has the potential to do just that.
But don’t worry: We get to see Meredith and Nick together, too. After a day of successful surgeries and both of these doctors getting to teach, albeit in very different ways, Meredith surprises Nick by showing up on his doorstep. He was the only person she wanted to celebrate her big win with, and so she hopped on a plane to see him. Screw her kids, I guess!! It’s hard to fault Mer too much because, dang, aren’t these two just so freaking cute together?
On the opposite side of the happiness spectrum there’s, not surprisingly, Levi Schmitt. Oh buddy, this guy is in a bad way. He’s still holed up in his mom’s basement, only now he’s playing a fairly violent video game nonstop. Nothing about his situation is healthy and Richard Webber arrives in an attempt to snap him out of it.
It doesn’t work. Not even a little bit.
Webber tries to connect with Schmitt by relaying his own story of a patient he felt an affinity for who died on his table. This patient put all of his trust in Webber and he died, and he still carries it with him today. What he’s trying to say is that Schmitt is not alone in how he’s feeling. Schmitt really only hears that they kill people. He killed someone. He can’t change that. It’s why he’s so obsessed with this video game. He explains to Webber, who can’t understand how Schmitt isn’t bored of this thing, that in this game when he makes a mistake, he gets a do-over. Each time, he learns something and can use that knowledge to change outcomes or to change his path entirely. There are endless possibilities and mistakes can be righted.
Webber tries his best to tie those sentiments to medicine — that Schmitt can learn from this and, armed with his experience and skills, he can choose to try again or choose a new path within medicine — but it’s kind of a stretch. Also, Schmitt doesn’t want to hear it. He thanks Webber for trying to “rescue” him but tells him it’s pointless: “I’ve already bled out. There’s nothing left to save,” he says. This is some real bleak shit, friends. If Webber can’t help Schmitt, who will be the next to make an attempt?
The O.R. Board
• Pardon, but what is this Bailey story line? Is this the first time we’ve heard about her lifelong dream to work at NASA, or am I missing something? When she gets offered a gig that combines both medicine and space, it seems to come out of nowhere. Speaking of, Bailey and her No. 1 fan Jordan Wright spend the day geeking out over sci-fi stuff and realize they have a lot in common. Their fun day together gives Jordan a wild idea and he ends his shift by planting a big ol’ kiss on Bailey. She immediately backs away and Jordan realizes he read the whole thing wrong. It is as awkward as you would imagine it to be.
• Teddy, who last week discovered Owen’s secret, is avoiding her husband by day-drinking with Jo. Friends, when Teddy blurts out that she’s done with her marriage, I wanted to flip a table. We’ve had to trudge through so much with Teddy and Owen; if the whole idea is just to break them up now, I will rage. How exhausting! When Teddy learns that Owen had to go into surgery, she comes to his bedside and does tell him that she thinks they should talk it out, so that’s a positive sign, but she also readily admits that she doesn’t know how she could ever forgive him, so … that part isn’t great. In short: Their tortured relationship continues!
• Jo is up for day-drinking with Teddy because she is actively avoiding Link. She admits that she loves him and that he gave her orgasms that were “earth-shattering.” She’s also aware that he is in love with someone else. However, Link is over at the hospital asking Owen for advice (lol) about friendships turning into romantic relationships. Link and Jo end up making out in their bathroom and deciding it might be better for both of them if Link moves out. So, they’re a mess, mostly.
• Jo complaining that her infant daughter is boring because she only likes two songs is honestly so funny.