Last night the fifth season of “Grey’s” concluded all I have to say is Holy Cow! I know “Lost” teased a game-changer ending, but I thought “Grey’s” ending could be an even bigger game-changer if you ask me. I guess it all depends on Izzie and George’s fates, which will have to wait until the fall. But, I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s break down this two-hour thrill ride…
General thoughts on the episode: I thought this finale was very good. It’s no small order keeping a drama interesting for a whole hour, let alone two, but I thought the writers. Allan Heinberg (Part 1, “Here’s to the Future.”) and Debora Cahn (Part 2, “Now or Never”) did a great job of that last night. I felt that there was very little filler, some but not much, but for the most part just about every scene mattered. I was very happy that most of the focus was on Izzie and her gut-wrenching decision whether or not to let Derek try to remove a tumor from her brain and the aftermath of the surgery. “Grey’s” has a history of not giving the most important storyline as much attention that it deserves, but that mistake wasn’t made last night. I really liked how different things happened during Izzie’s decision making process (her friend going on life support/her losing her memory and speech during a test) to make her see-saw on what to do. I thought by making her see both sides of the coin, it made her decision-making process that much more interesting.
Best storylines: Of course, Izzie’s struggle over what to do was the most intriguing, but there was a lot of other good stuff to latch on to from last night also. Even if it was one of the worst-kept secrets during the TV season, I liked the George-enlisting-in-the-Army storyline. What I liked about it was how he just went for it. He didn’t ask for anyone’s advice, he just realized he had a calling and enlisted. I also liked this storyline because of how all of the doctors reacted. I enjoyed the comical reactions from Alex and Cristina as well as Bailey’s stunned anger and how it temporarily put Callie and Arizona at odds. I also got a kick out of everyone rallying together to stage an intervention for George. I know going off to war is a big deal, but it’s not like he was on drugs or something.
Speaking of George, I have to add his critical condition to the best storyline lot, even though it was a mere medical case until Meredith realized who their John Doe was. When the doctors were working on him and debating whether pushing the girl out of the way of the bus was stupid or heroric, and Hunt chimed in with, “He’s a hero,” I had a bad feeling it was George. I spent the rest of the episode hoping that I was wrong, but when “John Doe” was trying to write something to Meredith the first time, and T.R. Knight was absent for a most of the whole second hour, that pit in my stomach just wouldn’t go away.
Worst storylines: Trust me, there have been worse storylines than this one, but I wasn’t a big fan of the Mark-Lexie stuff. It did provide some much-needed comic relieve to offset the Izzie storyline, but it just didn’t really fit with what was else was going on that day. I just don’t see a doctor as serious as Sloan picking out a new place while he’s on the clock. I did like when Derek overheard Mark’s initial conversation and Mark asked him how much heard and Derek said, “Which part? The part where you ask her to move in with you, or the part where she turned you down?” I also liked watching McSteamy get tips on how to be “the woman’ in a relationship. So, like I said, this storyline wasn’t bad, it was more so misplaced. It would’ve held a lot more water in a more relationship-themed episode. It got kind of lost last night, and a moment like commitment-phobe Sloan asking a woman to live him should not have gotten lost in the shuffle like that.
I also didn’t care for the “Chief trying to lure Bailey back to general surgery with fancy equipment storyline.” The Chief has been more unlikable than likable for me this season, but I thought he was taking a turn for the best near the end here. I guess I was disappointed that he tried to bribe Bailey away from pediatrics with robots. It just seemed infantile. I’m just glad that the Chief-Arizona battle for Bailey’s soul didn’t go on for the entire two hours. That would have been brutal. I was just glad that a) the Chief redeemed himself by being there for Bailey in her time of need and b) that she choose to go back to general surgery not because of the robots but because she knew there’s no way she could be a single mom and take on a new specialty. (Is Tucker the least supportive husband in TV history?)
Best performances: There were no bad performances last night (there rarely are), but I especially liked Chandra Wilson’s “We’re all scared” speech near the end. That was the stuff “Best Supporting Actress” Emmy’s are made of. Justin Chambers was also excellent last night. Watching him go through an array of emotions (supportive, scared, angry) in such a short time span was very impressive. I think he deserves some consideration for season MVP this year. Sandra Oh’s “I love you” speech was excellent as well, and of course I can’t forget Katherine Heigl, who has been great ever since Izzie’s cancer storyline began. This show really bounced back from a lackluster middle of season and became very good down the stretch, and while the stories and writing got better, I think the actors had a lot to do with it (even Ellen Pompeo stepped it up) as well.
Other random thoughts about last night:
*One of my favorite scenes from last night was the George/Owen fake out, when it was made to look like Owen asked Cristina to go to the recruiting station with him, when he was really going to see him mom and it George who was enlisting. I thought that was very well done.
*It was great to see my man, Zach Gilford from “Friday Night Lights” get a guest star role as the patient who was requesting a leg amputation. It was definitely strange hearing him without his bit of a Texas twang though.
*Now that Owen has seen his mom and he says he’s well, I hope that he and Cristina can mesh into a regular couple. This dance they’ve done all season has been absolutely exhausting. I still feel that Cristina lacks the chemistry with Owen that she had with Burke, but maybe now that the issues between them have dissipated, the chemistry will be more visible.
*I don’t know, I kind of liked Derek and Meredith’s “wedding.” I’m sure they will have to go City Hall to make it truly official, but I felt their little vow exchange in the changing room was very “them.” More so than the wedding they were supposed to have last week.
*Lines of the Night:
-“Screw the DNR.”
-“That’s quality booty.”
-“We’re gonna get you a pair of wheely shoes.”
-“If we were George and Owen, we’d hug right now.”
-“I got the whole (darn) thing.”
-“007 joined the army?”
*Wow, what a way to end the season. George and Izzie both seeing the white light as the “Grey’s” title card comes up. I don’t know what else to say except shouldn’t “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” been playing during that scene. When Izzie went to the elevator in her prom gown, I expected the doors to open and she’d see Denny again, but what a surprise to see George in full military gear and haircut waiting for her. What makes this cliffhanger so great is that with T.R. Knight and Katherine Heigl reportedly wanting off the show, there are no guarantees that George and Izzie make it. There’d be less doubt if this happened a few seasons ago.
So, overall I felt “Grey’s” ended on a good, although sad, note. This was a very strong finale and I hope the start of Season Six is just as good. Thanks to you all for chatting “Grey’s” with me every Friday morning. I look forward to doing it again in the fall!
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