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Grey's Anatomy - Episode 10.03 - Everybody's Crying Mercy - Review

Is it too early for a filler episode? This was the first question I asked myself as the credits rolled of episode 10.03 of Grey’s Anatomy. And yes, maybe I’m being overly harsh for so early in the season but nevertheless a filler is what I watched when I tuned in this week. Following the rumbustious efforts of the double opener of 10.01 and 10.02, Everybody’s Crying Mercy felt like a rather damp squib where the writers, exhausted from their cohesive integrated premiere, needed a vacation. It wasn’t bad. It just wasn’t great. Honestly I really enjoyed it. But at the back of my mind I think I enjoyed it more because I’m just glad Grey’s is back on my telebox than because the episode rocked.

Firstly though, let’s face it what’s not to love about a sleepy exhausted Daddy McDreamy. The very best part of this episode being his grumpy sleepy baby puky self, bemoaning the fact his nipples are not adequate for the task at hand. On the surface this is a trivial point but it speaks volumes when we relate it back to his early McDreamy days in pursuit of Meredith and surgical glory, and the journey he’s been on. While Derek was sleeping in his car (seriously he should’ve headed over to my place) Meredith was desperately trying to save Richards life. Richard. Mr Self Pity 2013. Did we see this coming, where Richard would descend into a pit of despair? Where not only would he deny Meredith as part of his family but layer on to her the burden of being unemotional, cold even? Richard Webber has certainly been through a great deal over the past 9 seasons and no one can deny that he’s been put through trauma and heart ache. But it’s easy to forget that this is a man who cheated on his wife (in a far more damaging way than Arizona or Owen) or who never really made it easy for Meredith during residency. It’s easy to be retrospectively blind to the angst of seasons four to six where a damaged version of himself almost tore apart Meredith and Derek.  More recently Webber has found happiness with Avery senior, that energetic whippet of a doctor who has swept him off his feet. Does Catherine deserve the shell of a man left on the floor in the basement? Oh my, does Bailey deserve it? I am eager to see where this story goes and honestly it’s difficult to predict the direction. But that’s good. We’ve had to a wait a long time to see Meredith face up to Richards feelings about her and I’m prepared to see this through. Perhaps Arizona is not the only character who needs to look in the mirror.

Speaking of...
Only a week has gone by since the premiere which is unusual in Grey’s terms, where we’re used to a time jump, so we are presented with “Callie + one week”. And she’s an emotional steam engine crushing everything in her path. Not only do I not want to be Arizona at the moment, frankly I don’t want to be any doctor who has to deal with our heartbroken Ortho surgeon. This is Ramirez at her best of course, where not only does she look the part of the destroyed wife (great make up and hair) but everyone she touches feels her pain too. This arc is probably the most important one for season ten and so far the writers are taking great care to move it at a respectful pace...that is...not too quickly. Arizona is starting to see the sheer size of the damage she has caused but, and perhaps I start to upset the Calzona apple cart here, she is not the only one of this couple to have brought this marriage to it’s knees. Last week I thought Callie understood this – “I don’t dance in my underwear anymore” – this week, I’m not so sure. One thing that is clear though is that Callie’s very justifiable pain is too raw to ‘deal’ at the moment. Oh this will be good. (More on this later in a feature article.)

Meanwhile the hospital is falling down and the board is collectively ineffective. It’s left to a grieving Owen to pull their heads from their a***** and force them to get on with their job. I had a very interesting discussion with a friend this week about how Grey’s copes with grief. In my opinion it doesn’t do it well. But I was reminded of the great examples of grief shown by couples that have split – Cristina and Burke – Callie and Erica – even more so with Callie and George. All these couples were allowed their pain and the consequences of the pain, even Derek and Mark. I conceded that point. But when it comes to Meredith and Lexie, no. Callie and Mark, no. So the argument evened out. Some big relationships have not been through mourning process. The conclusion of the discussion however was the observation that Shonda et al are doing a terrific job executing ‘grief’ with Owen and Cristina. It is such a joy to watch good chemistry between these actors as they go their separate ways knowing full well that neither of their characters want it and that their separation is utterly heartbreaking.  It shows, we feel it and we are left bereft.

As is unfortunately the way, especially with episodes light on real forward going plot development the periphery characters were more of a distraction than content. Jackson Avery (not a periphery character but should be) who had a stupendous premier turned (back) into an arrogant little s***. (I was relieved to be honest. The thought of liking Avery was starting to upset me :). He’s not Mark. Being the sexy mentor simply doesn’t work for someone who has the arrogance to order Chief Hunt to be a traffic cop with the “I own this hospital” affectation. I was very glad when Owen did exactly that with unintended consequences for Jackson.

April surprised us all and passed her boards, a small plot point to clean up the stories from early season nine. I hope that this will mean she gets treated appropriately in surgeries, Callie shouting aside (which was very funny). Her celebration was muted by Jackson who still keeps her at arms length. I’m hoping that she sees off Matt and then sees off Jackson too. The latter’s position is understandable but it’s also becoming insufferable as he woos plastic Stephanie. And I feel sorry for the poor girl, because when the chips are down this young intern has nothing to offer us.

Though reasonably enjoyable, episode 10.03 was disappointing and rather dull, almost like a filler just before the mid season crescendo. It was bitty and stilted and will not be an episode that I will choose to watch one rainy Sunday during hiatus. But it was necessary. While there were no major plot development to grab us so early on in the season, there were important snippets particularly between Callie and Arizona, Richard and Meredith. For the rest if I didn’t know it and tuned in next week I’d pick it back up fairly quickly.

What about the rest:

The worst:
Alex finally had sex. I can’t bring myself to give that any more of my energy.
The interns. I feel they may feature highly on this section of a review.

The best:
Okay, I'm not a fan of the interns but kudos to Shane. Epic moment with Richard
Daddy Derek
Oh Cristina, who will be our comic hero when you are gone?

The very best
Daddy Derek again

A Tribute to Cristina Yang - Yang-isms of the week:
 “Was it weird? Is she a man?....oh secret penis”
“Are the hydraulics not working? I can write you a ‘script”
“Can I ask you one thing? When we’re done, will you braid my hair?”

Written by Maxine (Brouhaha) aka @pipmaxine

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