Grey's Recap: Squall in the Family

Grey's Anatomy Season 11 Episode 6

As if you weren’t already looking forward to spending time with your family this holiday season! In this week’s Grey’s Anatomy, Derek made the grievous error of suggesting that Mer invite her newly discovered half sister over for dinner – and her newly discovered half sister’s estranged father – and April tried to appear enthusiastic about her mother’s arrival for a visit. The hour’s titled “Don’t Let’s Start,” but what the heck? Let’s!

GUESS WHO’S COMING TO DINNER | Those of us who thought that at last Mer was thawing toward Maggie, it turned out, thought wrong. In fact, early on in the hour, Derek was surprised to find out that his wife still had her semi-sibling calling her Dr. Grey. But perhaps he went a smidgen too far in his attempt to facilitate their bonding by pushing for not only the three of them to break bread together (which Mer went along with) but the three of them and Richard. He then made matters worse by pointing out that family was one of the reasons that Mer wanted to stay in Seattle. (It’s a wonder she didn’t get a concussion, she hit the roof so hard!) By the time he tried to call a time-out, it was almost too late — Mer was livid that he’d again brought up the D.C. job that he sacrificed for her. (Also of note: She mentioned that the president he’d been working for was Obama. So, not Fitz, then?)

In the end, Mer finally relented. At which point, Maggie balked at being set up to connect with her father, and Richard looked for any excuse to back out. But Derek refused to let any of them bail, which maybe he shouldn’t have. Why? Because when Maggie and Richard arrived for supper, their hosts were nowhere to be found – Mer had called a time-out of her own (to take a shower), and Derek had thought the idea sounded so good that he joined her. Richard seized the opportunity to apologize to Maggie for not having been a good father to her – or a father at all – and she reiterated that she hadn’t needed him to be a good father, she’d just needed him to be honest with her about their relation when they met. “I didn’t know what to do,” he said, “and I’ll never be anything but sorry for that.” Regardless, by the time Derek had toweled off, Maggie had left.

THE MOTHER LODE | Meanwhile, April and her mother made a lot of high-pitched noises to indicate how excited they were to have a chance to visit. But, since the ER was a madhouse, April couldn’t play hooky to actually hang out. Jackson, on the other hand, had a light schedule, so he jumped in and offered to spend the afternoon with his mother-in-law. But, once April learned that her mom and husband had been talking without her knowing it, she had a hissy fit and rejected all of her mom’s efforts to help out with the nursery, dinner, you name it. Later, Jackson calmed April down by explaining that, while she doesn’t need any guidance to become a parent, he does, so he welcomes her mother’s advice. It also helped that, in demanding an apology from April, her mom explained that seeing her daughter not only live so different a life but thrive in it was scary for her – and made her darn proud. Like that wasn’t enough, she added that, as a grandma and April’s mother, it is her right to pitch in and lend a hand if and when she can. Crisis averted.

DR. FEEL-BAD | Off Arizona and Callie’s break-up last week, the latter learned that the former – even though nobody kicked her out of the house – was crashing at Grey Sloan. Not that she had a lotta time to crash, anyway. Herman continued to run her ragged (and in such a withering way that she always let Arizona know that she doubted her ability/dedication/you-name-it). What’s more, Herman bailed on a meeting at which she was supposed to go over a complicated procedure with Arizona. Why? “I said it’s personal,” Herman snapped. (Sorry!) The following day, Arizona was nailing the procedure in the OR but explained what she was doing in her own way, and that just didn’t fly. “I want my exact words,” Herman barked. “You’re giving me the gist.” Even Alex, who was observing, was like, “Chill, lady.” That evening, Arizona took Alex’s advice and told her mentor that she wouldn’t be talked to in that manner for the next year. That’s right, you won’t be, Herman replied. “I’ll be dead in six months.” So the choice was Arizona’s: Would she tell the board that Herman was dying of an inoperable brain tumor or keep her secret and try to absorb a year’s worth of groundbreaking medical know-how in half that time?

STITCHES IN TIME | In other plots, Bailey’s discovery of a tumor in the esophagus of a patient with poor eating habits made her rethink her own lifestyle. (Her subsequent attempt at jogging was so funny, it called to mind AbFab’s Edina.) In the end, she became so convinced that she was dying, she vowed to change her ways, stat. In the story on which Shonda Rhimes and First Lady Michelle Obama put their heads together, Owen took a special interest in the case of a homeless veteran who lost everything she owned when she was carjacked. Though the patient didn’t think she deserved the help of an assistance program for veterans since she only fixed computers in the green zone in Iraq, Owen reassured her that she did. In turn, Jo saw herself in the veteran and realized that she didn’t have a home, she only had Alex’s home. But all he had to do to reassure his girlfriend was basically tell her that his casa was her casa.

OK, your turn. What did you think of the episode? Were you surprised to learn that Herman was going to go the way of Masters of Sex’s Lillian DePaul (RIP)? Sorry we didn’t get the Mer/Der/Richard/Maggie dinner we were promised? Hit the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. BP says:

    All i saw in this episode was that hot MerDer scene in the shower. Long overdue and way too short.

  2. tahina says:

    Why do I get the feeling there’s something wrong with April’s baby and they are making ways for Arizona to save it. That be great!

    • bar says:

      Good call! I hadn’t thought of that!

    • Rick Katze says:

      I think you’re right also. Wish I had thought of it. Not sure about the exact timing but I think the baby is due in about 6 months which coincidently is the time the Doctor has left.

    • Grey's Fan says:

      April is about 5 months pregnant based on the Show’s timeline (she was through her first trimester at the end of last season and Richard mentioned it’s been about two months since he found out Maggie was his daughter).

      It’s a good theory; I hadn’t thought of that. But, since April only has about four months left I say Arizona will keep Dr. Herman’s secret and learn from her. Something will happen to Herman – collapse – when she’s delivering April’s baby, putting both April and the unborn baby in danger. Arizona will have to step up and save them.

  3. Azerty says:

    Does anyone think this episode set up Arizona losing her seat on the board, maybe to Karev? I mean if she doesn’t tell the board about Herman’s tumor, at some point it will probably put some patients on danger and compromise the hospital’s integrity? Ok maybe I just think that because I’m still not over Bailey stealing the seat to Karev but that’s the first thing that came to my mind during that scene.

    • At the end of the day, Alex was too young to be on the board. Mer is only on the board because she put up money. Arizona won’t loose her seat. Alex must get over himself. The way he talked to Arizona was so wrong. She is the reason he is the surgeon he is today.

      • Sam says:

        The “too young” excuse is the dumbest excuse in a long line of dumb excuses for why Alex didn’t get the board seat. He’s not much younger than most of the other board members and Alex owns as many hospital shares as Meredith does, so that excuse makes no sense either.

        Alex is the reason he is the surgeon he is today. He has worked hard for every single thing he has achieved and several times now Arizona has tried to keep him back. Alex isn’t Arizona’s resident or fellow anymore. He’s a Peds surgeon just like her and they’re friends. Alex is a no BS type of guy and Arizona is the one that keeps going to him for advice. She needs to suck it up and put her big girl pants on. That’s what Alex told her to do and that’s what she did in the end. Looks like Alex is the one teaching Arizona these days.

    • Coal says:

      How exactly did Bailey steal Karev’s seat ? Or do I have to fawn over Justin Chambers to understand it ?

      • Azerty says:

        Ok so english is not my mothertonge so not sure what fawn over means but this has nothing to do with the actor. I have the feeling that Bailey stole the seat from Alex because Cristina gave him her share when she left and because in episode 3 Bailey bragged about how good she is, how that she doesn’t have anything to prove and that she doesn’t need to work to get it when Alex actually worked for it. And my comment was mainly about Arizona’s storyline and how it could be connected to last season cliffhanger.

        • Joshua says:

          Bailey is a surgeon like all the other surgeons on this show she has a high opinion of herself so she is bound to boast from time to time. They both had presentations to do and Bailey’s was better.

        • pinky says:

          I have an issue with Christina “giving” her board seat to Alex and him acting like he’s entitled to it because of that. While it was a noble gesture, a board seat is not a royal title…it’s not inherited.
          Board members are elected, and Bailey won more votes than Alex. It’s that simple, and she didn’t steal anything.

          • Sam says:

            Board members are elected by the shareholders they are representing. Alex is a shareholder and in that sense he had a right to that seat over Bailey who has no shares to her name.

  4. bar says:

    I definitely didn’t need all the fading to black-and-white. It was good to see April and Jackson and Bailey and Ben together since they seem so very inconsequential at this point in the show. I’m glad this episode set up some great things for Arizona’s future, but otherwise the episode didn’t do too much for me.

  5. bar says:

    I also kind of thought it was hilarious how Callie seemed to surprised Arizona was sleeping at the hospital. Callie did used to live there full-time, after all.

  6. Tv diva says:

    I can’t stand Pierce and I hate she’s a regular now.

    • Alichat says:

      Yeah….I don’t really find her compelling. More whiny and weird.

    • Jay says:

      Agreed. She is just awful.

    • Velocisexual says:

      I like her for the most part, but I can’t stand her unreasonable attitude towards Richard.

    • Viv says:

      I love Pierce! She’s healthy! She sees these irrational, emotionally stunted people for what they are & doesn’t put up with their crap. She’s a breath of fresh air: modern, brilliant, adorable and I cannot WAIT to meet her perfectly adorable spazzy parents. I’m kinda seeing a hypermanic & overly PDA Ed Begley Jr & Stockard Channing. (But I see SC in everything! LOL!)

  7. Tiffany says:

    Really Derek used the “Lexie Card on Meredith. Seriously!

  8. Coal says:

    That was really boring. You know you can tell whether or not an actor is enjoying a role, it does matter what strife the character is going through. The actors just seem tired.

  9. Veteran says:

    When Callie and Owen are discussing the identity of their patient at the beginning of the show Callie identifies a tattoo. Because She has been working with vets she notices a military tattoo indicating OIF 11-12. She say this means Operation Iraqi Freedom 2011-2012. One problem, War was over before 2012.

    • Amber says:

      Army brat/watched with my solider boyfriend and we both caught that. If they’re gonna do storylines like this, they need to hire a consultant to get their info right.

  10. Emma says:

    Finally a thaw in the Mer/Der drama. And shower sex!

  11. Abby says:

    My heart was sad when I learnd Derek didn’t work for Fitz :(

  12. Viv says:

    3-4 years since MerDer got married & i’ve still been on the fence about ’em. Seeing Derrick lecture those two dysfunctional chickens on how to build a family was priceless! So hilarious — great little scene!

  13. Meredith says:

    I was mostly struck by the way Gina Davis’s eye makeup was completely unbalanced in the surgery and her last scene with Arizona. One eye? Totally done. the other, not so much.