Grey's Anatomy Recap: Crash & Yearn

Grey's Anatomy Season 11

Where in the world is Derek Shepherd? The question loomed large over this week’s episode of Grey’s Anatomy, especially after a small plane’s crash flashed Meredith right back to… well, you know. So where was her husband? Read on… 

BAD TRIP | As “One Flight Down” opened, Richard was jamming in his car to “In the Bush” when he saw a plane go down. Hauling ass to Grey Sloan, he arrived just before the victims. Understandably, Mer and Arizona couldn’t help but remember the ill-fated flight that resulted in Mark and Lexie’s deaths and Robbins’ amputation. “We are okay,” they assured themselves while freaking out in a supply closet. Knowing how difficult the day would be for Mer and Arizona, Alex told Callie that they should keep an eye on their fellow docs. “There oughta be some rule,” he said, “that people who’ve been in a plane crash can’t work on one.” At the same time, Mer was extra worried since, not only had she and Derek survived a crash before, but he was a no-show at his meeting in D.C. (Flashbacks to their recent reunion only heightened our sense of her feared loss.) In fact, while performing surgery on the pilot, Mer became so distracted that Bailey asked if she had to excuse herself, then gave her till 5 p.m. — then and only then could she panic. Shortly thereafter, Maggie — who’d only just learned from her colleagues about the previous crash — was called in to assist Mer and Bailey.

HEART FAILURE | Meanwhile, Amelia was so adamant about not even discussing her relationship with Owen that he finally threw in the towel. “I’m done,” he said, concluding that he hadn’t provided enough of a high for her. Afterward, Stephanie put her foot in her mouth by telling Hunt how romantic she thought it was that the pilot and a passenger had been on their first date when the plane went down and had already realized they were in love. Later, she wondered if Owen and Amelia’s sniping had caused them to make a mistake that caused the woman to forget the plane crash, the pilot and the fact that she was head over heels in love. When Owen caught Amelia yelling at Stephanie for pushing the amnesiac too hard to remember her date — and took the opportunity to yell at Amelia — Edwards told them that she was the protagonist of this story, dammit, and “you two are mussin’ it up!” (Love it when Stephanie’s feisty.) Finding Edwards wheeling the patient into the pilot’s room, Amelia barked at her again… but the ploy worked: The woman remembered! Inspired, Amelia decided that she was ready to talk to Owen. But, haunted by his own memories of putting Cristina and Co. on the earlier plane that went down, he was hardly in the mood. “I won’t survive another plane crash,” he said, “and that’s all we are.

COMING UNGLUED | Miraculously, Maggie saved the pilot with… glue. Afterward, she suggested that, stressed out as Mer was, she go home. (At that point, we cut to another flashback, this one of Derek saying that they should add another baby to their family… starting that second!) Come 5 p.m., Mer picked up the phone… just as a police car pulled up in front of the house. Apparently — based on next week’s scenes — Derek was in a car accident. But did he live?!

PAST TENSE | While helping Arizona treat expectant moms whose yoga class had been crashed — or crashed into, to be specific — by a driver who’d witnessed the plane’s downward spiral, Alex made her nuts with his concerned “hovering and lurking and creeping.” When she apologized for snapping at him, he revealed that he had been the one who’d performed her amputation. Off this, Callie explained that she hadn’t told Arizona that it had been Alex who made the cut because 1) it had been her call, and 2) she hadn’t wanted Robbins to hate both of them. “Thank you,” Arizona responded.

I, WITNESS | In a funny B plot, April called Richard on his BS as his tale of witnessing the plane crash got taller and taller. But he managed to save face by explaining that — even if he’d embellished a bit — the experience had made him reflect on how much he had to lose. So in a way, it WAS a near-death experience.

OK, your turn. What did you think of the episode?

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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68 Comments
  1. bar says:

    I found this episode wonderful as a fan since the beginning. I thought it was very true-to-life in the way we as people store traumatic experiences in the past. And the way Arizona acted when she found out about the leg? And Callie saying that she didn’t tell Arizona because she didn’t want her to push away Alex too? Those moments, like the episode, just went in Grey’s hall of fame for me.

  2. brooke says:

    Rooting for Calzona

  3. Kel says:

    Horrible writing. How did all those people working at GRAY/SLONE Memorial Hospital not know why it was named that? It happened like two years ago not 60.

    • kn1231 says:

      You would think there would be some sort of plaque or something referencing the origin of the name somewhere in the hospital. With that being said, I enjoyed seeing everyone’s reactions as they found out about that trauma.

    • B says:

      It’s reasonable for Maggie to just assume the Grey part of Grey-Sloan was in reference to Meredith’s mom and not question the “Sloan.” We know from their first appearance that the new interns knew about the crash but didn’t know all the details, which was what was depicted tonight.

      • Sara says:

        Yeah, I thought that when Maggie revealed to Richard that she was Ellis’ daughter, she mentioned how Ellis’ name was even the name of the hospital or something like that.

    • jenny says:

      Grey/ sloan

    • Abby says:

      Yeah especially as all the surviving crash victims own the hospital you would think they’d know how that came about. Like why the hospital is named what it is might be the kind of thing that goes over some peoples radars but how are all these doctors rich enough to own the hospital is the kind of thing people would definitely be gossiping about.

    • H says:

      LOL exactly what I thought.

    • H says:

      By the way, didn’t the new interns came into the show on season 9? That was just moments after the crash.

    • CVA says:

      You are so right there should have been a plaque or something to let them know why the hospital’s name was changed and how it came about….. a lot of people don’t know the history behind Gray-Sloan memorial….this should have been something up there to remind them of what happend and To honor the fallen doctors….Shondra girl. Where’s the Plaque..where is the memorial wall it should be up there as soon as you walk into the hospital it should be up there so everyone would know what happened and remember the doctors that were there before them you’re slipping girl get that plaque up there

    • Lena says:

      Agree. Hated the episode. Sloppy, lazy and poor writing.

  4. kn1231 says:

    Loved the opening scene with Meredith and Arizona! Wish more of a relationship could have been built between those two. The thing I love about Greys is the never forget things that happen in the past. Every show you will see or hear a reference made to something from an earlier season and I love that. I was really into Amelia and Owen at the beginning but now I’m over it. Hopefully Owen’s speech tonight was really the end for those two. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, if Callie and Arizona are not getting back together, then pair Arizona with Amelia! Really not sure why all the promos for this episode were about “Where is Derek?” because we didn’t find anything out tonight. It seems like more of a set up for the next episode.

    • Nancy says:

      Arizona and Amelia sounds the the most explosive pairing in the world to me. I’m still rooting for Calzona! Every episode they seem to be healing a little bit more

      • kn1231 says:

        Amelia needs a change, and Arizona needs to move on. I definitely think their dynamic would be interesting, after everything we’ve seen during the Herman storyline. But I do agree that Calzona is my first choice.

        • Hepha says:

          Remember the “If” episode back in season 9 (I think ?). Owen and Callie were a couple and had kids. I don’t think it was random. Maybe they’ll end up together !

    • Sweetpea says:

      Ugh no! Having one female who loved men all of a sudden decide she’s bi is enough for me. Amelia and Arizona should never happen!

    • Anne says:

      If it didn’t work out with callie I suspect it’s nearly impossible to work with Amelia, she’s such a bascket. What a lunatic rat. Hunt will miss Cristina dearly even more after this exciting ride. And fans too. No one actually will work out with that hysteric Amelia.

  5. N says:

    I miss Derek

  6. sue says:

    Where is Derek bring him back

  7. Kaylee says:

    Who else thinks Derek is dead?

    • Heidi says:

      Me! I’ve been wondering if all that running round after the car accident is some sort of ghostly/dying thing.

    • Krystle says:

      Me, especially when they pulled the police car up to her house at the end and with her having all of those flashbacks to him wanting to have another baby.

    • Marc says:

      Did I see a different preview? He looks alive and trying (promising) to save a car accident victim. Where he could be in or encounter an accident and it it take so long to get to Meredith, I have no idea. That is bizarre. I don’t know the road to SeaTac is like, but you’re not going to disappear in an accident for 24 hour between Dulles or BWI and DC, while National is in sight of the Capitol. I wonder if Shonda and company have lost their way here as well.

  8. Jared says:

    This episode was great! I loved seeing Arizona and Meredith bond, after all I think they came out with the most tragedy. I also see hope for calzona, yay!. Derek is ok, he is in some car accident but he’ll be fine. I’m hoping to see Amelia and Owen together by the end of the season.

  9. Hello? He’s leaving at the end of the season… this is derek’s last hurah probabl they are setting it up for his exit from the show. I don’t want him to leave but this is his last season

    • kn1231 says:

      I did read an interview Patrick recently had, and his comments about Greys seemed pretty final. Seems like he wants to focus on his racing career. Just hope it doesn’t end in death because it’s so final. And after 10 years it would be a crime not to have Derek and Meredith together in the final episode of this show. Move Derek away, leaving the door open for guest spots.

    • jenny says:

      No Patrick (Derek ) has signed on for another season!

  10. Sweetpea says:

    This was the first episode in along time that Callie and Arizona didn’t irritate me. Loved Callie’s reason for taking the blame off Alex! I really hope Derek isn’t dead. Shonda ticked me off with Scandal tonight so I hope she doesn’t go with death again! It looked like he was just helping another crashed car but who knows? During the flashbacks with Mer and Der, they looked so happy and it was good to see for a change.

  11. Alyse says:

    I really hope they don’t kill Derek, but that promo gave me a really bad feeling. How did Jo and Stephanie not know what happened to everyone in the plane crash. They were wrong at the hospital in the episode Mark died in. It’s named Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital for a reason.

  12. Nitemar says:

    Ok, three May sweeps predictions after watching this episode: 1) Meredith is pregnant, 2) possible fatalities: Derek, and 3) couples reuniting: Calzona. Will check May 14!

    • Grey's Fan says:

      Also, have you noticed the lack of Jackson lately… wonder if that means something. Callie/Arizona and Owen/Ameila could be reuniting. The finale episode title: You’re My Person – if Derek dies I wonder if Sandra Oh (Cristina) will make a cameo to comfort Meredith. Wouldn’t make sense if Cristina didn’t come to Seattle to see Meredith (and maybe have a fling with Owen) if something serious happens to Derek.
      I’d rather have Derek die and Meredith coping without him next season and eventually moving on with a new love interest (Season 13?).
      I’m loving Stephanie lately… anyone else notice the similarities between Steph and April when they both “take charge” and blow-up at others? Also, have enjoyed April/Richard in the last couple episodes.
      I also think a Richard/Catherine wedding might happen.

      • jenny says:

        Honestly after 10 years I cant see mer with any1 but der! I could see him in a comma for a bit but not dead!! I like the idea of Christina coming back tho

      • Ellen says:

        The title of the finale episode was fake, so it’s not called You’re my person.

      • Jazz says:

        I am not sure exactly when the episodes were filmed but Jesse Williams aka Jackson tore his ACL in the all star basketball game a while back and wasn’t even able to stand on it for weeks. He explained this in his podcast called the Open Run show which is really good! So that may be a reason?

      • CVA says:

        I loved April also….girl stepping her game up….she getting herself a backbone you go April and where is Jackson lately she better not be taking him off. And is she getting ready to bring his mother back I hope so I love Debbie Allen she will be good for Richard keep him on his toes….and I really cannot see Mer with anybody but Derek. So I really hope she doesn’t kill him off I will be pissed “………I am still trying to get over the last people she cut Sloan Lexi Christina she starting to get on my last nerve

  13. Drew says:

    To be honest, if Patrick Dempsey is leaving the show I would rather Derek die than for shonda break them up, especially after everything they’ve been through together. will it be devastating for Meredith, yes, but I would prefer it to him just leaving her for someone else.

  14. pam says:

    I’m nit impressed. Derek better be ok

  15. Jayme says:

    This show has gotten somewhat ridiculous and frustrating… Enough! But, I am entirely unsure of the fate of Derek! If he dies, I will stop watching. At that point, there will basically be an entirely new cast with very few original members. Also, why would he be posting pictures in Seattle of the ferry boat now? Scary! I can’t wait to find out what happens

  16. Jayme says:

    Furthermore, think about what Shonda did with PP, everything ended well in the end for EVERYONE. She didn’t kill Christina, I don’t think she’ll kill Derek. I think she knows not many people would stick around to watch if he left too…

  17. tvfirsthand says:

    Awesome episode. check out my blog televisioncritics.wordpress.com for bones and grey’s anatomy

  18. alanlicious says:

    All this talk about Patrick leaving at the end of the season but didn’t he and Ellen Pompeo sign 2 season deals like last year? Meaning he’s sticking around until at least Season 12 no?

  19. Jake L. says:

    Patrick and Ellen did sign 2-year deals…meaning ABC/Shonda CAN keep them around through season 12 if they want to…but they don’t have to. Anytime a series regular is killed off any show for purely creative reasons, they leave whether their contract was up or not. Given how the second half of the season has been so Derek light (and even the episodes since he has returned, he’s only been in a couple of scenes each, meaning a relatively brief per-episode workload), I suspect that one of the conditions of his contract renewal for this year was significant time off. And if Shonda knows that he wants out, she could choose to write him out now. I think Katherine Hiigel had a longer contract with Grey’s and they allowed her to leave early, so there would certainly be precedent for that (and Dempsy hasn’t created any hoopla in the public eye about it like Higel did, either.) He could very well leave at the end of the season, and I agree that I would rather the character die than walk out on his marriage to Meredith. She would, eventually, be able to recover from his death, after a long time, but they are THE central romance of the show, so her recovering from his abandonment and abandonment of their family would be a much harder sell

    • Grey's Fan says:

      Even if Derek dies at the end of this season (next week? I think a coma first and then death in the season finale after a time jump of a few months) P.D. could still appear in flashbacks to the past in NYC with Addison, Mark, Amelia and his other sisters/mom. It would be cool to see the pre-Seattle life of these characters. Or Meredith’s European vacation before med school.
      I really do think the show could survive the loss of P.D. especially if Meredith is pregnant.

  20. Grey's Fan says:

    Just a comment:
    The small plane crash only had two occupants. The male pilot had chest problems (heart attack?) and Kate had to land the plane. The driver inside a car who witnessed the plane crash, himself or herself (the gender of the driver wasn’t mentioned) crashed into a yoga studio that was having a class for prenatal moms.

  21. ben says:

    Derek wasn’t in a car accident, did you all not see the promo for next week. Kids were driving the Ferarri that crashed, Derek was driving an mid size SUV. The description for next episode is, “Derek sees a car crash and springs into action.” The only real question is, does Derek die in the explosion of said Ferrai trying to save the kids?

  22. Kristen says:

    I really hope they put Amelia and Owen back together before the finale. I was just really starting to like them together. They have both been through so much and they deserve happiness. Maybe Derek will tell Owen how Amelia feels and sweep her off her feet!

  23. Babygate says:

    Awesome Calzona moment, albeit too brief and unexplored. As always, we’ll have to extrapolate meaning, impact, perception, etc. Love Alex stepping up and being all protective. Hope Owen and Amelia are done for good. You can’t put an addict with a man that makes you want to drink. Amelia went from superstar surgeon to neurotic in a matter of days thanks to Owen. Too much Stephanie. She needs to learn respect and know when to shut up. She’s reminding me of Shane and that’s not a good thing.

    • Agreed. Stephanie always has annoyed the snot out of me. I haven’t seen any growth in her character at all in the years she’s been on the show.

    • Emme says:

      Stephanie is one of my new favorites. As hysterical and insubordinate as some of the interns were, you feel that it is Stephanie who has crossed a line. No. She doesn’t “need” to learn anything. I’m sorry if her existence is too oppressive for you. I think she is hilarious.

    • CaroleC says:

      Agreed on all you touched on. Way too much Stephanie!!

  24. Krystle says:

    Did anyone else catch the part where Meredith had her finger on the hole in the heart and Pierce told her not to move? Flashback to Season 2, Episode 17 “As We Know It” where she has her hand on the bomb in the guy’s chest. Overall a great episode!

  25. Vorz says:

    Of course Derek is dead. Remember how the preggos were talking about a car that crashed into the building because of the plane? And all the flash backs about Derek wanting more, the plane crash itself. It’s leading up to the whole ‘he lived through one plane wreck to die because of another.’ Poetic ending or something. I dunno. I was really hoping that he and Mer could be the happy couple when the show wraps up. Le sigh.

  26. laura says:

    i thought there were numerous problems with this episodes, not the least of which was the boring use of flashbacks that have pervaded the entire season. the show has given up on coming up with new ideas and story lines, but instead it is literally attempting to recycle emotions and thoughts from earlier well done stories. It feels as if the last 22 episodes have just been treading water.

    secondly, why on earth would Jo and Maggie have to be told the details of the plane crash? it just seems absurd that this is not common, unspoken knowledge, and public. there must have been articles, the court case would have made all of the suffering and claims against the hospital public record and their must have been tons of articles written about them.Even if Maggie was ridiculous enough not to do research before she moved across country, Jo started soon after the crash and was their during the court case, and again that would have been public record and their would have been articles. This also seemed like an attempt to make those emotions part of this episode.

  27. laura says:

    also, I think that Amelia just has to go.

  28. Standard soap opera fare: happy couple experiences several bumps in the road, works through them, finally make compromises and begin making plans for the future … and then — just when you think they’re finally going to be happy! — one has a health crisis/accident/backsliding incident. If Derek dies and his evil twin shows up, we’ll know this show has jumped the shark for good.

    • CarrieB says:

      Your comment makes me think that there may be a similar Season 5 finale scenario upcoming, this time with a Derek “007.” This will be the cliffhanger. Then in the Season 12 premiere, Derek requires plastic surgery and a new actor takes over the role when the bandages are finally removed. Me thinks Dempsey is finally leaving Greys to race to his hearts’ content.

  29. Cas says:

    If Derek dies this show will too. Derek and Meredith are the core of the show and if they don’t get their happy ending it is just not worth it anymore.

  30. Hana says:

    Am i the only one who found it insanely insensitive that Richard was going around the hospital talking about his apparent near death experience from the plane crash and i know it was suppose to come full circle with him telling April it made him realize what he had etc. but umm hello did he forget about the plane crash in season 8. That entire episode i was waiting for someone to tell him to shut up and stop being so insensitive i was disappointed when it didn’t happen.

  31. Carolyn says:

    S. R…..if you kill off Derick I will never forgive you..I have been a fan of grays anatomy since day one please don’t kill of Derek ….I I am a fan of all of your shows ….I love them all…. ……

  32. rachele1973 says:

    I will no longer be watching greys! It sounds like shonda is the true diva firing everyone who doesn’t always act perfect and I’m sure shonda is not perfect either! Killing off dereck just killed the show… Great job!