Grey's Anatomy's Kevin McKidd: Arizona's Bad Day in Court, Trouble for Callie and Penny, and a Finale 'Payoff'

In one sense, Thursday’s Grey’s Anatomy (8/7c, ABC) will feel less like a regular episode of the series that we all know and love, and more like a standalone movie, says Kevin McKidd, who not only plays Owen but directed the hour. “Since most of it takes place in the courthouse, it’s kind of like a really wonderful courtroom drama, like Kramer vs. Kramer.”

RELATED Grey’s Anatomy: Did Sara Ramirez Just Announce Her Departure?

In another sense, “Mama Tried” will probably feel a whole lot like classic Grey’s, since the stakes are as high as they’ve ever been in the OR. As McKidd notes, in fighting for custody of daughter Sofia, “Callie and Arizona are fighting for their lives, in a sense.” Here, he previews for TVLine “the very emotional and heart-wrenching” installment that will decide the fates of Sofia and her mothers… and possibly Penny, too.

TVLINE | What was the mood on the set like while working on this episode?

Intense. It was intense to shoot, and I think it’s going to be really intense to watch. I think people are going to really respond to it. It’s very emotional, very powerful. I mean, to fight over the custody of a child, for a parent, is probably one of the most [difficult] things they could have to do.  Plus, the audience loves Callie. The audience loves Arizona. We want them both to be okay.

TVLINE | And obviously, they can’t both come out of this okay. Even their friends can’t, right?

Yeah, that’s the hard thing for all [the rest] of our characters. We’re all asked to give testimony for the person we believe should have custody. It’s really tough when you have to pick a side like that, and that’s part of the reason why it’s such an intense episode. Everybody gets cross-examined, and some people do better under that pressure than others. It really puts Callie and Penny’s relationship to the test when Penny testifies, and affects their relationship going forward in a big way. The testimony that Penny gives… she does her best for Callie, but it doesn’t go as planned, and that causes problems.

TVLINE | Is there ever a moment when Callie and Arizona are like, “What are we doing? Let’s work this out”?

They do try to connect at a certain point, but the lawyers get in there and do their lawyering thing and cause damage, so [the ex-wives’] interaction is very charged. There are a lot of hurt feelings. They try to stay civil, but it’s hard when things get thrown at you by a lawyer. Arizona especially, I think, really feels hard done in the courtroom.

TVLINE | Is there any sign, any hint at all, of the love that they used to feel for each other?

There is. They both in a way come to a point where they can acknowledge the relationship that existed. In spite of the hurt feelings, they try to reach a higher ground and respect the [past]. But it’s hard when there are hurt feelings in the heat of the moment to really follow through on that.

TVLINE | And when the heat of the moment has cooled?

After this episode, the aftermath plays out in a really interesting way in the lead-up to the finale. It gets pretty hairy in this episode. There is animosity. It’s not all fluffy and pretty and nice. There are really intense, complicated emotions flying around. But there’s a really beautiful payoff in the finale connected to this.

So, who are you hoping will wind up with custody of Sofia? And do you think Callie and Penny’s relationship can bounce back? 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. The Low-Cal Calzona Zone says:

    I swear to God we are headed for a full-fledged CALZONA reunion! Be still my heart!

  2. Me says:

    I still think Callie will get full custody, and finally change her mind and take a step towards Arizona. Yes, it could be a Calzona reunion – thought at this point I would prefer for Callie to go to New York and let Arizona build a new and interesting relationship.

  3. Sandra says:

    YES to a Calzona reunion. Please Shonda make it happen. I miss them so much.

  4. NM says:

    If this is anything like the Private Practice court custody battle between Pete and Violet then we can expect blood to be drawn.

    • rebecca says:

      That was a great episode. I remember Violet telling Sam she was still in love with Pete during the trial. Maybe something similar happens here.

  5. Emz says:

    It feels like Arizona may be the one trying to play fair but they try and attack her from all angles. I actually think Arizona is going to get custody. Callie will then probably blame everyone but herself initially. But then maybe she realises her role in this and starts to redeem herself? My opinion only, please don’t attack me!

    • Brandi says:

      I totally think Arizona is justified in getting a lawyer. Callie basically told her I’m taking Sofia, goodbye. I don’t know about the custody thing though. I keep thinking Callie is the biomom and Arizona is the adopted mom. I’m not saying it’s right, because Arizona put as much into raising Sofia as Callie did. I just can’t keep that out of my mind and I’m sure Arizona can’t either. Callie does need to remember she started this by acting like Arizona didn’t have a choice.

      • Mickey31896 says:

        I think Arizona will get custody because it is the courts job to determine what is best for the child. Sofia has her whole little life in Seattle and Callie is giving up a permanent position as CHIEF to chase a girl. I think the court will see that as a bit unstable even though she has a job lined up.

    • I really think you’re 100% right, Emz

    • jessy says:

      i agree with you 100% I really hope Arizona gets Sofia’s custody.. MAYBE this time Callie realize she’s not always right and that she has being selfish

      • B Marie says:

        I don’t remember Arizona formally adopting Sofia. My mind went right to Callie is Sophia’s only living biological parent and she should have full physical custody. I also must admit that having been cheated on in my own marriage I felt biased against Arizona for that reason. But the more I thought about it, Callie has always been the selfish one and lives her life based on an impulse. She never thinks things through. For example, marrying George, saying yes to going to Africa w/Arizona then bailing at the last minute and jumping right into bed with Mark. Volunteering to leave her brilliant career and drag her daughter away from her other parent to follow some resident she barely knows across country is another BAD impulsive decision. Although Arizona made an awful decision to cheat on Callie, I think she is the more level headed of the 2 and she should have full physical custody of Sofia.

        • Kristy says:

          I agree with you. I don’t think Arizona adopted Sophia either. I know it’s only a show but Callie would have to be really screwed up to not get custody.

          • Sandy says:

            The latest Grey’s Anatomy clip featuring Arizona in the courtroom states positively that Arizona legally adopted Sofia. That should no longer be an issue among fans! 🤗

        • BringBackCalZona! says:

          You really just explained that whole situation perfectly.

        • Tara says:

          I don’t think that Callie bailed on Arizona about Africa, I thought she was having doubts but finally decided that she was going to go and Arizona told her to just stay and that she was going alone.

        • There was an episode where Callie says she needs formal rights with Sofia a few seasons ago and they agreed to get that taken care of so she should be in the clear there.

        • Annamae says:

          I agree with you 100%

          I think Callie is spoiled and selfish and makes snap decisions. She’s not even thinking about what’s best for Sofia. She’s thinking about what she wants to do… Like she always does. She wants to chase her girlfriend to another state. Not a good choice for the child.

        • harleymama39 says:

          Called didn’t bail on Arizona going to africa. Right before they got on plane, Arizona told her no, she didn’t want her too. She broke.up with her, in the airport, in line to board. Awhile after that she hooked up with sloan.

    • Annamae says:

      I agree with you. I think Callie is being selfish. Callie has ALWAYS made snap decisions and she has ALWAYS looked out for Callie. I can remember several situations where I felt she was very unfair. This is a childish snap decision and that is Callie’s MO. I think Arizona would provide the more stable home for Sofia….. So does the Judge because she grants Arizona SOLE custody of Sofia.
      I don’t think Callie and Penny will last. I think Penny will leave for NY without her. I’m not sure what will happen after that.

  6. Erin says:

    I don’t like them together anymore and their problems won’t be fixed for another lifetime. Sometimes the damage within a relationship is just too much and I think the writers should keep them apart and give them new interesting relationships. Penny/Callie is boring but someone else might work for her. And Arizona deserves happiness too.

  7. Tweetygurl45 says:

    I Looking For Calzona Reunion I Have A Feeling Callie Lawyer try And Through Arizona Under The Bus Callie Is Going Get Hurt By Penny! What Could Penny Possible Say She Just Met Sofia Not Sure About That And I Feel Arizona Will Get Hurt The Most Callie Possibly Leave Still And Callie Have Custody Sofia Leaves Arizona Doesnt Take It Well I Hope This Does Not Happen I Hope CALZONA IS THE ENDGAME!!😚💙😚

  8. Luli says:

    I’m so on Arizona’s side on this one. I hope she either wins this thing, or callie stays in seattle. Just with the sneak peeks I know the episode will be heart wrenching, at least for ‘Zona. I just to like Callie before all this, but now I can’t stand her.

    • I agree Callie has totally disregarded Arizona’s feelings in this…something I’m sure she wouldn’t have done with Mark if he was alive. Plus I’m tired of Penny and think she should move on to NY without Callie. Hopefully that’s the resolution and that Sarah is not leaving the show when her contract is up.

  9. N says:

    I also want Cal-zona both to have custody

  10. Jeri says:

    Isn’t Callie leaving the show? Hopefully that means Arizona gets custody but the child could go too.

    • bearoness says:

      Probably not. Sara Ramirez sends out a similar end-of-season tweet every year. Plus she used #Season13, which is next season. So the consensus is that she is probably not leaving.

      • Sandy says:

        But she doesn’t yet have a contract for the new season. All the other main characters do, but not Sara. I also heard her in an interview several months ago (before I knew about the contrac) where she said she’d like to explore a music career and do a lot more Broadway. I don’t know if that was a bit of foreshadowing.

  11. Tracey says:

    I think Arizona will win and Penny will walk away as maybe she feels the custody battle started because of her and Callie will try to follow her after being devastated. But Penny still doesn’t want Callie and then Callie will go to Arizona for comfort for a Calzona’s hoping.

  12. Larc says:

    I think the perfect solution would be for Penny, Callie, Arizona and Sofia to all move to NYC.

  13. Joyce says:

    I have not liked Penny at all. Callie cannot leave to follow NYC. She is not worth it.

  14. nadialus says:

    I don’t see a reunion in the cards for them this season. Callie is trying to take away their daughter, whatever the outcome I don’t see Arizona forgiving + forgetting that right away. Girl can hold a grudge when she feels wronged. While I do think she’ll be civil for the sake of Sophia, I don’t think she’d be in the headspace to be with Callie in that sense.

  15. Kathy says:

    I hope Arizona gets custody.. She is the responsible one! Callie is more concerned about her and Penny.

  16. NC says:

    You know who the audience doesn’t love? Penny. I hope she leaves alone and never comes back. How sad for Sofia, she shouldn’t have to lose either of her moms because of this. I hope Callie and Arizona can work it out, and that the beautiful payoff in the end is them reuniting as a family.

  17. Danny More says:

    Used to watch this great Medical show. Then it turned into a Gay soap. That should be on at 10 AM. M-F.
    I stoped watching It need to be put to bed.. And taken off the air.

    • Benington says:

      Really! Really! This show was never a real medical show. It was always an excellent hospital soap opera. Come on please…what’s mothering you is the gay theme. Too bad. Gay people are a part of society and should be portrayed as such. Homophobe much!

  18. Red Snapper says:

    I used to love Callie and Arizona they were my favorite couple besides Mark and Lexie. I’ve been rooting for them to get back together but I don’t see that happening nor do I really want them to anymore. Callie is being selfish and not thinking about what is best for their daughter. I think that they should split custody with the judge not allowing Callie to take her out of state which is a common ruling depending on the circumstances.

  19. linda says:

    I think the judge should rule for them the have joint custody and neither are permitted to take Sophia out of the state without the others concent.

  20. A3rynSun76 says:


  21. David says:

    Time for a kiss and make up session with Arizona and Callie. Let’s see what happens with contract negotiations with Sara Ramirez and whether or not Callie is back this fall or not. Penny is ok, but time for her to either move on or find a new love interest.

  22. "A" says:

    Callie & Arizona will call off the court case minutes before the judge renders his/her decision and they’ll have the judge renew their wedding vows, before they head off to NYC with Sofia to start their new life.

  23. Piper says:

    1) No one can ever replace Calzona
    3) There is no love deeper and truer than Callie and Arizona. Theirs is the most beautiful love story and we adore them. We miss them terribly. Theirs is the kind of love that is once in a life time.

    7) Penny who?

  24. Kathy. Deats says:

    I love reading all your comments. But her name is not Calzona….it’s Calliope like the instrument they play at the circus!

  25. Sara says:

    Why would anyone want Calzona together after everything especially this?? They are better apart.

    • Anna says:

      Right? I’m genuinely confused why anyone is still a Callie/Arizona fan – they made each other miserable the last few years together, and are clearly still hurting each other now. They are both so much happier when they stay away from each other.

  26. deborah says:

    I wanted to see the transfermation on the large aftrican american u posted as see new transfermation!!!!!!! You know who I am talking about!

  27. Claudia says:

    I am all team Arizona…. she is the one who saved Sofia in the very beginning even over Callie. And I really hope that in the end everything works out well for April and Jackson…. hopefully a new marriage…

  28. Azerty says:

    I have the feeling that whoever gets Sofia, Callie will still leave for New York and then in the finale moment of the season finale, Callie shows up (with Sofia if she wins custody) at Arizona’s door, paving the way for a Calzona reunion next year.

  29. Andrew Hass says:

    I think eventually Callie and Arizona will come to an agreement.For example maybe Callie leaves Sofia with Arizona while she and Penny get settled in New York.However i think Callie will get custody but maybe something happens to Sofia that brings Callie and Arizona together as her mothers and Penny is on the outside.Then the season could end with Callie been forced to decide to go with Penny or stay in Seattle.That way if Sara Ramirez does leave then next season the show could say Callie went with Penny.

  30. EM says:

    I think Penny will have an impact about how this all plays out. Nothing is ever black and white on Grey’s. Multiple guesses. She is adopted herself or her parents had a vicious custody battle over her when she was a child. Or she just can’t handle the guilt and breaks up with Callie at the airport. I can also see Penny, Callie and Sofia leaving for NYC in the finale all happy and then next season Callie coming back to Seattle with her tail between her legs because it didn’t work out.

  31. joy says:

    Get a man

  32. judy snell says:

    I really hope Arizona gets the child .We can hope that Callie leaves happy.

  33. Crystal says:

    Callie should get custody. She’s the biological mom

  34. edna says:

    Callie is her birth mother so she should have custody but be told she can not move Sophia out of Seattle

  35. Gail says:

    I think Callie will end up with custody because she is the birth mother. But I reallyI want the court to say Callie can’t take Sofia to the east Coast.

    • Sandy says:

      Well, since Arizona legally adopted Sofia (see the latest Grey’s clip), it’s really a moot point that Callie is the biological mother. Adoptive parents have very clear and concise rights. I have to believe the court will rule in the best interests of the child. In the latest clip, Arizona says the right thing: regardless of the judge’s decision, she knows that her daughter will be well taken care of and loved. Why can’t Callie do that?

  36. Nancy Krause says:

    Arizona is my choice. Sophia is grounded where she is. Callie is acting immature running after Penny. If that’s what she wants go and leave Sophia with Arizona till she gets back. Penny’s not good news for Callie.

  37. Clo says:

    Alison hannagan and I really really excited for Thursday !! Sitting on the end of my seat, all silence in my house

  38. Callie an Arizona just need to Drop it an get back together they were just made for each other poor kid dosent need to see hers moms to get hurt an just be together an lives , we fans out their we don’t want this to happen we all love Callie an Arizona we r bigs fans for u guys …#loveucallie&arizona

  39. Brenda says:

    I think Arizona should get her Callie is doing exactly what Bailey said she is chasing tail across country giving up her career why should Sofia have to suffer be cuz her mother is being stupid and if Penny was any kind of a decent human being she would see what this was going to do to Sofia end she would tell Callie to stay they could make a long distance relationship work Penny needs to leave and stay in New York

  40. Jessica says:

    I think Cali and Arizona will get back together. This will bring them closer in the end and penny will go to New York and start her life there.

  41. MARIE says:


  42. Joanna Montana says:

    Arizona should get Sofia. She has school and friends here. Callie wants to go, let her, but she goes alone. No Sofia.

  43. Terri Boggs says:


  44. Judy Fitzgerald says:

    Kelli Ripa

  45. Ami Grey says:

    I always love Arizona (and of course my Mer)and I salute her for choosing to go back to the hosp to save the baby patient rather than to fight with Sofia’s custody at that very moment.. I would do the same for the same reason.. “Sofia is healthy and will live because she has moms but the baby won’t if I am not there”..
    ugh! something like that 😉

  46. Christine says:

    I am hoping to get bk d Calzona team dey make a grt team dey shud try to make it wrk again. Penny needs to go

  47. Ami Grey says:

    I love Arizona (and of course my Mer)and I salute her for choosing to go back to the hosp to save the baby patient rather than to fight with Sofia’s custody at that very moment.. I would do the same for the same reason.. “Sofia is healthy and will live because she has moms but the baby won’t if I am not there”..
    ugh! something like that 😉
    #UnselfishLove of a real mother that’s what Arizona gave & I do hope Callie finds again the love in her heart and forgives Arizona already!

  48. Lorrin says:

    So penny’s testimony goes in favor of Arizona considering the foreshadowing in the previous episode where Blake was on Arizonas service and Callie thought she was horrible to her and Blake keeps her mouth shut because she has to know what’s going on for Arizona isn’t easy and it’s mostly because she is going to NYC in the first place… So I’m guessing that plays out in court. She is surprisingly most like Meredith which is why Derek says he likes Penny before he dies (meaning she does the right thing a majority of the time) … I’m going to say she thinks it’s not a good idea to take Sofia away from Arizona on account of her … Also I totally am hoping for a Meredith and Alex thing which I also think should potentially happen!

    • Annamae says:

      Lorrin…… I’ve kind of been expecting a Merideth and Alex thing also?!

    • Lance Stewart says:

      Mer and Alex will never be together, as much bad things that have happened to them and they still love? Nope cause of they got married show would be over… They both get a happy ending

      Can’t have happy and still have a show, he’d never hurt her like dreamy did

  49. Tiffany says:

    Come on Shonda give us Calzona.

  50. Jamie says:

    Oh vomit if this leads to them getting back together. God they were awful to watch – just ridiculously depressing and boring at the same time. I know which scenes I’ll be fast-forwarding through if that happens.