greys anatomy season 13 episode 1 recap

Grey's Season 13 Premiere Recap: If at First You Don't Succeed, Lie, Lie Again

Season 13 of Grey’s Anatomy is already looking pretty unlucky for Alex. In Thursday’s premiere, both his fellow doctors and the police had questions for him about how poor Andrew’s pretty face got so thoroughly rearranged, and neither truthful answers nor lies seemed likely to wash the blood off of Karev’s hands. Is he about to go from the O.R. to big house? Read on and find out…

A REAL KNOCKOUT | Picking up where Season 12 left off, “Undo” began at Owen and Amelia’s wedding reception, where Meredith was reluctantly putting the kibosh on Nathan’s attempt to get closer to her when she received a frantic call from Jo. After hightailing it to the loft with Richard, Grey deduced just how much trouble Alex was in, left Webber with Wilson, and made a beeline for Grey Sloan. There, she quickly figured out that her person had pummeled DeLuca. When Alex explained that Andrew had been on top of a drunk Jo, Mer decided not to inform Bailey that he was responsible for DeLuca’s injuries. Instead, “you slipped in the rain,” she told her pal. “That’s how you hurt your hand.” She even lied to Maggie that she didn’t know what had happened to her ex. Mind you, not everyone was buying Alex and Mer’s tall tales. Ben, for one, didn’t, and warned his buddy that, as soon as DeLuca awakened, he’d obviously talk. What was Karev’s plan? “Talk to [Andrew] before he says anything,” he suggested to Grey.

EYE AY AY! | Unfortunately, DeLuca was in no shape to see anyone, much less his attacker. Could things get any worse? Why, yes. Yes, they could — and did. When Jo arrived at the hospital, Karev jumped to conclusions rather than listen to his non-fiancée when she attempted to explain that neither had DeLuca been taking advantage of her, nor had she been hooking up with him. So, in the end, their misunderstanding turned into an argument that turned into another disaster. He even spat that he’d been foolish to want to marry her, since it was so easy for her to throw people away. “I was asking you,” he said, “for something you’re not capable of.” Observing Andrew’s surgery — and his unresponsive eye — Ben told Mer that “whoever did this [to DeLuca] just ended his career as a surgeon.” And another thing: Warren knew who did it, but Bailey shouldn’t hear it from him.

ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT | After finding Jo packing up to leave town, Stephanie reported what Wilson told her to Mer — that Andrew hadn’t been forcing himself on her. In turn, Grey informed Alex, noting that “we’re the bad guys!” Still, he was determined to talk to Andrew. It was his only hope. Meanwhile, Richard stopped Jo from leaving Seattle or the program. When she visited Andrew, he got angry because it appeared that her main concern was that he not reveal her marital status. Next, Alex attempted to talk with DeLuca, which resulted in the patient freaking out utterly. At the same time, Mer was struggling with the knowledge that she had to turn in her person. It was so hard that she even asked Nathan to sit with her for a while. As she confessed to Miranda that Alex had beat up Andrew, Karev was turning himself in to the police. So, ultimately, a shell-shocked Jo was left to watch as the man she loved was hauled out of Grey Sloan in handcuffs. At least, during a subsequent prison debriefing, Alex forgave Mer for coming clean with Bailey.

greys anatomy season 13 episode 1 recapNAMING NAMES | In semi-related events, when Maggie heard that her ex-boyfriend had been admitted to the hospital, she ran right there and even stood by as Jackson operated… but she also took pains to let Nathan know that she and DeLuca were really, truly over — not that a workplace romance couldn’t work. Later, she learned that Mer had misled her about how Andrew had wound up in such dire straits and warned her sister not to lie to her again. Yet, when Nathan showed up at the sibs’ house and Mer turned him away rather than admit that, yeah, she dug him, she still lied again to Maggie that it had been someone looking for directions at the door. (That’ll go well.) Bailey caught on to the fact that Ben, too, had fibbed to her about the Alex/Andrew mess but ultimately seemed to agree with her husband that he couldn’t be her workplace spy.

On a lighter note — whew! — April tried not to tell Catherine the baby’s moniker until Jackson could be present. But, of course, Grandma couldn’t wait. So, after a momentary misunderstanding — during which Richard’s wife thought that the newborn was named after her! — April revealed that the tot was called Harriet. And not, as Catherine hoped, Harriet Avery, either. Finally, April and Jackson informed Catherine that their daughter’s surname was Kepner-Avery, which seemed to be a happy compromise for everyone.

So, what did you think of the Season 13 premiere? Grade it in the poll below, then hit the comments with your review.

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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93 Comments
  1. Al says:

    Intense and Amazing kickoff to S13!

    Great acting

  2. R says:

    I was baited into watching for japril going by the stills and the promo. Disappointed they chose to delete a scene that would have made staying up late worthwhile.

  3. I thought the episode was fantastic. I loved the focus on Meredith, Alex, and Jo. Alex/Meredith have such an amazing dynamic…I could watch their scenes forever. And I’m glad that Alex/Jo have a storyline, finally. But poor Deluca.

  4. Sarah says:

    Harriet??? Come on!

  5. Monique says:

    let japril die please.

  6. Clay says:

    I’m just – ugh. I want George, Izzie and Cristina back. I want then helping Meredith and Alex right now. I need something that feels familiar right because I’m not fond, personally, of the direction this is going. Don’t get me wrong, this episode was powerfully acted. They were all on point. But Alex doesn’t need more turmoil. Justin Chambers does it well, but why can’t Alex just be happy? At best, he’s content.

    Also, I’m not a fan of the Meredith storyline. Her lying to Maggie doesn’t make the story juicy. Meredith being with Derek while Addison was – and wasn’t around – juicy. This feels a lot like when Izzie and George were a thing for like 10 episodes at the expense of Callie. It made both Izzie and George look really bad. And it wasn’t fun to watch. If they want to give Meredith a love interest why don’t they just do it? Why do they have to make it difficult? It would still be interesting. We don’t know much about Nathan. There’s a whole dynamic that can be explored about him through her eyes. And let Maggie have Deluca because that was a great storyline! Ugh.

    I enjoyed the Japril moments. Bailey is also amazing as ever.

    It’s also obvious that Callie and Arizona are gone. I miss Callie.

    I’m not sure what I’m trying to say here. Lol. I enjoyed the episode because I’m a ride or die fan, but I don’t like what’s happening. I need Meredith Grey to be happy and not a home wrecker. I need a positive storyline. I need Cristina Yang to check in for two minutes. I need Shonda Rhimes to recognize.

    • Crys says:

      I hear ya. And agree. But Sandra Oh and Sara Ramirez both chose NOT to work there anymore and we are stuck with the fallout. We have to get over it. And I say that just as much to you as I do to myself. I do NOT want Alex to be the sad story this season and I sure as he*l don’t want Mer to continue to lie (by omission) to Maggie. I must say, I was proud of Mer for agreeing with Maggie’s when she said they were sisters. My first thought was that was the result of A LOT of work put in by the one and only Lexi Grey.

    • Anna says:

      YAAAAAASSSSS. Seriously. I completely understand what you’re saying. I’m still stuck at Shonda killing Mark and Lexi (especially Mark) – he was hands down my favorite and least annoying character on the show. Alex and Meredith just need to be happy/content/not in a constant state of crisis. For the love of god they have been through too much to make it even feasible that they are not in a psychiatric hospital. I don’t mind everyone else having crises while they take their trip around the sun, just leave Meredith and Alex aloooone. And Cristina could you please just stop by. Two episodes, just a fly by to remind us why we loved this show to begin with.

      • Coal says:

        You do realize that both Eric Dane and Chyler Leigh both wanted to leave the show right ?, and they are both doing well for themselves since leaving ? Not everyone wants to be stuck playing the same character for the rest of their lives.

        • Clay says:

          Hi there. I agree that they’re both doing well outside greys and both wanted to leave. But I think what Crys means is that Shonda didn’t have to kill them. She easily could have wrote one or both of them off. They could have ran away together. Or if just Lexi died then Mark could have left, needing some space. Callie just left the show, not as Shonda would have liked because it was a last minute decision, but that proves that a main character can depart organically without having to die. Who knows if Chyler or Eric Dane would have returned if they weren’t killed off or not – probably not. But as a fan I would have preferred either to not a have died. Maybe you disagree and that’s okay. But that’s all that’s being said here.

    • Stacy says:

      Arizona isn’t gone. Jessica Capshaw is just missing a couple of episodes due to maternity leave.

      • Clay says:

        Oh, i know, thank goodness. I just meant that she was gone from this episode and it didn’t go unnoticed. I wished she was in it is all.

        • Jami says:

          Same here. I miss Arizona she is LOL funny, besides beautiful. Please giver a great love interest. I still think April and Arizona would be god together.

      • E. D. Boddy says:

        I got confused because I didn’t see her name in the credits. Even if a series regular is not in a particular episode, the name is usually still in the credits.

    • Jewels says:

      George and Izzy were like 7 seasons ago. Eight even. How can what’s going on NOT feel familiar? Cristina? I get that. I miss her too and I hate all the side characters sometimes. But George and Izzy aren’t even important anymore.

      • Clay says:

        Please don’t. If that’s how you feel, then that’s valid. But how I feel is also. I’m perfectly aware that characters like George and Izzie are never going to return, but a shows roots are just as important as its current branches. And every once in awhile it’s okay to miss that. I feel the show could use some of that right now. Maybe you disagree. That’s fine. I didn’t post this to argue. My post was really just an opinion and a frustration with how Meredith and Alex are always gloomy these days (in my opinion) and how I miss the good old days when it wasn’t just them two going through it. There’s not a right or wrong way for a fan to want for a show. I’m glad we agree on Cristina. I miss her terribly.

        • LaDonna says:

          I get what you’re saying, Clay. George died at the end of…what was it…season 5? And Izzie left half a season later. It’s been awhile, but the repercussions of their exits are still felt. It’s almost like this is a completely different show than it used to be. The lightness and fun is gone. I still love Grey’s and I’m already rooting for Mer and Riggs, but I miss the days of Christina and Izzie doing illegal autopsies behind Bailey’s back or the whole gang working together to hide some other illicit event/massive screw up from the Chief. Unfortunately, both Mer and Alex are attendings now and chiefs of their departments (Alex is Chief of Peds, right?) so life gets more serious as you get older and have more responsibility. But yeah, I get what you mean.

    • Aeol says:

      Good lord… In show time, some of these people have been gone for like 10 years. Gotta move on some time.

    • sterling says:

      Mer is a not a home wrecker. Nathan is single. He and Maggie are nothing. Maggie has a stupid crush and frankly everyone needs to grow up. Mer needs to admit she slept with him. He needs to be frank with Maggie about not returning her crush and Maggie needs to realize having a crush and not acting on it doesn’t mean other people can’t date that person.

      • MAS says:

        If only everyone could be so rational. I can’t figure out why Mer thinks not being truthful is the right course. Someone’s crush does not a relationship make, especially if you didn’t even know. I guess that is why they call it a drama, but this is soap territory.

      • Stacy says:

        Ditto all this. Maggie might have been bummed to learn Riggs didn’t return her interest, but it was no big deal and she would have been fine. Now she’s going to be outraged because Mer not only lied (direct or ommission) to her, she let her continue trying to flesh out her feelings for this guy. She’ll feel both betrayed and humiliated. The whole thing is stupid.

  7. Edward says:

    I find Jo to be insufferable almost to the point that it rivals my disdain for Amelia. I honestly wanted Richard to just let her go. I want Alex to start from scratch. She adds no value to the show in fact she’s the reason Alex is regressing. Unless the writers find a way to redeem her character which they will just have her pull a Hahn and not appear in future episodes.

    • Lisa Echerd says:

      I agree except that I like Amelia – well not, like, but like having her flawed character on the screen. With Jo, they are just making this up as they go along there are so many holes in her backstory. I love Alex and I don’t see how they are going to get him out of this.

  8. Nikki says:

    Loved it. Its long overdue for Alex to have a big storyline. Justin was fabulous.

  9. abz says:

    Solid premiere, but I’m not a fan of the direction they’re going with Meredith. I don’t know for some reason I’m just not feeling the chemistry with Riggs. I feel like he’d be better for Maggie. And I don’t want Meredith’s entire arc this season to be about a Riggs romance.
    Seriously, who chooses these baby names? Harriet?
    I can’t believe how much I was hating the music selection 2 seasons ago with the whole song cover nonsense, but now I loved the background music in this episode.

  10. With Grey’s Anatomy out of the running for the blind item I’m running out of Shows I watch that premiere in September. I was really hoping the blind item was going to be about one of the shows I watch.

  11. Joe says:

    No idea what happened. Music still drowns out all the dialogue.

  12. Kathy Bergeron says:

    Glad it is back and as usual I enjoyed it. How many shows still appeal at season 13? I am in for the duration. Go April!!

    • LaDonna says:

      Thank heaven there are still a few of us die-hards! :) I loved April in this episode even though we only got to see her for a few minutes. (THAT’s your baby, this is mine!) Go April…you tell her! LOL!

  13. Kerry says:

    Why can’t Jo ever catch a break! I’m tired of this. I want her to be able to experience some happiness!

  14. Kerry says:

    Now they have Meredith lying to her sister about Riggs by not telling her about him and her! Aaaaarrgh! Can’t they let some relationships work out ok??!

  15. Tennisnsun says:

    Not happy with Mer being so two-faced as to tell Maggie she wouldn’t lie to her again and then fibbing within minutes about who was at the door. I am curious about Mer’s last words of the hour saying something like what’s done is done and life goes on “for better or worse”. A clue of some sort?

  16. 777 says:

    I was kinda hoping that the blind item was about GA. Now i have no idea.

  17. Joneses says:

    Free Karev i love Alex he is my fav just wish the poor guy could catch a break already. Shonda let the man have some good already.

  18. N says:

    Can’t stand Jo AND Alex, now! More Japril

  19. carrol says:

    I thought Mer was gonna succumb to Nathan’s obvious interest in her. Mer seems to be wanting Maggie to team up with him, not sure that’s gonna work. How are they going to squeeze Alex back to working at the hospital id Deluca is there too. I’m glad Mer stood by Alex ,

    • fiberlicious says:

      She doesn’t want Maggie to team up with him – she just told him that to get him off her back. She wants to not hurt/not have Maggie pissed off that Mer stole her man.

  20. analog says:

    Ugh since this GA, Alex will get a slap in the wrist and Deluca will probably not press any charges. Alex needs to go to jail.

    • Ally Oop says:

      In real life he probably wouldn’t go to jail. He’s white and a doctor and society is still accepting of men beating up other men.

      • parstl says:

        Thank God you said it. I couldn’t help but think the entire episode what would happen if Alex was black…can you say “20 to life” or morgue bound?

        • Stacy says:

          For a first time felony, even aggravated assault doesn’t equal long jail sentences. I know a guy who beat someone up with a baseball bat. He got 3 years, I think? And yeah, this gentleman happened to be black, so he didn’t get off easier because he was white.

    • James R. says:

      Doesn’t matter if DeLuca presses charges at this point. The DA can still charge Karev and likely will. At least that’s what would happen in real life.

  21. Chris says:

    After watching for 11 years, I really think the attack was WAY out of character for Karev. I honestly think that Ms. Rhimes has no basis in the past for the chaaracter to go nearly homocidal for that kind of walk-in. I honestly think she’s being pulled in too many dfirections woth too many different shows and plotlines, and this plotline makes no sense at all.

    • Mandy says:

      He thought Jo was in trouble and DeLuca was taking advantage. Alex has always been super protective so when he thought DeLuca was messing with her he reacted which he has done before take the beating he gave Shane as an example. If christina and Meredith hadn’t pulled him off he would have done the same thing to him. I don’t feel like it was really out of character he gas grown a lot but he is still has that old Alex in him.

      • Tennisnsun says:

        I agree with you Maggie. Viewers had been complaining that Alex had become too soft in the last few seasons so it was time to show us that dark Alex was still in there just waiting for a trigger that would make him surface.

  22. Great start! Loved it. I particularly loved Mer and Alex in this episode,knowing they got each other’s back. And I’m I the only one who hates Catherine? I mean let April be,she just went through a lot giving birth.
    I miss Callie also.
    Looking forward to an entertaining season.

  23. kari b says:

    I’m with everyone else about the whole riggs thing. I think he should be with Maggie and I just don’t like Jo’s character. I kind of want Alex and Mer together. Also getting tired of the whole kepner/Avery thing. It’s getting old fast.

  24. Antwon303 says:

    Can you believe we are on season 13? That is crazy but it’s still a ratings champ, fresh and popular so I can see it going to season 15 and then ending.
    Great acting last night. I am so thrilled Alex has a major story arc. I am glad he plead guilty because he is. He beat pull Andrew to a pulp and he could have killed him. Justin was really good last night. I thought Giacomo Gianniotti (Deluca) did great too during the scenes were he was conscious. I even felt for Jo at the beginning when she was crying and being comforted by the chief. I was debating with a friend on FB last night and she feels Alex has grown beyond this and the attack was out of character as far as the person he he is now. I am on the fence. Alex has baggage. He has always been fiercely protective of those he loves. I get it. But the writers also seem to be spinning this from the finale. The story then was a giggling drunk Jo and Deluca fell on her and Alex thought they were hooking up. In the premiere it seems that he thought Deluca was forcing himself on her. It should be an interesting trial.

    Maggie/Meredith: Loved Maggie’s speech about sisterhood and lies. She and Meredith have come so far. They love each other and have become real sisters. I am still not liking this story as a way to shake that up. I mean I am glad she broke it off with Nathan but she turned around and lied to Maggie minutes after promising never to lie again. She should have taken that moment to come clean with her. This will blow up in Mer’s face.

    April was annoying me and I normally like her. She should have just told Catherine the baby’s full name. Maybe she was just messing with her. I did laugh when she said: Because that’s MY baby and he is YOUR baby. Speaking of the baby she is simply gorgeous. I don’t like her name but they made a gorgeous little girl.

    What is this blind item people are talking about?

    • kmb55 says:

      Blind item was a surprising casting stunt that will air during the show’s season premiere, that will have everyone talking.

  25. andrew hass says:

    I think Alex will get off easy legally wise with probation and community service but i’m wondering how what he did will affect his career.I could see him been suspended from the hospital and maybe been demoted too.

  26. Rosa says:

    Don’t get rid of Alex…. make deluca drop the charges!!!!! You can not get rid of another main character!!

    • S says:

      Yeah of course, let the victim drop the charges just because it’s Alex. What’s wrong with some greys fans? How it can be ok to be violent? They will not get rid of Alex but he should face the consequences of what he did

  27. Sue says:

    I love the show but I’m tired of Alex always being the bad guy, Jo has had many many chances to tell the truth. Now we have to watch as Alex pays the price for her lies . He’s needs to forget about her and move on to someone who treats him with love and respect. Bring back Christina!

    • S says:

      No he will pays for what he did. Violence is not ok. Never. She lied yes and had many times/years to tell him. I don’t like them together but Alex needs to talk/understand before reacting

  28. fiberlicious says:

    1. On what planet did Karev think that the guy, whose career may be over, would say no harm, no foul? Sloppy, writers. SLOPPY.

    2. Seriously, tell Maggie the truth. Junior high was decades ago. Again, bad concept/writing.

    • James R. says:

      This.. I mostly watch this show for the funny parts and usually end up fast forwarding the childish parts. I know it’s a tv show, but no mature adult acts like this in the real world. It’s pretty simple. Tell Maggy that you slept with the guy she was crushing on before she made it clear that she liked him. It will take her time to get over but ultimately Meredith did absolutely nothing wrong. But for the sake of having nothing else to do with Meredith’s character, they did this.

    • Milli says:

      I kinda understand the rationale behind 1. cos we’ve all done something in the heat of the moment that we wished we could undo. An that’s what this episode is about. I’m worried about how this could affect Alex’s career as a paeds doctor (and he’s a really good paeds doctor).
      Meredith and Riggs have great chemistry but Mer please grow up. How hard is it to tell Maggie the truth. What is she gonna do? Beat you up, not talk to yo, be angry? really . He’s single, you’re single and if you want it go for it. You’re an adult now.

  29. Wendy White says:

    Met should be happy and stand up for what ever she does in her life. Give her a backbone. Alex needs a break. I do like Jo with him and wish they could build a strong relationship. The show is playing up to strong women but degrades them by not having healthy relationship. Women can be doctors and have families. Shonda really hates to have anyone happy or settled. Like the viewers only watch to see her turning Settle Grey upside down. Been watching since season 1 but really don’t know how they could change the under tone/ direction of a once loved show.

  30. Dominique says:

    amazing first episode, and it just proves they should foces more on alex. justin chambers is a fantastic versatile actor and his dynamic with ellen pompeo is marvellous. i hope alex will get to be front and center for a long time.
    but ehm.. harriet? good lord WHY?

  31. Kayte CookWatts says:

    Mer/Riggs is SO boring. No chemistry there. I think somehow Riggs will spill the beans and Maggie will be livid. Kind of glad that Alex got a meaty plot- and there is no way that him & Jo will get back together, right? I think the actress is beautiful & talented but her character is under developed and a big snore.

  32. kb says:

    Like downton abbey, there better be happy endings for all these loose, unfinished endings…SO many characters have come on then gone away!

  33. Laura Schleif says:

    I just want to know what’s going to happen to Alex. Is he (the actor, drawing a blank on his name) leaving the show or will he be back somehow?

  34. dave says:

    What I’d like to see. Alex-charged with assault and straight into the slammer. Mer & Joe charged with concealing a crime and straight into the slammer. DRAMA!!

  35. Pam says:

    Overall I liked this episode. The one problem I had was Maggie. Like really, so what if she is Meredith’s sister. They only just met 2 years ago. Look how long it took for her to accept Lexie! She didn’t have a right to pull out that card. Alex, he did a incredibly stupid thing,but she has known the guy for 13 years. It wasn’t like she wasn’t going to tell. Meredith just wanted to get all the facts and have Alex tell turn himself in. When she didn’t think he would, she told Bailey. Maggie, to me, is an really annoying character and hopefully we see less of her this season.