greys anatomy season 13 episode 8 recap

Grey's Anatomy Recap: Zero Patience

The term “complicated surgery” took on a whole new meaning in Thursday’s artful Debbie Allen-directed Grey’s Anatomy, as sleep deprivation, short tempers, hurt feelings and a whole lotta memories crowded into the O.R. along with Meredith, Richard, Owen and Stephanie. Did the patient manage to survive not only multiple procedures but his caregivers’ vivid recollections of, among others, Hunt’s long-discussed, presumed-dead sister? Read on and find out.

‘WHEN HE’S PISSED, HE REALLY LIKES TO TEACH’ | Early on in “The Room Where It Happens,” a well-rested Richard joined his exhausted colleagues in surgery after two motorists were rushed into Grey Sloan’s E.R. following a freeway collision. In no time, Webber became upset that the docs were behaving with the John Doe like “mechanics… treating [him] like a sack of organs on a table,” so he challenged them to play a game: Make the patient someone in their minds — anyone they wanted.

When Mer and Owen weren’t arguing over whether, with John Doe’s liver already shredded, his kidney could be saved — she said no; he, yes — Richard started the game by imagining that the man was actually a beautiful 46-year-old woman named Gail, a cellist with three kids. He didn’t get much further, however, before he was drawn into a fight with Mer over whether to call UNOS for an emergency liver. (Ultimately, she ended the debate by pointing out that, as Chief of General Surgery, “I outrank you.” Snap!)

greys-anatomy-season-13-episode-8-recap‘WHY ARE YOU GUILTY, EEYORE?’ | When Owen was called upon to personalize the patient, he insisted that he didn’t have to, that he’d successfully operated on many a John Doe while enlisted. Bulls—, sis Megan (guest star Bridget Regan) declared in his head. He’d always made it a priority to get hold of their dog tags. Before long, as she razzed him about turning into their father and suturing as slowly as a tortoise, it became harder and harder to imagine how Nathan could have cheated on Megan. She was charming!

Later, Owen’s imagined sibling asked if he felt guilty since he’d begun to lighten up on Riggs. Or was the problem his new wife? He should have married Mer, “Megan” argued. Oh, and BTW, “you’re not gonna choke anybody again, are you?” (Man, Owen’s imagination is not a nice place to be!) At the end of all this, Hunt decided to side with Richard about the transplant, and, to Mer’s chagrin, removed John Doe’s liver.

greys anatomy season 13 episode 8 recap‘IF YOU’VE GOT SOMETHING TO SAY, SPEAK UP!’ | Deducing that the patient was suffering from a not-as-uncommon-as-everyone-thinks autoimmune disease, Stephanie pictured her younger self quoting from the medical books she’d read while hospitalized for sickle-cell-anemia treatment, and piped up with a suggestion to save the guy’s life. Was it risky? Hell, yeah. But “if I were on the table,” she said, “I’d want the risky thing.”

After the foursome learned that the patient was Carl Henley, a married father of two, he lay dying on the table, sending Mer flashing back to Derek’s demise. Before anyone in the present could do as she ordered and inform the family that they were about to lose Carl, they got his heartbeat back. At that point, Grey realized, “It’s time to compromise, for all of us,” and recalled the awful moment when she had to tell little Bailey and Zola that she couldn’t fix their daddy, “because he’s dead.”

‘IT’S A HAIL MARY’ | Off that heartbreaking scene, Mer realized that Richard hadn’t made up Gail, prompting him to admit that yes, she was his mother. And he’d always hated the constant drone of her cello playing… until, that is, it stopped. As he challenged Stephanie to diagnose Gail based on her symptoms — she’d died of pancreatic cancer, it turned out — Mer got the bright idea to repair part of Carl’s liver and use it for his transplant.

Miraculously, as the episode drew to a close, the daring procedure seemed to have worked. Before washing up and heading home, Mer apologized to Richard for barking at him… then, for a brief, wonderful, awful, wound-reopening instant, she imagined that she was looking right at Derek, alive and well and smiling his million-dollar smile. “Hi,” he said. And, that fast, a nurse interrupted, snapping Grey out of her reverie. Sigh.

What did you think of the episode? Did you like the sneaky way Megan was introduced? Didn’t Owen’s line about not stopping till you know someone’s dead suggest he was about to search for her anew?

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. Karen says:

    That would have to be one of the most boring episodes of Grey’s for a long time.

  2. Al says:

    One of the most beautifully produced episodes

    • LAwoman says:

      I agree. It was beautifully produced. I loved seeing Owen’s sister giving him a hard time and I don’t even like Owen!

      • abz says:

        I agree. I guess I’m in the minority. Yeah, the Weber stuff was a little boring to me and I was weary of the episode at the start, but overall it was a really beautifully done episode. The scene where Meredith told her kids that Derek was dead and then at the end with her remembering Derek, it brought tears to my eyes. Ellen Pompeo has really been underrated in this role, especially the last few years. She’s gotten even better as the series ages.
        I’ve never really been a fan of Owen and I’ve been dreading this inevitable sister storyline, but with Briget Reagan playing her I think I’m definitely on board now. I’ve enjoyed her in so many shows, soon I’m gonna lose count. His sister is probably still alive too.

  3. Beth says:


  4. Taylor says:

    This Episode goes with the theme of such Grey’s Episodes that initially seem very off the mark but when you watch them eventually, they are a masterpiece. (S7’s The Golden Hour, S8’s If/Then)

    It was definitely an emotional hail mary for sure. Ellen Pompeo once again delivered and proved why she is the Grey in Grey’s Anatomy!

    • Grey'sFan says:

      S7 The Golden Hour is one of my all-time favourite episodes. EP better get at least an honourable mention for POTW (we all know Alex Baldwin is going to win :) ). Awesome episode. Loved little Stephanie and learning about Richard’s back story after 12 years it was nice to learn what likely prompted him to go into medicine. Wondering if we’ll see Owen’s sister again in his mind, or how long before she turns up alive?

    • Luli says:

      If/then is one of my fav eps! This one was a good one, I enjoyed it.

  5. Sandra says:

    I thought it was boring too.

  6. Ariah says:

    It was a good episode, but it would have been better for the winter episode or something. They used the Merder theme song and that was hard to swallow.

  7. pinky says:


  8. mammaZ says:

    The start was kind of boring but the end with Derek was classic grays. Made me cry! I miss Derek. I know his character can’t come back, but it would be so awesome if Christina’s character and even Izzy’s would return, that would be very cool!!

  9. Maddie says:

    Boring episode, but the ending had me in tears!

  10. Wordsmith says:

    Pretty soon, I think Bridget Regan will be in EVERY SHOW ON TV.
    And I’m not mad about it.

  11. Sam says:

    The episode was ok but it was filler. None of the actual stories advanced and next Thursday is the winter finale. This week the episode should be building up to the finale and a flashback episode is something they could have left for some other time.

  12. Louise Gross-Douglas says:

    I absolutely LOVE Grey’s Anatomy. But tonight’s episode (11/10/16) was the stupidist thing I’ve ever seen. What the hell?????? I patiently watched it – convinced that the show would get back to the normal drama the characters – to no avail. What was Shonda thinking? Bad…….bad……..bad………episode.

  13. Amy B says:

    Oh Derek…..

  14. Julia says:

    Slow & boring episode! One of the worst Grey’s episodes ever – 2nd to Derek’s death episode which was terrible! The only good part was seeing Derek at the end. I watched that part a few times. Grey’s isn’t the same without Derek…and Christina. And Meredith hasn’t been Meredith in a long time. She seems so mean all the time. Miss the old Mer. Watching the old episodes on Lifetime you realize how good Grey’s used to be.

  15. Scott says:

    Contrary to what many are saying, I thought it was brilliant. One of my favourite episodes of the whole series.

  16. N says:

    I fell asleep with my eyes open

  17. Jenny says:

    For those who say you were bored, what the heck were you watching?

    this episode was beautiful and gorgeous and the writing fantastic. I love when they do special episodes like this. Truly a work of art. This show continues to amaze, job well done to all!

    • Pam says:

      This! Unfortunately, now that we saw who America prefers for president, we can see that they aren’t intelligent enough to know good television when they see it. Yeah, I went there.

      • Carrieann Loper says:

        Pam, I think that I love you!

      • Carrieann Loper says:

        This episode reminded me of the Grey’s that I used to love. There have been so many times over the current season that I wanted to just give up on the series in general because it was getting ridiculous. It has started to remind me of a cheesy soap opera, and the acting has deteriorated. I thought that this was beautifully written.

  18. Sophia says:

    Bottle episodes are so interesting to me and I wanted to see how Grey’s does it. It was good for the most parts. The music at the very beginning was so distracting. But the end blew me away. Man i miss Derek so much. I miss the light tones of this show. None of the present characters other than Mer and Alex evoke any reaction from me anymore and then Derek shows up for a few seconds and I’m bawling like a baby.

    • Babs says:

      I agreed – I thought it was an excellent episode. Mer’s scene with her children was very sad but her scene with Derrick was wonderful!

    • LaDonna says:

      And see, I liked the music at the beginning. My daughter even came out of seclusion…I mean her room…when she heard it. She said “Oh I love this song, and this is a cool arrangement.” Apparently, it was a One Direction song…I never listened to them but she did. I liked the back stories. Richard and his mother, Owen and his sister, little Stephanie…and of course, Derek. Tears for Derek. I do agree with you about the lightness of the show. I miss that, but I guess life wouldn’t be all light after losing a spouse.

  19. Jim says:

    Does anyone else find the suggestion that Owen might have feelings for Meredith interesting? Way down someplace he’d never unearth? Or just me? Never even thought about it but it didn’t feel dishonest or unearned, did it?

    • Pablo says:

      I thing what they where trying to tell was that Owen wanted what Meredith has, a whole big family, he has bad luck with women and their anti-kids nonsense, had he been with Meredith he’d probably have some kids by now, and also he’d be dead because Mer and her loveones can’t be that happy

  20. Rick Katze says:

    It was so boring that I kept jumping forward a minute at a time hoping to see something coherent and enjoyable. Sadly I didn’t. Hopefully this is an experiment which will NOT be repeated.

  21. EM says:

    Slow moving but not boring. Back story on all four characters involved. I also took Owen’s sister saying he should have married Mer as not having feelings for her but wanting what she has which is three kids. He is their uncle so I hope they do show him with her kids some. I do hope next week is waffle Sunday.

  22. kn1231 says:

    Was this one of my favorite episodes, no, but I did appreciate how well put together the episode was. For the first time I enjoyed Owen’s scenes, I loved that we finally got to see his sister. And don’t even get me started about Meredith’s scenes. Ellen had me bawling as if she just told me my father died. So it was definitely a slow burn episode, but some of the moments excellent.

  23. cuius says:

    No poll? Worried about upsetting Shonda?

  24. Angel says:

    Sorry but the expression “jump the shark” came to mind while watching this very boring episode. However the last scene with Derek made me tear up – show is not the same without him.

  25. Sarah Bercar says:

    Owen and Meredith was actually the really great part , others was very boring .. but i don´t really get why ? people said it was boring? it was a very interest way to watch an episode, excellent production and directing I known we are not use to it but for me was fantastic… and well of course Shonda knows exactly the perfect way to make us cry even if the scene was just 5 sec was really amazing one …

  26. 40184156p says:

    My least favorite episode ever!

    • Tennisnsun says:

      Agreed. I have never switched an episode of Grey’s off before it finished. I did this time. I’ll catch Derek’s smile On Demand.

  27. T. says:

    More or Bridget Regan please ?!!

  28. Jamie says:

    Came here to say this was easily the most boring episode of Grey’s that I’ve seen (especially Webber droning on and on and on), but it seems like everyone agrees lmao.
    Only part I found interesting was Owen’s bits with his sister.

  29. Eran says:

    The nuanced, touching maturity of this stunningly beautiful episode is most likely the reason why so many found it boring.

  30. Debbie says:

    This episode was awful. I actually started cleaning my house while it was on :(

  31. lana says:

    most boring episodes ever
    I don’t understand why they put a filler episode 1 ep before the midseason, this was a useless stand alone they could have use it later on the season. it was like last year when they put the Meredith attack episode after a massive cliffhangers for jolex and japril, they never learn and things never change.
    And if they wanted to focus on backstory it’s kind of a shame they didn’t have Jo in tonight’s ep considering how much of her past we don’t know anything about. wasted opportunity

    And I’m tiered of the use of derek to create empathy toward meredith, she has became an annoying and hateful cahrather, bring in back in flashback don’t change that. Shonda after you kill him poorly in a terrible ep, stop use him

    about the promo….Jolex will be the cliffhanger plot and then probably will not get followup. a they always use certain couple preferably jolex and japril to attract people and then give them 2 minutes of sceentime

  32. Sara says:

    Such a great episode especially after 2 boring episodes! Very interesting and original episode for sure. They are in season 13, nothing to lose to try something new.
    The Meredith scene telling the kids Derek is dead was heartbreaking. Ellen Pompeo is freaking brilliant.

  33. Bev Dubuque says:

    Can’t wait for Gray’s to start shaping up to its reputation. I hated this episode. It lasted way to loooong; so it was boring to have the entire show circle around this one thing. This could have been done in about 8 minutes; then go on and bring in some captivating, riveting, way to go Gray’s that we are all used to. Was the writers having a short brain-cramp to come up with some “good” material and had to stretch this out for the WHOLE show?? Quite frankly this whole season is not cracking up to what it has been in the past. We need some pizzazz back into the show!!

  34. steve says:

    I loved this episode. It took four emotional backstories and brought them to the forefront in a fresh, artistic fashion one would see in the stage.

  35. kat says:

    I hate bottle episodes. Were they trying to make Webber so annoying that we won’t be pissed when they hire that horrible woman?

  36. madgavkar says:

    Was this a cameo appearance by Patrick Dempsey or just past footage artfully woven in?

  37. Len says:

    Loved this week’s Grey’s. Fantastic direction.

  38. Yoko says:

    A bit slow of a beginning but better writing than we’ve seen so far this season. Poignant. Refreshing to not see Maggie whining or Riggs drooling over Mer. Can’t stand that whole story line. Please bring in someone worthy of Mer….and way better looking too!

  39. araba says:

    Meredith and Riggs is never going to happen. Come on Mer is for Der and Der only. No riggs in this.plzzzz