Meredith promised one thing at the start of Grey’s Anatomy’s season premiere: “You’re about to find out that everything has changed.”
But, in the end, that couldn’t be further from the truth. At least when it comes to Grey’s Anatomy as a whole. The show returned with an episode that sent a powerful message: The Grey’s Anatomy you love hasn’t changed a bit.
The hour — the start of the show’s 12th (!) season — had all the makings of a classic episode: a powerful patient storyline (this one about two lesbian teens who struggled to gain the acceptance of their bigot parents, who were the kind we like to hope are rarer than they probably are), a return to a more established arc (Bailey’s quest to be chief), and reminder that an in-transition Meredith Grey is still trying to figure out her future.
Though, with regards to the latter, the bigger question of her path going forward was circumvented for a smaller-scale and comedic story about her struggling to adapt to living with Amelia — a perfect choice for a season opener that already had a heavy storyline present.
The premiere also touched on a few other subjects somewhat fleetingly, but these acted as setups for more to come.
For example, April returned from another deployment in the final minutes, and her reunion with Jackson was icy, but we didn’t see much more than that. And in another, Arizona struggled to find a roommate because, she was told, her reputation as a legendary doctor, a bit of a jinx and an intern-seducer was a deterrent for potential roommates. Luckily, she eventually found one.
There was no big moment that made the episode. This is Grey’s; it saves those for sweeps.
Instead, Grey’s focused on making the sum of the parts a satisfying experience, with those signature, powerful moments along the way.
Like when Maggie punched the horrible mother of one of the teen girls.
Or when the group had a meaningful talk about bullies.
Or when Bailey speechified like only she can and got the keys to her kingdom.
Or even when Meredith apologized to Amelia by saying, “I’m sorry I said you have fleas.” (Because that’s perfect Meredith.)
The message of this episode was that there may be a piece of Grey’s missing — RIP, still, Derek — but the rest is still here.
And we’re all allowed to enjoy that.
What did you think of the Grey’s Anatomy season premiere? Tell us below.
The following post contains spoilers to this weeks episodes of Grey’s Anatomy. Please use caution.