[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Grey’s AnatomySeason 17, Episode 3, “My Happy Ending.”]
COVID-19 comes for Grey Sloan’s own in Grey’s Anatomy Season 17, Episode 3 — aka November 19’s “My Happy Ending.”
The episode opens with Richard (James Pickens Jr.) recording a video message for the Grey Sloan employees in his new role as chief medical officer of the Catherine Fox Foundation and “chief of chiefs” at the hospital. He announces that all employees have to get tested for COVID-19, and he introduces the newest batch of interns — which includes a mother-daughter duo this year. Koracick (Greg Germann), who was demoted from the chief-of-chief post last week, is relegated to teaching the interns.
But you’re surely wondering about Meredith (Ellen Pompeo), who collapsed in the hospital parking lot last week and imagined her dead husband on a beach. As you’ve probably guessed, Mer does indeed have COVID-19, and it seems like a particularly bad case. She’s pressuring her colleagues to discharge her and let her quarantine in a hotel, but they refuse. And it’s a good thing, too, because she falls unconscious again when she tries to get out of her hospital bed. She dreams about Derek (Patrick Dempsey) on the beach again, but she can’t quite reach him. He says she can’t make any headway on the beach because she’s worried about their kids. (Stay away from the light, Mer!)
Cormac (Richard Flood) video-chats Mer to check in on her, and she tells him that she’s afraid to get some rest because she’s worried that if she falls asleep, she won’t wake up. Bailey (Chandra Wilson), meanwhile, urges Mer to change her living will because Mer is still counting on Alex for power of attorney — and he and Izzie are still half a country away. She chooses Richard to have her POA instead.
And it’s probably good that Maggie is asking, because Teddy hasn’t fully resolved her love triangle drama. In fact, Teddy even goes to Koracick to ask him if he wants to join her for coffee, but he declines, saying he needs to get over her. Just then, Owen (Kevin McKidd) barges in with scary news: Koracick’s COVID-19 test came back positive.
At least Jo (Camilla Luddington) and Bailey have some distraction this week. They meet a patient named Val, who’s complaining of abdominal pain and vomiting. Turns out, she’s pregnant with a hepatic pregnancy— as in, her fetus and her liver are attached. Jo and Bailey rush her into surgery and deliver the baby, and we’ll likely return to Val’s case next episode.
The other patient of the week is a sex therapist named Manoj, who was doing some office renovations when his sandblaster crushed his hand. Jackson (Jesse Williams), Link (Chris Carmack), and Helm (Jaicy Elliot) are amazed to learn of Manoj’s 37-per-hour reputation. That’s 37 orgasms per hour, not 37 dollars per hour.
Link, inspired, goes home to Amelia (Caterina Scorsone) to give her some stress relief — especially because she can’t seem to turn off her brain and relax during her maternity leave. Before they get down and dirty, though, Link realizes that they have to maintain social distancing. “Who says we can’t do this six feet apart?” Amelia replies.
As the episode closes, Richard brings the interns into an OR, seemingly gearing up to deliver the speech we’ve seen him deliver so many times before — you know, the one about how “the seven years you spend here as a surgical resident will be the best and worst of your life.” Instead, though, he gives a speech for the COVID era. “You had dreams of a career,” he says. “I know this isn’t it. It’s not mine, either.”
And the episode ends with Mer returning to her dream beach and running toward Derek…before falling flat on her face in the sand. Derek laughs at her, and Mer laughs despite herself. “I’ll be right here when you’re ready,” he tells her, which is both romantic and ominous.
Plus, ABC’s promo for the next episode says someone else from Mer’s past is coming back. Who do you reckon? George? Cristina? Izzie? Doc the dog?!
Grey’s Anatomy, Thursdays, 9/8c, ABC