All TV dramas have them – the salacious back-and-forth of romantic toils, trysts and triangles. The problem is, we can’t seem to get enough of them. Medical dramas in particular come with their own brand of love and relationship problems, probably because of all those high-stakes situations and cozy little call rooms. With Saving Hope officially back and Grey’s Anatomy returning Thursday night, we figured it was about time we pitted the show’s two leading ladies against each other in the “Love Doctor” spotlight. So who is better at love, Alex Reid (Erica Durance) or Meredith Grey (Ellen Popeo)?
The TV Trope: The Love Triangle
When two men or women compete for the same heart.
When Meredith “accidentally” hooked up with her boss in the Grey’s Anatomy pilot, little did she know that he’d be the love of her life. Or that he’d have an estranged wife who would show up several episodes later, wanting to reconcile.
Even though it’s obvious that Joel (Daniel Gillies) is head-over-heels for this gal, she’s stayed fairly true to on-again, off-again fiancé Charlie (Michael Shanks). Sure, that doesn’t stop her from having crazy dreams about her co-worker ex, but she can’t exactly be faulted for that.
Alex. Even though Mer got the guy in the end (and Addison, aka Kate Walsh got her own spinoff with Private Practice), having two cute guys vying for your heart is just a better situation. Durance’s advice for those in a love triangle? “Get out as soon as you can because it will always end poorly.”
The TV Trope: The After Action Patch-Up
When a woman tends to a man’s wounds, reprimands him but “proves” her love
The doctors of Seattle Grace/Grey Sloan Memorial have been through it all: rogue shooters, super storms, plane crashes and bombs. Meredith has been Derek’s side on a few occasions (anyone else remember the time he lost control of his hands from the crash?), but he’s had to be there for her during life-threatening situations, too. (Nothing like giving birth during a super storm, right?)
Alex spent the entire first season of Saving Hope beside Charlie, fighting for his life when no one else would. That’s a serious commitment.
Meredith. Even though Alex’s commitment to Charlie was saintly, MerDer wrote about their commitment to take care of each other on a Post-it note. Meredith’s sage words? “We’ll take care of each other even when we’re old and smelly and senile.”
The TV Trope: The All Girls Want Bad Boys
Nice guys finish last.
Derek wasn’t always a nice guy, not at the beginning of his fling with Mer, and he failed to tell her about Addison. In reality, that made her want him even more. Sure, she won out in the end, but she went through a lot of impromptu dance parties with bestie Cristina (Sandra Oh) in order to sort out all of her “dark and twisty” feelings.
We’ve heard tons about how Alex had her heart broken by bad-boy, serial dater Joel, but so far throughout the course of the series we haven’t actually seen her play into them.
Alex. For now. Who knows what will happen between her and Joel in Season 3? Durance’s real life advice? “There are many people that you can choose in your life. You just have to love the people that are good for you.”
The TV Trope: The Birds of a Feather
I can’t believe how much we have in common; we’re like, so alike!
He’s into brains, she’s into general surgery. But it all came together during that Alzheimer’s study — for a while, anyway.
She’s a practical, believe-the-facts, wrist-watch wearing kinda gal; he talks to spirits. That’s a pretty big hurdle to overcome.
Meredith. For now. She and Derek might fight over the fact that they both can’t achieve their career ambitions, but Alex went pretty cray-cray when she learned Charlie’s secret. Mind you, now that she’s keeping him company in the spirit world, that could definitely change. Words to live by? “I love you, in a really, really big ‘pretend to like your taste in music, let you eat the last piece of cheesecake, hold a radio over my head outside your window,’ unfortunate way that makes me hate you, love you. So pick me, choose me, love me.”
The TV Trope: The Cock Fight
I love you so much I’m going to fight for you
While it’s true the Derek has thrown punches on the show (remember the time he decked Eric Dane’s Mark for sleeping with Chyler Leigh’s Lexie?!), his physical brawls never really tended to be about her.
Charlie and Joel have always been pretty cordial to each other, right up until the point the Joel’s sleepwalking patient stabbed Alex and put her in the ICU. Then all of a sudden, it was raining men.
Alex, even if she wasn’t conscious to witness the men fighting for her honour. Durance’s opinion on the matter? “It’s the desire to be desired, you know? Having the two people duke it out for Alex, women watch vicariously. It’s wanting to be loved, as simple as that.”
The TV Trope: The My Own Private I Do
This is our wedding day, and no one else’s!
So much hoopla was made over the potential MerDer wedding, especially with Izzie (Katherine Heigl) planning it all. In the end, It was Izzie who got to walk the aisle, while Meredith had her own private I dos with Derek.
She didn’t want to wait, and she didn’t. As soon as Charlie was out of a coma she planned them a small, quaint ceremony in the garden. Unfortunately, he never showed up.
Meredith. Two words: Post-It. Note. For all the fans out there, here it is again:
We guess that leaves the good docs at a tie. We’ll just have to go ahead and make some popcorn and settle in, it seems, because from the sounds of things Season 3 and Season 11 are going to be doozies.
Grey’s Anatomy airs Thursdays 8 p.m. ET on CTV, followed by Saving Hope at 9 p.m. Want more Thursday night TV? Check out the debut of How to Get Away With Murder at 10 p.m.