Various shades, shapes and levels of bedside manner have been represented on Grey’s Anatomy throughout the series’ 13 seasons. The extremes of screaming at patients, all the way to sleeping with them, have taken place within the walls of Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital, yet the staff never seems to learn the correct balance between delivering devastating news and being emotionally available.
This week’s episode featured 95-year-old surgeons, who were in the hospital as patients after falling during a hike. Side note, if you want to live to 95, it seems you’re going to have to hike. Ooof.
June Squibb and Hal Holbrook played a couple who feel in love practicing medicine together and still want more time with each other after 60 years of marriage. Take that, every couple to ever be on this show.
The death of Squibb’s character, easily one of the oldest people to ever die on Grey’s Anatomy, hit surprisingly hard during this week’s episode. But why? Kids die on this show all the time. Are we monsters who only care about people who can tell us what life was like before the internet?
No. Well, maybe. But the real reason Squibb’s character’s death was so devastating to us, the viewers, and to the fictional characters on the show, was because she was sensitive and emotionally intelligent. We literally almost never see that on this show.
This week’s episode featured a number of tone-deaf emotional moments courtesy of the staff at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital, mostly towards Maggie.
Upon learning that her mother has breast cancer and not, as she was led to believe, a desire that she must, she must, she must increase her bust, Maggie was obviously shocked. When she took her anger out on Jackson, her friend gave her a hug. Nope! He turns around and heads into surgery.
Last week, Jackson was telling grieving mothers he could ‘definitely’ save their daughter and passing hugs out like they were flyers in Times Square. This week he can’t give his friend a quick pep talk? Have some consistency, Jackson.
When the surgery goes poorly and more cancer is found in Maggie’s mother, Jackson shows some emotional intelligence and grabs a friend to support Maggie. Unfortunately, he chooses Meredith.
Really? We know they’re sisters and everything, but really? Meredith predictably watches Maggie from a safe distance of eight feet as her sister sobs and looks at scans of her mother’s cancer. We’re actually more disappointed in Jackson. He knew better.
We did see at least one attempt at a hug on this week’s episode, thanks to DeLuca showing some sensitivity while trying to comfort a tearful Stephanie. The half-hug unfortunately also included DeLuca proclaiming his love for Jo, which was terrible timing. Even if a woman isn’t interested in you, she still doesn’t want to hear you love someone else while she’s in the middle of crying. It’s an easy rule.
Maybe seeing an emotionally healthy couple who cared for one another for 60 years will be a wake-up call to the doctors of Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital that they should be more supportive towards one another.
Grey’s Anatomy airs Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET on CTV.