During Season 6 of Grey’s Anatomy, a merger with Mercy West Hospital brought in a new crop of doctors. Thanks to April Kepner, TR Knight’s late character George had his spot as the resident punching bag filled. Kepner was loathed by her fellow residents, ridiculed and verbally assaulted, tolerated only by Jackson. And why? Because people can be jerks.
On this week’s episode of Grey’s Anatomy, April took over as the interim Chief of Surgery while Meredith sat at home with Alex to make a point. The move made April persona non grata among the attendings, with even her work bestie Arizona cancelling their friendship, leaving Kepner to once again eat lunch alone at Grey Sloan. Again, people are jerks.
For years, we’ve watched as April was the Janis Ian of Mean Girls, tormented by Meredith, Cristina and Alex (you better believe that dude is a Mean Girl). She’s been ostracized, criticized, and treated as garbage because…actually, there’s no reason. As with most Mean Girl situations, the bullied are picked seemingly at random by the bullies.
April’s competency to stand-in as Meredith’s replacement was quickly called into question this week, so let’s go over the facts. Meredith and April were residents at the same time. Yes, April left the program after failing her boards, but Meredith also missed a year of work following Derek’s death, so their time in the OR is pretty even. April also spent time as a surgeon in a war zone, giving her experience in disaster medicine that not even Meredith and her mother’s legacy can touch.
Next, there’s the idea that April stepping into Meredith’s position as per her boss’ request means that she doesn’t support Richard’s claim to be head of the Resident Program. Interestingly enough, when April left the surgery program, it wasn’t Richard who found her milking cows and brought her back to the hospital, but Owen. At some point we have to acknowledge that Richard isn’t necessarily the best teacher, right? No? Not til the end of the season? Ugh.
Finding a perfect doctor to step into Meredith’s role as Chief is as likely as finding a perfect doctor anywhere — they don’t exist. People are not infallible. What does exist are workplaces where colleagues are civil to one another. While we’re dealing with who should be head of the Residency Program, can we also get HR into this hospital for some personnel training?
How many more seasons do we have to feel sorry for April? At least we used to be able to take solace in the fact that she had a hot husband. Prayer circle for Japril.
Grey’s Anatomy airs Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET on CTV.