grey’s anatomy recap : fight or flight & losing my religion (season 2, episodes 27 & 28)

Deterioration of the Fight or Flight Response & Losing My Religion [05-15-2006]
This is something of a team effort at giving you a summary of the season 2 finale of Grey’s Anatomy. I don’t have any screen caps for you, nor was I able to keep a running transcript of what was going on – they lost me in the very beginning with the voiceover. Since I’m doing this from memory, I’ve recapped the general plot lines, and my impressions of the first half. Josh’s take picks up somewhere after the first hour.

Grab your kleenex — after the jump you’ll find the work-in-progress recap of the double episode finale! This should probably go without saying, but here there be spoilers. ;)

If you didn’t grab kleenex at the beginning of this episode, then you, like me, were an idiot, and probably spent two hours crying into the nearest pillow. I know I did, much to the consternation of my cats.

Everyone voiceovers: “human beings need a lot of things to feel alive. family. love. sex. but we only need one thing to actually be alive. we need a beating heart. when our heart is threatened. we respond in one of two ways. we either run. or. we attack. there’s a scientific term for this. fight or flight. it’s instinct. we can’t control it. or can we? Meredith
Sandra Oh
Patrick Dempsey

The show picks up immediately from where we left off last night, only we’re back inside and Cristina is talking to the Chief, who tells her she gets to run Trauma Two. She doesn’t believe she gets to run the table, and nearly floats out of the room, she’s so happy.

That’s because she doesn’t know what happened. She doesn’t know Burke is shot, and the Chief is doing his best to keep it from her – he instructs them to put Burke in Trauma One. But of course, while Cristina is working on her case, who turns out to be the shooter, Petey, she turns and sees Burke in Trauma One. She does this very Cristina thing, where she runs to Burke, evaluates the situation, then runs back in to her case and demands they keep trying to save Petey’s life. Everyone around her tells them he’s dead, but she insists. Because, she tells them, she doesn’t want his family to at all say that they didn’t do everything possible to save his life.

Burke is in shock, and not aware of how badly he’s hurt. He keeps trying to get up, until Bailey [I think?] orders him to shut up and lay down.

Meanwhile, upstairs, Izzie and George and Meredith are all frantically trying to save Denny’s life. His heart is, of course, fighting them on this idea, and none of them had the briliant idea to oh, say, maybe get help. And yes, George called Meredith in, because he and Izzie needed help, and she was the only person he could think of.

At Mercy West, Alex and Burke’s competitive colleague watch the clock count down.

Once Burke is closer to stabilized, Cristina goes in to see him, and they get a minute alone. She tells him she’s there for him, whatever he needs, and it’s a very very sweet scene – she’s all tears, and very soft. It’s a sweet scene until he asks her to go check on Denny for him. Cuz, remember, Burke knew something was up, just not what.

Cristina, after pointing out that Burke ruined a perfectly good moment, obliges, and is our fourth intern to join the fray. She stands in the room trying to grasp the situation while Izzie tells them it’ll be okay, it’ll be okay, Burke will be there soon. Only, well. Yeah. And Cristina tries to point this fact out several times until she finally just yells to get their attention – Burke’s been shot! And Izzie collapses into a sobbing pile of tears, continuing to prove the addage that if you’re pale skinned, you should never ever cry in public, because it just ain’t pretty.

Back with Burke, Derek is having to decide whether they operate or not, and he’s having a hard time making the decision. Burke is looking to him for advice, and Derek is overwhelmed by the knowledge that if he does nothing, Burke might lose his surgical career, and if he does something, Burke might lose his surgical career. (Burke has numbness in his fingers, and there’s the potential of nerve damage.) Derek bails, letting Burke think on it.

There is more here with the interns and Denny, the important thing being that he groggily asks Izzie to marry him.

Bailey goes in to check on Burke, and to see if he needs anything. He asks for some ice chips and morphine, if that would be allowed, and for Cristina. Bailey softly agrees, and begins to walk out of the room when a lightbulb comes on. And then Bailey gets the beginning of some of the most awesome dialogue (and really, over a span of two hours, there was a lot of awesome dialogue). “Where,” and keep in mind, I’m quoting, “are my ass kissin surgically hungry suck ups? You know something! Preston Xavier Burke – WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH MY SUCK-UPS!” Naturally, Burke can’t stand up to Bailey, and he tells her.

She soars into Denny’s room, and enters a scene of chaos. They’ve had to stop his heart (it was beating too fast), Izzie is hand pumping his heart with this old looking device that looks like a modified bicycle pump, and it’s basically a very Not Good scene. And that bit about the mommy hormones softening her? Gone – completely and utterly gone, and the Nazi is back. She screams, she yells, she tries to pull Izzie away, and Izzie yells right back. Bailey allows Izzie to stay pumping the heart, and yanks the other interns out of the room. Cristina is sent off to Burke while Meredith and George are screamed at, told to shut up, told not to move, and finally told to report Denny’s stats.

Some time in here, Alex is informed about Burke being shot, and Burke’s colleague takes that as the go ahead to take the heart out for herself. Also at some point in here, Bailey corners the Chief with hypotheticals about the transplant list and ethics and the hypothetical situation of Izzie being stupid. The Chief points out that their job is to save lives…but that the offenders will be punished, and Bailey had better give him names.

Cristina goes into Burke’s room, and is a mess of vulnerability. She’s obviously in a lot of pain seeing him like this, and tries to hide it behind looking at his chart and pictures. He tells her what’s going on, and asks her to help him with this, to tell him what she thinks he should do. She tears up, stammers, and makes an ungracious exit from the room. Burke closes his eyes and cries. Cristina runs into the resident sleeping lounge, slams the door shut, and cries.

Adele, the Chief’s wife, is in the ER with her 17 year old niece, who is being seen by Addison. Seems the niece was at her prom, and opted to “cash in her v-card” (ie she had sex with her boyfriend), and in the process of uh, cashing in, passed out. Turns out she had ovarian cancer several years back, but they managed to save one ovary for fertility’s sake. Sadly, it’s a decision that is going to cost her her life, as she’s diagnosed with a severe return of the cancer.

Two of her friends are there with her, and they call other people who call other people who…suddenly the Chief’s hospital is overrun by the prom. He yells at them all to leave, and come back tomorrow in smaller groups during visiting hours, and they comply. …and then Adele is there, and Adele is letting him have a piece of her mind. She just had to tell her sister that her sister’s daughter is dying. She has put up with years of long hours, never once complaining. She stayed with him while he cheated on her and had an affair, never once saying anything, even though all her family and friends thought she would be better off leaving him, she never asks for anything, and now she’s asking – no, she’s telling him, that their niece will have her prom! Or he can find somewhere else to sleep.

Addison tries to corner Derek in the hall, but Derek is on the run. He slams into an empty room, only to hear the Chief comment that it’s so hard to get any privacy in the hospital. Derek joins the Chief on the couch, and they talk. Or rather, they give speeches in sequence. The Chief talks about his sacrifices, and how he had an affair with Ellis Grey, and didn’t think his wife knew, and it turns out that Adele did know and had known all these years and stayed with him anyhow. Derek talks about how irritating Burke is, but how much he admires Burke, and how he can’t make the decision about the surgery, he just can’t do it, he can’t risk ruining Burke’s career. They gloomily mope in the dark together.

Over at Mercy West, Alex catches the Competitive Colleague leaving with her ice cooler (heart inside), and tries to get her attention. She tells him she can’t stop, time’s ticking, and he basically insists. She turns, and realization dawns. Denny took priority over her patient, and she has to give up the heart. She’s pissed. Really pissed. Then Alex points out that there is a chopper on the roof….

We cut to the chopper landing, with Alex and Competitive Colleague getting out. Seems she’ll be performing Denny’s heart transplant. We move to a montage scene of Denny and Burke being operated on, but things start going wrong on Burke’s side. The arm isn’t responding, but there’s no obvious nerve damage. Derek and the Chief decide they need to wake Burke up without sedation so he can help them by moving his fingers, and they can’t anesthetize the open wound they’re working in or he won’t be able to move those fingers. Nor can they take out the breathing tube, but when they wake him up, he’s going to try to fight the tube and take it out. Derek decides they need Cristina to help, to keep Burke focused.

With Alex scrubbed in on Denny’s surgery, the other four interns – the ones who’re, as Meredith puts it, grounded – sit along the wall under the surgery whiteboad and wait. Cristina is pulled from the group to attend to Burke, and Izzie says screw it and goes to keep an eye on Denny. This leaves Meredith and George. Meredith, once again, tries to apologize, and George tells her to knock it off. Seems he knew she didn’t love him, she didn’t at all feel that way about him, but the chance to have her, be with her, sleep with her, presented itself to him and he took advantage of the chance and situation, knowing full well it wasn’t what she would want to do if she wasn’t so upset. And so Meredith needed to stop apologizing, because it was George who needed to apologize to her. And he does. And it’s sweet.

Denny’s heart surgery is done, but the heart itself is not working. They try to jumpstart it, but he’s still flatlined.

And then we cut to what is undoubtedly one of the most painful things I have ever witnessed on a television show. Derek briefs Cristina with what he needs and why, and they bring Burke out from under the anesthesia – and he spasms and writhes and thrashes and is in so much pain just thinking about it makes me wince and want to look away from my mind’s eye. Cristina panics and freezes, and nothing Derek says snaps her out of it. Derek finally steps in and grasps Burke by the face and alternates between yelling at Burke to stay still and soothingly talk to him telling him to move his hand, move his fingers, touch his fingers. Cristina watches a moment longer, and leaves the room, big tears in her eyes.

Denny continues to flatline. Alex looks up to the surgical observation room and sees Izzie. Most of the doctors in the theatre tell Competitive Colleague to stop, but she insists they give the heart a chance. And miraculously, it begins to beat.

{O.K. folks. Josh here with your second half report — enjoy! And those hankerchiefs we mentioned. You might need them for at least one or two scenes. And Kelly is going to chime in, in italics because Josh took all the colours for the voice-over and he probably wants to remain distinct from me, cuz I am going to detail the things he missed – namely, the things that made me bawl like a baby.}

With everyone touching fingers to thumbs and having their hearts beating miraculously, we cut to the morning after. All of our favorite interns are lined up in the Chief’s office. At first, Isabel confesses to cutting the LVAD wire, but then the rest of them jump into the Spartacus routine. Even Alex, who could not have possibly cut the wire since he was at an entirely different hospital when the whole thing went down gets in on the obfuscation. But only after everyone yells at him to stick to the plan. The Chief claims to know who did it, but George [!] calls his bluff, saying that if he knew they wouldn’t be in a lineup. After a lot of yelling, they don’t break; so he takes them out of surgery and orders them to wait on his niece as punishment.

Isabel apologizes to the gang and offers to confess. She thanks Alex for what he did for Denny, but he snaps that he doesn’t care about Denny, he lied to Burke to get in on the transplant. And that’s it. Surprisingly, Sandra Oh insists that they all stick to the plan. Surprising, yes, but Sandra Oh so sells it – Cristina is near tears most of these two hours, and the reason spills out in a bit. After all, George says, how hard can it be to take care of a 17-year-old cancer patient. Bailey says it will be really hard — Chief Niece’s bestest pals inform the interns that their best friend wants (another) prom. Surprise — the doctors are on prom committee! As George and Alex suffer through discussions of potential themes, Grey and Oh talk about their high school days, neither were into the prom. Meredith, who didn’t go, wore a lot of black in high school, which complemented her pink hair. For her part, Sandra Oh, went with a date who barfed on her then tried to feel her up. {I am choosing to see this as a shout-out, as I’ve been talking on various boards about my department prom, which is this Saturday. And I don’t care that they filmed this months ago, allow me my fantasy!}

Why isn’t Izzie helping with the prom? Because she’s back at Denny’s room admiring his new heart owner glow and warm hands. She tries to let him out of his marriage proposal in favor of dating and lots of sex, but he sticks with it. Izzie is obviously really freaked out. She’s paniced and talking fast, looking everywhere but at Denny. And Denny accuses her of what Alex has been saying for months: that she has a thing for sick guys she can mother, and now that Denny is well she’s not interested in him. She denies it, but frankly, it’s not a convincing denial to anyone watching it with me. Because the writers were totally setting up people like me, who disliked the Denny/Izzie storyline, for utter and complete heartbreak. Bastards. After five years of being bossed around by doctors, he’s in charge now and gives her a romantic proposal about choosing her. She scampers off without a response.

— commercial —

The Chief complains that the interns aren’t talking. He assures her that he’ll eventually break them, then demands that everyone will attend the prom. He does this while talking to Bailey, after asking if she had her dress. She insisted she was NOT going to the prom until he informs her that if he has to go to the prom, she has to go to the prom. EVERYONE HAS TO GO TO THE PROM! The prom whose theme still has yet to be determine. Alex is going crazy, seriously crazy – like pacing the room and swearing. He’s going crazy because the girls keep changing their minds about colours and themes. George is sharing in the misery, but he just has his head on the desk. The body language screams “kill me now, please”. The girls don’t mind, “the hot ones are always mean.” They explain the gravity of the situation — cancer kid’s prom, her last one. And they want to make it memorable for her, because they love her. It’s a really moving speech, with one of the girls telling Alex that he’s right, the colour doesn’t matter, what matters is that it’s perfect for the Chief’s niece, because she’s dying and they want to make her happy. And I grab my kleenex. Again. The interns, all of whom were apparently social outcasts in high school – or boys – are desperate, and they line up behind Bailey. She’s not happy to see them, and thinks they’re trying to get out of planning the prom. They finally get a word in edgewise, and it turns out they’re there to ask for help. They, voiced through one of the boys, are desperately hoping that she speaks teenage girl. Bailey sighs, and then we cut to the conference room the teen girls are in, with Bailey telling them that the colours will be, and I kid you not, she really says this, “”silver and black. It’ll make your dresses POP.” She goes on to explain that designers use these colours during fashion week because you stand out against it, and then stops to give that patented Nazi look to her interns. “Oh no,” she says, “you do NOT get to judge me!” She quickly delegates tasks – who will get balloons, how many in what colours, and so forth. As Josh noted before I completely rewrote this section, Bailey was quite clearly on her prom committee in high school. Girl had it going on!

While George and Isabel inflate balloons with hospital helium, Crazy Torres you can tell when she’s crazy – they back comb her hair. if she’s going to be sane, her hair is smooth and beautiful. seriously interrupts to find out why George wasn’t answering his cell phone last night. He tells her that things were crazy, but he can’t tell her exactly how crazy they were. Denny’s room is like Vegas that way. She, having professed her love to him the night before, isn’t so keen on his lack of candor. She angrily declines his invitation to go to the prom with him.

As we all know, George wasn’t the only one off the network last night. Chris O’Donnel shows up at the hospital, telling Meredith that he tried reaching her by cell all night. She skips the details “it’s a long story, and it ends in you asking me to the prom”, an invitation that he happily accepts. He was, not to brag, the king of his high school prom. But why is he at the hospital, she asks? Doc the Dog has taken a turn for the worse. His cancer has spread to his brain, causing him a night of seizures.

Dempsey and Addison decide not to talk too much about their hallway showdown, and instead to go to the hospital prom together. Really, more to the point, Dempsey doesn’t want to talk, no matter how much Addison does. She wants to talk. Badly. And the writers suck, because I started out hating AddiSatan, and now I feel nothing but sympathy for her.

Elsewhere, Sandra Oh looks through the window at Burke, stretching his fingers and noticing his now-shakey hand. She’s close to tears, and it’s heartbreaking.

— commercial —

The Chief conducts a series of one-on-one interviews to try to break down the Great Intern LVAD Cutting Conspiracy, but gets much more than he bargained for. It’s time for the interns to be a metaphor for his own life, a refreshing change of pace. Alex goes with a sports metaphor, saying that even though he isn’t crazy about the team he was drafted for, he’s a player and a good team member doesn’t gab to the press or bitch to the coach. He goes out every Sunday and play to win, because it’s your freaking team. This was an awesome moment in the show. Alex is very resolute in his position, and you finally understand a lot of his motivation.

// He tries the “surgical junkie” angle on Sandra Oh, noting that it will be difficult for her to be out of the O.R. for so long. She agrees, saying how difficult it is to not be the one providing answers to an authority figure. But right now, she doesn’t have any answers. Instead she has questions, asking him how he keeps is edge, staying clean and focused after so many years. She used to be like that until she got to Seattle Grace — the old Sandra Oh would have ratted out her friends and not felt guilty about it, but all of that has changed and it’s causing her great emotional distress. Before, she wouldn’t have even been in that room, and more to the point of her current crisis, she would have told [Burke] what to do. She’s lost her edge and begs the Chief for advice about getting it back. She fights back tears asking him how to not be affected so that she can be the great surgeon she’s capable of being, that would be great. A single tear rolls down her face, and he excuses her. Desperate for advice, she offers to tell him who cut the wires. He doesn’t want to know, at least not from her. He has the answers, but doesn’t want to be responsible for making her any less human. SOB! Goddamit, she’s an awesome actress. She is heartbreaking in this scene. She’s changed so much over the past season, and she knows it, and it scares her. Because she’s feeling. For the first time in who knows how long, she’s feeling something besides anger. To, ya know, continue the running metaphor Meredith started this whole thing out with.

// Next, it’s Isabel’s turn. She talks about being an obviously pretty girl, what with the blonde hair and the nice breasts. The moment guys find out she’s got a bright mind behind that pretty face, they flee – they want nothing to do with her. Someone once told me that the scariest thing for a man is a beautiful and brilliant woman. I don’t know how true that is, but it’s what Izzie is certainly talking about. The Tin Man looks at her like she’s a whole person, and now she’s happy because he makes her feel like her. She doesn’t confess to cutting the wires except in the hypothetical with the hypothetical guilt that she doesn’t feel. Because she’s happy.

// The Chief tries the silent treatment with George, letting him fill the quiet with his own chatter. I love how this is turning into Intern Therapy Hour. George cares, but he just can’t tell the Chief what he wants to hear. Which is a theme in his life: he blathers indirectly about not saying that he loves Torres, the exhaustion of conflicting desires, ending with “life sucks.” Poor George. He’s had to grow up so much this season, and he knows it, and he doesn’t know how to handle the fact that life isn’t a fairy tale.

//The Chief has known Meredith for a long time, and he tries to use this to his advantage, saying that he knows that she didn’t cut the wires. He needs her to tell him who did it. Like the other interns before her, Grey quickly shifts the focus to the personal. She’s been thinking about it and has come to realize that the Chief is the reason that her parents’ marriage failed. It wasn’t just an affair or a cheap thing where she [Mother Grey] didn’t tell him that she was married. She was in love and she left her husband for him. But the Chief stayed with his wife because it was safe and she was the right person for him to be with. They’re talking about her mother {sort of} — and there’s nothing wrong with safe or good forever. She assumes that he’s never regretted his decision or looked back. Right? After a long pause, he looks away from their stare down without saying anything. I think this is really important in informing Meredith’s later decision. So much for getting relationship advice from your mother’s one time lover based on a past situation that closely mirrors a current parallel storyline. Good try though, Meredith. This is where Josh and I disagree – I think Meredith got exactly the advice she wanted to hear from the Chief. She’s hyper-aware of how the Chief’s story relates to her own, and his answer to whether he regretted his choice answered her question.

— commercials —

Meredith finds Patrick Dempsey to update him on the Doc the Dog situation. Dempsey’s disengaged, clearly annoyed at the mention of Chris O’Donnel. Meredith asks that they just do this one thing, saying that they may need to put the dog to sleep. He agrees, saying whatever she thinks is best. She asks if there’s any possibility of their {relationship stand-in} dog to recover, but he assures her that it’s hopeless. Meredith tells him that they should kill the dog tonight.

Isabel breaks the rules for about the one millionth time to visit Denny. Bailey tries to evict her to no avail. Bailey has no power over love! Izzie accepts his proposal, causing his new heart to flutter. She promises to come back during visiting hours to show him her prom dress.

Sandra Oh visits Shakey Hands Burke to tell him about the big prom dance event. He already knew, because his friend George already stopped by to say hello. He says that he won’t bear a grudge if she can’t stay to take care of him; but he has to take care of himself. He can’t take care of her right now, he needs to heal, and if she can’t be there for him… he doesn’t say it, but the implication is clear. She should start packing her bags. Cristina ignores the implication and just looks at his shaking hand, wondering if he has told Dempsey about it yet.

It’s vet time. Addison, Dempsey, and Meredith are gathered around Doc the Dog. As usual, the dog is heartbreakingly cute while Meredith asks about what they’ll do with his body once he’s dead. At first Patrick Dempsey says to dispose of him however, but Meredith insists that they can’t just toss him out like he’s garbage. We need a cute little icon that we can insert in the recaps whenever a metaphor comes up – a Metaphor Alert sign! They settle on a place to bury him, near a clearing on the trail overlooking the water. Addison looks back and forth between the two as they argue about where and how Doc should be buried, and you can see the lightbulb above her head glowing stronger.Addison gets paged back to the hospital, and Meredith cries as Chris O’Donnel administers the lethal injection. This is all incredibly sad, even if you don’t view the dog as a metaphor for Meredith & Dempsey’s relationship. More kleenex, damnit. It’s really sad, and they don’t pull any punches – Finn clearly explains what will happen to Doc and now, and they show the needle going in. As the drugs move through Doc’s body, Dempsey cradles his head while Meredith stands on the other side of the table, near Finn. She’s crying into Doc’s fur, and gently petting his body. Dempsey is also petting Doc as he watches Meredith, and he strokes her hand as he pets Doc. Once Doc is dead, Meredith leaves in tears. She pauses for Chris O’Donnel to tell her that he’s sorry for her loss. Sucks to be the boyfriend who killed the dog. Meredith reminds them/us that he wasn’t her dog for that long; Dempsey says that he was a good dog and she agrees that he was. {this is sort of true, except for the laundry-destruction, misbehavior, et c.}

— commercials —

Prom Time! What a nice excuse to get the cast out of their scrubs and into formalwear for the last episode of the season. Bailey’s husband is at home with the baby; she’s surprised that Sandra Oh didn’t use her “get out of prom free” card to be with Dr. Burke. Cristina looks miserable at this comment, but tries to toughly shrug it off. O’Donnel and Dempsey meet up at the dance just as Meredith makes a grand entrance on the glass staircase. Both of their jaws drop, and for good reason – her dress is a stunning sparkly black, sleeveless, with a small train, but only the vet goes to her. Dempsey stays with Addison, who is in bright red, which my friend Michael swears was intentional, to remind us that she was originally AddiSatan. Dempsey makes smalltalk with Addison, but he can’t keep his eyes off Meredith and Finn. And he’s not being at all subtle about it.

Slow dance time! The Chief cuts in for a dance with his niece. She tells him to be kind to her boyfriend, because she’s been loved {to a state of consciousness loss}. This is a really beautiful scene, snark about her boyfriend aside. The Chief is fighting off tears as he talks to her, and her comments about being loved are more along the lines of having finally lived. She’s made her peace with dying, and it’s okay, because she got to do the important thing, someone loved her. That, and her prom, left her knowing that she was loved. She is such a sincere actress, and her eyes shine brightly as she talks.

George finds Torres in the hall. She’s in a dress, which surprises him. It turns out that she just didn’t want to go to the Prom with him. She rushes away,something she doesn’t do well while in heels, which is a nice touch – it was about this scene that I realized that the actress playing Torres won a Tony for her role in Spamalot! – but he calls her back. For a minute, it looks like she’s going to beat him up (she’d definitely win in a fight). She’s freaked out because she said “I Love You” and got avoided. He promises that he isn’t avoiding her, but he isn’t going to say it back, because if he did, she would think, and know, he only said it because she did. Instead, he wants to wait to say it until he means it and asks for some more time to mean it. She hates that she’s so into him. They make out in the hallway.

Chris O’Donnel says that Meredith is much hotter than his last prom date, which feels like a compliment. She tells him that that kind of talk could result in him getting very lucky after being such a patient man. At some point in here, they start dancing, and Dempsey grabs Addison and asks her to dance, too. Dempsey is really getting kind of creepy, really. O’Donnel says that after his wife died, he stopped making plans. Now that he’s looking at Meredith he has all kinds of plans. This doesn’t unsettle her. As they dance with their respective partners, Dempsey looks at Grey, who looks at him, and they lock eyes across the dance partners.

Meredith panics at the intense eye contact with Dempsey, and breaks away from O’Donnel. He’s concerned that he freaked her out with his admission of plans, but she reassures him and tells him she just got really hot, and it’s very stuffy in the room, and all she needs is some air. She excuses herself, and runs out of the room and into a hallway. Dempsey sees her go, and breaks away from Addison to chance after her. Grey knows she’s being chased, and looks behind her shoulder as she runs, then ducks into an exam room. He follows her. She begs him to leave her alone. She’s not alright because he has a wife and he called her a whore and their dog died and he keeps looking at her. She demands that he stop. He denies looking at her. She’s really trying to be happy and she can’t breathe with him looking at her all the time. He asks if she thinks the he wants to be obsessed with her. (He doesn’t). He wishes – and yells as he says this next bit, like it’s Grey’s fault – that he could be looking at his wife, who doesn’t drive him crazy and make it impossible for him to feel normal; [Addison] doesn’t make him feel sick to his stomach thinking about his veterinarian touching her with his hands. He pauses for a kiss, and they’re quickly taking off their clothes for some sweet loving while a girl whispers acoustic-accompanied music on the soundtrack.

{From here on out, it’s Kelly recapping.}

Elsewhere, Isabel arrives looking pretty in pink. Izzie looks gorgeous – this is one of the first times I’ve bought her being a model to fund her medical education. The dress is a pink strapless number, with layers of pink netting over a slightly orange base. Her hair is back in a classic updo, and she looks radiant. She’s every girl’s dream of a prom outfit, and somehow managed to not look like Malibu Barbie in the process. Alex is walking up the stairs as she comes down them, and he pauses to compliment her, sweetly and sincerely. There is absolutely no malice in his voice. She thanks him, and tells him she’s going to visit Denny before joining the people at the prom. He nodds, and watches her as she walks away from him.

There’s music and party-noises, and the elevator slowly closes on Izzie, who’s standing perfectly framed in it, beaming. The girl could seriously be used to illuminate a room, she’s so happy. They do a lovely slow bit that I read as a visual representation of her heightened emotional state and excitation at showing Denny what she looks like outside of scrubs, and then we focus on Denny, who’s reading. He makes a few odd faces, and the camera ominously pans to the heart monitor as he flatlines. {You’d think someone would keep a closer eye on post-transplant patients. I guess they were all at the dance party. -Josh I, for the record, never liked the Denny/Izzie storyline. I rooted constantly for him to die, bite it, trip over a cord, run out of batteries. When that flatline went across my screen, I screamed. And not out of joy. -Kelly}

— commercials —

We come back from commercial to the corridor outside the exam room, the one Meredith and Derek were busy having sex in. Meredith’s voice floats out, “I was wearing panties!” We slide into the room with Derek dressing, asking Meredith intently (and kind of asshole-y, if you ask me) what this means now, what does this mean for them. Meredith is in major panic mode, and keeps searching for her panties as she gets fully into her dress. As she searches, she kind of oddhandedly tells him to fix his tie – and as he’s doing so, Torres opens the door. Before Meredith can say anything, she cuts her off and tells her they need her – it’s Izzie. All everything drops from Meredith’s face and she bolts out of the room. Callie grabs her and stops her, fixes the back of her dress (which was still undone) {so that she doesn’t go back into the hospital looking all sexed up and disheveled – Josh} and tells her, quietly, “okay, go.” This really impressed me – George told her to stop being scary, and that if she wanted to become part of the family, she needed to act like it, and she actually listened. (And for those wondering, her hair was smooth and pretty.) Callie gives Derek an utterly loathing, disapproving look, and leaves.

Dempsey asks Meredith what this means (them having sex on an exam table). She says that she was wearing panties and frantically looks for them as they dress. She tells him to fix his tie. Torres interrupts: Meredith is needed — it’s Izzie. She quietly does a nice thing by fixing Grey’s dress . She gives Dempsey a disapproving look and leaves.

George, Cristina, Meredith and Callie (who gets points for being there voluntarily for this) rush into Denny’s room, where SyphNurse is looking helplessly at Izzie. Poor, beautiful, calm, broken Izzie, who is laying curled around Denny’s cold, dead, blue body. His eyes are peacefully closed, and she is gently moving her fingers over his collarbone as she talks. Izzie thinks it was a stroke that killed him; the surgery was beautiful, but he probably had a blood clot, and it probably killed him. She is so controlled and calm that it’s terrifying in its enormity. She was in such pain and shock she shut down, and is moving on cold medical logic.

George tries the friend approach, to reassure her that there was nothing she could have done. Izzie calmly replies that she took so long getting dressed, she changed her dress three times, because she wanted to look perfect for him. If she hadn’t done that, she would have been there sooner. She doesn’t say it, and doesn’t have to: if she had been there sooner, she would have saved him.

Cristina tells her they can’t let Bailey catch her like this, and Izzie doesn’t care. Meredith tells her she needs to get up, because they need to do… and she trails off before continuing on…things…to the body. Izzie says “like take him to the morgue?” She asks them to leave her so she can be alone with Denny.

And then Alex. Awful, arrogant, seemingly selfish and evil Alex, brushes past everyone else, touches Izzie gently on the arm and tells her that it isn’t Denny anymore, and that a guy who loved her (at this point the camera pans oh-so-subtly to Alex before back down to Izzie) wouldn’t want her doing this to herself. It isn’t Denny anymore, and she needs to let go.

“An hour ago, he was proposing and now he’s gone. Isn’t that ridiculous.” Before she even finishes saying ridiculous, she loses it. Beautiful, scary, calm Izzie breaks down into huge, wracking sobs, and Alex, wonderful, perfect Alex, very calmly puts his arms around and under her and physically picks her up and carries her over to a chair. She clings to him for dear life, and if you can hear her crying over your own tears, you’re a much more stoic person than me. He gently rocks her and makes comforting noises.

Bailey finds the Chief sitting in the operating room observation gallery. He looks very sad, and begins to tell her how he’s spent his entire life in the hospital, putting it in front of everything else. Bailey tries to interrupt him several times before finally saying “Sir, Denny has died.”

Derek finds Addison at the prom, and starts making an excuse for where he’s been. Before he gets too far into digging his hole, The Chief and Bailey find them and ask if they know where the five interns are, telling them Denny died. Both Addison and Derek look immensely sad at this, which puzzles me – they didn’t seem too connected to the patient. Not like Burke, Bailey, and our interns. But anyhow. On cue, they turn to find Izzie, who is now full of self-righteous anger, fire and ice-cold control, flanked on either side by George and Alex. Meredith trails behind.

Izzie glides by them, and once past, turns to face them. She tells them that it was her that cut the wire, and she did it on her own. “I thought that I was a surgeon, but I’m not. I never was. I quit.”

“Izzie-” Bailey says in this voice we haven’t heard from her before; kind, caring. Someone’d throw something at me if I said mother-ly, and I don’t think it’s that. It’s just human, and wanting to stop someone from making an emotional mistake.

Izzie doesn’t stop. She walks regally down the stairs, George and Alex on either side and ready to stop anyone who might try to get in Izzie’s way. {Really, they should put these people in nice clothes more often. It really ramps up the dramatic significance. – Josh}

In the meantime, Cristina quietly enters Burke’s hospital room. She’s been crying, and looks like she’s going to continue. She walks to his bedside, where he’s still holding out his shaking hand, and as he shifts to look from his hand to her, she takes that shaking, broken hand into her own, then covers it with her other hand, and looks tearfully into his eyes. You can physically see her take a deep breath and commit herself, and then she smiles. (And I start crying even harder. Damn, I’m full of estrogen.)

We cut back to the walkway where Finn, Meredith, Addison and Derekt are still watching Izzie leave. Addison says that she guesses that that puts an end to the evening, and turns another direction and walks away. Finn offers to drive Meredith home, and walks off yet a third direction (how many ways out are there??). Meredith takes a step after him, but Derek says her name. She stops, and looks at him. Finn turns around, looks at Derek and then back to Meredith and says “Meredith?” and there’s definitely a question in his voice. The camera closes in as Meredith looks back and forth. As we get to an extreme close-up, she focuses on someone, and the screen fades to black.


{How’s that for a cliffhanger? See you next season! -Josh }

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11 Comments so far

  1. mandy (unregistered) on May 16th, 2006 @ 6:02 pm

    thanks a million! I am so hooked on this show. I had it set to record but husband screwed it up. thank you thank you thank you!

  2. Kelly (unregistered) on May 17th, 2006 @ 6:46 pm

    I didn’t want to ruin the flow of the sad, sad death scene by saying this, but I felt like Alex with Izzie was the culmination of the story arc begun a while back, with everyone telling Alex he needed to soften his bedside manner, and he explained that the one thing he has going for him is his ability to tell the truth.

    George tries to respond to Izzie as a friend. Cristina responds by looking to the practical – Bailey’d flip if she saw you like this. Meredith appeals to the procedural, if A happens then B has to happen – death, then morgue.

    And Alex has that ability to tell the truth, and it’s what he has and does, and it’s the thing that works.

  3. Kelly (unregistered) on May 17th, 2006 @ 6:50 pm

    Okay, fine, one more comment. I really think the end should have been rearranged so that we went from Denny’s room to Bailey looking for the interns to Cristina and Burke, and then Izzie and the other three interns walking by the residents. Izzie should have said her bit, and the show should have ended with her walking out of the hospital, potentially with Meredith leaving with them.

    Because quite frankly, the idea that Meredith is in anything of a bad bind when her friend/roommate’s fiance just died does nothing other than make Meredith appear to be a shallow and selfish whore.

    Just sayin’.

  4. to kill TV you should be very white (unregistered) on May 18th, 2006 @ 5:50 am

    Your site is a very nice source of info. right cards will make table without any questions: corner can double table, when cosmos is pair it will loose chair

  5. mike (unregistered) on May 20th, 2006 @ 12:31 pm

    anyone knows the song the show was playing toward the end when Izzie was breaking down?

  6. u guys rock!!! (unregistered) on May 20th, 2006 @ 10:09 pm

    Wow!!! Thank a lot!!! i missed the episode!!! but this is like wathching it, hahahah THNKS AGAIN!!!

  7. Bizeechik (unregistered) on May 21st, 2006 @ 7:31 pm

    I think the song was Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol. . . it’s getting big playtime on my MP3 player!

    Love the blog! Can’t wait for next season!

  8. stake will chair unconditionally (unregistered) on May 22nd, 2006 @ 8:48 am

    Hey! I liked your site very much! full gnome make or not

  9. Stacy (unregistered) on May 22nd, 2006 @ 1:08 pm

    I admit, I bawled, but I had one problem. I have always had a problem with The Grey/Shepperd Relationship carrying all the dramatic significance, and I didn’t think it merited closing this very, very excellent episode. It seemed like a superficial, soap opera moment, not real deep emotional trauma as had been experienced in other parts of the hospital.

    My 2 cents, anyway.

  10. Athena28 (unregistered) on May 24th, 2006 @ 8:16 am

    Thanks so much for the great synopsis. We missed the last ep. & you saved our lives.

  11. Lori (unregistered) on June 5th, 2006 @ 8:57 pm

    You guys are awesome! This is EXACTLY what I was looking for since I missed the last hour. Thanks so much for all your effort. I particularly enjoyed the whole “Crazy Torres” commentary. You guys are very entertaining and spot on with all your comments! Can’t wait for next season! (-: Lori

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