I Am The Sun and He can Go Suck It

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Grey's Anatomy Addicts in in no way affiliated with ABC TV, Shonda Rhimes or Grey's Anatomy. It is a personal blog containing news and gossip, my personal opinions and that of the fans. All photos have the correct attribution added.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Grey's Anatomy Season 11 - 2 - Puzzle With A Missing Piece

Grey's Anatomy - Puzzle With A Missing Piece - Written by Brouhaha on 7th October 2014

Hi there Grey's fans, here is the review of the second episode of Grey's Anatomy for Season 11 written by PipMazine AKA Brouhaha - Writer at Spoiler TV. This review was originally posted on Spoiler TV: Grey's Anatomy - Puzzle With A Missing Piece

I have been time limited lately when it comes to updating this blog, as I have been doing a lot of writing work and it pays, so I have to prioritize paid work over managing my blogs. This season, I am going to be posting my favorite reviews and recaps of episodes from other reviewers in the blogsphere who are my favorite bloggers and writers. This episode review is again; written by Brouhaha from SpoilerTV.

Anyway, let's get on with it. Happy reading everyone, and see you next weekend.

Grey's Anatomy - Puzzle With A Missing Piece

Did anyone see the pilot episode for a new show last Thursday? It’s called Grey’s Anatomy and stars Kelly McCreary as a beautiful young surgeon...
There is always a risk when a new face lands in a mature series as a major character. Too many times it’s merely the last death throws of a show that is painfully lingering before the network cancels. On rare occasions the introduction causes a positive shift and the show goes happily on – perhaps Law & Order SVU is an example of that. Well, Grey’s is not in the death throws but it is a mature show and in order to secure a future the producers had to change the game. The question is...did you notice?

There was something very different about Puzzle With A Missing Piece. It’s easy to assume the status quo with the current set of characters. Many of the longest serving actors have renewed up to the end of season twelve and that’s quite a lot of story yet to tell. However, it became very clear on Thursday that the writers are starting to play the long game, it’s called the ‘planning the future of Grey’s’ game and in episode two of season eleven we were introduced to the key protagonist. Grey 2.0. Lexie was technically a Grey but she didn’t have the legacy. Perhaps, early on, the writers had some thoughts that she could be the next Grey but it was apparent in season seven that this would not work. Maggie is a Pierce (or a Webber?) but, as we will no doubt discover thoughout this season, Maggie is a Grey in all but name and she’s arrived with the Ellis (and Richard) legacy, cardio and all. 

Well, it’s a theory anyway. 

To present the viewer with a ‘special’ episode so early in the season is a huge risk and indicates how seriously the producers view this storyline. If the viewer is to believe in this character as a potential lead (it’s only a theory and it’s way into the future!) then the writers need ensure she’s legitimate and worthy. They need the audience to root for her even if they don’t quite like her, though it was hard not to. It worked. Episode two was a gem of a story. It was funny, it entertained, it informed, it was fresh and despite the viewer being by default on Meredith’s side this particular viewer came away very sympathetic to Maggie and wanting to see much more of her. 

Dear Shonda, THAT is how you introduce new characters to the show. Not by giving them their own early episodes necessarily but by giving them a strong story to land with and most importantly showing it to us. (A sigh of relief though that Adele isn't here to see this child of Richard).

Not all new characters need such a power introduction. Owen Hunt and Arizona Robbins were phased in through the story and though the latter’s back story stalled somewhat, their introduction worked well because of the immediate relationships they formed – both work and romantic. Contrast this to our sudden introduction to the Mercy West residents whom we had to endure for the season before two were killed off. It took a long time for Avery and April to take hold. Then in season nine a new set of interns arrived and frankly we are still trying to like the remaining two, a full two seasons later.

Putting aside the far-fetched fantasy coincidence of Maggie being a surgeon, just like her birth mother, and being a cardio one at that, which was Ellis' aspiration for Meredith, Maggie has arrived at Grey Sloan Memorial to get to know her sister and find out more of her past. It is a scary thing for adopted children, finding out their birth stories, walking into the unknown and the very best feature of this episode was the successful presentation of her fears for that as well as the more common fears that we all have when starting a new job...will people like us, will we make friends, will we understand the politics and relationships? It’s quite fitting that the same writer who penned the season ten finale and Cristina’s exit, William Harper, wrote 11.02. He’s overseen the departure of one powerful character and it seems was given the brief to bring in a new one...

We saw many sides to Maggie, kick ass cardio expert, vulnerable newbie, scared adoptee, and with a foot planted firmly in her mouth she introduced herself to the seniors in the show planting the seeds of future relationships. She was woven in, the most wonderfully funny scene which illustrated this perfectly was her introduction to Amelia. Amelia knows THE secret (isn’t that fabulous, it’s a lovely little plot twist!) so when Maggie says “Is everyone in this room somehow related?” and Amelia cracks up laughing after a wry look at Richard we get to feel the complex nature of this story we’ve now been buried in. Amelia has also been given a great introduction. Her unique ‘relationship’ with Richard allows her to get a birds eye view of the action. It presents Maggie with her potential friend in the hospital, one who will eventually have to deal with a huge conflict – confidential AA meeting versus being honest with her new friend. Nothing promotes bonding between women more than rolling eyes at over-sexed frat boys and talking sex lives. This is great story telling and inspired comic writing, a real tapestry of a story arc. 

Instead of patients telling the stories of the doctors, in 11.02 it is Maggie pointing the way. Callie and Arizona, who have a persistent shadow of doom hanging over their marriage, come to a decision on their future. Maggie inspires Arizona. Apparently the Robbins-Torres’ can have it all as both ladies had their own epiphanies. This was a small step forward in story telling but nevertheless it progressed these other characters’ stories. Alex gets fired as a direct result of her parroting Wilson’s blabber preparing us for the Bailey v Karev fight. 

On top of all of this Maggie presents herself as a problem solver and indeed she solves problems all over the episode. She even solved the biggest medical puzzle, the one that beat Yang, the cardio myopathy mystery, which finally gave Sabine some closure. There is one huge puzzle outstanding though; the one puzzle she is only now confronting, which she hasn’t even started to solve, the story of her birth and the following relationship with Meredith. By the end of Puzzle With A Missing Piece, Maggie comes across as an entirely likeable character. This is important because if a future Meredith/Maggie relationship is to be legitimate then the viewers have to see that it's actually possible and this must be through strong character development. We’ve felt the frost of Meredith’s cold demeanor but have been given no reason for her to be otherwise. Up until the closing minutes, to Meredith, Maggie was simply a new doctor who didn’t know the hospital rules, disagreed with patient care and apparently broke protocol. Meredith had no reason to like her at all. At the end she now has a reason to either hate her or to love her. 

This is huge for Meredith. How should she react...her mother had an affair which produced another child. She's discovered that Ellis was capable of ‘abandoning’ her child, no doubt soon she'll realise she was capable of abandoning the child conceived with love. Her mother already had a 5 year old daughter, she knew about motherhood and what it entailed, what does it say about Meredith that she was willing to give it up by giving away another daughter. This story is going to challenge Meredith’s moral center, motherhood, career, and marriage. It will also continue to fuel her insecurities, particularly as she realizes that Maggie became the heart surgeon her mother expected her to become. This story may be far fetched but it’s a massive powder keg and once again places Meredith front and centre in the show. 

In other news, while we learnt a lot about Maggie, we also learnt a couple of things about Wilson; that she is annoying and forgettable. Actually we knew that already and unfortunately this episode has not done that character any favours at all. Two character introductions - Maggie and Jo - they simply cannot be compared. 

This felt like a pilot of a new show, and perhaps it was; a pilot for the continuation of Grey’s past the possible departures of Ellen Pompeo and Patrick Dempsey; a game changer. Maybe by mid season the viewers will be introduced to Maggie’s on/off epic love interest, unless of course that’s already happened. Alex anyone? Amelia? Owen? 

Puzzle With A Missing Piece was a fresh, thoroughly watchable episode contrasting the light newness of Maggie with the familiar darkness of Meredith. But in the end perhaps it’s worth forecasting that these two will eventually become something together. Amelia said it best – “she’s worth knowing”

Written by Spoiler TV writer, PipMaxine AKA Brouhaha - Follow Brouhaha on Twitter

You can visit this link to read the comments Spoiler TV readers have written: Spoiler TV: Grey's Anatomy - Puzzle With A Missing Piece

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Copyright © 2014 Janelle Coulton

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Grey's Anatomy Is Back For Season 11

Today I am just popping in to give you all my opinion on the first two episodes of Grey's

I have to admit that I am pretty impressed, despite the fact that I thought the loss of Cristina (who was my favourite) would hurt like Hell, and I would not be able to watch for this reason. Although I really missed her, I really loved the first two episodes. This season is looking like it might be pretty good. Having said that, I am also cautious, as I have been disappointed before. From about Season 6, it has seemed as though Grey's starts out well and it is really entertaining, however as we get to the middle of the season, something happens to drag it down. 

So as usual, I feel cautiously optimistic about Season 11. And, no I have not gotten around to watching the next two episodes, but that is simply about time. I actually cannot wait to sit down and watch them, however I have had lots of writing to do lately and a lot of medical appointments. Not watching episode 3 and 4 does not mean that I am not interested in my Grey's anymore. Not on your life, I'll be here until the end.

I have high hopes for the story of Richard and his long, lost daughter and Meredith's part in this also, even though I was worried that this would be Lexie 2.0, I think the writers are doing well with these stories. I am also excited about what will happen with Derek and Meredith as I have been picking up little bits of information on Twitter and Facebook that all is not well with the McDreamys. Callie and Arizona's story is kind of frustrating me, I guess that is because I don't want a repeat of more angst with these two. We saw enough of that in Season 9 and 10. What I do want to see is more Alex and it is looking as though I will get my wish granted here. Please, please Shonda Rhimes, more Alex Karev. I just wish he did not come with Jo Wilson; I so loved it when Meredith kicked her out of bed. I  howled with laughter so hard, that I cried. Hilarious.

Anyway, I will try and find some time to watch the episodes I have not seen, including episode 5 which is coming up on the 24th October and pop back here and let you all know what I think. I will also post the review of episode 2 by Brouhaha, as her reviews are so great to read and I really want to share Brouhaha's writing with all of my readers. 

So until next time; I'll leave it with you to have your say in the comment or you can connect with me at the links to my Grey's Anatomy Facebook and Twitter pages below.

I found this photo on Facebook and I love it, had to share this.

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Copyright © 2014 Janelle Coulton

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Grey's Anatomy Season 11 Premiere - Review By Brouhaha, Writer For Spoiler TV

Grey's Anatomy - I Must Have Lost It On The Wind - Review

Written by Brouhaha from Spoiler TV 

We are officially in mourning. Cristina didn't actually die but her departure from Grey Sloan Memorial leaves us with a huge hole in our hearts and a chasm in the cast. Season eleven of Grey's Anatomy kicked off Thursday night and we landed straight into the drama we left back in May. No time jump, no shootings and no Yang. "I must have lost it on the wind" was a good episode, worthy of early season promise. It flowed almost too well from season finale in a seamless movement from ten to eleven. In this way it succeeded as a premiere because it took us along the journey as if the last four months were but one week. Though without the drama it has potentially lost ratings. In a mostly strong episode the writers gave us good questions about existing, more established characters and left us wanting to know more about the newbies. 

Rather than be worried about the negative impact of Oh's departure episode one has actually provided a lot of hope. 

The absence of Yang, or perhaps more notably Sandra Oh, while sad, has allowed an unexpected blast of oxygen into the cast. As a powerful character played by a superb actress her absence runs the risk of destabilising not only this season but further seasons. She was at the heart of the show and deeply loved. What occurred through this episode however was a shot of hope to loyal fans that this oxygen has the potential to reinvigorate. Old characters appear renewed and new characters with existing, genuine depth of story have been introduced (even if one of them is a repeat - Half Sister 2.0). This is not to say that Cristina/Oh will not be missed. No doubt at all she will be, but the writers have taken the gap very seriously. They haven't loaded the premiere with childish residents we are told to love (pointing directly at Jo Wilson, a prime example) as they did with the last series of cast departures (Mark, Lexie, Teddy). The writers have provided a more rounded integrated series of plot development and character introductions. In the case of the latter we can already see their place in the show. 

This season is about Meredith. If this was not already known before season premiere it's obvious in the first few minutes that Shondaland has gone back to basics. The humorously dark bedroom scene played homage to Grey's of old. With a large regular cast Grey's has always darted around multiple story lines, characters and relationships but this season it is back to Meredith, her uber dysfunctional family and MAGIC. This is wonderful in itself but the beauty continues because Alex and Richard are back in the fold, with pivotal roles to play. Both have been pushed to the periphery in the last few seasons almost to the point that their absence would not be missed. This is no longer the case. 

Meredith has another sister. Well…it's not an original story is it? Though granted this sister has a bigger claim to the Ellis Grey 'legacy' than Lexie. Shondaland has written a rather heavy diversion for Meredith with the introduction of Maggie Pierce. She will not be able to mourn Cristina for too long as war wages in the Attending's lounge. This particular arc allows for a much bigger role for Richard. He is now slap bang in the middle of the Meredith action again with new raison d'ĂȘtre. Illustrating further weaving and integration the arrival of Amelia in the AA meeting closes the circle for Dr Webber - a nice touch very early on, an interesting relationship to follow. 

In her third arc Meredith is questioning her life with Derek - a solution presented itself at the end of the episode but it seems the problems are a bit deeper than they first appear. It's gonna be a rough year for her and for them. 

Justin Chambers has a new lease of life. He looks younger, tidier, less world weary, less…well…tired. Of course we don't see the actor we see Alex Karev, but there is something in his portrayal that implies it is Chambers who feels invigorated. He looks like he is enjoying himself again. It's almost criminal that it's taken Oh's departure for the writers to build Alex into someone we can believe in as we once did. Alex Karev shined through the episode as if he finally has the space to exist in the hospital for the first time in about five seasons. It wasn't explained how it appears he is now back on staff already, but such continuity issues rarely bother Grey's writers. The important thing is that MAGIC or more specifically MA is back and with Alex up front we will see a new, though reassuringly familiar, dynamic replacing Meredith/Yang.

In addition to his promotion to "her person" Alex is now embroiled in a fight with Bailey for a board seat. It cannot be that this board seat goes to anyone but Bailey (really..she was promised chief of surgery in the future back in season 4 or 5, give the woman a break) however it is possible that the writers will somehow find two seats available at some point. Regardless, this is a nice progression for Alex and a welcome boost to his character. Only the story arc with his father has provided depth for him in the last few seasons so it will be interesting to see how Season eleven develops for Evil Spawn. 

Alex and Richard have emerged from the Yang shadow with expansive fully integrated stories. One can only hope that Bailey follows. 

Callie and Arizona continued on their "oblivious to any problems" journey as cracks start to show in their new found togetherness. Perhaps that's a disservice. Callie did acknowledge last season that they are still fragile but neither of them have realised yet just how fragile they are. Awkward around each other their season eleven storyline kicked off with both of them walking down different roads to potential happiness. Callie is on Team Bailey, Arizona stands in the Team Alex corner. It's a metaphor for their entire marriage - backing different horses as solutions to their problems. Though each one woman focussing on 'self'. This was not an inspiring start for this couple though it does appear that answers may finally come this season. It wasn't particularly enjoyable to watch either, rather awkward and uncomfortable viewing. But then maybe that's the point, it was meant to be uncomfortable and is actually just very good writing?

The newbies presented themselves well. The introduction of Amelia as a Grey's regular seems so natural. Her character has a rich and often dark back story and perhaps fits in better with Grey's than Private Practice. The potential for story is huge. Gina Davis made a fleeting but notable appearance in her recurring role. Slightly wooden in delivery her few words provided a 'career' stake right down the middle of Arizona and Callie. The dilemma she provided fits in well with Arizona's previous work history. The jury is out on Maggie. Her introduction has initially shown her to be a rather insecure and annoying attending and the timeline of her birth versus her career so far is already confusing - another thing that rarely bothers the writers. Even Meredith getting lost at the fairground didn't help. Over the course of the season we will be given reasons to like Maggie but right now it's very hard, but that feels right. All three characters are welcome additions to this ensemble cast and it's reassuring to see more senior new characters over interns.

Unfortunately it wasn't all wonderful. Season Premiere was let down by the rather amateurish special affects which were stolen straight out of 1996. See for yourself by watching the movie Twister. Even the pretty view behind Richard at the AA meeting looked embarrassingly fake. Budgets may be tight now for Grey's as it runs into it's eleventh season but there is no excuse for jarring, painful viewing. In fact the entire helicopter scene wasn't needed, included only to provide some smash bang wallop drama for the premiere. Rather wasted archaic special effects in the end. 

In other news: 
'Dying inside' Owen is being romanced by the boys at the behest of April. Poor sod never made it to the bar in the end. And Jenga? Really Richard?
Ben is back. Yay.
The kids are still moaning. Though at least there are only two of them now. 

In case you missed it: Jackson's line to April "what kind of buddy are you asking me to be?" Subtly and quietly funny. 

This process of renewal and integration helped deliver an almost seamless transition from season ten to season eleven. While we didn't get 'hands on bombs' the new season opened with a solid, thoroughly enjoyable episode with invigorated old characters and interesting useful new ones. The flow of the episode was delightful and a credit to the seasoned writer Stacey McKee. It didn't feel like a premiere, which could be problematic in terms of ratings but for loyal fans it felt like a natural progression from the last season finale. 

By the end I felt comfortable and already settled into the new. 

Over to you...

Maxine (aka Brouhaha) is a Grey’s Anatomy devotee, from the very beginning and through the dark period of George and Izzie as a couple. Her other TV 'loves' include the British series Foyle's War, Criminal Minds and TBBT. In real life she's a new mum, self-employed and can often be found arguing about politics or current affairs, attempting to write fiction and buying hair products. Maxine reviews Grey's Anatomy. Got a question - go to Tumblr ask! or follow Brouhaha on Twitter.

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This article has had 29 fans share their opinion in the comments section on Spoiler TV, tell Brouhaha what you thought of the Grey's Anatomy, Season 11 Premiere.

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Copyright © 2014 Janelle Coulton