Sunday, March 13, 2022

Grey’s Anatomy 18x10 Recap: “Living in a House Divided” (Order in the Court) [Contributor: Julia Siegel]

“Living in a House Divided”
Original Airdate: March 3, 2022

Are you ready for some drama? Grey’s Anatomy ramps up the tension to create one of the most dialogue and situation-dense episodes in recent memory. One of the season’s biggest storylines reaches a head in perfect play-like style. Sadly, we also see the departure of Cormac Hayes who will be sorely missed by the characters and viewers alike. 


The episode begins by setting up the general plotlines of the hour in quick bites. First, Bailey works on rearranging the surgical board’s schedule at Grey Sloan Memorial, which proves difficult with taking Hayes off and delegating surgeries to other doctors. At a nearby hotel, Nick is packing to go back home when Meredith knocks on his door with two cups of coffee. She announces that she dropped her kids off at school five minutes early and the rest of her day will consist of following up with Hamilton then watching Schmitt’s Morbidity & Mortality Conference. Nick has to leave for the airport and Mer wants him to stay.

Jo and Link have presumably been sleeping together non-stop based on his out-of-breath “wow” exclamation. Jo is having just as much fun apparently too. Back at Grey Sloan Memorial, Teddy is watching over Owen in his hospital room while Maggie and Winston head to the M&M. Maggie isn’t looking forward to it and is upset that she didn’t get to talk to Richard in advance. Mer is about to go into the M&M room when she is ambushed by Bailey, who pawns off a hernia surgery because no one else is available. Mer prefers to go to the M&M, but Bailey has to be there as the chief of surgery, leaving only Mer available to operate. She begrudgingly agrees, so Bailey walks into the conference room. 

Half the room is filled with residents and the other half is attendings, including Richard, Catherine, Nico, Maggie, Winston, and Lin. Even though Schmitt has yet to arrive, Bailey gets started by informing the crowd that they must ask questions as they arise since that is a requirement of an M&M. Schmitt shuffles in and looks as if he hasn’t slept in days. His hair is a mess, he’s got a shabby beard, and he’s wearing his glasses for the first time in a long time. He brushes past Bailey on his way to the podium at the front of the room and presents the case. Once he gets to the point where things went wrong, Bailey stops him and forces Wright to ask a question. Schmitt freezes while talking, as he starts to relive what happened. Bailey forces him to continue. Helm stands up to help her best friend by saying that there was no indication of issues with the patient’s anatomy or anything visibly wrong that would have made Schmitt predict what would eventually happen. 

Talking about the patient triggers Schmitt, which overwhelms him. Schmitt quietly says he killed the patient and runs out, ignoring Bailey in the process. Nico goes after him, and Bailey asks Richard to step in and take questions in Schmitt’s place. Wright asks who was in charge in the surgery because he doesn’t understand the chain of command for the Webber Method. Lin asks for clarity on how things work too and feels the method sets up the senior residents as attendings. Maggie stands up to ask if there was a meeting of department heads to decide whether they should adopt the Webber Method prior to it being put in effect. 

Things get more contentious when Maggie then asks Catherine if other Fox hospitals are using this method. Catherine argues that it’s a teaching tool, not a cure for cancer. Lin replies that it’s a tool that cost a patient his life before telling everyone that Bailey had reservations about the program to begin with. Winston chimes in to ask if the M&M is on the Webber Method or the surgery because the Webber Method didn’t hold the scalpel. Lin doesn’t think all the residents are ready for this program and asks if the program has been sanctioned by the board of surgery.

We get a bit of a reprieve from the barrage of questions when we shift to Teddy helping Owen in his room. He claims his pain isn’t terrible but he still looks like he is in rough shape. Teddy knows that he went through something terrible, but it has been two days and now she wants to know what’s going on. She wants the truth because Noah’s wife Heather has been calling the house looking for Owen. Teddy knows something happened in the car if Heather is calling and Hayes quit. Owen tells her she is right but wants her to trust him when he says that he can’t tell her what’s going on. She says trust goes both ways, but Owen remains strong. He tells her to sit there as long as she wants but he can’t and won’t tell her. Teddy is annoyed, but it’s sweet that Owen is trying to protect her.


As they walk through the hallway after the M&M, Catherine tells Bailey that legal hasn’t heard anything from the family of Schmitt’s deceased patient. Catherine informs Bailey that she has decisions to make about whether the method continues or not and it will entirely be Bailey’s decision. Catherine walks away, so Mer comes over to ask Bailey how the M&M went. Mer wants to check in on Richard but Bailey tells her he needs space. Bailey instead begs Mer to do another surgery since they are down a three surgeons and a resident. The rest of the residents are so traumatized from Schmitt’s debacle that they aren’t in the right mindset to work. Mer will take one of the unclaimed surgeries and says she knows someone who can help with another and calls Nick.

Winston finds Maggie and asks if she is okay after going after Richard. She asks if he can still stand by the method after what has happened. Winston feels the Webber Method does work and knows Maggie hasn’t been around to see it work. Maggie knows that and says that it still got someone killed. Maggie wants to tell Richard the truth because she loves him and no one is being honest with him.

Link finds Nico in the ER, and Nico asks if he saw Schmitt. Apparently, no one has seen him since the M&M, and I’m not sure how no one knows where he is. Link hasn’t seen Schmitt, but has a big surgery that Nico can scrub in on. Link is peppy so Nico asks if things are better with Amelia. He says no, but he feels great. Link doesn’t elaborate and goes to help Perez with a patient who is a second grade science teacher. Her leg is numb, which has happened before with her history of knee problems that she usually gets treated with cortisone shots. Link wants Perez to do a workup on the knee and might give her a cortisone shot depending on the findings.

Elsewhere, Amelia goes to examine a patient, Francesca, she has been treating for several weeks with lower back pain and degenerative discs. Francesca’s pain came back a few weeks after an epidural and she doesn’t know why. She felt good for the first week post-treatment, but she has noticed her pain gets worse when she’s on her period. Amelia decides to get an OB/GYN consult based on Francesca’s symptoms. 

Hayes shows up at the hospital and immediately runs into Mer, who has been looking for him. She heard he quit, and Hayes decides to be short with her and says yes. Mer tries to convince him to stay by saying Bailey can’t lose him right now. Hayes knows, and Mer wants to know why he hasn’t returned her calls. Hayes says it has been chaotic trying to pack his boys up for their impending move to Ireland. Mer asks if his life flashed before his eyes and he realized he’s unhappy here and needed to quit. He replies, “Something like that,” because he too doesn’t want to get someone else involved. Mer asks if he was going leave without saying goodbye, and she is surprised when he replies with a yes. Hayes explains that if he said goodbye to Mer, he might not leave. He gives one last, nice speech and tells Mer that she was the first person that truly understood him in all the years since his wife died. She made him feel less alone and made him realize that there might be a life after his wife. Hayes thanks Mer for that and tells her to take care. Mer smiles and says, “You too” as Hayes walks away.


Carina and Jo show up to consult on Francesca’s case. Jo is surprised to see Amelia and has a shocked look on her face, but gets it under control before Amelia sees it. Amelia explains she was treating the patient for back pain and minor degenerative disc disease, but her pain coincides with her period and has pain during sex, so she has called for a consult. Jo examines Francesca and asks questions. Carina asks if she has been checked for endometriosis, which could explain her back pain too. Francesca doesn’t believe so, and the doctors decide to do an exploratory surgery today to check if that is what’s going on.

Nick arrives at Grey Sloan Memorial and gets privileges. Mer thanks him for coming back and saving her sanity. She gives him a patient who needs a hernia repaired, while she takes a more fun surgery. Mer tells Nick to go to OR 3 and runs off to her own operation. Nick looks terribly lost and is thrilled when Wright passes by to tell him to get some scrubs and join him in the OR. 

Bailey goes down to the ER after being paged by Helm, who has a patient in a trauma room with a power tool injury to her hand. Bailey is annoyed that Helm hasn’t debrided the wound or cleaned it, but Helm thought Bailey would want to examine the patient before she did anything. Bailey is surprised with Helm, but Helm wants Bailey to observe the exam, that way Helm knows she’s doing things right. Bailey instructs her to get a laceration tray, clean the hand, and get an X-ray, and leaves Helm to treat the patient.

Link finds Perez and asks why his patient is still here. Perez thinks she may need an MRI, but Link won’t listen to him. He goes to talk to the patient and asks where the pain is. She points to an area, and Link says the cortisone will help a little, but a permanent solution might be to lose a little weight. Perez and the patient are appalled at his bluntness. The patient explains she exercises every day and has dieted for most of her life and can’t go for long walks like Link suggests with shooting joint pain. Link says losing 10-15 pounds could make a world of difference. Perez is shaking his head and can’t believe Link is brushing off the symptoms. The patient goes to leave and says she’s giving him a zero star rating. Link asks her to wait, as he notices foot drop when she starts to walk away. Perez says that can’t be fixed by losing weight and asks if he can order the MRI now. Link agrees and knows he looks like a fool.

Outside, Teddy catches Hayes in the parking lot with a box of his stuff. He isn’t returning her calls either. Teddy is pissed and wants to know what’s going on with Owen and why he is lying to her. Teddy has a horrible feeling because of the lies. She wants to know what happened in the car. Hayes thinks about what to say for a second and tells her that Owen told him to get out first and to think about his kids. He will always be in Owen’s debt and is thankful to get the chance to build a new life with his kids. Teddy doesn’t understand what Owen did or said because Hayes isn’t the type of person to randomly quit and leave. She is so sorry that whatever happened is causing him to uproot his life. Hayes says Owen is alive and wants Teddy to hold onto that. He says goodbye and gets in his car, and with that, Hayes’ time at Grey Sloan Memorial comes to an end. 


Richard is in the M&M room sulking, and Maggie walks in to talk to him. He wants to be alone, but she won’t take no for an answer. She knows Richard knows how traumatizing it is for a surgeon to lose a patient to an honest mistake. He coldly asks if she remembers what happened to his niece. Maggie understands why Schmitt is so distraught, especially when it could have been prevented. Richard isn’t happy that Maggie humiliated him in front of the whole hospital, where he has worked for thirty years. She didn’t mean to do that, and Richard argues that it wasn’t his fault that Schmitt chose to disobey orders and go ahead with the surgery. Maggie retorts that she believes in scientific data and doing things over and over to make sure it will work before putting a new method in place. Richard reminds Maggie that she hasn’t been around for most of the program, so she doesn’t get an opinion. He asks her to leave him alone before he says something he will regret.

Next, Carina and Jo operate on Francesca, and Jo gets frazzled again when Amelia pops in to see how things are going. They find lots of endometriosis lesions which explains the pain and why epidurals didn’t work. Jo continues to act weird and isn’t as subtle this time around. Next door, Mer has finished her surgery and is scrubbing out when Maggie comes in to tell her sister that she is worried about Richard. Maggie asks Mer if she thought the Webber Method was a good idea. Mer thought it was a good idea for lap colis, but then the program was expanded to more difficult surgeries. She acknowledges that she wasn’t around to see the method in action, but knows that Richard must have thought the residents could handle it. Maggie says that’s what Richard said and that he also said Maggie and Mer don’t get a say since they weren’t there. Mer doesn’t want to be dragged into this battle and isn’t sure how she did in the first place. 

Upstairs, Teddy brings Megan some coffee to check in on Farouk and complain about Owen. Megan knows Owen is the worst patient and reports that Farouk is doing well and is tolerating the anti-rejection meds. Teddy asks Megan if Owen or Hayes said anything about what happened in the car. Megan knows nothing, and Hayes only said goodbye to her. Teddy needs to know what Owen is hiding and knows he confessed something big to Hayes when he thought he was going to die, which scared Hayes away. She also knows if it’s so big that he can’t tell her, then he did something bad. Megan knows he’s rash and continues to say that Owen always believes he’s making the right decisions and must believe staying quiet is his only option. 

Back in the OR, Bailey checks in on Link and Perez’s surgery. Bailey needs Perez in another OR when he’s free. Link tells Bailey that Perez did well today and caught a foot drop that he missed. Bailey is pleased to hear that Perez seems to be the only resident who isn’t useless after Schmitt’s mistake. Perez says he caught it because he did a thorough exam. Link responds that excessive weight can cause those symptoms too, and Perez counters that Link looked at her and assumed she was just fat. Perez reminds Link that obesity is disease and that he doesn’t need to tell a fat person that they are fat. Link apologizes for making a snap judgement based on weight and BMI, which leads Bailey to say BMI is useless and doesn’t account for differences or distribution in individual bodies. Link asks why the metric is still on the charts, and Bailey quips that it’s there so insurance companies can rob patients by charging them more money. Link allows Perez to finish the discectomy himself, which makes Perez feel better.

Upstairs, Jo runs into Amelia again and gives her an update on Francesca in a weird high-pitched tone. Amelia knows things with her and Link aren’t great and can tell by the way Jo’s voice goes up an octave each time she enters a room that he’s talking to her about their situation, which Amelia is fine with since Jo is his best friend. Amelia is grateful Link has someone to talk to, but needs to know if that means they can’t work together because things are awkward. She continues to point out that it was awkward with their patient today and patients are their first responsibility. Amelia thanks Jo for helping out on her case and walks away without Jo telling her the real reason why she has been acting weird all day. Amelia has been extra observant over the past two episodes, and I hope that’s a quality the writers continue to play with. Carina overheard the whole conversation between Jo and Amelia and asks Jo if she wants to go talk over coffee. Jo instead wants to talk about it in the hallway and asks Carina if casual sex is a good idea even with friends. Carina says that can be the best kind and immediately realizes the situation is not casual for Jo based on her reaction. She tells Jo to tell the guy she loves him or stop sleeping with him since those are the only two options.

In another part of the hospital, Bailey finds Helm hiding in the stairwell and is now worried about missing that Helm isn’t okay and was in that OR too. Helm gives a very relatable anecdote about how she used to not answer questions in school even though she knew answers because she was afraid of other kid’s opinions of her. She thought she outgrew that bad quality, but hasn’t. She feels she should have said something to Schmitt and stopped him before he accidentally killed his patient. Bailey says it’s hard to speak up to someone who is so sure of himself and in that OR, Schmitt wasn’t just her best friend, but her boss as the lead surgeon, making the situation even harder. Bailey tells Helm she was also a know-it-all, which seems to motivate Helm to get back to work. It’s a nice moment of connection between the two surgeons who typically seem to be worlds apart.

Back in the M&M room, Richard and Amelia look like they are having an impromptu AA meeting when Maggie and Mer walk in to talk. Maggie knows Richard’s intent with the Webber Method was good, and Mer says lines can blur and sometimes good intentions can cloud good judgement. Richard chokes up and basically says the three of them are the closest thing he has to kids (though he stops himself from completing the sentence) and the thought of disappointing them is unbearable. I’m pretty sure he stopped himself from saying “kids” because he realized his biological child was actually standing in front of him. Maggie isn’t disappointed, but was enraged at herself because the incident put her right back where Schmitt was and she has spent years trying to deal with the accountability for Richard’s niece’s death. She still doesn’t know how the surgeon is supposed to recover and move forward when there are others to hold accountable too. Maggie believes the Webber Method deserves to be scrutinized from every angle. Richard knows the world has changed and evolved, so he wanted to give the students something to feel excited about when practicing medicine. Mer says he is what is exciting about them practicing medicine. She assures him that they don’t need a method, they just need him. 


Nick finds Mer in the hospital lobby and proclaims his surgery was a breeze. He wants to go get dinner to celebrate, and before Mer can answer, Amelia and Maggie chime in to say hello.  Mer apologizes to a confused Nick because she didn’t know Amelia and Maggie were behind them, and then introduces her sisters to him. Mer says he’s from Minnesota, so Maggie asks if he works on the secret project. Amelia quips that she would have noticed if he did, and Mer gives Nick an out to go check on his patient to avoid the awkwardness. Maggie and Amelia give Mer a look as Nick hurriedly walks away, and Mer leaves, saying she “has a thing to go do” without explaining who he is to her. Maggie jokes that she likes Minnesota, and Amelia replies that it’s full of surprises. She too walks away before having to explain the meaning of her cryptic sentence, ending the most lighthearted scene of the episode.

After work, Link arrives home with Scout and is greeted by Jo. He wants to talk about how he misdiagnosed a patient, but Jo blurts out that she wants to talk at the same time. Like the gentleman he is, Link tells Jo to go first. It appears that Jo is going to finally confess her feelings to Link, but she chickens out at the last minute and tells him that they can’t sleep together anymore. Link semi-surprisingly asks if she is sure, and Jo says she is. Link is fine with her decision and Luna cries, which allows Jo to escape before anything else can be said.

Back at Grey Sloan Memorial, Bailey finally goes to Richard’s office to talk. She feels that she let him down and should have brought up more of her concerns before the Webber Method started. She doesn’t think she was vocal enough and trusted him because it’s him. Richard assures her it’s okay and that she can say what she has come to say. Bailey informs him that despite the doctor shortage and backup of surgeries, she wants to permanently suspend the Webber Method. Richard reminds her that she did say something ahead of time and he had Catherine overrule her. He knows it wasn’t right or fair and he’s sorry he did it. Richard walks out after saying goodnight, and I hope he’s okay with Bailey’s ruling and doesn’t fall into another depressed funk.

Elsewhere, Nico shows up at Schmitt’s house and finds his boyfriend in the basement playing video games. Schmitt wants Nico to leave, but Nico has come to say that he wants Schmitt to come back to work. Nico reminds Schmitt that everyone loses patients, which is part of the job. Schmitt says he won’t go back to the hospital, which shocks Nico. He is worried Schmitt will lose his residency spot, but Schmitt doesn’t care at the moment. Schmitt rudely tells Nico to go away and not come back and that they are done. Nico leaves, heart broken.

Mer meets Nick in Grey Sloan Memorial’s parking lot and apologizes for her bad timing with her sisters, which he didn’t mind. She doesn’t want him to leave, and Nick very candidly tells her that he doesn’t want to leave or ever be apart. He doesn’t like leaving her and wants Mer to come to Minnesota with him for a few days and then he’ll come back to Seattle with her. Mer says she would, but she has the kids and used to know everything going on at Grey Sloan Memorial and now knows nothing. She is feeling disconnected to people she’s close to, which is something Mer has never really experienced. With Hamilton recovering, Mer knows she can stay put for a while and make things right in Seattle. Mer tells Nick that if he doesn’t have to leave tonight, her kids are asleep and he can come back to her house. Nick decides he doesn’t have to leave and goes home with her. It’s a touching moment for the couple, and I hope Nick will be in Seattle more often for Mer’s sake and sanity. 

The episode ends with Teddy seeing Heather in Owen’s hospital room. She sees Owen giving Heather his car keys. Heather quickly walks out when she notices Teddy, so Teddy grabs her coat to go after her. Owen begs her to leave it alone, but Teddy tells him she can’t. Teddy finds Heather taking something out of the glovebox of Owen’s truck and asks her what she took out of her husband’s car. The tense moment closes out the episode, and it’s easy to imagine that Heather is going to tell Teddy the truth. Until the next episode, we will all be wondering how Teddy will react. 


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