Friday, November 15, 2019

Grey’s Anatomy 16x08 Recap: “My Shot” (One Wild Ride) [Contributor: Julia Siegel]

“My Shot”
Original Airdate: November 14, 2019

The moment we have all been waiting six months for has finally arrived! Yes, it’s time for Meredith’s medical board hearing which will determine whether or not she gets to keep her medical license after committing insurance fraud. Since this is Grey’s Anatomy, it shouldn’t be surprising that this hearing doesn’t go quite as anyone planned. With everyone on edge, good and bad memories are evoked and take center stage in what is easily the best episode of the season.


The episode begins with the cavalry arriving at the Washington Medical Commission hearing. Meredith, DeLuca, Alex, Maggie, and Amelia crammed themselves into one car to drive there together. We get quick shots of Richard, Teddy, Owen, Jackson, Link, and Bailey showing up too. Once inside the building, Richard and Jackson have a short chat. Richard has just gotten back from Sabrina’s funeral and apologizes to Jackson for not inviting him and Catherine. Jackson is very surprised to hear that his mom didn’t attend the funeral, and you can see the wheels turning in his head. Everyone convenes in a room to wait for the hearing to begin, and it’s one of the rare moments that eleven of the main cast members are in the same place, and camera shot, at the same time.

The action then cuts to Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital, where the interns and residents are getting ready for the day. Schmitt is worried about having to testify, so Nico tries to calm him down. Jo pops into the residents’ lounge to inform the group that they will have to take charge of the hospital given that most of the attendings will be at Meredith’s hearing, herself included. She tells them not to kill anyone, and I was a little surprised that nothing bad actually happens on their watch. Back at the hearing, Meredith’s lawyer tells her to stay quiet at all times and be respectful for once. The lawyer needs Mer to let her do her job. Mer agrees to stay quiet, but she is immediately tested when the medical board panel walks out with a shocking member. The final doctor on the panel is none other than Paul Castello, a.k.a. the guy who killed Derek. Mer is extremely upset to see Paul and tells her lawyer she needs this guy off the panel.


For anyone who doesn’t quite remember who Paul is, he was the trauma surgeon who forgot to give Derek a head CT after our favorite neurosurgeon’s car was hit by a truck. Had Derek gotten the head CT he needed, Paul and the other doctors would have seen that Derek’s brain was bleeding and would have had a chance at saving him. Paul also did not try to do any burr holes to relieve the pressure in Derek’s skull, which resulted in his death. So it’s completely understandable why Meredith would not want this man to be one of the people that will decide her fate. Unfortunately, the lawyer says that if they try to switch Paul out for a new doctor, they might not get another hearing for six more months.

The hearing doesn’t get off to the best start as the first set of witnesses has parts of their stories twisted to fit the prosecution’s case. Bailey is the first to testify and is extremely defensive and off-putting. She actually says that she isn’t close with Meredith, who is visibly struggling to stay quiet. We then get a lovely walk down memory lane and see flashbacks of all of Mer’s past transgressions. This episode doubles as a great recap of Mer’s life over the past sixteen seasons. Luis Rivera, the father of the girl Mer committed insurance fraud for, is the next witness, and he reports that his daughter, Gabby, is responding well to her cancer treatments. He says that Mer saved his daughter’s life by catching her cancer so early. DeLuca is the next lucky person to be questioned, and he gets put through the wringer. He admits to not knowing about the fraud before all the nitty gritty details of his past, including when Alex beat him up, are brought up. The prosecutor hands out documents showing that DeLuca wanted to transfer from Grey Sloan after the Alex incident and cited that he felt he wouldn’t get a good education or fair chance because most of the attendings were on Alex’s side, including Mer. The panel, spearheaded by Paul, picks apart DeLuca and Mer’s relationship and tries to twist things into something they aren’t.

Schmitt is the last person to testify before the hearing takes a quick recess. He starts by saying that Mer is the best teacher he has ever had and continues to gush about how great she is. The prosecutor wants to know if Schmitt ever saw a name on Gabby’s hospital bracelet when doing rounds. Schmitt admits that he saw that her bracelet said Ellis Grey even though the patient’s name was Gabby Rivera. He thought that the hospital had made an error, so he brought the issue to Bailey because Mer wasn’t around that day. The realization that Schmitt was the one to turn Mer in is a bit surprising, and he’s immediately apologetic and continually says that he thought he was doing the right thing.


During the recess, we see that Jo has arrived and get a glimpse of a conversation between Mer and DeLuca. Mer is worried that she is going to lose her license and proceeds to tell her beau that their relationship won’t work if they aren’t both surgeons. The hearing continues with Owen describing Mer as a better doctor than people say she is. Richard is up next, and the prosecutor brings up the Alzheimer’s trial that almost ruined both Mer and Derek’s careers. In another surprising moment, Richard flat out lies to the panel and says he was the one that found out Adele was getting the placebo, switched it out for the real treatment, and was the only one involved. Bailey’s twisted face says it all, but I guess the panel didn’t catch her reaction to his statement. The prosecution brings an interesting person to the stand next: Patricia Murphy, Richard’s former chief administration assistant. Patricia tells the panel that Mer didn’t match up with the former Seattle Grace’s internship program at first. It turns out that Richard pulled some strings to get Mer on the list for the program, which is news to Mer.

Things start to get dicey when Alex testifies. He disagrees when the prosecutor calls Mer rash and reckless. Alex isn’t happy when the prosecutor brings up that Zola is one of his patients and asks why her adoption was held up. He doesn’t think it has any impact on the case and says that it was a normal delay. The prosecutor keeps pushing and asks if the delay was because Mer was briefly fired, but it appears she doesn’t know the real reason is that Mer kidnapped Zola. Paul keeps trying to go after Mer’s family life and is clearly at a witch hunt at this point. He wants all her personal life details out in the open, which certainly doesn’t have a place in a medical license hearing.

Mer has finally had enough, stands up, and starts listing off the names of the spouses of the patients that she has lost over the years. She looks right at Paul and tells him that she remembers every single one of them. She continues her rant by saying that he has no right to ever mention her daughter’s name because he killed her father. As Mer’s temper flares, she accuses Paul of not remembering her and goes on to say that she remembers him as a coward who didn’t attempt to do burr holes after failing to get a CT for her dying husband. Mer goes for the ultimate burn by saying that she was doing burr holes as an intern and that the night Derek died should have cost Paul his career. Her epic speech concludes with, “But instead, you are sitting up here, judging me? You don’t deserve to judge anyone.” Paul asks the panel for a recess so they can evaluate the situation given that Mer might have a conflict of interest. Well, that was the wrong thing to say. Mer gets right in Paul’s face and says that her medical license shouldn’t he in his hands because he is dangerous. Out of nowhere, Paul starts seizing and drops to the floor.


Like the good doctors they are, Mer, Alex, and Jackson jump into action to help Paul. They have maintained his airway, and Meredith asks Amelia to have the ambulance take Paul to Grey Sloan and for her to personally give him great care. As the EMTs are taking Paul out on a stretcher, Mer yells that they should give him a head CT too. I was ready to stand up and applaud Mer at that point for her wonderful one-liners. Amelia goes in the ambulance with Paul, and Teddy and Link meet them at Grey Sloan upon arrival.

The scene then changes to the bar at the hotel where the hearing is being held. Maggie is drunk and having a hard time getting over killing her cousin on the operating table. She is attempting to explain what happened to the bartender when Jackson walks in and sits down next to her to check on how she is doing. Jackson fills her in on the hearing details and says it might get cancelled due to Paul’s seizure. Maggie tells him that she is afraid that Richard won’t speak to her again, and Jackson convinces her to let him take her home.

As if enough bad things aren’t currently happening in his life, Richard gets into a heated exchange with Bailey. She goes off on him for lying to the panel, while he isn’t happy that Bailey spoke like she barely knows Mer. Bailey says that Mer will always take risks to suit her needs and that she’s selfish. She’s also not happy that Richard always covers for Mer instead of stopping her from whatever crazy thing she’s doing. The icing on the cake for Bailey is that Richard went around the system to get Meredith a spot at Seattle Grace and is jealous that he always chooses Mer over her. More on this conversation shortly.

Back at Grey Sloan, Amelia asks Koracick to operate on Paul. Tom takes one look at the CT scan and says he doesn’t want the bad outcome. He feels Amelia should do the surgery since she found it first. With tears in her eyes and anger bubbling over in her voice, Amelia explains to Tom that the patient is the man that killed Derek. She can’t operate on him, and Tom decides to cancel the rest of his day to operate on Paul, who has a massive brain bleed. Amelia decides to watch Paul’s surgery from the gallery, with Teddy there to support her. Once Link walks in, Teddy leaves the couple alone to watch together.


Richard and Bailey’s conversation then continues with Richard saying that he won’t pretend like he didn’t give Mer special treatment over the years. He calls Mer his family and says that she is one of the most brilliant surgeons he has ever taught. He tells Bailey that putting your career in jeopardy is what you do for family. Bailey is still mad that he didn’t come to her about the insurance fraud instead of siding with Mer and is equally upset about having Koracick as her boss. Richard didn’t want to get Bailey involved because he felt she would also have lost her job. Bailey feels that she lost more in the long run because she lost control of her hospital and quite a few of her best surgeons. She is ultimately the most upset over the fact that someone that she taught and was close to betrayed her.

Back inside the hearing room, the judge announces that the hearing is postponed and that a new hearing will be scheduled. Alex busts in and says that they can’t postpone because too many people from all over have come to speak in favor of Mer. In the most moving scene since last season’s “hallway scene,” close to one hundred of Mer’s former patients file into the hearing room to lend their support to the doctor who saved their lives. Gabby even runs in and gives Mer a big hug. The panel allows everyone to advocate for Mer, which leads to some more blasts from the past, including Katie Bryce, Mer’s first patient as a doctor from the pilot episode.

Things seem to be going well in the OR, as Koracick has evacuated the hemorrhage. Amelia tells Link that she wants to stay and watch the entire surgery, stating that she has had some very violent fantasies about the day when Paul would pay for his arrogance. Link says that they can stay, as long as they are up in the gallery and far away from the scalpels. Leave it to Link to lighten up the moment. Of course, that’s when the surgery starts to go south.

Before the hearing ends, Alex reads a moving letter from Cristina since she couldn’t make it. Jo hands him a stack of letters from other doctors that couldn’t be there in person, including Callie, Arizona, April, and Addison. A quick flash to Paul’s surgery reveals that he has flat lined. The judge announces that the hearing is over, but Bailey busts in and asks to say something quickly. Bailey gives a nice speech about how Mer will always break the rules, but she broke a law to save a life. She agrees that Mer deserves the punishments she has been dealt, but that no one should question her license because she is too good of a doctor. Bailey concludes by saying that all of Mer’s hardships have made her a better person and doctor. It’s about time the old Bailey showed up. Right before the commercial break, we get another quick flash back to the OR at GSM, which shows that Paul died on the table.


The entire main cast waits together for the outcome of the hearing. Teddy, Link and Amelia arrive, and Amelia announces with a huge smile on her face that Paul died. She quickly adds that she wasn’t the one that killed him. Mer wants to know is she should feel bad for yelling at Paul, but Amelia says no. Amelia argues that Paul was a bad doctor and doesn’t deserve sympathy because he forgot that high blood pressure is a silent killer and let it get to him. She’s way too giddy over Paul’s death and needs someone to give her a reality check. Mer’s lawyer comes out of the hearing room and announces that the hearing is not getting postponed. The panel has sent their recommendation to the medical commission, and the lawyer reveals that they are letting Mer keep her license!

It’s not all that surprising that Mer gets to keep her medical license because the show would have been over if the titular character couldn’t do the one thing she was meant to do. Mer thanks Bailey for her nice words on her way out, and Bailey says, “See you Monday.” She asks Mer to come back to work at Grey Sloan and says that she needs her. A super happy Mer thanks Bailey and agrees to come back to work. All is pretty much right in the Grey’s Anatomy world, which means we have just enough time for a few people to be miserable before the episode ends. Jackson and Maggie are hanging at the Grey-Pierce-Shepherd household, and neither of them knows how Richard and Catherine are doing. Jackson has a feeling that their parents might be having marital problems, but the conversation is interrupted by a text informing them of Mer’s news. Maggie is clearly still drunk, and they admit they are having a nice time together not fighting. Jackson says he has missed her, and they almost kiss. Jackson stops and says he can’t kiss her, so Maggie throws him out as Mer walks in the door. Maggie says she hates Jackson and storms off.

The interns and residents of Grey Sloan have finally heard that Schmitt was the one who ratted Mer out. One rather mean doctor tells Schmitt he should be happy that Mer got to keep her license, but the mood is dampened by everyone feeling upset and betrayed by Schmitt’s action. It seems likely that Schmitt will find himself on the outs once again. DeLuca has knocked on Mer’s door and wants to talk to her. Mer immediately apologizes for what she said earlier about their relationship and blames it on being scared. DeLuca isn’t buying it and believes that she meant what she said. He goes on to say that he stood up for her time and time again because he loves her, but they must not be partners if she can’t do the same for him. He tries to explain to her that she doesn’t respect him the way she did Derek, but this makes Mer mad. Mer doesn’t think he can compare their relationship with the one that she had with Derek and says that she does respect him. DeLuca wants to know if there’s any part of her that wonders if they are equals or if he will ever be at her level. Mer doesn’t deny that she has had these thoughts, so DeLuca tells her to take some time to figure out what she wants and let him know if he is a part of that. The episode ends as he walks away, effectively ending their relationship.


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