Midseason Report Card: ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ season 13 goes back to basics, for the most part successfully
There have been times where we’ve been fairly critical of “Grey’s Anatomy” for either telling stories that are a bit too silly, or at times repetitive versus past seasons of the show. When you are a whopping thirteen years into pretty much anything, you’ve gotta prepare for the possibility that there are a few things out there that are going to get repeated.
Yet, by and large we’d say that the first nine episodes of season 13 so far have done a very good job of trying to be original, and also treading some different ground — for the most part — than what we’ve seen in the past.The biggest thing we’ve appreciated is that it feels like the show has focused more inwards rather than trying to expand the universe further. The majority of the characters in the spotlight are people like Meredith, Bailey, Alex, and Richard Webber, who’ve been around to experience almost all of the highs and lows of the series from the very beginning.
What worked – The entire story for Alex so far is tremendous, and some of Justin Chambers’ finest work. He’s felt at times almost like the lead, but given that he’s gone almost full seasons before without substantial story, it’s been interesting watching him learn how to leave his ego at the door at times in order to determine how to stay afloat in the midst of what transpired between him and Andrew DeLuca at the end of this past season. Also, the work done with Webber over the past few weeks as he questions his own uncertain future at the Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital is outstanding, and the same goes for Bailey’s struggle to figure out the right thing precisely to do with hi.
If we’re looking at individual episodes of the series, “The Room Where It Happens” was the show’s strongest, most emotional hour since “How to Save a Life,” and it managed to be that way without having to kill off a character. Isn’t that always appreciated?
What needs work still – The whole story for Owen and Amelia doesn’t really feel like we’re treading any new ground for either character; sure, it makes sense to Amelia’s character that she would bolt over the pregnancy disappointment and the ensuing conflict, but weren’t we meant to believe that both she and Owen were getting better? This is throwing them back into the people that they were. Hopefully, the second part of this season offers up chances for redemption.
Also, it feels like the writers casually decided to toss Meredith and Riggs aside for the time being and focus on other things. We do understand that there is a lot going on at the moment, but aren’t we going to touch back in on this eventually?
Overall – While not perfect, the emotion through the first part of season 13 is outstanding, and we’re loving some of the characters like an Alex, a Jo, or a Webber more than we ever have. “Grey’s” still has us hooked, and that’s saying a lot for a show 13 seasons in. Grade: B.
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