Shonda Rhimes Discusses Season 3 Finale

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Season 3 of Grey's Anatomy began with Meredith helping an emotionally wrecked Izzie out of her prom dress and ended last night with Meredith helping a bawling Cristina out of her wedding gown.

Shonda Rhimes, as she puts it, likes symmetry.

Below are excerpts from her blog, in which she discusses the events of last night's finale, "Didn't We Almost Have it All," and what's in store for us in the fall when Grey's Anatomy returns for Season 4, now that she's "burned everything to the ground" in the third campaign ...


Shonda Rhimes Discusses Season 3 Finale

This season was very important to me. It wasn't as light as Season 2 and for good reason. Our characters were in a darker place. I needed to put Meredith's mother to rest, Izzie's grief to rest, and the race for Chief to rest. George needed to grow up on a monumental level and then come full circle to where he was when we first met him in the pilot.

Meredith had to finally try to face the fact that she's damaged when it comes to relationships. I wanted to put Bailey on a path of questioning her standing as The Chosen One. Both Burke and Derek needed to hit a relationship wall, each in their own ways. Then there's Cristina.

Oh, the Cristina of it all.

What Season 3 is about most of all - for all of our women - is the idea of "having it all" is a myth. And that was true for Cristina more than anyone. Slowly, over the course of the season, we've watched as hard-nosed Yang sliced off little pieces of herself to accommodate Burke.

From helping Burke hide his tremor to Colin Marlowe telling her she's not the woman he knew to prepping for the wedding, she slowly morphs from kickass surgeon-girl into a woman we don't quite recognize in that wedding dress with penciled eyebrows.

I wanted you to have the feeling in the finale that she's become this painted doll - beautiful, everyone's fantasy bride, but a painted doll all the same. No longer our Cristina Yang. There's that wonderful moment where she begs Bailey to let her cut because a part of her knows she's becoming someone she doesn't recognize.

And then, just as she's lost almost all of herself standing there in that gown ready to walk down the aisle, Burke is telling her that he can't marry her. Because even Burke realizes that this Cristina is not his Cristina. It's devastating.

I hope you noticed that in the beginning of the episode Cristina talks about a heart as a purely anatomical thing ("it pumps blood") and then Burke's vows are all about the heart as an emotional thing ("I promise to lay my heart in the palm of your hands") and it's so sad to realize that they have completely opposing views of the world.

I feel for Burke and you should too because he knows that, in a way, by leading, pushing, cajoling her down this path to being together, he's done this to her - he's changed her. That the only way to save her from disappearing completely is to set her free.

And then in that wonderfully painful moment (how much do we love Sandra Oh and her incredible talent?) in the apartment, Cristina turns to Meredith and says "He's gone. I'm free. Damn it."

And it's so nuanced and layered and so tragic because she's relieved and terrified and heartbroken and suffocated all at once. Watching her journey back from this is going to be amazing next season.

George and Izzie and Callie: you all have your opinions, very strong opinions, on how you feel about this love triangle. I'm glad â€" strong opinions mean you care what happens.

In the finale, Izzie's declaring herself and Callie's fighting for her rightful territory. That moment when Callie casually lets Izzie know that she's not only been named Izzie's boss but that she and George are trying to have a baby is very interesting.

Callie's saying "don't mess with me" in the only way she knows how. About the baby thing - for the record, I am very strongly against anyone trying to have a baby to save a relationship. It's crazy because it never works and I highly recommend you don't do it.

Plus it goes against every feminist bone in my body. But it is also human to delude yourself into believing that you're not having a baby to save your relationship, that instead having a baby is a way of taking your relationship to the next level.

And Callie gives that great speech about her hormones and her body.

I've been there and I know that it is real, this sudden baby rush that happens and, if you are firmly into your career, it freaks you out. Callie's just being as honest as she knows how to be with George.

Because she can't bring up Izzie again - not when the last time she brought it up, George called Izzie a supermodel thereby suggesting that Callie was, well…not.

Continue reading the rest of Shonda's blog here ...

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.


I do think if the editor keep torturing us fans like this there probably will be fewer people who would want to watch the next season. We NEED to see Derek and Meredith being TOGETHER. Mer has been through so much misery, she deserves to be happy. She certainly can live a life that is happily ever after, with Derek. Please, let them being together. If not, I'm done. I'm done watching this painful play.
And I want to see more about Alex, he's really great and cute.


Brokenheartedly ( I always thought that Burke and Cristina are gonna make it) I should say that the whole season 3 is amazing and the finale is orgasmic..


I think you need change George grade on his exam to passing. Since J.R. Knight (George) is returning next year. He needs to be happy too. This year needs to be George and Izzie year together. Keep up the good job.


Though the finale was sad, i still love it. I think Shondra Rhimes is a genuis. I love the twists and how great Cristina was - funny and poignant. She's just fabulous. I love how the characters' issues where laid out on the table in the final episode. I hope to see more of Karev, next season. He is such a great character. I look forward to seeing Mer and Der explore sides of themselves other than their relationship with each other. I miss Karev and Mer mirroring each other. As if they don't need to explain anything to each other and the other person just completely understands and says the perfect thing without being patronizing. I miss the light-hearted Izzie and George. Enough said! Kudos to the whole Grey's team. It has been a great season again.


Hey guys i do not get why you are so upset about the season finale in my opinion it was briliant and i cant wait for season 4 Shonda just had to do that because remember the season premiere it wasn't exactly bright and shiny I dont think that Lexie Grey poses any threat to MerDer relationship she may actually like meredith and wana to know her i mean she missed 20 years of Meredith life.So give greys a break it rocks and season 4 is gona be awesome


*gasps* i really wouldn't mind if burke left towards the beginning of the season and then came back towards the end because he realizes that he loves cristina and can't live without her. that would be terrific.... *sighs* but one can only hope... although i'd rather they get it together without anyone else leaving. ADDISON is enough. we loved her, and her leaving the show is something we could debate for HOURS upon, but that's enough. burke leaving would ruin EVERYTHING, since mer looks up to cristina for hope.


ok i've read a few comments, and even though mer and der may be the heart of the show, cristina and burke were their guide, their hope. they were the ones who supported them. that's why merder supported burktina when they weren't talking. get it? when der was havin trouble with mer, burke would help. when mer was having trouble with der (or der and finn) cristina would help. i love how that worked. now... *pauses* i won't believe what anyone says until it comes out of shonda's mouth sealed with her word, and i don't think we'll get that anytime soon.


Can Tiffani Amber be mean to that Lexie Grey? Please. And can she be the one Shep sister to actually like Meredith unlike nancy


You guys who are threatening not to watch or saying it sucked are just getting annoying! Try to be optimistic, but I'm not sure it's possible for you guys.....


holy crap tiffani thiessen! yay i love her in all her shows. could definitely see her being dereks sister. cant wait for season 4 now.


Grey's Anatomy Quotes

Did you say it? 'I love you. I don't ever want to live without you. You changed my life.' Did you say it? Make a plan. Set a goal. Work toward it, but every now and then, look around; Drink it in 'cause this is it. It might all be gone tomorrow."

Meredith (closing voiceover)

Burke was- He took something from me. He took little pieces of me, little pieces over time, so small I didn't even notice, you know? He wanted me to be something I wasn't, and I made myself into what he wanted. One day I was me Cristina Yang, and then suddenly I was lying for him, and jeopardizing my career, and agreeing to be married and wearing a ring, and being a bride. Until I was standing there in a wedding dress with no eyebrows, and I wasn't Cristina Yang anymore. And even then, I would've married him. I would have. I lost myself for a long time. And now that I'm finally me again, I can't. I love you. I love you more than I loved Burke. I love you. And that scares the crap out of me because when you asked me to ignore Teddy's page, you took a piece of me, and I let you. And that will never happen again.