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.


Here is the article from Televisionista on Grey's Finale............. Saturday, May 19, 2007
"Grey's Anatomy" #3.25 "Didn't We Almost Have It All": Wedding Disaster A fabulous 75-minute finale leaves happy-ending-hungry viewers foaming at their mouth, cursing Shonda Rhimes and declaring threats of abandoning the superior medical drama. "Grey's Anatomy" however dared to burn it all down to the ground, as it prepares to rebuild from scratch next year. Over the course of the season, Christina (the impressive Sandra Oh) had morphed into a Burke woman, losing her own identity, trying to accommodate Preston. In the finale, as she stood eyebrowless, begging Bailey to let her cut, Christina was suffocating in her future self. Ultimately, a romantic Preston who made Addison and other women at Seattle Grace swoon over his vows ("Dump Yang and marry me!) realizes the all dolled up Christina who had overcome her struggle within and was ready to walk down the aisle was not the Christina he had fallen in love with and he lets her go. As Christina realizes Preston is gone, in a powerful moment of hysterical relief, fear and sadness she breaks down. Meredith helps Christina get out of her wedding gown, as she had helped Izzy remove her prom dress. As for Meredith herself, she appears to be devastated by Christina's wedding disaster. A woman with poor family role models, she looks up to her best friend, but once the wedding is off, she believes "it's all over." Contrary to what some may think though, Derek has not given up on the love of his life. George is taken aback by Izzy's profession of love and his own failure at exams. He also appears more vulnerable then ever before as he tells Bailey he can't repeat his internship and he has almost no word of advice for Derek's bar girl, who as we had anticipated, is indeed Lexie Grey. Alex obviously has issues with his self-confidence as he gives a begging Ava no reason to stay. Thank heavens for the sharp Addison who opens his eyes (and tells him he sucks in the process). But will it be too late for him and the woman he shoved back into her old life? Finally, we learned Derek was the chosen one, but he handed the Chief his job back. Will the Chief look for somebody else or will he remain in his position? If so, how will that bode with his new-found spark with wife Adele? The season finale of "Grey's Anatomy" may have been a depressing affair, but it was also a powerful one, an episode that set the stage for an entirely different season four that may or may not include Preston and George. This is TELEVISIONISTA


MSN article on Greys-Could not have said it better!
"The Grey's we've known is over. So over" The fourth season of "Grey's Anatomy" will probably begin with an ambiguously single, non-chief of surgery Derek Shepherd finding himself working in a hospital along with an attractive female intern named Grey who he met at a bar the previous evening. Although the first season also began that way, this new Grey is not Meredith. In one of the season finale's final scenes, George, having learned that he failed his medical exam, emptied his locker as five new interns walked in, ready to begin the first year on the job. One of them was the same woman who flirted with Derek the previous evening, and she revealed herself to be a character previously mentioned by name but never seen: Lexie Grey, Meredith's half sister. While echoing the start of its first season, "Grey's Anatomy" will not be returning to where it began after covering a single calendar year in three television seasons. Instead, the show's third-season finale wrapped up existing stories â€" but in mostly unsatisfying, occasionally depressing, and sometimes illogical ways that will leave the show decidedly changed. Its major developments all involved the characters rejecting one another, and will alter their lives, giving the interns â€" and viewers â€" little to look forward to for their next year. The first string of rejections came as the result of an attempt to answer one major question: Which of the attending physicians would Chief of Surgery Richard Webber appoint to take his place? First to be removed from consideration was Mark Sloan, who insisted he really wanted the job despite acting like an all-around jackass most of the time. Next up was Addison, who had to be rejected not because that's what fit with her character, but so she could move to Los Angeles and star in ABC's new series "Private Practice." Richard conveniently set up her spin-off by telling her, "If you need a job to get your life, you either need a new job, or a new life." Addison's new life airs Wednesdays at 9 this fall on ABC. Burke was also turned down because, as Webber told him, "You let me down this year, Preston. ... I want to give you the job â€" I want to, but I can't." That left Derek, who was actually offered the job that brought him to Seattle in the first place. But he rejected himself. While that may show growth on his part, he didn't really offer an explanation as to why he suddenly no longer desired the job he's been desperately wanting. Derek's decision also leaves Richard in an awkward position. Having reconciled with his wife after she nearly died miscarrying their baby, he now is stuck with the job that essentially destroyed their marriage. "You take care of other people's families, and you sacrifice your own," he said at one point. Seattle Grace without Richard Webber would not be the same, but he was quitting because he devoted too much of his life to work. Now, he either needs to reject his wife and life again, or leave the hospital, which seems like an even unlikelier option. In other rejection-related developments, some of them incomprehensible or out-of-character, Bailey lost the chief resident position to Callie, perhaps because Webber wanted to save Bailey, but still making little sense. Alex rebuffed Ava, whose husband's appearance prompted her to realize she was ready for a new beginning. Alex had apparently moved on â€" or calloused himself as a result of her earlier rejection â€" as just a day or so before, he'd clearly fallen for her. George failed his intern exam, maybe because he spent too much time hooking up with and pining for his roommates this year, at least when they weren't pining for him. Meanwhile, his wife, Callie, suddenly and bizarrely declared to George that she was hormonal and wanted to have a baby. Because smart people know that babies fix bad marriages, George immediately did his part to help conceive a child. That left Callie to coldly but finally dismiss Izzie with 12 words: "I was named chief resident; plus, we decided to have a baby." That will probably have little effect on Izzie, who earlier refused to give up and told George, "I'm in love with you, George, and I hope you're in love with me, too." He didn't acknowledge any reciprocal feelings, having apparently been convinced by one of "Grey's Anatomy"'s convenient, always amusing, and flawlessly constructed metaphors for a character's personal life masquerading as a medical problem.
A mountain climber with an axe in his skull "panicked," George said, and tried to climb down despite being attached to his fellow climbers. "You have every right to turn back if you're scared," George declared. Without thinking, Derek replied "No, you don't. You choose to climb a mountain, you can't change your mind in the middle of a climb." Preston Burke, however, did exactly that. In fact, he changed his mind in the middle of his wedding. After months of pressing Cristina to get married, he finally realized that he was asking her to do something she didn't want to do; while she insisted otherwise, the wedding was off. "I know you don't want to come (down the aisle) but you'll come anyway because you love me. And if I loved you ... if I did, I wouldn't be up there waiting for you. I would be letting you go," he said, and then disappeared. Calling off the wedding might have made sense, but leaving her entirely? Minutes earlier he was practicing his truly touching vows, leaving every person in the operating room in tears. Apparently, he had time after that procedure to surgically remove his feelings for Cristina and deposit them in a biohazard waste container. His departure and rejection of Cristina led her to have an ambiguous breakdown in front of Meredith. "He's gone," Cristina said, fighting to get out of her wedding dress. "I'm free. Dammit." Derek, meanwhile, didn't want to be free of Meredith, but she seemed willing to reject him by not explicitly rejecting him. He told her, "I do love you, don't you see? ... You're the love of my life. I can't leave you. But you're constantly leaving me." He begged her, "If you're not in this, please, just end it. ... Put me out of my misery." Meredith responded in the moment by simply avoiding the topic, saying only that she had to go to the wedding. Once there, after Burke changed his mind and called off the wedding, Meredith was left to deliver the news to the assembled guests. "It's over. You can all go home," she said. At once she was talking to the assembled guests and to Derek. "It's over. So over," she said. So, she also seemed to be saying, is the "Grey's Anatomy" that we've known. What I can't figure out is why Shonda thinks ruining all the relationships is a good idea. If she thinks she can erase the past 3 years and start fresh she is fooling herself. SHe can't do that. What does she think breaking up Mer/Der again will accomplish? Especially after she said she would not do that? ANd what happened to letting them grow as a couple? That lasted 9 episodes? How the heck do you explain that? She has gone nuts. SHe thinks she can justify anything and fans will go for it but it won't work for too many. She is going to be regretting it when the fans leave. And from what I can see, it is not going to be pretty! I HOPE SHONDA WILL SEE THIS ARTICLE AND WAKES UP PRETTY FAST BEFORE ITS TOO LATE!!! SOMEONE PLS SEND THIS ARTICLE TO SHONDA AND TEAM!


I some of you think that Mer/Der are bad for each other. But i think bad dosen´t always mean bad. Bad somtimes mean GOOD. So with that in mind i really really hope their together in season 4. If not i´ll be heart broken.


the country i'm in has not shown the season finale but based on wat ive read from u guys comments, it sounds bad....everything seems to be tumbling down....on burktina sudden breakup..well, i guess that is to add spice to the show....but i really hope that they will get back together...where....burke will still hv feelings for yang and get back together somewhere in season 4....and the most impt thing is....NONE of the casts leaving the show..its bad enough that addison in leaving....hopefully...none others will...esp burke or george...coz it sounds soooo likely that either one of these 2 will leave...bad bad...


I agree with Sue up there. Yeah, where did all the fun and humor go from GA? It has nothing but gloom n doom in the season 3. Why break up a great couple after all that they went thru together?
I m talking about Burktina. Cristina changed because she loved Burk, what was so terrible about that? She didn't become less of a surgeon, just softer n more caring? This show has become way too seriouse n unrealistic for me.


Agreeing with Jennifer right now!! But I think Burke & Cristina should get back together as well. MerDer - make up your mind! Either be happy, or don't be together. Anyone else agree?


Ummm, yeah that sucked! I was totally bummed by every aspect of the finale. There was not a glimmer of happiness or even hope anywhere. At least last year's finale was just one tragedy that brought everyone together. This year it was multiple upsets that fractured everyone. Not happy at all about the Liza Grey thing either - so not necessary. Seriously. We watch this show to be entertained not to get depressed - so let me help you out: put Meredith and Derick back together! and do what you may with the others - just throw up something stable and good - like how they used to be. We watched her evolve over these years and really do great work on herself just to have her crash and blow it all in one episode. It makes the viewer feel very slighted and betrayed - as if their prior investment in the characters didn't matter at all because one poorly written show could blow it all to shit anyways. I'm seriously considering not even bothering next season - you've done your viewers wrong! Darn you! Okay, I feel a little better...




just when I thought it will be a happy ending for Christina and Burke, it has to end that way...on their wedding day. After Burke said his vows during the surgery thing. It's sad to see that maybe they're not really meant to be together. After a whole season of sticking up for each others, it ends up sad. MerDer just wont reach happpiness in their relationship. One is more into it... like it's his life, while the other one is acting like it's just a part of hers. They want to be together, but her issues were too much for her to handle. But oh well, waiting for season 4....


I totally agree with Tina (above). What Burke & Cristina have is very special. Please, please don't let it end. I watch the show for them, because they have a true relationship. Despite all of their differences, they still love each other. They're the best characters on the show, don't let their relationship end!!!


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)

There's a reason I said I'd be happy alone. It wasn't 'cause I thought I'd be happy alone. It was because I thought if I loved someone and then it fell apart, I might not make it. It's easier to be alone, because what if you learn that you need love and you don't have it? What if you like it and lean on it? What if you shape your life around it and then it falls apart? Can you even survive that kind of pain? Losing love is like organ damage. It's like dying. The only difference is death ends. This? It could go on forever.