For Grey's Anatomy, it's the Medicine, Stupid

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Change is hard, as Meredith Grey has observed more than once in her narrating Grey's Anatomy quotes. After the show's strange slide late last season, the Los Angeles Times notes, everyone, including Shonda Rhimes and Patrick Dempsey, said a certain creative downturn, an earnestness, would be rectified.

"We're bringing the fun back," Shonda Rhimes said.

Indeed, the first episode of Season 4 was entitled "A Change Is Gonna Come." And millions of fans breathlessly waited ... and waited.

Eight episodes in, things have happened, of course. George (T.R. Knight) told wife Callie (Sara Ramirez) that he cheated on her, so the marriage is over and George is officially in love with former best friend Izzie Stevens (Katherine Heigl).

Single Callie moved in with jilted Cristina (Sandra Oh). Derek (Dempsey) and Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) continue their dance of longing and leaving.

But the only real change so far is that Isaiah Washington is gone, and the fabulous Brooke Smith, playing the dynamic Dr. Erica Hahn, has taken his place.

Dr. Erica Hahn is a terrific character, sassy and professional, with an appropriately acerbic view of the various romantic shenanigans at Seattle Grace. She also seems to be a carefully considered stand-in for viewers choking on the soapy silt of last season, a way to move forward without messing with the brand.

Erica, Derek, and Mark

Don't get too nervous now, Brooke Smith, but the future of what was once TV's highest-rated drama may be resting increasingly in your hands.

Changing a big hit TV show is a tricky business. It's easier to tinker, if often not as effective. And while Grey's Anatomy remains a big hit, its ratings continue to slide; a few weeks ago, they hit an all-time low.

A major concern? While viewers like the romance and character development, they need to have their medical shows rooted in, well, medicine.

Continue reading in the Los Angeles Times ...

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


It's not because they were on the 2nd place after CSI, that it is ok.. They can be on the first place with only 8 million watchers.. How many million viewers did grey's have last week?
I agree it's not as good anymore as before... Especially not because Shonda promised it would be a happy, good season. I didn't see a lot of that. So it's obvious that when she doesn't keep her promise, many people feel like 'hmm, i'm not gonna watch this show anymore'.
I just saw episode 1 from season 3 back. Those episodes were good! Derek's ' I love you' speech, Meredith drowning. But now? Not much going on there...


I guess this is a sign for Shonda to really do somthing good for MerDer. And I mean to get them together and stop all the things they put in thier way. Seriously, I agree that yes the medicine should never be forgotten, but I guess millions of fans are rooting for MerDer and a lot of them lost patience already after seeing the writters constantly pulling these two apart. So come on Shonda! Bring MerDer back together!


I think G's Atomy will be fine, i agree. Now I never checked the ratings but i'm sure if -Kathy is correct than what do we have to be worried about?
Hoppefully nothing. But Mer/Der really do need to patch up they're scorpion dance.


I think Grey's will be fine. They have had alot to get over from last year and I truly believe they are getting there. To me each episode has gotten better and better and I think the fun is back. I think we all knew it would take some time to prove to the viewers that things were going to be lighter this season and more fun and I think they are showing that each week. I do think that one big issue is the Mer/Der storyline. I believe they will end up together this season and Shonda is going to have that nurse "Rose" create a few problems along the way before we see Mer/Der truly together. I just hope that "Rose's" storyline is short lived and we the viewers will finally get to see Meredith and Derek together! As far as the ratings, GA has remained in 2nd place each week behind CSI except for one week it took the #1 position. ANd it has taken the #1 position on the 18-49, I believe each week this season. So GA hasn't done bad this season, we just need to get them back to the #1 position that it held last year and I think they'll get there if this strike ends soon!


Grey's Anatomy Quotes

You almost died like men.


I miss my dad.