Grey's Anatomy continued its recent string of solid episodes last night, although we definitely enjoyed the previous two, single-character-centric episodes a little more.
We also didn't need another doctor thrown into the fold. That said, Dr. Teddy Altman (Kim Raver, below) was introduced well, and the episode as a whole was good.
If you missed any of the drama, here's a recap of "New History." Now, a look at the major developments of Thursday night and why they worked (for the most part) ...
The gift: Owen has a present for Cristina: Teddy, a cardio surgeon who he served with in Iraq. In vintage Cristina fashion, she's far from impressed with the new girl.
Ultimately, she respects her elder, though, and Teddy proves to be the excellent teacher that Dr. Yang lacked for so long, talking her through a very difficult procedure.
Cristina is so giddy we actually see her skip! Sandra Oh is so brilliant, she actually made that look awkward. That was so un-Cristina, and it subtly showed. Wonderful.
Dr. Teddy Altman and her relationship with Owen were introduced last night.
Here's the interesting thing about Teddy: She and Owen were never involved ... but she wishes they were. She tells him as much after she learns that he and Beth broke up.
Owen doesn't know how to react to the news that Teddy has feelings for him. Clearly there's something going on there, and we don't know what. Well handled all around.
The work husband: Adele accuses Bailey of having an affair with the Chief because he didn't come home last night. Has Adele not been married to him for like 30 years?
She says his behavior lately reminds her of when he was with Ellis. Bailey conceded that the Chief can be her "work-husband" but assured her an affair is NOT happening.
Something's definitely up with this guy, though. He looks tired and nearly kills a guy by botching a routine surgery. The stress is taking its toll ... and he's back to the bottle.
We loved the look on Meredith's face when she sees him drinking at Joe's, and the relationship of Bailey and Richard in general. She wants to protect her work-husband.
Still, she tells him, get it together. It was nice to see a Richard story line not centered exclusively around him being a jerk who feuds with the surgeons over budget cuts.
Alex did not take the return of his wife very well.
I can't forgive you: Izzie returned to the show last night, and no, she's not pregnant. Sneaky promos. Her old science teacher thinks she is, though. He thinks she's 16.
His dementia is what brought her back to Seattle Grace, to get him treatment. She succeeds, strong-arming the Chief and holding her $8 million donation over his head.
That case was great to watch, and guest star Joel Grey did a terrific job, but what does Izzie even bring to the show anymore? Her big "return" felt as forced as ever to us.
When Alex saw her, it was heartbreaking. Words fail him. He doesn't even know what to make of it. Nearly do we. Finally, the spouses confront each other and have it out.
Izzie starts blaming Alex for getting her fired, saying the job was all she had, and that she cannot forgive him for it. Irate, he fires right back and puts her in her place.
Alex says that she made an assumption about that, didn't give him the benefit of the doubt, and took off. For that, he can't forgive her either. Burn. Bring on her next hiatus.