Shonda Rhimes Discusses Grey's Anatomy Finale

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Call her the game changer. Grey’s Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes sat down to discuss last night's Season 6 finale with Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello earlier today.

"Sanctuary" and "Death and All His Friends" were filled with dozens of memorable moments and burning questions. EW certainly did its best to touch on as many as possible.

We've excerpted a good chunk of the interview below. Click here for the full version, and tell us what you think. Are you satisfied with her explanations - and the finale overall?

Q: One of the most controversial aspects of the finale was Meredith’s miscarriage. Did you ever consider a different outcome?

Shonda: If she didn’t have the miscarriage, she wouldn’t have been pregnant at the beginning.

Q: The pregnancy was all about the miscarriage?

Mrs. Shepherd Picture

Shonda: It was about Meredith Grey being truly happy. When Meredith is having a miscarriage and says, “I’m having a miscarriage. I need Lidocaine. Are you going to help me or not?,” you realize how incredibly strong and badass she’s being in that moment. To me, that’s the hero moment. If you don’t have that moment you don’t really have the story of Meredith Grey.

Q: You once said Mer and Der would never have children. Have you changed your mind?

Shonda: [Long pause] Yes. I’ve written my way out of that I think.

Q: So there may still be a baby in their future?

Shonda: Definitely. For me, this is the beginning of the baby story.

Q: How does Meredith not revert back to dark and twisty Meredith?

Shonda: I don’t know how she doesn’t, but she doesn’t. I think in a lot of ways Meredith has become the mother of the group. I don’t think there’s a lot of room for dark and twisty when everybody’s been affected. We joke a lot in the writers’ room that because Meredith’s childhood was so damaging that, in a way, she’s better equipped to handle this stuff than anybody else.

Q: How did you arrive at the decision to kill off Reed and Charles?

Shonda: It was both really easy and really hard. We’ve been layering in these people all season, and I wanted you to feel comfortable with them and their personalities. I also really wanted [to lose] people who on some level we barely knew.

Q: Had Katherine Heigl not left the show, what role would Izzie have played in the finale? Would she have been killed?

Shonda: I have no idea.

Q: Talk to me about the decision to have Alex call out for Izzie after he was shot.

Shonda: I really wanted to find a way to deal with how much Alex is missing Izzie. It felt really poignant to me that if he was lying on a table dying he’d be calling for her.

Q: Lexie confessed her love for Alex, but some fans aren’t buying it.

Shonda: I don’t think she could have possibly made a decision in that moment. The thing I think is interesting is that Alex made his decision. When Alex called for Izzie - when in your hour of need you’re calling for another woman - I think he made his decision.

Q: In other words, hope is very much alive for Mark and Lexie?

Shonda: Yes, there’s definitely hope.

Q: Jessica Capshaw is pregnant in real life. Arizona decides at the end of the episode that she wants to have kids with Callie. Is there a connection there?

Shonda: No - although I love that Jessica is pregnant. I feel like every year we have to have somebody on the show who’s pregnant and we have to hide the pregnancy. It’s what we do now.

Q: So the pregnancy won’t be written into the storyline?

Shonda: Nope.

Q: Where was Bailey’s beau Ben in this episode?

Shonda: Ben was not working that day. There was a great debate in the writers’ room that we should have Bailey say something about Ben not working. And I felt like, no, we only see Ben sporadically as it is. He’s not at work that day.

Q: You mentioned that April and Jackson are “part of the tribe now.” What did you mean exactly?

Shonda: For the purpose of story - because I don’t write things thinking, what are the business decisions going on - April and Jackson have really been folded into the group.

Q: When Owen chose Cristina, he really chose her, right?

Shonda: Yes. He definitely chose her.

Q: So that triangle is, for all intents and purposes, over.

Shonda: That triangle is done.

Q: But Cristina broke up with Owen in that episode.

Shonda: That is true.

Q: So they’re not technically together.

Q: I tried really hard to get in an Owen-Cristina scene where he holds her after Derek survived. But all my [medical advisers] kept saying, “If Owen holds Cristina, she can no longer operate on Derek. She’s become unsterile.” There was a big fight about it and finally I had to go with “the look.” And I felt like Sandra [Oh] and Kevin [McKidd] adequately and brilliantly portrayed in “the look” that there was still something there.

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


Zdenda... like April, I have no confidence in myself, and like April I have daddy issues too in the maybe there's a link there ;)


I love the finale!!


I think that comming season can start with Derek's family visting him in the hospital and maybe Addisson either. It could be awesome, Addison and Mer together sitting with Derek....mmmm. I'm pretty sure that now Derek and Mer should have real wedding becouse Derek has to think what will happen if he dies. You know, Mer isn't his wife legally so she can't inherit from him and decide in important cases.


To April-haters: I started to like her more in this episode. She naturally broke down, when she found her best friend dead, but later she was able to get herself together and she helped Mer best she could in an extreme situation. I think this character could be easily developped. E.g. - why is she so unsure of herself? She was described as brilliant student and best doc among the Mercy Westers. So why does she have no confidence in herself? From psychologic point of view - this could indicate serious daddy issues in her past... :-) So I think it is up to Shonda what she will do with her. Certainly looking forwared to see it :-)


@Greys Fanhey- yes yes pls!!! i want avery and xtina!!!! or bring back burk!!!!! for xtna sake!!!! its been an ages that fagot issue is been rest and peace!




Okay, The question I have is how many people died in the tragic episode? I really enjoy the episode and it me cryed when charles died, I liked how they put charles last word about reed in there, I wonder how bailey will take it when she finds out that she will never be able to tell reed his last words.


I watched the finale twice and I cried with Bailey. Charles Percy's death had to have been one of the saddest things in the finale, I felt anguish for Meredith and Derek, shook my head at Richard saying don't don't your sober now don't and cheered when he poured out the booze, but for Charles Percy I must admit I cried, Robert Baker who played Charles should win an emmy for that performance, it was wonderful. And Lexie declaring her love for Alex, I think after the dust settles she'll realize Alex still loves Izzie and that her true feeling are with Mark, did you see how he protected her from the shooter, Mark showed Lexie his true feelings, he still loves her very much, looking forward to the hot mcSex when these two get back together. Bailey brave terrorized Bailey saved herself by saying she was a nurse, that must of been the hardest thing for her to say, she is very proud to be a surgeon and not being able to save Charles Percy was tough on her, I think Bailey will feel Charles Percy's loss more then she did for George O'Malley. Charles died in her arms. Chandra Wilson should also get an emmy for her scenes with the dying Charles. And Bailey's patient Mary, having to play dead while the shooter pulled back her sheet, not to scream out would have been so difficult. I also notice that both finales Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice both mention the fact that the Shepherd sibling both saw there father being shot for his watch. Now with Derek being shot, this would certainly open it up for a crossover in the beginning of next season with the Shepherd girls all coming to Seattle. I remember Derek telling Meredith in Season One Episode 2, that if he was injured lying in hospital his sisters would be there and that he want them there (this was the episode where the girl was attacked and left for dead, Meredith was wearing the same shoes). Now that Richard is sober and Derek injured, the reins of the Chief will be past back to Richard Webber and Derek once recovered from his heart surgery goes back to head of Neurology with Meredith and April. April should be given a new mentor. Oh and here's a thought when Derek hired back April Kepner, he hired back Dr Megan Nowland, she is married to Dr Steve Mastow, we haven't seen anything of her at all in the last what 13 episodes, if your going to bring a character back you would think you get to see them even in passing, Dr Megan Nowland, was pregnant when she was fired surely her and Steve would of had the baby by now, every episode of Grey's Anatomy features something about Meredith and Derek but the little side stories always had something with these interns and other doctors. Will we see Dr Steve Mastow and Dr Megan Nowland become parents in Season 7? Season 7 can't start soon enough. Looking forward to Season 6 being released on DVD in Australia. And whatever happened to the fire we were told was suppose to be in the finale, was that in the unseen 18 minutes that wasn't aired?


please bring back izzie for alex!!!!!!!!!!!!! were a big fan.. please ms.shonda!!??


Favorite answer: "Jessica Capshaw is pregnant in real life. Arizona decides at the end of the episode that she wants to have kids with Callie. Is there a connection there?
RHIMES: No — although I love that Jessica is pregnant. I feel like every year we have to have somebody on the show who’s pregnant and we have to hide the pregnancy. It’s what we do now." LMAO.

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Grey's Anatomy Quotes

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.


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)