This was a quiet, introspective hour of Grey's Anatomy that people will either love or hate.
There is this ambivalent quality to Grey's Anatomy Season 14 Episode 17 that makes it difficult to rate and critique, to be honest. It'll be interesting to see how others respond to it.
There were so many deep, special moments, but there were also moments that felt too slow.
This installment slowed things down drastically, took us away from most of the plots, and narrowed in on three main characters. There was a lazy feel to it, and I don't mean in the sense that the writing was lazy, but rather it felt like watching an artistic Indie film.
Even some of the camera angles were artful.
For example, everything with Owen and Teddy in Germany was beautifully shot. The two of them hugged up by the window with the snow falling was incredible. The lighting, placement of their bodies, and the angles they were shot from were all visually appealing.
The shot from outside with the snow falling was stunning.
The scenes with Meredith and Nick talking about their dreams and envisioning their other lives -- those were beautifully done. It felt like we were eavesdropping on them while they were wrapped up in their own world.
The way the camera panned and crept around objects, the lightness of Meredith's laugh -- her every move and sound coquettish, it set a specific mood.
Meredith and Mars' scenes were captivating mainly because of those special touches and the nuance captured.
OK, let's talk about Meredith and her mystery man.
First off, Scott Speedman was an absolute delight. I could not get enough of him. He was mesmerizing in his every scene. That's not limited to his good looks either; he seriously owned every scene.
Nick: I just got way too personal on the first date.
Meredith: Excuse me?
He and Ellen Pompeo have great chemistry. They have better chemistry in this one installment than she had with her previous paramour in his entire tenure. That's not meant as a slight against Nathan's character or Henderson, but the chemistry was stronger here.
Meredith and Nick's chemistry simmered. It was seductive and alluring. You couldn't take your eyes away from the two of them during their scenes, and when their conversation took dull turns (and yes, parts of their conversation were dull), you still tuned in.
It felt like we the viewers were imposing on a private moment. It's that feeling you get when you're reading a great novel. It had that effect, fully and completely.
Nick was so damn charming. He was also sweet and a bit self-deprecating. He was so open and vulnerable, and we damn near got his entire life story laid out to us, but at no point did it feel forced or like overkill.
It felt like Meredith knew him for years, but it also felt we had known him for years. The true test of a great guest-star is if you'll miss them when they're gone or if you'll bother remembering them at all.
After this, I would consider giving up a kidney to have Scott Speedman join Grey's Anatomy full-time or guest-star again.
The way the hour was going, it seemed like he wouldn't make it out of the OR alive. When he begins telling Meredith, this woman he just met, about the deed to his house and all the things he needed (and trusted) her to do, I kid you not, my hand went over my heart.
I don't typically find myself enamored by such displays, but Nick has something special.
I really like the way my life is now, but he made me feel something I haven't felt in a long time, since Derek.Meredith
The effect he had on Meredith was spectacular. She hasn't smiled this much in a long time. She hasn't been this youthful and free for a long time or ever.
She was dark and twisty Meredith for so long, and sure, Derek changed some things for her, but he knew her when she was dark, and they grew into a relationship together.
It's entirely different having someone encounter her post her dark and twisty and grieving widow phase. She has the baggage, but she's not weighed down by it anymore, so it's someone meeting her as the mature, new Meredith. You know what I mean?
That flash of young Meredith and her admitting to Alex that she hasn't felt that way since Derek gave me all the feels.
The other storyline that did that was April's storyline with Eli. I've said it before, but Sarah Drew may be going out, but dammit, she's going out with a bang. She has put forth her best work to date this season.
Admittedly, that irritating quality of hers returned when she lashed out at Bailey. It was so far out of line. It was rich coming from a woman who got fired, suspended, and some of everything else because of her many mistakes over the years.
When she told Eli that Bailey screwed up, I was gritting my teeth. That's the April that gets under my skin and crawls around. Pardon the analogy. Poor Eli!
April's arc with Eli didn't become interesting until he picked up that she was having a crisis of faith, and he reached out to her. He told her all of the things she needed to hear, and I like the fact that it was a rabbi, someone who was of a different religion than her, helping her understand her faith.
Faith wouldn't be real faith if you only believe when things are good.Rabbi Eli
There was a tweet during the live tweeting that caught my eye and gave me chills. If you search for the importance of Eli in the Bible you'll find this quote:
"Eli in the Bible was a Jewish priest living in the days of the judges and serving God at the tabernacle in Shiloh, a city near the hill country of Ephraim (1 Samuel 1:1, 3). Eli is best remembered for his blessing on Samuel’s mother and for his part in Samuel’s first prophecy."
It has been a long road for April. Outside of Tom, no one else has chipped away at her during this crisis that she has been in. But Rabbi Eli, until his dying breath, is the person who finally broke through to her. He gave her a gift. He reminded her what faith means and reunited her with God.
Eli gave Samuel's mother a blessing.
It could not have been more heartbreaking watching April pretend to be his wife and break down after he died. Good grief, nominate Sarah Drew for an Emmy already. I'm serious!
Every conceivable emotion she could have experienced was all over her face during her scenes with Rabbi Eli. Wow, you guys.
Moving on, I was onboard with Teddy and Owen until I watched their scenes play out.
For one, Owen came knocking on Teddy's door, and he didn't tell her very much before they fell into bed. Teddy was always hung up on Owen, so she just went with it, and it was nice at first.
But then, Owen started talking, and the writing was on the wall. This is not going to work, and it probably shouldn't work. Owen is lost. He has this way of seeming like he's figured it out for a bit, but then he's back to being lost.
I am done! I am not your damn sloppy seconds. I'm not your consolation prize!Teddy
Perhaps it's that friends to lovers trope that made the idea of those two appealing, but in the end, it's not fair to Teddy at all. She was absolutely right in everything that she said. He treats her like she's a consolation prize.
No one deserves to be the second-choice and the back-up. She's always the second choice. She's always the person he goes crawling back to when everything goes to hell.
It's like after he's lived his life with different women, and it doesn't work out, he runs to her like she's a security blanket he pulled off the shelf when it's most convenient for him.
When he started talking about her moving back to Seattle and sharing the cardio department with Maggie, like, what the actual f**k?!
Don't get me wrong, I have a soft spot for Owen, but man he pissed me off during this hour. He's not fair to Teddy. He's never fair to Teddy.
I am in love with you, Teddy.Owen
Teddy deserves someone who will look at her with heart-eyes, put her first, and cherish. She deserves to be someone's first-choice, and that person is not Owen.
Owen deserves happiness, but he has to figure himself out first.
Ugh, Owen. You disappointed me. Kevin McKidd, however, did not. He directed this hour, and since I spent the first half of the review gushing over the camera shots and other techniques, I have him to thank for it.
Over to you, Grey's Fanatics? Did you like this episode? Do you love Nick Mars? Were you rooting for Teddy and Owen? Does Sarah Drew deserve an Emmy? Hit the comments below!
As always, you can watch Grey's Anatomy online here via TV Fanatic!
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.