Maya and Carina are engaged. This is not a drill—time to sound the wedding bells.
After much back-and-forth and some more and then a little more, our favorite power couple ended Station 19 Season 4 Episode 14 as fiancée and fiancée.
It was a joyous moment, but it took too much time and energy to get there and ultimately dampened the celebration.
From the start, Andy told Maya proposing to Carina so that the pair could stay together wouldn't magically solve their problems.
Although Maya couldn't let her girlfriend leave for Italy, not when there was something she could do so the pair could stay together.
Carina: Marry me. Marry me. I don’t want to just get married because the government says we have to, and I still think marriage was meant to keep women as property, but I’d much rather do something that I don’t want to than lose you.
Maya: Carina, I don’t know if I want kids, and the world is a mess right.
Carina: Yes, the world is a mess, and the world is changing right now as we’re standing here, and it’s beautiful. We can worry about kids later, but what I know is that I want to be in this beautiful, mess of a changing world with you, please. Please, marry me.
Maya then proposed, and from there, it was constant whiplash as Maya and Carina oscillated between marriage proposals and breaking up.
It was unnecessary drama and tainted their eventual engagement, as the show made such a strong case for why they shouldn't get married.
Maya and Carina want different things out of life and have vastly different viewpoints and philosophies.
They see the world so differently, and as Maya pointed out, they don't know each other as well as they thought they did.
Carina sees marriage as a societal constraint that will only end in divorce and resentment, whereas Maya views marriage as the ultimate sign of commitment and love.
Carina is deadset on wanting children, and Maya hasn't given it much thought.
Maya's made no effort to learn Carina's language or culture and has no idea about her girlfriend's anxiety and stress as Carina gets ready to return to Italy.
Maya's suggestion of them taking a break was more a reaction to Carina rebuffing Maya's proposal, but it does make some sense with all the facts laid out in front of us.
Maya: I thought we were building a future together.
Carina: We are. We don’t need to be married to do that.
Maya: But you’re moving back to Italy.
Carina: What do you want me to do about that? That wasn’t my plan either. Do you think I want to move back to a country that reminds me of my dead mother, my dead brother, and my very difficult father? I’m sorry I have to leave. If there was any other way…
Maya: There is. We could get married.
Carina: Um, I’m not getting married just because of the visa.
Maya: Just because?
Carina: You know what I mean.
Maya: I really don’t apparently.
Carina: Maya, this is not something you do to solve a problem.
Maya: I don’t see any other way.
Carina: We are doing the other way. I’ve already left Grey Sloan. I got a job in Italy. I’m about to go to the airport. We can’t get married just because you want to be apart from me.
Maya: That’s not why we would be getting married.
Carina: That’s why we moved in together.
Maya: That was just the bureaucracy of it.
Carina: So is this marriage idea. It’s just bureaucracy. The only reason it’s coming up is because I’m not from this country, and I can stay in yours. That it’s.
Maya: That’s it? That’s a pretty good reason.
It wouldn't have been the worse thing in the world for the pair to take some time to decide where they stand and what they want out of life, but after a quick call with Gabriela, Carina decided she wanted to marry Maya even if she would later regret it.
Carina literally mentioned that she doesn't want to get married, as she proposed to her girlfriend.
The music in the background and camera shots made it all so romantic, but in reality, it wasn't.
It's as if Maya and Carina are entering into this marriage and expect it to fail, or at least Carina does.
It feels like the wrong foot to start a new life on and would almost be better if the couple decided to get married purely so Carina could stay in the country.
On paper, they would be married, but otherwise, nothing would have changed.
That way, it would still feel like they were building toward something instead of accepting the possibility of defeat.
Maybe, I'm off base, and I want nothing more than Maya and Carina to be happy.
Maya: I hate this.
Carina: I know.
Maya: Everything you said is true. I was so worried about you leaving, that I never asked you how you felt. I just assumed that you were happy to go home for a little bit.
Maya: I know your home home is in the south, I just thought…
Carina: Italy hasn’t felt like home since my mama left when I was 16 years old. It just became the place where I lived. I didn’t find my home until I met you. You’re my home, and I’m being kicked out of my home in the middle of a pandemic. It sucks.
Maya: And you’ve been pretending it was no big deal so I wouldn’t lose it.
They're my favorite couple and are so cute together, but the storytelling wasn't there for me to fully support their decision.
The Marina 'shipper in me is beyond ecstatic, but the critical reviewer isn't sure they're doing this, beyond Carina getting to stay in the country -- for the right reasons.
Looking back, throughout the series' entire run, no one has technically gotten engaged or married for the right reasons, or rather love wasn't the only reason they got engaged or married.
Andy and Sullivan got married because Pruitt was dying, and she wanted her father to be at her wedding, and Vic and Ripley got engaged, so they could stay together and keep their jobs as firefighters.
It seems like a weird message for the show to send out, as Maya and Carina are now the third engagement motivated by something other than love.
But maybe, I'm looking at this too simplistically.
Maybe television has romanticized our ideas about true love and marriage so that we imagine every love story as some epic fairytale when it's usually far from it.
Maybe this is an accurate representation of life and marriage in the real world.
Maya: I should be running home, wanting to soak up every last minute with her…
Andy: But, it sucks. As someone who recently weathered a separation from the one she loves, I wish I could say it won’t suck, but it will.
Maya: Oh, so inspiring. Thank you. I keep thinking maybe I should just propose, and then she won’t have to leave.
Andy: Well, um, as someone who also recently got married super-fast, it’s not the solution to your problems. You two are meant to be. You’ll get through this. Now go home and soak up every minute.
After all, Meredith and Derek got legally married on Grey's Anatomy so they could adopt Zola, and that didn't detract from their love story.
So, who am I to pass judgment?
Elsewhere, Jack and Inara spent some quality alone time together, and Jack's begun to realize he's with Inara for the wrong reasons.
He loves her and the instant family that comes from being with her, but Jack isn't in love with Inara.
He's trying to convince himself that he does love her because of how much he cares for her and Marcus, but in the end, both of them are going to get hurt, and the cracks in their relationship are already beginning to show.
When Inara wanted to partake in some sextracurricular activities, Jack's face as they hooked up on the kitchen counter said it all.
The firefighter would be more than happy to settle into the role of husband and father so long as things remain PG-13.
Family is something Jack has been searching for his entire life, and he feels like he's finally found one with Inara, Marcus, and Marsha.
Jack: You don’t need to do all of this.
Inara: All what?
Jack: I like you so much, and I care about you. I love taking care of you and Marcus.
Inara: So that means I can't be sexy because you like taking care of me and my kid?
Jack: No, no, that’s not coming out right. What I’m saying is you don’t need to be something that you’re not because I did some crazy things in my past. I don’t need that from you.
Inara: I’m not. Jack, I’m a whole person. Believe it or not, I like sex too.
Jack: I know you do. I’m just saying it doesn’t have to be all wild, and with your history…
Inara: Oh, I see because you rescued me from an abusive situation, you think I’m made of glass.
Jack: That’s not.
Inara: I’m not just some damsel you need to keep rescuing, Jack.
He'd happily -- OK, probably not happy, but he would -- forgo sex to keep living this make-believe life he's constructed with these people.
Jack can't keep pretending forever. At some point, he'll have to tell Inara the truth; she deserves that much.
However, Jack is such a standup guy that he'd probably never think of breaking things off with Inara unless he gets a push from a friend, say like Andy.
At first, it'll be hard for both of them, but in the long run, it's the right call.
Jack and Inara deserve to be with someone who can return their love and devotion, not a partner who's on a different page.
Hopefully, Jack can remain in Inara and Marcus's lives, but that may be too big of an ask right away.
Because whatever Jack may be faking with Inara, he does love Marcus with all his heart.
Lastly, Ben had his surgery and was forced to confront his fears of losing part of his manhood head-on.
The anesthesia-induced hallucination was quite a trip -- pun intended -- but in the end, Ben realized he was making the right call.
That’s not what makes you a man, Benjamin. It’s what would have made you a dead man.Mother
Rationally, Ben knows that only having one testicle doesn't make him any less of a man, husband, father, or firefighter, but it's not always that easy to accept what we know to be true.
So what exactly did it take? A vivid hallucination with various versions of himself, his deceased mother, an old girlfriend, and Joey. Piece of cake, right?
It also didn't help that Ben felt alone as he went into surgery.
Bailey was MIA, which the series tried to explain away with her having an emergent surgery.
Bailey may have been late to her own wedding because she was operating, but that was because the patient was Adele.
So unless it was Meredith Grey on the operating table, there's no way Bailey would have missed Ben's surgery, even it was something pretty standard and routine.
Additionally, Ben had his surgery at some random hospital instead of going to Grey Sloan.
Understandably, he doesn't want his friends and former colleagues pitying him or seeing him as a patient, but Grey Sloan has the best doctors in Seattle.
Mother: Benjamin Warren.
Mother: I did not raise a fool.
Ben: Why are you here?
Mother: Because you’re scared, and that makes you stupid.
Wouldn't Ben feel more comfortable having a top-notch doctor that he knows and trusts before the surgery rather than some stranger?
Fortunately, Ben had his firefighting family at his side, and it was sweet that Andy and Sullivan came to be there for him.
Even though it was a relatively easy surgery, Ben was still scared, and Andy and Sullivan could tell, so they showed up. Pruitt would have been so proud.
Some stray thoughts:
- Why weren't Vic, Travis, and Dean at the hospital? I get that they were at a Black Lives Matter protest, but they couldn't have swung by to check up on Ben? Weirdly, Dean wasn't there after everything he and Ben went through in the freezing water on Station 19 Season 4 Episode 13.
Who would have thought that Gabriela would have been the one to push Carina to consider Maya's marriage proposal? Maybe the fiery Italian isn't all bad after all.
Did Bailey and Ben officially adopt Joey, or did I miss something? I thought Joey was just living at their house, and because he was 17 or 18, they weren't even fostering him. That doesn't mean he's not their son; I'm just confused on the specifics.
So what did you think, Station 19 Fanatics?
What are your thoughts on Maya and Carina's engagement?
When will Jack break things off with Inara?
Why were so many of Ben's family and friends MIA from his surgery?
Don't forget to hit the comments below to let me know your thoughts. If you missed the latest episode, remember you can watch Station 19 online at TV Fanatic.
Jessica Lerner is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.