Wow, that was a lot.
On the one hand, Owen Hunt lives, and it seems that he will get to walk again and operate too. Ironically, for most of Grey's Anatomy Season 18 Episode 9, the real drama didn't pertain to if Owen's life hung in the balance but if his career did.
And in the end, the closest we came to a goodbye was Hayes choosing to resign! Did anyone see that coming?
It's disappointing that we're likely losing Richard Flood's Cormac Hayes. He's a character brimming with so much potential, but they have done absolutely nothing with him, and I don't understand why.
They set him up as a possible love interest for Meredith, and he even got the Cristina stamp of approval. He was a literal gift from her twisted sister. But strangely, they never went anywhere with that.
One can argue that COVID killed whatever storyline was in the works, but it doesn't explain why they never did anything with him in all of this time. Since he showed up, they haven't given the man much of a storyline to work with at all.
The entire MerHayes dating situation happened offscreen, and you couldn't even say that he was in a love triangle with her and Nick because they never gave him enough space and storyline to be a viable option.
It feels like the series wasted Richard Flood and this cool character. If he does leave for good, it's logical since they don't appear to have anything to do for him, but it does leave you wondering what was the point of him in the first place?
And the timing of it is frustrating when it seems like they were finally giving the man something to do. His connection with Megan felt like it was leading somewhere, and we got to see more of that, especially during that fantastic chapel scene. Also, his ethical dilemma over Owen's admission could've led to something meaty, too.
I know how it feels to want to live and not want to live. I know the depth of that grief.Hayes
The Hunt siblings had Hayes spiraling. In some ways, you can't blame the guy for wanting to go back to Ireland.
It felt like we learned more about Hayes in his conversation with both siblings than we've had in some time. With Megan, it became evident that Hayes has also struggled with some dark periods while grieving his wife, and it placed him in a stronger position to understand where Megan was coming from with Farouk.
I appreciated that he opted to tell her everything about the accident and what happened, but he needed to know that she was in a stable place and made sure she called her therapist, too. He admitted that he's not over his wife and can't move on, and that's the reason he stopped dating Mer.
It's too bad we didn't get to delve deeper into his character to see that play out onscreen rather than him reciting these lines every now and then.
And with Owen, we learned about Hayes' ethics. As much as you'd want him to turn the other way and not make a big deal about this, Hayes' ethics matter to him. It's commendable, and since he's a single father, he can't take certain risks. However, I was confused by this arc because Washington is a state that allows Assisted Suicide.
It's giving the weird, nonsensical vibes that Meredith's insurance fraud storyline had.
Hayes turning in his resignation will leave some shockwaves. The hospital is already losing doctors left and right. Teddy already sees through it, too, so she knows something else is to it. She's smart enough to ask Owen about it right out the gate.
Owen's accident didn't have the highest stakes, but at least he got everyone's attention, which is more than one can say for Levi.
Borelli was fantastic with his portion of the hour, and my heart broke for him as he aggressively scrubbed his hands raw for hours after the death of the podcaster. But even the way they handled that situation was bizarre.
Link: I don't want to feel all this again.
Jo: Then don't.
Bailey and Webber got in a screaming match over the Webber Method, and they're giving each other the cold shoulder, but the lack of concern or follow-up with Levi was alarming.
Bailey, who is familiar with how Levi is feeling and saw him rubbing his hands raw, didn't have one of those maternal, sympathetic talks with him like she's done over the years.
She also casually kept telling him to get back to work as if she didn't see how unwell Levi was and how ineffective he would be on the job. And Webber was more concerned about Bailey stopping his program than Levi. As his superiors, it was downright irresponsible for them to leave Levi hanging and carry about with their day.
The new resident made his mark by being the person who got Levi away from that sink. He shared what it was like to lose his first-person and carried him away when Levi couldn't move. It was a heartbreaking scene, but all involved in it were spectacular.
But then, it felt like Helm and Jo dropped the ball when they left the kid alone again, and Nico found him later. It doesn't seem like Levi will be bouncing back from this anytime soon.
And then we have the Amelia, Kai, Link, and Jo saga.
What have they done to Atticus Lincoln, and why have they done it? He has moments when he's unrecognizable, and it feels borderline character assassination.
He spent most of the hour giving Amelia the cold shoulder because he saw her kissing Kai. And while it's understandable that he would have some feelings about the matter, it didn't seem true to what we've known about the guy since he arrived that he would allow it to interfere with the job.
The contrived dissolution of Amelink "because plot" has been one of the most irritating things to come out of recent storylines. It's almost impossible to figure out what exactly caused all of these issues between them in the first place because of how inconsistent the writing has been for the sole purpose of tearing them apart.
Amelia: My life is messy, and I would totally understand if you wouldn't want anything to do with that mess.
Kai: Tell me, is your type always hot, square-jawed men?
Amelia: Lately my type is hot, square-jawed you.
A few seasons ago, Amelink was one of the most consistent and best aspects of this series, so it was irritating enough that they started to tamper with it.
And it's not necessarily about bitterness over this romantic pairing falling apart. The problem is that it never felt like the narrative earned whatever was happening between them.
They didn't build up to it or allow this dissolution to happen organically, and the timeline is so wonky that it leaves you scratching your head.
One minute they showed us that Amelia didn't have any opposition to marriage or another kid, then another, it was the opposite, and she felt so strongly about it that it became a fundamental difference between her and Link. But also, one minute, marriage wasn't a big deal for Link, then randomly, it became some dealbreaker.
Their breakup came across more as a break, and then Amelia rather abruptly moved on when things were still unresolved with her and Link.
The exploration of whatever Amelia was going through during the pandemic with her sobriety wasn't explored deeply. However, at the time, there was still open communication between the pairing and no discussion of actual unhappiness within the relationship.
But now they've been telling us that Amelia was happy, and Link wasn't listening and didn't understand. Both of them are accusing each other of gaslighting, and truthfully, it feels like they're gaslighting us with this whole storyline and their liberal use of the term.
Nothing is wrong with the two of them parting ways, and Kai and Amelia are a nice pairing and a fan-favorite, ironically, like Amelink used to be. Still, the execution and transitions with these storylines, dynamics, and characters haven't been ideal, that's for sure.
You just moved on. You just moved on like the last year didn't matter.Link
Amelia and Link both made valid points during their hallway tirade, even if all the dialogue during that scene was clunky. It's offputting that what read as Link's expression of hurt that Amelia moved on with anyone regardless of their gender left room for some to interpret his misgendering Kai as intentional or bigoted.
But the two went to their respective corners to talk about one another with their new love interests. Frankly, Amelia tearing up while talking to Kai about Link was legitimately the first time she's actually come across as emotional or affected by their breakup, and Scorsone was lovely, capturing those complex raw emotions.
It was refreshing to see Kai respond in a supportive manner. They give Amelia the space to talk and get emotional without it detracting from or threatening their chemistry and relationship, and they cheer Amelia up when necessary.
And Jo got to comfort Link in more ways than one, hyping him up like the lovesick best friend she is and making a move.
Link should move on, but Jo placed herself in the position of being a rebound with the man she's in love with, and this isn't a promising start.
Jo: There are other women who would love to love you, Link.
Link: I am a catch.
Jo: You already mourned her. You already suffered, so just, don't suffer anymore.
They've been building to this for a bit, so JoLink sexytimes isn't a shock. At this rate, why the heck not? But in time, we'll have to see if this is another George and Izzie situation or a Jackson and April one.
Over to you, Grey's Anatomy Fanatics. What are your thoughts on Hayes' departure? Are you a fan of romantic Jolink? Hit the comments below!
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Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.