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TV REVIEW: Secrets Are Unveiled in “The Great Pretender”

BY Lisa Casas

Published 9 years ago

TV REVIEW: Secrets Are Unveiled in “The Great Pretender”

After last week’s trail of April/Jackson tears, tonight’s Grey’s offered us a bright happy smile with its funny intact. “The Great Pretender” showed us that our favorite medical drama has not lost is sense of humor after all these years. This one won’t go down as an all-time fave, but it is just what the doctor ordered after last week’s baby tragedy. Let’s take a look at Meredith’s big, fat secret, Owen’s shiny new romance, Ben’s brother/sister transformation, and Alex dropping a bomb.


What Are You Hiding?

Meredith returns from her probably hot, sex-filled weekend in DC with Derek, acting sketchy and dodging questions about her reunion with hubby.

“Everyone’s getting freaky but me,” laments Callie.

Not so fast, Torres. The look on Meredith’s face says she kept the freak time to a minimum. We aren’t the only ones to suspect Mer’s assertions that she had a fine time in Washington. Co-persons Alex and Maggie question each other about the big Mer/Der weekend, both knowing something’s up.

Pierce reveals to big sis that she knows. She knows her siser was not in DC because Derek called her three times looking for his wife. Oops!

Meredith’s more concerned with what Maggie said to her husband than in coming clean. “What did you say when he called?” A shower, a nap and performing an emergency rectal surgery were the alibis. Quick thinking, sis. Meredith STILL won’t say where she was, insisting it’s “not a big deal.” Maggie wants answers, feeling more than hurt that her sister won’t confide in her.

Meredith finally admits to Maggie, “I went to the airport, went to the gate, “and I just stood there… I didn’t get on the plane.” She didn’t know how to tell anyone, so she holed up for the weekend in a hotel.

She later confesses to part time person Alex, “It was amazing. It was just me for three days. I wasn’t anybody’s wife, or mother, or doctor. If I’d gone to DC we would have fought.”

Meredith adds, I don’t want to leave him, but I don’t want to be with him right now. That miracle recovery we thought was coming with a DC reunion will have to be put on hold. Our favorite couple is nowhere close to getting back together.


(ABC/Richard Cartwright)


Everyone’s Happy?

Herman is a bundle of giggles in this one, laughing at the news of Jo stripping in front of Arizona in an effort to hit the shower first. “Residents gone wild,” she jokes, taking further pleasure when Alex tattles that the blonde one got “handsy” with an intern. Herman seems to revel in the fact that Arizona isn’t as buttoned up as she once thought, even making a “you finally got interesting” comment.

Alex is also a happy little Karev tonight, giving Arizona hell and teasing her mercilessly about seeing Jo naked. He says he’s “down for whatever” and hilariously accuses Robbins of checking out his girl’s ass. Arizona’s mortified, rushing off embarrassed.

Amelia and Owen continue their awkward flirtation and dance around their obvious attraction. Neither one seems to know what to do with the other.

Callie complains to Amelia about not having any game. Amelia admits she used to have game, but it may have been drug induced. “Game over,” says Torres.

(ABC/Richard Cartwright) KELLY MCCREARY

(ABC/Richard Cartwright)

Even the medical case of the night was knee slapper. A would-be fiancé brings in his girlfriend who passed out and took a tumble down a flight of stairs as he was proposing. She admits to the docs that she faked the fainting because she didn’t want to break “his tender little quivering heart.”

She’s disgusted by the thought of taking it to the next level with boyfriend, Todd. So disgusted she would rather throw herself down the stairs than face naked time with Todd. He’s super sweet in a sickening, way too much sugar, coma-inducing way. She can’t break up with him, but Callie’s up for the challenge. She does the Todd dump, pushing him out of the room, saying he deserves someone who loves him.

The cute banter and “aw shucks” moments were a far cry from the major snot cry-inducing dead Avery baby story line of last week. It wasn’t all smiles and giggles though. This is Grey’s after all.

Brotherly Love Lost

The one hanky moment of the night came to us through Ben and his little brother. Ben, his brother Kurt, and Bailey are out in the woods dumping the guys’ dad’s ashes in his favorite place. Little bro collapses, taking a nasty tumble down a hill.

A concerned Ben accuses Kurt of drug use, knowing something is not right with his brother. Meredith and Bailey figure out he’s transitioning. He/she is transgender wanting to live life as a woman.

“Your brother is becoming your sister,” Miranda explains. Ben laughs not believing the news and immediately calls for a psych evaluation for Kurt. The fact that older brother thinks something must be mentally wrong with his sibling for wanting this lets us know this will not be an easy transition for either brother.

Sometimes you’ve just gotta love Bailey. She comes in for the save in her usual no-nonsense way, saying you are going to buck up and tell her you love her no matter what. Instead, Ben confronts his brother telling him there is no way he feels the way feels. Kurt argues that he’s known who he is since he was five. “I’m just supposed to be okay with his? I’m just supposed to accept this?” Ben storms off and there’s no happy ending with this story line.

Miranda gives her husband her best “I’m so disappointed in you speech.” Ben says he feels lied to, twenty five years of lies and storms off again. Bailey brings in Jackson to talk plastic surgery and the proper way to transition. It looks like this one will turn into a major storyline (we imagine with major tears) over the next few episodes as Ben struggling to accept his brother.


(ABC/Richard Cartwright)


We’ve Got Game

Amelia tries to get in the game, showing up on Hunt’s doorstep with a bottle of sparkling water. She awkwardly admits, “I’m sorry I have literally no game.” She turns to leave with Owen chasing after her. He lands a mighty kiss, and we cheer. Yes, we all miss Cristina and think she is definitely Hunt’s person, but who does not want to see him happy and smiling? And with the hell Amelia’s gone through with two writing teams (think Private Practice), we know she deserves a little smile time as well.

Callie’s getting her game and groove back at a bar making goo goo eyes at a cute boy. “Dance with me,” she flirts, pulling him on the dance floor. We haven’t seen a Torres smile that bright since Arizona and she got back together for the fifth time. It was nice seeing her dance it out (even if it was with a man).

In a scene that leaves us with a smile matching Callie’s, Meredith and Alex are on the couch talking. Alex thinks about being grumpy, asking Mer if Pierce wasn’t available for this special talk time, but then he remembers this a “happy” Grey’s episode.

Jo comes bursting into the room semi-naked, and embarrassed. She rushes off asking her beau for a little warning when they have guests next time.

“I’m gonna marry that girl,” Alex says. What? Jaw hitting the floor. Could this be the year of Alex fabulously happy, no girlfriend dying or going crazy or stealing his job?

Meredith has her own revelation, admitting to Alex, “I don’t want to fight anymore. I don’t want to leave him, but I definitely do not want to be with him right now.”

The power couple of Grey’s is on the rocks, but it’s strangely okay. This season has been about exploring the power that is Meredith Grey, and although we miss Derek, that exploration has been interesting. We’ve seen Mer come out from Derek’s shadow, and truly come into her own. “The Great Pretender” wouldn’t let us be sad (no real tears tonight), instead, giving us something to smile about. It let us pretend that last week didn’t happen (no scenes with a grieving April), that Meredith is really okay without Derek, and that love and happily ever afters stand a chance.

What did you think of Meredith’s turn as “The Great Pretender?” Surprised at Ben’s unaccepting attitude toward brother Kurt? Wasn’t Bailey the best in her support of brother-in-law? And most importantly (to us), will we see a Grey’s wedding this season involving our favorite Karev who so deserves that happy ending we mentioned earlier?

 Grey’s Anatomy airs Thursdays on ABC at 8 p.m.

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