Thursday, December 17, 2020

REVIEW: 'Grey's Anatomy' - Meredith's Condition Improves Until She Exerts Herself Once More in 'No Time for Despair'

ABC's Grey's Anatomy - Episode 17.06 "No Time for Despair"

Grey Sloan Memorial faces new pressures as Seattle Pres is overloaded, and Grey Sloan is now on surge capacity protocol. Meanwhile, Owen and Amelia are faced with one of the most controversial surgeries of their careers.

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of ABC's Grey's Anatomy.

"No Time for Despair" was written by Felicia Pride and directed by Pete Chatmon

The pandemic is growing worse at Grey Sloan. It's not just the hospital having to convert the cafeteria into overflow space for more patients either. Meredith's condition is getting worse as well. Everyone believes that she has started to bounce back. Her story could be one of survival. Death consumes these doctors now. Her recovery can serve as inspiration. However, it's false for them to place their stability on how she is doing. They all have this immense love for her. They want her to recover from this vicious disease. And yet, it's also the reality that she will be suffering from its effects for a long time. Things may still take a deadly turn for her. The episode ends with her being placed on a ventilator. It may all seemingly be a result of her returning to her duties as a doctor. She saves a life. That exertion is enough to reveal the damage already done to her lungs. That may have been inevitable though. The moment she tried to exert herself would have exposed this as the truth. That's how the symptoms can develop as well. Her colleagues are terrified that a ventilator means that she too is likely to die. That has been the expectation. Whenever a case must take that dire step, it's seen as a last resort. Teddy wants to remain hopeful. The statistics at this point have started to improve. There are no guarantees though. This disease affects people in different ways. Some only develop mild symptoms. Others require hospitalization. Some have the influence to receive all the cutting edge treatments. The doctors are trying to stay informed about the best way to treat their patients. The pandemic is only growing. It's daunting. It's potentially breaking the doctors as well. Koracick didn't have a connection with his roommate. Once he dies though, he expresses grief in a shocking and visceral way. Meredith and Koracick can lean on each other because they have experienced so many of the same things in life. And yet, their cases differ as well. Meredith offered him hope. She brought out laughter too. She cares about the people around her. That makes her a great surgeon. She offers her help whenever she can. People rely on her. And now, they are tasked with saving her. That narrows their focus of what they need to do in order to prevail with this disease. And yet, it's so widespread. Plus, it's not the only danger that lurks in the world. Amelia has to save the live of a man who kidnapped two girls for a sex trafficking ring. She does so because it's her job. She took an oath to do no harm. That is meaningful to her. She is still outraged. Maggie wants the people around her to be angry with the system that produced all of this tragedy for young Black girls in the first place. She has that lived experience. She offers sympathy. However, she too is fighting a daunting war. One where she hopes to make a difference. But one where she knows people are indifferent because of who the victims are. COVID-19 patients are overwhelmingly people of color. As such, the controlling powers of the world treat their deaths with no compassion. Maggie sees those issues so clearly. She is angry at how the world views people who look like her. And yet, she gets the uplifting, happy ending at the end of all of this with Winston coming to be with her. That development felt inevitable. It's still a time to rejoice though. Someone needs that happiness in their lives. It certainly wasn't going to come from Teddy who continues to do damage even though she tries to be a bit more honest with herself about the destruction choices she has made throughout her life. A pattern is emerging for her. It still seems like it's taking forever for the show to get to a point with this particular story. That never distracts the narrative too long though. It's a moment and then the action goes right back into the hospital. Richard fears the profound impact this will leave on the doctors and nurses who have now spent months battling this disease. Jo may be choosing to leave this darkness behind for a life of joy. That should be a valid choice for her as well. It's just one that may always be associated with this time in her medical career facing the most dire pandemic the world has seen in over a century. These big changes are constantly occurring. The developments happen rapidly. One moment Meredith is awake and getting up to date about everything that has happened. And then, she is right back to being on the beach in her idyllic limbo.