Ellen Pompeo Gripes About Fans Doubting Future of Grey's Anatomy After McDreamy's Death: It's "Difficult for My Ego"

Ellen Pompeo and Patrick Dempsey as Meredith Grey and Derek Shepherd on Grey's Anatomy Credit: Scott Garfield/ABC via Getty Images

Who needs a man, anyway?! Sure, Grey’s Anatomy may have killed off Patrick Dempsey’s hunky and brilliant Dr. Derek Shepherd last season, but series star Ellen Pompeo is tired of fans doubting her ability to help maintain the ABC medical drama’s hit status without her TV husband.

“Annalise Keating carries [How to Get Away With Murder], Olivia Pope carries [Scandal]. But somehow, Meredith Grey needs someone,” Pompeo, 45, complained in the new Entertainment Weekly about how people seem to perceive her character. “Why can’t I just be the lead of the show the way Annalise and Olivia can? Why can’t I be on that poster by myself?”

Why not indeed! After all, the show is named after her character and no one else. (We suppose it could’ve been Little Grey eventually, but, well … RIP.)

“Let’s keep it really real for a second and say this is really difficult for my ego,” she admitted to the magazine. “It’s okay! We all have one!”

If the actress needs an ego boost after all the doubts fans have expressed since Derek’s shocking death, she could take another gander at her cover for the latest issue of EW. Because really, who needs a man to spice that picture up? Pompeo looks amazing in the solo shot, posing nearly nude in little more than an open doctor’s coat, stethoscope, and sexy red pumps.

That’s right. McDreamy who? 

Grey’s Anatomy Season 12 premieres Thursday, Sept. 24, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.