Despite all the emotions running rampant on the intense Grey’s Anatomy season 11 finale, Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) was surprisingly the one who kept it together the most.
At the core of the episode — which was packed with breakups, makeups, tears, and a glorious dance party — was the couple involved in the big tunnel collapse last week. Everyone gathered to try to save Keith, still trapped inside his car, after April (Sarah Drew) brought him in. It was uncertain if he would live, but with some help from all of the doctors and even the interns — aka Stephanie (Jerrika Hinton)’s "ducklings" — they were able to save him, his girlfriend, Joan, and their baby.
Think that was dramatic? The episode kicked off with a breakup and ended with a wedding, and you have to see what happened to all of your favorite couples in the big season 11 ender.
Catherine and Richard
After a blowout fight in front of almost everyone at Grey-Sloan, Catherine (Debbie Allen) took off her engagement ring and gave it back to Richard (James Pickens Jr.). Instead of going after her, he angrily told Bailey (Chandra Wilson) that she would be the new Chief of Surgery.
When they still didn’t reconcile by the end of the day, Meredith confronted them with a good ol’ guilt trip. “My husband is dead. Yeah, I’m gonna play that card,” Meredith yelled. “You are both very much alive and you yell and argue and fight. And you should both be thrilled to be able to do those things. I would give anything to be able to do those things [with Derek]. And none of those things are a reason not to be with a person you love.”
From there, they had a long back-and-forth about boundaries in their relationship — both professionally and personally — and decided to get married. Unfortunately, one of the terms was that Bailey would have to go against a candidate of Catherine’s choosing for chief, but Miranda wasn’t threatened. “It’s not fair to the other candidate … losing by that wide a margin because I am primed for this job. It’s already mine,” she quipped. Get it, Bailey!
Alex and Jo
Remember how Meredith wanted to move in with Alex (Justin Chambers)? He never asked Jo (Camilla Luddington) about it, and when he did, it didn’t go so well. “You said you were putting down roots here. Congrats — now you got a house and a family,” she said before storming off.
When Alex caught up with her later, he explained that Mer was his best friend and even though he didn’t want to piss Jo off or make her run, he couldn’t say no to Meredith. “All that crap I said about setting down roots, I want with you,” he explained. “I want my house, my career … maybe someday a dog. It’s all supposed to be with you.”
Even though Jo didn’t give him an answer right away, she put an offer on a loft for them to live in and brought him to see it. It looked like a total crime scene, but when she proposed they have a place just for them and said “I love you,” it sealed the deal. Alex will probably be moving out of Meredith’s old house in season 12!
Jackson and April
Things were looking good for Jackson (Jesse Williams) and April. After she brought Keith in the car to the hospital and was able to save his life, she talked to Jackson about how this trauma felt like being in the Army and how it was her true calling. Surprisingly, he said “maybe you should go back” and gave a sweet speech about how he saw a light come back to her after their son Samuel’s death.
But in Shonda Rhimes’ world, there’s always a catch, and the next thing he said was, “April, I love you so much, but I don’t think I can be here when you come back.” Since she didn’t ever ask him how he was coping or grieving, he gave her an ultimatum: stay here with him or go and lose him forever.
We weren’t given a concrete answer, but seeing April sobbing with Arizona after Richard and Catherine’s wedding was not a good sign for Japril.
Amelia and Owen
Amelia (Caterina Scorsone) and Owen (Kevin McKidd) had a string of awkward encounters before they had a sweet one. At one point, he even thought she wanted to get back together.
Their biggest moment came after Meredith brought Amelia her old phone with a voicemail from Derek on it and told her to listen when she was alone. At the reception, Amelia tried to listen but couldn’t bring herself to do it. Owen helped her press play, and it was the message from Derek’s last ride on the ferry. “I love you. I love our family, and we’re going to keep doing this. I’ll see you when I get home,” he said to Meredith, and we erupted in tears the moment that she did.
The final moment of the episode saw Amelia come out on the balcony to talk to Meredith and Maggie. Since Maggie had just been crying over her parents divorcing, Meredith took the moment to help solve everyone’s problems.
“Derek would have loved this. He had a big, noisy family,” she said of the wedding crowd. “I want this to be my last memory of this house. … We have to dance it out.” And their dancing was the perfect way to end an emotional rollercoaster of a season.
Tell Us: What did you think of the way Grey’s Anatomy ended season 11?
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