Ready to look back. On Grey’s Anatomy’s Thursday, January 26, midseason premiere, Arizona, Miranda and Jo went to a maximum security prison to help a teenage inmate give birth — and gained perspective on their own lives along the way. Here were the episode’s seven most shocking moments:
1. Only three major characters appeared
After mysteriously going missing for the first few episodes of the season, Arizona (Jessica Capshaw) started the second half of the 13th season as one of only three main characters to appear in the ABC medical drama's hour-long return. She was joined by Miranda (Chandra Wilson) and Jo (Camilla Luddington) as they went to a prison to help a teenage inmate, Kristin, deliver her baby.
On the way to jail, Miranda tried to get Jo to talk about Alex (Justin Chambers), but she refused. (For those in need of a refresher, Alex may be going to jail for beating DeLuca senseless — because he thought DeLuca was hooking up with Jo, but oops! He wasn’t. Classic mix-up?)
“There’s nothing that I can do about it,” Jo said in an attempt to dismiss the conversation. “Whatever happens at the trial tomorrow, happens.”
2. The inmate was not who they expected to treat
After repeatedly telling themselves that they were going to meet “just another patient” (who happened to be a 16-year-old pregnant inmate with a high-security risk), they finally met Kristin. Within the first few minutes, the teen attacked the prison staff doctor, Dr. Eldridge, and broke her fingers because she wouldn’t give her a snack. We’re not sure if this behavior can be chalked up to an extreme case of being #hangry, but by the looks on the doctors’ faces, it’s clear that they were starting to realize that this was not in fact “just another patient.”
From the moment they stepped foot in the hospital, Miranda made it clear that she did not want to operate on an inmate and spent most of her time in the prison silent or just looking around uncomfortably. Arizona finally demanded, “What did prison ever do to you?” but Miranda had no answer.
3. Jo was forced to confront her past
When they first got to the jail, Miranda looked around and bluntly stated, “I would never put myself in a position to be here,” to which Jo snapped: “Nobody intends to be here.”
Later, Arizona left Jo alone with Kristin to respond to a call, and the two began to talk. “I once helped a guy I liked rob a convenience store,” Jo admitted, blaming her past mistakes on “crappy foster parents.”
Kristin sarcastically responded, in what may have been the best line of the episode (not that we’re biased): “Stars: They’re Just Like Us.” When Jo demanded to know what she meant, Kristin said, “You’re trying to act like we’re the same, you and me,” and went on to explain that she grew up in a great household with a mom who made casseroles and that her baby would too.
4. Arizona and Jo defended Kristin
When Dr. Eldridge told Arizona, Jo and Miranda that Kristin would only have 24 hours with her baby after delivery, who would then be handed over to Kristin’s mother to adopt, Arizona and Jo fought back. When Jo argued, “She’s the baby’s mother,” the doctor coldly responded, “She’s a violent felon with a sentence to serve.”
Arizona confronted Kristin’s mother upon learning that she had no intention of bringing the baby to see her mother in jail after she adopted the tyke — and that she didn’t want to be in the delivery room at all.
Kristin’s mother asked, “Do you have a daughter?” When Arizona said she did, Kristin's mom responded: “Keep an eye on her. Pay attention. I don’t know what for because Kristin was perfect. She was beautiful. I never could have imagined. … Pay attention. She’s someone that I don’t even recognize now.”
5. Miranda backed down
As she walked around the prison hospital, avoiding Kristin’s room, another patient asked Miranda for help with a wound. Miranda reluctantly began to examine her and decided to confront Dr. Eldridge about the way the prison hospital was being run.
Dr. Eldridge didn’t take kindly to the advice, saying: “Maybe stay in your own lane, Dr. Bailey.” Miranda, who, quite frankly, was terrifying Us with this whole stay-quiet-and-out-of-everyone’s-business thing, finally came back to life and delivered a classic zinger. “That’s Chief Bailey,” she said. “And I’ve been asked to drive in yours today.”
The doctor took Miranda to the supply closet and showed her how scarce their funding was. Miranda realized she was too harsh on the doctor, and as Miranda left the hospital, she told Eldridge to come see her if she ever wanted a job. We’re happy for her and all, but a potential new doctor at Grey Sloan means a potential new love triangle, power struggle or secret past coming out, so maybe Grey Sloan HR can hold off on hiring until we figure out this season’s 125 other dramatic issues?
6. Jo defied Arizona’s orders — and Miranda came around
When Arizona relayed the message that Kristin’s mother had no intention of letting her daughter see the baby after she was adopted, Jo was all of Us and responded: “I hate people.” Same, girl. Same.
Jo then went against Arizona’s orders and told Kristin the news as they helped her deliver her baby. “I can’t do it alone,” Kristin cried. Miranda grabbed her hand and said, “You’re not.” Kristin told Miranda to get off, but she refused: “I’m holding your hand. You’re not alone.” Aaand cue your Thursday night tears, courtesy of
Dr. Bailey Chief Bailey.
7. Miranda delivers bad news to Jo
On the way home, Miranda told Jo that Alex went to see her the night before to let her know that he was going to go to the DA to take the plea — and that he would be going to prison. Jo made Arizona pull over so that she could throw up, but when Jo got back into the car, she only had two words: “Let’s go.” Arizona hesitated, asking her, “Are you OK?” Jo coldly replied: “Drive the car.”
Grey's Anatomy airs on ABC Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET.
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