‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Star Ellen Pompeo Reveals How Far Meredith Will Go to Defend Alex

Orange is the new lab coat? Grey’s Anatomy season 13 got off to a somber start last week with Alex Karev (Justin Chambers) landing behind bars, and Ellen Pompeo tells Us Weekly exclusively that her character, Meredith Grey, is prepared to do whatever it takes to fight for her embattled bestie.

Pompeo, 46, spoke to Us recently at the Uplifting Miracle Worker product launch event with Philosophy skincare, and she reveals Mer will go to bat for Alex, who is facing legal action for beating up Andrew DeLuca (Giacomo Gianniotti) on the ABC medical drama’s season 12 finale.

“I think as long as it's within the law," Pompeo says with a laugh. "Alex is her ride-or-die."

The actress points out that Meredith comes close to threatening DeLuca on the Thursday, September 29, episode, but that the Grey-Sloan Memorial chief of general surgery and board director calms down before doing anything she'll regret.

"Meredith has to pull it back,” Pompeo says. “She took that step toward possibly threatening, and then got her hand slapped by Dr. Bailey, and she doesn’t want to make anything worse for Alex, so she’s had to rein it in. She owns the hospital — she doesn’t need a lawsuit.”

JUSTIN CHAMBERS, ELLEN POMPEO
Justin Chambers and Ellen Pompeo ABC/Byron Cohen

Pompeo says she isn’t sure if Meredith’s romance with Nathan Riggs (Martin Henderson) will continue, as there aren’t any sexy scenes between them in the season’s first five episodes. In the season premiere, Meredith ended things with the surgeon because her sister Maggie Pierce (Kelly McCreary) is so smitten with him.

“We’re still doing the triangle, and Meredith is still keeping the secret from Maggie,” she says of last season’s hookup with the hunky cardiothoracic surgeon.

But what about some fans’ hopes that the mom of three and her longtime pal Alex will someday end up sparking a romance on the show? Pompeo doesn’t advise viewers to hold their breath.

“We have Riggs in the mix, too, so we can’t just go to the Alex place!” she says. “No one knows what will come out of Shonda Rhimes’ mind. I never try to predict the future, in my job or in my real life.”

Tell Us: What are you hoping to see happen in season 13?

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

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