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Grey's Anatomy: Kung Fu Fighting

“There’s this thing about being a surgeon . . . a true surgeon never admits they need help unless absolutely necessary.”
—Meredith Grey

And so the scene is set for “Kung Fu Fighting.”

This eppie opens with Callie asleep on Christina’s couch and Meredith and Christina psychoanalyzing Mer in the bedroom. Christina actually suggests to Mer she stop having break-up sex with Derek. They look at each other with the ol’ “as if” look. Mer admits that the more available Derek becomes, the more she moves away.

Meanwhile, in a parallel story, Richard is living on Derek’s land, his trailer parked next to Derek’s. When Derek offers trout for breakfast because he’s been up fishing at 3:00am, again, Richard proposes a “Gentleman’s Evening” to take their mind off their women.

Izzie is watching George sleep, which is always creepy. George is apparently sleeping all over the hospital, now that Callie has given up their hotel room. Izzie tells George she’s tired of it and she wants all the sex. She will even be shaving her legs in honor of their first time (since their first time).

Emergency comes in—two women in a massive contest for the “wedding of their dreams” have beaten each other up in a serious way because whoever let’s go of a wedding dress first loses. Neither will let go, despite their battered states. The docs are having a hard time attending to the ladies. Callie’s upset because George’s patient is one of the women and hers is the other. Sloan suggests torturing George—he is an intern after all. Callie likes the idea. When one of the women needs to have her shoulder popped back into place, Sloan suggests George stand in proxy for her. George is heartily mocked. Callie is happy.

Another emergency comes in—a guy fell 12,000 feet when his parachute didn’t open. As one might expect, Christina’s psyched, given the surgery potential! How much do we love Christina?! But for whatever freaky reason, the skydiving guy can speak. He’s perfectly lucid. Turns out he only has appendicitis. The instructor busts into the emergency room, completely freaking out, having watched the terrible fall. The skydiver is about to say something tender to his instructor when she suddenly tells him she’ll destroy his jump video and runs out.

Izzie’s heart patient needs a catheter. He launches into a huge schpiel about how all he wants to do is get well so he can go see the Ivory-billed woodpecker. Suddenly, Christina appears in the door to tell Izzie about the parachuter so Izzie will give up her heart patient. Christina wants in on any cardio surgeries with the new cardio, Dr. Hahn. “I am married to cardio. . . . there is no way you are hardcore enough to handle cardio,” says Christina. Izzie is obviously insulted.

Alex finds Lexie working on charts in the closet, hiding from Yang. Alex warns her that every intern class has a runt of the litter and she is it. He brings her on rounds with him to help her back on her feet.

Turns out Izzie’s heart patient can’t tolerate the anesthesia and so Dr. Hahn can’t run a catheter up through his leg to alleviate the blockage. It also means she can’t do surgery and hence, he will die. Of course, he brings up not being able to see the dang bird, thereby playing on Izzie’s oversensitive heart strings.

Meanwhile, George is suffering total humiliation holding his end of the dress so the shoulder patient won’t lose the contest. Sloan keeps digging the knife in with horrible jabs. All the residents and interns are gathered around mocking George too until Christina turns up with a video of the skydiver. They all run off to watch this. The whole time he’s falling, he’s claiming his love for his instructor.

There are intermittent scenes of Mer and Yang psychoanalyzing Mer. As I’m sure you can guess, these scenes are boring because most of us are really OVER Mer/Der. Incredibly tiresome.

“Being aware of your crap and actually overcoming your crap are two very different things.”
—Christina Yang

Christina researches and finds a way Hahn can operate on the heart patient without anesthesia—he’d be wide awake though numb from the neck down. For 5-6 hours. Awake. With his chest open. When the patient balks, Izzie reminds him about the Ivory-billed woodpecker. And Hahn gives the surgery to Izzie, even though the solution came from Christine.

Sloan and Derek talk to Hahn about her awake-heart-surgery. Then, bizaarely, they ask her what she thinks a “Gentleman’s Evening” includes. They’ve been debating this since the chief announced wanting to have one. Prostitutes? Strippers? What could this mean? They want to know. As a result, best line of the show comes from Dr. Hahn: “Are you two a couple? Just checking.”

Izzie walks up to George while he’s being proxy for the dress to let him know they’ll have to push back all the sex because of the awake-heart surgery. She’s nervous that she’s not hardcore enough for this surgery compared to Christina. George tells her to be “hard core Izzie” with a little Billy Idol sneer. Really cute. Why don’t people like them as a couple? I think they’re adorable.

The Chief gets on Hahn for not running the awake-heart-surgery by him. She returns fire by asking him if Burke, Sloane, and Derek have to run their surgeries by him. Or is it just part of their “Gentleman’s Evening”? She notes this get-together she’s heard about sounds a lot like how in the old days law firms would have “get-togethers” at the country club. You know, she says understatedly. The one’s that didn’t allow blacks in. Point taken.

Post-coital, Mer reminds Derek about when he pulled her out of the water and how clear everything seemed then, as if she were washed clear. She really goes on and on. They are naked, just having had sex in some doctor’s sleeping lounge. Does anyone actually sleep in these lounges? Why don’t people ever get walked in on? I love this show but the sex-in-the-lounge thing is ridiculous!

George bonds with the woman on the other end of the wedding dress. All she can talk about is how much this means to her mother. It’s pretty sad really. Then she passes out and George calls for a crash cart. Into surgery she goes and George gets to be in on it. The whole time he talks about the humiliation she must have felt holding onto that dress. The chief notes that Sloan was hazing him but George says it’s all ok.

Izzie talks her patient through his heart surgery. She provides him with a picture of his bird and music to listen too. She’s our wonderful, sensitive Izzie. Then, he starts freaking out that people are watching him (the gallery is full of docs who want to see surgery on an un-anesthetized patient). As a birder, he’s usually the one watching and being watched is too much for him. He starts begging to be covered up because everyone is staring at him and finally starts screaming to stop the surgery. His heartbeat is going like gangbusters in the background. Izzie tells him to imagine all the watching surgeons as birds. So he describes all our favorite docs as birds by their personalities. Touching . . . not! It’s way over the top. But Izzie saves the day, which is the point. And she does it her own way, not by being “hard core.”

The wedding-contest chick with the shoulder out of place wakes from surgery and all she cares about is who won. Even after hearing that her competitor nearly died and is in surgery, all she can ask is, “Who won?” In one of the great old-Callie moments, she replies, “Sometimes you need to know when to let go. So just let go already. Just frickin’ let go.” Obviously she’s speaking to herself as well. Subtlety—not a strong suit of Shonda’s.

Up in the gallery of the awake-heart-surgery, Christina and Derek are sitting together. Christina notes all the wonderful things Izzie did in the surgery. Derek notes that Mer won’t let him take care of her anymore. Both are at loose ends in their respective ways.

After their surgeries, Callie and George meet in the hall. Callie tells George she’s letting go. Seems they may be able to interact like normal folks now.

The parachuter is disappointed that after his crazy fall all he has to show is an appendix scar. It’s almost embarrassing. Mer tells him the feeling goes away—the feeling of clarity and invincibility that he’s high on right now. It goes away and the fear and worry comes back. She tells him she saw his tape, knows he loves his instructor, and encourages him to tell her how he feels because if he doesn’t, the appendix scar won’t be his only scar. Once again, doctor advice that’s self-referential. Except I think by know we know Mer won’t tell Der this herself. She’ll just settle for passing on the advice to her patient, moaning to Christina about it in future episodes, and talking about it in her voice-over.

Finally, the “Gentleman’s Evening” is on. Sloan and Derek have been speculating all day about what’s involved. They are waiting at Derek’s trailer almost nervously. The chief walks up and they grill him. He replies simply that this is it. A “Gentleman’s Evening” is an evening without women. Until, of course, Dr. Hahn walks into the campfire light as well. They have a rip-roaring evening of Monopoly, far away from their real-life crap and Dr. Hahn becomes “one of the boys.”

In one of the closing scenes, Lexie propositions Alex, who she has been shadowing all day. He replies, “I’m not a nice guy. I’m not looking for a relationship, cuz I’m not good at them. I’m kind of hung up on someone else anyway. The only thing I can give you is sex and that’s never enough for girls like you.” And off he walks into the night.

Izzie and George are on her bed, ready to do the deed for the first time since their first encounter. But suddenly Izzie is crying like a baby about how exhausted she is from her day, from the surgery, from everything. I mean the girl’s a sobbing mess all of a sudden. George tells her its fine but quite frankly, he looks kind of pissed off. They go to sleep. Or at least they lay down and Izzie goes to sleep, snuffling to herself. George is tragically wide awake and unhappy looking. Is he just tired of all the women in his life or is he suddenly seeing Izzie in a new light, compared to the tough-as-nails Callie? Only future episodes will tell.

“Sometimes, you have to give yourself permission for not being hardcore.”
—Meredith Grey

Mer tells Christina she can’t stop seeing Derek. It’s not about the sex, she says. It’s about the moment afterwards, when the world stops and she feels safe. She’s not ready to give that up. The fact that Mer’s best moment with Derek is not during sex but after confirms that she needs to walk away from him and leave him to me. The girl just does not have the proper appreciation. I mean really!!!

Just as she’s trying to sleep, however, Mer is disturbed by laughing. She goes into the hallway to catch Lexie and Alex half-clothed in the doorway to his room. Now let me just point out that Mer was just in the same bed with Christina, which would suggest they were at Christina’s apartment. But apparently not. Apparently they are having a sleep-over at Meredith’s house. And why Lexie and Alex are standing the doorway to his room scantily clad, who knows. Who cares? Fantasies of Alex with his shirt off will wing me off to sleep.

-- Tracy Blanchard

Posted by on November 1, 2007 10:57 PM
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