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  • How is Callie able to essentially run the ortho department when she's introduced? She's not even in her final year of residency, but performs most orthopedic procedures unsupervised, and generally behaves like an attending.
    • They do talk about an ortho attending in sixth season when Callie is pushing for an attending job. She mentions the guy is a "dinosaur" and that when people wanted the best, they came to her. It's probably a little like what Cristina had with that cardio guy, the department is his, but he tells her that as long as she doesn't kill any patients, she can do what she pleases with the cases.
  • So, has Seattle Grace simply stopped performing cardiothoracic surgeries? After Dr Burke left, Dr Dixon didn't take the position of Head of Cardiothoracics, and now Christina is putting in penile implants while whining that there is no cardio God to learn from. Surely heart surgery is a major part of any hospital's workload, but we're given no hint of who is performing them, or why Christina isn't assisting them.
    • Didn't Hahn replace Burke?
      • She did for a while, but left Seattle Grace in season 5. In the beginning of season 6, there is no Head of Cardio as far as I know.
      • There's a new one now, I forget her name.
      • That would be Dr. Teddy Altman. Teddy leaves at the end of season 8 and is replaced by someone else, though Cristina's doing a lot of the work.
  • Seriously, how many tragedies can happen to one person in a space of six years? Pretty much everybody has it hard, but Meredith and Izzie are the worst offenders here. It's definitely not realistic and it's not moving nor dramatic anymore. Now it's just like "Gee, I wonder what kind of terrible event will happen to Meredith today"? Even her friggin' dog has died!
    • Even worse when you realize it's only actually been around 2 years. (Seasons 1-3 were all their intern year, and if you look closely you'll notice that seasons change based on this, and that holidays aren't repeated in this time.) The number of major catastrophes that have happened at that hospital - cut LVAD wires, bombs, ferry boat crashes, crashed ambulances, flooded pipes, interns cutting each other open, and finally a crazed gunman on the loose - I probably would have run far far faaar away by now.
    • Not speaking as to the improbability of major catastrophes happening to one hospital, personal tragedies can stack up. To recap my year: dead dog, father diagnosed with cancer, miscarriage, father died, other dog got cancer, another miscarriage, best friend died. So, y'know, shit happens.
    • And I lost my dad, grandmother, dog (the day after my dad died, seriously) and a couple of fish in the space of ONE MONTH. So it definitely can happen.
  • The fact that every single episode needs to have a one-in-a-million case, cutting-edge procedure or major catastrophe (or preferably any combination of the three). ER, Scrubs and even House do a wonderful job of having interesting, moving episodes without having super-duper-special things happening every week. It's as if the writers know that their characters aren't interesting enough and their writing isn't good enough to produce compelling episodes without something really outrageous happening.
    • In addition, it bugs me that none of the attendings can be simply decent, good or even great at their job. They have to be the best in their particular field at all times. Seattle Grace has the best pediatric surgeon, neuro surgeon, cardio-thoracic surgeon, plastic surgeon, trauma surgeon and orthopedic surgeon in the entire universe. With all that awesomeness and all those "this procedure has only been done once before in the world and I am one of few surgeons on the globe qualified to do it" operations, how is it that the characters are also worried because Seattle Grace's ranking has dropped?
      • They're all the best because a top-10 hospital attracts extremely good doctors. And each of those world-class surgeons attracts more talent and can help the other surgeons become better. The reason everyone gets worried is because if the rating has dropped, that means their performance has dropped, so they're worried they're not as good as they can be.
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    • While the huge number of large-scale disasters is pushing it a bit, Seattle is a big city. But, the rare cases and cutting-edge procedures can be Justified. The hospital is one of the best in the country, and the paramedics and general population know that, so they deliberately bring the hard cases there. They're always performing cutting-edge surgeries because they want to keep their edge and "change the face of medicine".
    • And it's not like it's every episode, it's probably 1/2 at most of them, and it's not like it's every case in those episodes (and episodes have covered time periods from about an hour to over a year). That probably averages at once a week, and that can't be unusual to find in a really big, successful hospital. Not to mention some of the seemingly obscure medical cases are way more common than you'd think.
      • The show has been doing a really good job of having episodes centered on personal problems or making simple/boring medical cases interesting. It has right from the start, but you remember all the disasters and weird conditions more.
  • I can understand Gary Clark's motivation at seeking revenge (well, actually... no, I can't. He was needlessly excessive and broad in his violence, supposedly directed at one man he held personally responsible); what I can't understand at all is his wife's original doctors never properly explaining what a Do Not Resuscitate order covers. He seemed to be under the assumption that his wife only wanted to be taken off life support if she was on it due to complications from her illness. That's not how DNRs work. At any time for the rest of her life (or until she signed something revoking her standing DNR), any medical professional treating her would have to respect the order she signed. The fact that her husband didn't understand his wife's own wishes is more his own fault than any doctor's.
    • You're completely right. Only thing I can think of is that Mr. Clark has a severe Never My Fault thing going on, as well as finding it impossible to put the blame on his wife for having chosen to sign a DNR. He never wanted to understand it; maybe his wife never told him she signed it and all he saw was some doctors going over him in order to "kill" her.
  • Why didn't the police kill Gary Clark when he tried to kill Little Grey? Why again, why, if they had a clear shot, did they put a round in his shoulder instead of his head?
  • Can someone please explain the merger to me? Ok, so: Chief Weber is being fired/demoted because Seattle Grace's ranking has dropped. So he therefore arranges a merger with Grace and Mercy West. It's unclear what this is supposed to achieve. They don't seem to need the money; we are told that revenues are up except for elective procedures, the clinic is turning a profit, and in any event I'm not sure how the merger would save money. Further more, money wasn't an issue so much as prestige; would adding (say) the #20 program to the #12 program up the rating, rather than drive it towards the average of the two? This is further compounded by the Chief demanding that Derek not remove the perfect tumor from the MRI guy, even though he urged Bailey to remove another inoperable tumor because doing so would help the ratings. The entire arc doesn't make a lick of sense to me.
    • It's obviously been awhile since this was asked, but nobody's touched it, so: yes, merging the programs would improve their ranking above the higher of the two (assuming the gap between #11 and #12 wasn't massive, of course). If you're sports-inclined at all, you can imagine taking the #12 and #20 college football teams in the nation and combining them. You get the best starter from each team at each position, and — to the extent that the folks who come in second decide to stick around rather than accept a backup role — the depth at each position is vastly improved as well. In a hospital setting, there are other aspects to this which make the merger an additive formula rather than an average; the grant monies being provided to each institution are combined, maybe one hospital has expensive equipment the other doesn't have yet, so on, so forth.
  • Also, doesn't Chief of Surgery just mean "in charge of the surgeons"? The way they talk, it makes it sound like he's the Chief of Medicine. It's a surgeon's show, I know, but there are other departments in the hospital.
    • Furthermore, the characters of the show seem to take care of a lot more than the scope of what surgeons normally do. What do the rest of the non-surgeon doctors do all day?
  • How do these people keep their jobs? If my coworkers or I acted anything like these guys, we would be fired. Don't get me wrong - I love the show. It's just that everyone acts like they're ten years old instead of adults. Most normal businesses wouldn't put up with that crap for ten minutes.
    • Meredith should have lost her license for tampering with the drug trial. Instead she got fired and acted like she had been wronged. Somehow Webber managed to take the fall for the whole thing, saying Mere was covering for him even though Alex testified that he saw Meredith switching the drugs, and Webber isn't fired. Talk about ultimate job security.
    • He shouldn't have gotten fired since it was obvious he didn't do it and everyone knew Meredith did it, though no one had any actual proof.
  • Where did Owen's PTSD go? I know there was a big thing about him getting over it, but you don't GET over PTSD, you just learn to live with it. There should still be some signs, and I can't see ANY in Season Eight.
  • Really, Teddy? You hate Owen because he, and I paraphrase, "put the needs of your hospital before the needs of my husband"? He's Chief of Surgery, it's his job to make these decisions, he gets paid to put the needs of his hospital first. And you yourself admitted that Henry was a dead man walking and that nothing more could've been done. So you're going to turn on your best friend, and tell him that he's a bad person and deserves to die... because... he's good at his job??
  • So, in the premiere of Season 9, Mark dies. Everyone's gathered around who can be, watching his final moments... except for his former lover and the other half of (one of) his One True Pairing, Addison Montgomery. There are fairly obvious behind-the-scenes reasons why the character couldn't be written in, but her absence isn't discussed or even Handwaved. What gives?
    • No one actually knew he was going to die, except for Mark himself. They all just assumed he was getting better, and not just "the surge", so they didn't really expect it and he didn't tell anyone. Also, Mark and Addison weren't very close anymore and it's entirely possible that she was at his funeral.
    • That is actually explained on her own show, where she is in the middle of an adoption and dealing with the death of another friend. She finds out about Mark's death at her other friend's funeral.
  • For a show set in Seattle, there is remarkably little rain. There's a lot of talk about it, but little demonstration. There are also remarkably few people carrying umbrellas or wearing ponchos. No one ever has wet hair or wet shoes. I know it's a really minor nitpick, but it really is the little things that make a show.
    • Seattle is really more overcast and misty than constantly rainy — it is in fact only #15 in the U.S. for total rainfall per year. It's only egregious if it's always sunny.
    • What's more remarkable is how frequently the rain is depicted as a downpour. This only happens a handful of times per year in Seattle, so one might assume that every possible downpour makes an appearance. Carrying an umbrella is also very rare among natives.
  • In a similar vein to (my) confusion over the merger: the lawsuit. First of all: the insurance company's reason for not paying for the victims of the plane crash's damages (you can't have more than two attendings on a plane at once)? Is the stupidest thing in the world. Secondly: Seattle Grace can't pay, they *appeal the ruling*, and odds are the amount drops down an order of magnitude. Third and finally (although this may resolve itself): the survivors didn't want the money; they wanted to know more about why the plane crashed. If that's true, they can just give back two thirds of the money, have $5 million a piece, and presumably keep the hospital from having to close the ER, something none of them want.
    • On the third: That's exactly what they do. Ten points for This Troper for being Genre Savvy! =) On the second, we find out later that Owen has Survivor's Guilt concerning his decision to switch to that charter company in the first place, so this might be a (really stupid) way of being The Atoner about it. On the first: Someone was holding the Idiot Ball. What can ya do?
    • Regarding the two attendings thing, that's probably some liability built into their flight contract because attending surgeons are very good in their field and too valuable to lose, so it'd be irresponsible to put a lot of them on the same plane and it's then the hospital's fault for doing that if something happens. The same kind of clause is written into transport contracts of other industries: like in showbiz you don't put your entire cast on the same plane, and a lot of parents who travel independently to work without their kids won't get on the same flight, or if we're talking about value then when transporting museum exhibits every piece is taken separately. Basically, charter company contract says "attending surgeons are valuable property, if you put more than 2 of the best on one flight we will not be responsible if they all get injured because that was a really dumb idea" — a lot of insurance payout comes from lost wage and whatnot with Derek's $2 million hand needing to be super steady for brain surgery, and Arizona's field of pediatrics being pretty active and emotional and smiley, and Mark in Plastics one of the highest-income fields of surgery. And on point 2: yes, Owen has hurt his friends, he wants to give them the money.
  • Still reading the main article and I've reached seasons 4 & 5 - Lexie's intern year. Can't remember how you worded it, but I vaguely remember that someone was not paying attention to time. I just can't remember the ep numbers. In the season premiere (5?) it is mentioned that it is October (global warming, black ice) yet in the S4? episode Haunt You Every Day, it is Halloween, which is the end of October. So, in addition to stretching 2 seasons, Lexie's intern year lasted two Octobers. Oops.
    • It's not exactly clear when Lexie's intern year ends. By the beginning of Season 6, she's in her second year of residency, meaning she'd already been a resident for a year prior. Since the show runs on a mild version of Webcomic Time, it's entirely possible Seasons 4 and 5 didn't represent a calendar year.
      • The fact that there are two Octobers probably means that there was a Continuity Error, or the episodes were arranged out of production order. Also, Seasons 4-5 consist of a year, Lexie's intern year. The intern year is the same as the first year of residency in most programs, so the fact that the next year, S6, has Lexie as a second year resident is accurate.
  • The length of time allowed for George's intern exam is an hour longer or shorter than the time allowed the rest of the interns. Don't remember which, but one was 2 hours and one was 3.
  • This may not be unique to this medical show, but why do the characters always use the term "GSW" when they have a patient who has been shot? It makes complete sense when they're writing up the case notes, but it actually takes longer to say "gee-ess-doubleyou" than "gunshot wound".
    • Do you say ASAP or as soon as possible. It definitely does not take longer to say GSW, but it only saves a second, which if you would ask them, that second matters
      • The difference the OP is referencing is the syllable number. ASAP is four syllables, "as soon as possible" is six syllables, ergo ASAP is shorter. On the other hand, GSW is five syllables to "gunshot wound"'s three, so hypothetically it should take longer to say GSW, but GSW is less of a consonant cluster which means you can say the five sounds more rapidly in succession.
      • As someone that has worked in the ER and the OR I can attest that this is actually what is said. You tend to talk the same way you take notes. Saying GSW takes the same amount of time.
      • How about not scaring patients as a reason? They probably don't even hear the doctors saying GSW, but ears are drawn to words like "gun".
  • How does Seattle Grace get away with not having surgeons in several fields for huge chunks of time?
    • There was a huge chunk of time during which there was no cardiothoracic surgeon (early-Season 5 until mid-Season 6), excepting Dr. Dixon for a few specific cases.
    • There hasn't been an OBGYN/neonatal surgeon since Addison left in Season 3, excepting Lucy Fields in Season 7, and she leaves at the end of that season.
    • There wasn't a plastic surgeon before Mark.
    • There wasn't a trauma surgeon before Owen.
      • In the episode when Owen first arrives its explained they didn't need it, as the hospitals ER wasn't a major trauma center, however, this makes the various gaps in Cardio around those seasons where Cristina complained about lacking a mentor very bizarre. Level 1 Trauma Centers in the US require 24-hour availability of attendings pretty much every major specialty the show depicts.
    • There was a pediatric surgeon before Arizona, but it strains credibility that he isn't seen even one time before his departure.
    • There wasn't an orthopedic attending before Callie got promoted, although she did essentially run the department while she was a resident.
      • They don't get away with not having those surgeons. No hospital just has one surgeon in each field; in the cases of Addison, Burke, and Sloan, they were the heads of their departments, but that doesn't mean there wasn't someone there in the interim. For instance, before they had Dr. Shepherd, they had "shadow Shepherd" who was the interim head of neuro. Callie mentions there is a head of ortho who doesn't do anything. The pediatric surgeon that was there before Arizona was in fact seen, he died at the beginning of the episode where Arizona first appears. Just because we aren't introduced to other doctors doesn't mean they don't exist. A better question would be why they never had chief surgeons in these departments.
  • How was the plane crash not massive news? Jo mentions it to Owen in the season nine premiere as something that she "heard" had happened. A plane went missing. Its occupants were stranded in the woods for weeks. They are doctors from that same hospital that had that huge shooting only two years before. This is news media gold, and yet we are to believe that there was no round-the-clock coverage, or any coverage at all for that matter?
    • It did have coverage. When Cristina is at Mayo Clinic, Dr. Thomas mentions that he googled her, and found news reports on a plane crash she was in. The reason the interns aren't shown talking about it much is because in the episodes that it is relevant, the aftermath is still unfolding and they didn't want to give anything away.
    • When do interns have time to sit down and watch an entire news story? Why watch more than clips when you work at the same place??
  • Now I really like the tension in the scene where Meredith begs Mr. Clark not to kill Derek and kill her instead while Cristina and Jackson are operating on him, and I do understand Derek had enough Plot Armor at that point to not die right there, so I'm fine with how the scene was made, but still: is there any logical reason why Clark didn't just, well, shoot Derek right there on the table, instead of pointing the gun to Cristina's head and telling her to stop? The only rationalization I could make is that he was saving his last bullet for Webber, but he still shoots Owen in the same scene, he still had a bullet to spare. It could be a irony thing, of Derek, being a surgeon, dying there during an operation just like his wife died after a surgery but... it still feels like a contrived way of thinking, since Mrs. Clark didn't even die on the operating table.
    • Mrs. Clark died because of Derek's instruction to pull the plug. By telling Cristina not to operate, Mr. Clark is putting Derek in the same position he felt his wife was in (being allowed to die because doctors wouldn't intervene,) creating more of a parallel than just outright shooting Derek would have. He specifically wanted Derek to die from a lack of care.
  • Here is something that bothered me regarding the aftermath of the plane crash. Jackson and Lexie were in a relationship and really liked each other for a little while. Even though the plane crash occurred after they broke up, why doesn't he react to or say something about her death? Anytime he is in a scene where Lexie's death is explicitly mentioned, there is just a look on his face that shows he understands what happened but he doesn't make any comment. I find it odd and kind of annoying that his ex-girlfriend, who he once really liked and was on good terms with even after the break-up, died and there is not even one single moment of Jackson saying anything about it. Back in season 6, Lexie said something about George's death. It wasn't a whole lot, but it was still an acknowledgement of somebody she cared about dying.
  • How old is Arizona? Seriously, she looks like she's in her early 30s but let's look at the facts. She was made Head of Pediatrics in season 5, and it's treated like an obvious progression so she can't have been exceptionally young for the post — Maggie is seen as, at 30, very young to be made a Chief of a department. So, Arizona is at least a few years older than that in season 5. Though, it's strongly implied that she became a doctor because her brother died due to lack of Army doctors in the Middle East. They're supposed to be about the same age, although going by Nick's age in season 8, her brother might have been a bit younger and so she might not have gone to medical school right away because logically he needed time after 18 to sign up then serve then die, making her even older. So, say late-30s in season 5. There's also the fact that she's older than Callie, who is said to be an age-appropriate choice for Mark when he's dating Lexie, with Mark being born in 1967 so Arizona must have been born around then, too. Are we supposed to believe she's 50? (Though this would make sense with some of the details she gives of her childhood — her grandfather serving in World War II means her dad was probably born in the 1940s and given the family then she'd be born less than 30 years later, the masses of homophobia suggests she grew up either a decent length of time ago or somewhere podunk, maybe both, and she'd be going to college during the height of the AIDS crisis which may be, apart from her general characterization as human saccharine, reason why she wants to help treat the African babies, who are often born with HIV/AIDS.) But, really, she doesn't look it at all, and Jessica Capshaw isn't old, either.
    • Also would make sense why she's good friends with Webber, and friends on a peer level rather than the mentor-mentee thing he has with Bailey.
    • Might answer why she miscarried so early, too — just too old.
  • After Arizona becomes Head of Fetal Surgery, why does she stop doing Pediatric Surgery? She basically becomes a glorified OB/GYN, but if ever Alex isn't around they hand child patients off to the unseen peds department instead of Arizona, even if she's already there. You could argue that surgeons aren't covered to work outside of their specialty, but they always do so it's really irrelevant. Plus, fetal is technically under the broader scope of peds (it'd be either Pediatric Surgery or Maternal and Fetal Medicine, and it's a surgical department) until the hospital got good enough to have a full department. Even if it wasn't, it's supposedly understood that stepping up to take the Head of Fetal job doesn't remove her from being part of the peds department, just she can't be Head of both at the same time. There's no reason for her to not work with children and fetuses and mothers. She barely even (on-screen) develops in-utero surgeries any more, only seems to give ultrasounds and deliver babies.
  • When Mark and Arizona are being told to decide whether to deliver Sofia after the car crash, surely Mark would defer to Arizona's opinion, not get mad at her for having one. It's literally her specialty, that she's one of the best in the world in. He's a plastic surgeon and knows nothing about babies, why does he yell that he's got to be right and she — the pediatric surgeon (which at this time incorporated fetal surgery) — is wrong?
    • They both were butting heads with each other a lot over who was more of a parent, he probably just wanted to assert his relationship. It wasn't right but it was a very emotional time, especially when Arizona kind of caused the crash.
  • How are Meredith and Jackson not old friends? They're about the same age and both grew up in Boston as part of prestigious medical families. In one episode, it even shows that Meredith's mom and Jackson's grandfather were friends! And yet, the two didn't seem to know each other when they met in season 6.
    • It's either been implied or outright stated that Meredith took some time off when it came to her schooling, so when the show began, she was older than the average intern and if Jackson is around the same age as Lexie or Maggie, there is at least 5 years between them, which is a huge gap when people are kids. She could have also stayed out of the medicine social sphere as well, so they never properly met.
    • Also, we know that most of Meredith’s life outside of school, while growing up, was at the hospital, being dragged there by her workaholic mother. Whereas Jackson says in season 14 he knew he’d end up becoming a surgeon when he grew up due to being an Avery, so spent a lot of time playing around and enjoying life. It’s likely his mother also paid for private school, or extra curricular activities, as she didn’t have money growing up and wanted to provide for him what she didn’t have. Meaning that Jackson could have easily avoided going to hospitals where Meredith would be hanging around. And Ellis wasn’t the best mother, so possibly wouldn’t have been wanting to show her daughter off. And it’s pointed out in season 14 Maggie worked at Jackson’s social club and they didn’t remember or recall each other.

  • In season 14, its stated that Dr Ellis Grey took Dr Cerones name off her ‘Grey Method’ paper as Ellis wanted a Harper Avery award, which Cerone couldn’t be eligible for due to her gag order over Avery’s sexual harassment of Cerone. However when we first meet Harper Avery himself in season 6, Jackson states quite clearly that only work by a single surgeon can be eligible for a Harper Avery award. So having Greys and Cerones names both on the paper would have made it ineligible on that basis, not necessarily because of Cerone and the gag order. So which was it? Or a combination of both?
    • It's possible that the rules changed in the meantime.

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