It literally took a pandemic for McDreamy to come back to the show. It truly is a beautiful day to save lives!
As avid Grey's Anatomy fans, we were heartbroken when Patrick Dempsey's character left the show in 2015. He made the show a much better place and MerDer was just THE couple with so much happening to them. We bawled our eyes out for weeks after McDreamy died in a car accident. Coming to this year, 2020 has been the worst, just like that episode with the plane crash, but we will say there's always a light at the end of the tunnel because it took a frikkin' pandemic to bring McDreamy back to the show, as per Los Angeles Times. Yes, that's right. He's back, guys!
We didn't get season 16's finale because productions were cut short due to the spread of Coronavirus, but the medical drama returned on Thursday with a two-hour Season 17 premiere that made up for the rather bleak ending last season. Dempsey, who played Derek “McDreamy” Shepherd for 11 seasons, made a rather stellar return to the season, in a dream-like sequence. As always, the episode kept it real as it portrayed the struggles of health workers battling the unseen enemy. The episode, a crossover event with lead-in “Station 19,” ended with Meredith Grey, played by Ellen Pompeo, collapsing in the hospital’s parking lot after a long day at work.
As she is found by co-worker Cormac Hayes (Richard Flood), the scene fades to Meredith standing on a deserted beach. Then, a voice calls out, “Meredith!” She turns, only to see the love of her life waving out to her as he calls her name. “The most important task we had this season was to honor the reality of this global pandemic and the impact it’s having — particularly on healthcare workers,” showrunner Krista Vernoff said in a statement following the East Coast airing. “Along with that, we had to come up with creative ways to allow our show to still be fun and romantic and provide some escapism. Enter Patrick Dempsey.”
The beach was included in the shot to portray a world outside the pandemic. “Season 17 has been a Herculean effort by our cast, our crew, our writers and our partners at Disney and ABC — and we are proud of it,” Vernoff continued, “But our effort is nothing compared to the work of our frontline healthcare workers to whom this season is dedicated. We hope our show inspires you to wear your masks to protect them and each other. As Derek Shepherd would say, ‘It’s a beautiful day to save lives.’” However, this is the first season without everyone's favorite Alex Karev, aka Justin Chambers.
In January this year, we reported Justin Chambers' heartbreaking announcement of leaving the show for good. Chambers's character Alex Karev was last seen on the show's 350th episode, which aired on November 14 last year. The appearance in the November 14 episode was his final appearance on the show, and it doesn't seem like there will be a specific farewell episode. Fans are shocked that such an important character had to go in such a manner. In a statement to Deadline, Chambers said, "There’s no good time to say goodbye to a show and character that’s defined so much of my life for the past 15 years."
oh, we feel so much your leaving. this show won't be the same without you, Alex Karev is unique and irreplaceable. but we wish you success in your career, Justin. you deserve so much. will be missed. 💙 pic.twitter.com/AyJAb8t2A9— ؘ (@screensanatomy) January 12, 2020
"For some time now, however, I have hoped to diversify my acting roles and career choices. And, as I turn 50 and am blessed with my remarkable, supportive wife and five wonderful children, now is that time.” Chambers played the role of Alex Karev on the show since the pilot aired back in 2005. Karev started an intern at Grace Hospital, before becoming a resident and then a pediatric surgical fellow. The character has gone through various transitions, starting as a brusque character dismissive of his patients and co-workers. Karev is later well respected by all and gradually has become a fan favorite.
Chambers made sure he acknowledged the show's three remaining cast members—Ellen Pompeo, who plays Meredith Grey; Chandra Wilson, who plays Dr. Miranda Bailey; and James Pickens Jr., who plays Dr. Richard Webber—as well as the ABC Studios. He also made sure he thanked show creator Shonda Rhimes. "As I move on from Grey’s Anatomy, I want to thank the ABC family, Shonda Rimes, original cast members Ellen Pompeo, Chandra Wilson and James Pickens, and the rest of the amazing cast and crew, both past and present, and, of course, the fans for an extraordinary ride,” he said.
Thank you for the hottest doctor,the best ped surgeon,the amazing friend and for the wonderful and loving husband Alex is. Thank you for ALEX KAREV and for these incredible years and memories. I’ll miss you everyday ❤️ Wish you all the best @7JustinChambers #WeLoveJChambers pic.twitter.com/umNcL52QYz— ℳαddy ♡ (@ciaoluddington) January 11, 2020