Show: Grey's Anatomy.
Excels At: Piling on the romance nice and thick, even if it's not always the specific romance one wants to see. You're a dream show for a 'shipper, really, because there's always some pairing going on for us to love, hate, hate to love, or love to hate. And there's typically more than one happening at the same time. The multi-tasking of relationships provides us with a plethora of choices. Don't want to watch Derek and Meredith? Have some Alex and Izzie. Don't like Alex and Izzie? Come play with Mark and Callie. Still not interested? Here's George and Lexie. Or George and Izzie. Or George and Callie. Or George and Meredith. No matter what, someone is always hooking up, breaking up or making up.
Needs Improvement: Your new interns are becoming about as annoying as the new fellows on House, and - save for the wonder of Lexipedia - they are pretty much just taking up precious screen time. Sadie has got to go. No, really. It's impossible to think about anything other than NSC/Covenant double-agents and treacherous, murderous wives when Melissa George is on the screen, and Sadie seems like nothing more than an attempt at shock-and-awe television to me. Her antics are not at all entertaining. On the contrary, they're eyeroll-worthy and (again) using up precious screen time while others are suddenly being ignored. Which brings me to...
Interpersonal Dynamics: Apparently having Derek & Meredith "happy together for good" translates to Shonda Rhimes as "completely uninteresting and incapable of being story-worthy anymore." We want to see our OTP actually being happy in their relationship - not just hear about it every once in a while. Show them starting to build the house, enjoying life now that they live together. Show them dealing with external forces of angst that involve moments of supporting each other instead of moments of fighting until they break up again. The other amazing relationship development so far this season has been the return of the Izzie/Alex romance. I was so excited and thrilled to finally see that explored again with more fervor. Keep moving forward with them - but ghost!Denny has got to go. Immediately. If this is going to lead to Alex & Izzie being closer and even more in love, then I will probably accept it in the end. So long as that end is very, very near.
Cristina and Hunt is a completely adorable and interesting development. Mark and Lexie is a completely creepy and unlikable one, though. Callie just lost Hahn, not long after losing George, and Mark has been her touchstone through it all. Let's get back to that dynamic instead, and let Lexie play with George for a while. Or meet a lovely young intern in her own class.
Particularly Notable: My favorite moment so far this season has been from "Brave New World," when Miranda Bailey jumped in during a rough streak of nonsense, boredom and disinterest to spout out a monologue about the undiscovered country of the va-jay-jay and bring the show back to life. I laughed so loud and so thoroughly, I completely forgot how bored I was with this show for a while. Bailey is definitely the MVP of this first semester.
Pay Attention To: Mark and Lexie, who are sure to end up causing major waves of drama once Derek and Meredith find out about them. And, as much as it annoys me, the ghost of Denny is surely setting us up for some totally incredible Alex/Izzie plot that may go down in the books as one of the best romantic twists ever. It's just a hunch, but I've had my eye on those two since day one - something screams that this is their year.
Next Semester: The Derek/Meredith romance needs to come out of hibernation. Let's get back to focusing on the basics, here. More relationships - both romantic and friendly - instead of so many crazy antics and jump-the-shark-esque twists. You sucked us in initially with the character interactions, and that's still why we're sticking around. Flooded hospitals don't do much for me if it doesn't lead to any major relationship developments. Love is all you need. Listen to Lennon, kids.
Overall Grade: A solid B+.