If you don't like spoilers, walk away right now. If you don't want your entire outlook on the future of Grey's Anatomy darkened and ultimately destroyed, run as fast you can - maybe ignorance really is bliss.
Still here? Okay, then.
Y'all, I have no idea what is wrong with Shonda Rhimes, or ABC Network for that matter. Is it pure greed? Of course it is. Because you can't possibly tell me there is any other reason for the ridiculous news we got today.
E!Online has just reported, buried within an article about Katherine Heigl's leave of absence to make a movie, that Seattle Grace will soon merge with rival hospital Mercy West - thus bringing on tons of new characters from said other hospital and mixing them in with the doctors we already know and love. As if we really need any more newbies, right?
But that's not even the main issue here. This is:
The Seattle Grace-Mercy West merger storyline is part of a long-term plan hatched by producers and ABC execs to make Grey's Anatomy a viable going concern for years to come. (We hear they want something like an ER that could continue for 15 years or more.)
Are you kidding me? I almost don't even want to scream out "Seriously?!?" because Shonda doesn't deserve to have that remain such a popular part of the American vernacular anymore, but really -- SERIOUSLY!?!?
So, let me get this straight. They're going to introduce even more new characters, mix them in with the originals we already love (and the previous newbs we've grown to accept by now), then slowly start to weed out the originals over time until we're left with Grey's Anatomy v2.0?
Allow me to clue you in on a little secret, ABC: It didn't work for ER! Those last five seasons were one embarrassing train wreck after another. It's not going to work for Scrubs, either, although guest spots by Zach Braff will carry it for at least this first season of attempting life with a beta cast. The only reason that ER was able to sustain itself as a successful quality drama for the first nine years (even with the revolving door of characters) is that Dr. John Truman Carter - the character the entire premise of the show was built upon - had never left.
Sure, we've seen characters come and go many times already on Grey's, and the general viewing audience seems to have accepted Callie, Lexie, Mark, and Hunt with open arms by now. (I've accepted Arizona, too, but I'm not sure about the rest of you out there.) But that doesn't mean we think Grey's Anatomy can continue on their shoulders alone. You can't systematically remove Izzie, Meredith, Derek, Alex, Cristina, etc et al and think we'll still watch because, hey, Lexie and Mark are still there so technically it's still Grey's Anatomy - now we just have McSteamy full-time instead of McDreamy! Trust me, Mark and Lexie running the show with a group of newbies under their care is never going to work. Ever.
And really, to be honest, it still won't work even if Derek and Meredith did stay around for 15 years taking over the hospital and overseeing all the new interns that come through their doors. Why? Because no one really gives a rat's ass about the newbies. Especially not when you're trying so hard to force us to get to know them/like them that the remaining originals we do still love barely receive any worthwhile time on the screen anymore.
I mean, come on, did no one learn anything from House? Even House learned from House, and is making great strides at correcting what went horribly wrong with the introduction of the newbs. But sure, Shonda/ABC, give it a go - since you're so wonderful and infallible, clearly the mistakes and lessons of others won't possibly apply to you.
Who knows, maybe I'll end up surprising myself, but I have sneaking suspicion that I won't be watching Grey's Anatomy anymore after this season.
Horrible, epic fail, Shonda/ABC. Really. What the fuck.