'Grey's Anatomy' Season 16 Episode 2: Deep-Fried Nads (RECAP)
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Season 16, Episode 2 of Grey’s Anatomy, “Back in the Saddle.”]
Amelia (Caterina Scorsone) and Link (Chris Carmack) reach a decision about their baby, Jo (Camilla Luddington) starts a bidding war, Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) opens a private practice of sorts, Maggie (Kelly McCreary) gets pretty petty, and Owen (Kevin McKidd) electrocutes a coworker’s balls. All in a day’s work in Grey’s Anatomy Season 16, Episode 2, a.k.a. October 3’s “Back in the Saddle.”
Picking up where we left off in the season premiere, Amelia nervously tells Link about her pregnancy, but she’s paged away before she gets his take. Link debriefs with Jo, saying he’s not sure he wants to bring a child into a world that’s on fire. When he catches up with Amelia again, she tells him about Christopher, her “unicorn baby” who died from anencephaly in her Private Practice years. She’s terrified it’ll happen again, though she knows it’s extremely unlikely. Link realizes that the idea of him doing anything that would hurt her more scares him more than the idea of fatherhood, and he tells her he’ll be by her side no matter what she decides. She says, “Dammit, Link,” and leaves the room, much to his befuddlement.
When they catch up later, she explains that his vow of support made her a “little bit” in love with him, immediately blaming her hormones for her feelings. “You and I, we’d make an amazing kid,” she tells him. “Now I kinda want to meet that kid.” And happily, he wants to see that kid, too.
As for Jo, she’s returning to work after her mental health treatment and fielding job offers from Bailey (Chandra Wilson) and Alex (Justin Chambers), who’s now Chief of Surgery at the flailing Pacific Northwest General. Alex offers her a fellowship with complete control and no oversight, and Bailey matches the offer. Alex realizes that, all things being equal, Jo would go to a hospital that’s not, you know, going down the gutter — so he ups his offer, saying Jo could be a full-fledged general surgery attending.
Jo leverages that offer back at Grey Sloan, reminding Bailey that GSM is short-staffed and that few people know the hospital better than she does. Bailey relents. Back at home, Alex accepts defeat and advises his wife to make sure Bailey gives her a parking spot. Jo tells him Bailey did already: his spot!
If it sounds like Bailey is in the weeds, that’s because she is. Without her favorite surgeons around — and with Koracick (Greg Germann) as her boss — she “has no joy.” She even gives up on her superfood smoothie breakfasts in her funk and gets donuts for herself and Ben (Jason George). But she starts getting her joy back by yelling at her interns, who compete to join her in the OR for an axillobifemoral bypass.
In the skills lab, DeLuca (Giacomo Gianniotti) shows more talent than Helm (Jaicy Elliot), but Bailey still makes Helm her right-hand woman. DeLuca later accuses Bailey of benching him out of misplaced resentment toward Meredith, but in this case, the only thing she resents is his accusation.
In terms of overworked chiefs, though, Alex is doing much worse. His ER is overcapacity, especially because Meredith keeps sending him patients from her work crew. In fact, his hospital is failing so hard that one poor sap nearly dies in the ER waiting room. Alex has hired Richard (James Pickens Jr.) as the residency director, but Richard hates being there. Grey Sloan is his home, after all. Alex confides to him that he doesn’t want to be there either, and he asks Richard to help him turn the hospital around—and, in so doing, prove Bailey wrong.
Meredith’s work crew supervisor, Robin, finds Mer giving medical advice to a long line of workers, with Schmitt (Jake Borelli) smuggling medical supplies from the Grey Sloan supply closets. Robin shuts the ad-hoc clinic down, but Mer notices a lump on Robin’s neck and brings her to the Grey Sloan parking lot, where Jackson (Jesse Williams) grudgingly gives her a consultation.
Turns out, Robin has capillary thyroid cancer. She frets about the cost of her cancer treatment since her insurance only provides her with one asthma inhaler per month and charges her $500 for each inhaler after that. With those exorbitant prices, she thinks that her cancer diagnosis means “bankruptcy or death.” Her case inspires Meredith to write an article about the broken healthcare system, though DeLuca worries that she’s torpedoing her chances of keeping her medical license. “You’re very sexy when you’re about to take your whole life down,” he tells her.
(By the way, Schmitt asks Jackson to cover for the stolen medical supplies. Schmitt explains that he’s a Gryffindor, meaning he’s brave but living in constant fear. Jackson agrees, saying he’s a Gryffindor, too.)
And speaking of Jackson, he royally pisses off Maggie by posting a sunset photo on social media with the caption “#freedom,” which she finds out about as she packs up her stuff at his place. At the hospital, she tells him he must be enjoying his #freedom from a partner who challenges him intellectually — now that he’s dating a firefighter, i.e. Station 19’s Vic.
Later, Jackson tells Maggie she’s wrong about Vic, which Maggie already knows. Maggie apologizes. Jackson claims he wasn’t being “consciously spiteful” with his #freedom caption, but Maggie suspects the operative word there is “consciously.”
Maggie has other stressors in this episode, too. A scooter rider crashes into her car in the parking lot and fractures his rib, puncturing his heart. Worse, he blames Maggie, even though Maggie’s car was stationary at the time. The guy flatlines, but he seems to pull through. His girlfriend tells Maggie that he’s a total mooch and wonders why she stays with him. Maggie, projecting her romantic woes on the woman, says that it’s because they had good times at one point and because the dating world is terrible.
But the guy who might be in the most trouble this episode is Owen, whom no one informed of Koracick’s lofty new position. That embarrassment aside, the Owen-Koracick feud goes electric when Owen accidentally defibrillates Koracick’s crotch in the ER.
Owen heads to Koracick’s hospital room later to apologize for the “incident.” (“Incident?” Koracick asks. “You deep-fried my nads!”) Koracick tells him that Owen should be standing 500 feet away from him. You see, Koracick got himself a restraining order against Owen, which is gonna make it pretty hard for Owen to keep his job at Grey Sloan, we’d imagine. Till next time, Grey’s fans!
Grey’s Anatomy, Thursdays, September 26, 8/7c