We’re big fans of Grey’s Anatomy at our house. When there is a new episode, Thursday night at nine is something my wife looks forward to all week. Go ahead, laugh at me for liking a “chick show,” but between the solid writing and great cast it’s hard not to like Grey’s. Last night’s episode was previewed as a “two hour special event” and so close to the end of the season, we were excited for the extra dose of one of our favorite shows. Turns out, however, were were severely misled.
There’s been a not-so-well-kept secret about a potential spin-off series centered around Kate Walsh’s character, Dr. Addison Montgomery. So instead of giving a tease of the new situation in a Grey’s episode and then letting the spin-off have its own pilot, last night’s episode was dominated — and I mean dominated — by what could only be considered a pilot episode for a new series. It felt like only a few brief glimpses of the characters we actually care about sprinkled into two hours of a whole new ensemble cast.
Look, I understand that the spin-off, apparently to-be-blandly-titled “Private Practice,” (although there were way-too-many shots of the “Oceanside” sign to make me think that might not make it into the eventual title) will need the Grey’s Anatomy audience to succeed (um, Joey, anyone?), but this was not the way to do it. Here’s a genius idea: make an actual one hour pilot and schedule it immediately following an actual episode of Grey’s.
This is not to say the spinoff won’t evolve into a good show in its own right; certainly there are enough recognizable faces in the new cast, including Amy Brenneman, Tim Daly, and Taye Diggs, but the new characters were more like caricatures and I never felt involved. I mean, could we mention that the one guy likes to pick up girls on the internet a few more times, or make it just a little more obvious that each one of these new people has emotional and relationship issues?
What’s worse is that there was powerful stuff going on with the Seattle Grace cast — George is still on the brink of disaster and breaking two women’s hearts, Preston is having cold feet, and Meredith’s newly befriended step-mother died, and she got slapped by her grieving father! But all of those things felt like an afterthought, when they should have been the focus of the show.
I still love you, Grey’s, but please let this spinoff live in its own series and get back to the stories and characters that make us watch Grey’s Anatomy in the first place.
Did you like last night’s episode? Share your thoughts in the comments…
- « Eastern Blok’s Breath of Fresh Air
- » Why would you use the default AOL IM client? Pidgin (formerly GAIM) officially 2.0