One Couple Seeks Medical Divorce (RECAP)

Love Don’t Cost a Thing

Season 19 • Episode 9

rating: 2.5 stars

We have a lot of relationship drama on this week’s Grey’s Anatomy, most of which feels arbitrary and avoidable, but at least we have a couple of hookups to mitigate all the misery in Season 19, Episode 9, a.k.a. March 9’s “Love Don’t Cost a Thing.”

[Warning: The below contains major spoilers for the Grey’s Anatomy Season 19, Episode 9, “Love Don’t Cost a Thing.”]

The episode picks up with the interns preparing for a house party at Mer’s old house, but Griffith (Alexis Floyd) isn’t exactly focusing on hosting duties: She’s too busy trying to sort out her feelings about her ex Trey (William Martinez) showing up in Seattle and trying to reunite with her. Turns out, they were engaged, and they had a “whole life” together, as she later tells Adams. Now Trey wants her back.

But the pressure is too much, so Griffiths escapes to her room, which is where Adams (Niko Terho) finds her. And Adams, with whom she shared an elevator smooch last episode, says all the right things. (For example: “Even when you’re upset, you’re pretty damn perfect.”) He and Griffiths start making out and undressing, but they’re interrupted by a knock on the door. It’s Trey, of course, telling Griffith through the closed door that he loves her. After Griffith sends him away, Adams asks her if she still loves Trey. Her hesitation is answer enough. He tells her she doesn’t need to apologize, but when insists on making sure the coast is clear before letting him leave the room, he tells her she can apologize.

Later in the party, Trey re-proposes marriage to Griffiths. “Put your ring back on and marry me,” he says. “Marry me for real this time.”

Griffiths says yes, and the bystanders in the backyard cheer — everyone except Adams, of course. Adams sorta golf-claps for the happy couple.

And they’re not the only party guests hooking up. Yasuda (Midori Francis) flirts with Helm (Jaicy Elliot), who, yes, is still working as a bartender. And Levi (Jake Borelli) accepts a date offer — and then a kiss — from a traveling nurse named Carlos.

That party, for the record, is far more fun than the dinner Owen (Kevin McKidd) and Teddy (Kim Raver) host for Bailey (Chandra Wilson) and Ben (Jason George), who no sooner hand off their apple pie do they realize they’ve walked into an emotional minefield.

Owen, Ben, Bailey, and Teddy in 'Grey's Anatomy' Season 19 Episode 9

Raymond Liu/ABC

Teddy still mad with Owen for getting his medical license suspended, and he’s mad with her for interviewing candidates for chief of trauma, a job he thought she’d save for him. Finally, Bailey gives them both a talking-to. “For all of our sakes, get some help!” she says. “Ben, get the pie!”

But after Ben and Bailey leave, we see that they have some relationship drama, too. When Bailey asks Ben why he seems resentful — adding that she doesn’t her and Ben to “end up like Hunt and Altman” — Ben confesses that he resents Bailey for going back to work, leaving him to do the bulk of the parenting with Pru. Bailey argues that she cut back on her hours at the hospital, but apparently, that’s not enough for Ben.

Back at the hospital, meanwhile, Maggie (Kelly McCreary) has an especially hard night at the ICU — more about that later — and her estrangement from Winston is getting to her. She asks Richard (James Pickens Jr.) how he and Catherine got through their trouble. “How did you know it was a rough patch and not something more malignant?” she asks.

Richard says that he and Catherine knew they had a foundation of love. “You and Winston have so much love between you, you’ll work through it,” he adds.

One couple not going through a rough patch, mercifully, is Amelia (Caterina Scorsone) and Kai (E.R. Fightmaster). They FaceTime throughout the episode, and Amelia invites Kai to visit her new place.

Jo (Camilla Luddington), meanwhile, wonders aloud why Amelia gave Link up. She says Link (Chris Carmack) is perfect, especially because he spent the night helping a woman through childbirth. (Yes, Jo knows she’s being kinda rude toward Amelia: She says it’s been a long night for her, too.)

“He wasn’t perfect for me,” Amelia replies. “But maybe he’s perfect for you.”

The real drama of the episode, though, is Richard and Maggie’s patient Natalia (Johanna Curé), who has stage 2 esophageal cancer. When Natalia starts seizing, the docs realize that the cancer has metastasized to her brain and that she needs brain surgery. But Natalia and her husband, Elliot (Rick Kumazawa), have very little money. So Kwan suggests divorce.

No, Kwan isn’t a heartless ass. He suggests “medical divorce” so that Natalia can get more insurance benefits and Elliot isn’t saddled with medical debt. Maggie yells at Kwan for crossing the line, but Kwan won’t apologize, nor will he back down. He tells Maggie that his mother never had the option of divorcing him, and now he’s deep in debt for her medical care, and every bill feels like a noose tightening, he says.

Meanwhile, Millin (Adelaide Kane) talks to Elliott, who’s struggling with the whole “till death do us part” part. “If you trusted her enough to marry her,” Millin tells him, “why not trust her enough to unmark her?”

The couple end up divorcing in the most romantic breakup we’ve seen on the show, but Natalia’s medical ordeal is far from over. See you next week!

Grey’s Anatomy, Thursdays, 9/8c, ABC

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