Just say no to drugs.
In all seriousness (although that is a serious and heartfelt suggestion), Grey's Anatomy Season 15 Episode 14 was a stirring take on America's Opiate Epidemic.
It was likely something that the series was building up to, and Not Betty's involvement added that personal touch to the storyline that would not have landed the same without her.
Caterina Scorsone is remarkable. Amelia's growth in the past season and a half has been incredible and so understated that sometimes you have to take a moment during one of her scenes and process where she was when she arrived on this series, and where she is now.
I know the consensus is that her brain tumor storyline was absurd in many ways, but the series succeeded in revitalizing her character post-tumor and you have to give them props for that.
While my casual viewing of Private Practice is but a distant memory, the Amelia that we have seen more recently feels more like that version of her character, and the series is all the better for it.
Miranda: This world is so scary, no matter how well you raise your kids. No matter how much you give them, it's a scary scary world.
Ben: Yeah, it is, but it's beautiful too. Surrender to the fear and miss the beauty that's when you go into the bad place.
Amelia carries her journey with her; she owns it proudly, and therefore one can't help but burst with pride for her because she has come into her own.
She has been the dark horse of the season, and Caterina Scorsone brings so much to the character recently capturing the blend of the maternal vibe, the maturity, and the wisdom. Somehow, despite being under so much stress on the regular, Amelia seems lighter, freer, and more unburdened than she ever has been before.
It's as if she has reached a real point of self-acceptance that she didn't before, and as a result, she's taking all that life throws her way in stride.
Even throughout this installment, with the loss of baby Leo to his grandparents, the death of a young teen she knew in passing, and the maternal fear of losing Not Betty to addiction, she had a quiet strength and resilience.
Owen has been falling apart, and with good reason, but she was the one keeping it together with the Dickinsons taking baby Leo. They wasted no time with that one, and I'm surprised there wasn't more of a dragged out fight before Owen was forced to relinquish custody of Leo to his grandparents.
The Dickinsons aren't supposed to be terrible people, but it doesn't change the fact that they are annoying individuals. They were banging on Owen's door like they were the police or something. Give the man a moment to answer!
Also, between Carol's response to Amelia while taking Leo from her, and her husband's snippy comment about how they know how to raise a child (thank you very much!), they were so rude. Amelia handled it all in stride though.
She was nothing but sympathetic and supportive of them since they arrived in a way that was admirable. She held Carol's hand and squeezed her leg supportively when they found out about Not Betty and were waiting to hear if the teen would make it out of surgery alive.
She didn't let the callous way they threw her addiction in her face to suggest that she wasn't in a position to care for children stop her from sharing another personal experience that could help them understand their daughter and her addiction.
Amelia was kind, brave, understanding, and forgiving. She was also right about the Dickinsons telling Not Betty the truth. It was another affirming monologue from Amelia that said so much about her and her journey with such few words. It was no less moving.
My fiance died, years ago. He died in bed beside me. He OD'd. I thought it would kill me, too. But instead, it saved my life. Because I decided to live. I decided to live because he died. You can't protect her from this .YOu can't protect her from the pain that she is going to feel, but you can hope that this is her bottom. God, I hope this is her bottom. I hope this gets clean. I hope that she decides to live.Amelia
It was odd that Mr. Dickinson had shared his harsh last words to his daughter before she disappeared for nearly two years, but he was about to go right back into repeating some mistakes by not telling Not Betty about her boyfriend.
It was evident that Mr. Dickinson carried a lot of guilt with him. He and his wife were probably so hard and cold with Owen and Amelia because of that guilt and their feeling that they failed their daughter. They resorted to judging Owen and Amelia before anyone could judge them for their daughter's situation.
I think they knew deep down that Owen and Amelia were great people and great parents. In the end, there was no reason to feel threatened or jealous because did you see how Not Betty's face lit up when she saw her parents there? You could see the love, longing, and relief in her eyes.
Not Betty has a long road to recovery ahead of her, but I think nearly dying and losing her boyfriend may be her rock bottom.
She has the support of her parents now, and there is no doubt Amelia will still be there to support her as well. She may no longer play the maternal role, but Amelia as a sponsor is invaluable as well, and Not Betty can use her.
Amelia could use Not Betty's presence in her life, too. While she has taken a more accepting role than Owen in the disruption of their unorthodox family, she's going to have a difficult time letting her pseudo-daughter go.
Her breakdown in the hospital hallway after Not Betty's boyfriend died was one of the best scenes of the hour. It was gutwrenching seeing her in such anguish, and holy crap, why is it that we don't allow ourselves to give into certain emotions without apologizing?
She kept apologizing to Link for breaking down as if she weren't allowed that moment of succumbing to her emotions before pulling herself together and supporting everyone else.
It was a fantastic scene for Link as well. He was working nonstop, and all of it was getting to him. The dire nature of the situation, the tragedy and the loss of life, his inability to understand how he could work so hard to save people who work so hard to put their lives in jeopardy.
He captured that sense of hopelessness that medical staff must experience when it feels like their attempts are futile. He is such an upbeat, positive guy the majority of the time, but in this case, even he has his bad days. It made him as likable as ever and more grounded and human than ever, too.
It's a lot, right? It's just one of those days where being a doctor feels futile. We're in here saving lives, and out there, people are doing their damnedest to kill themselves.Link
You hear about hospitals being flooded with addicts and overdoses all of the time, but it's not something you envision often or experience unless you're in them yourself. Bailey nearly being run-down by a car throwing an overdosed teen out of a moving car set the tone well.
The hospital descended into chaos from that point forward as it faced an influx of addicts who had a mass overdose in the park. Those types of moments are always interesting and exciting because of how it becomes an "all hands on deck" type of situation.
Everyone jumps in and gets their hands dirty, and specialties get cast aside with the primary focus being on healing and helping. I love how effortlessly Teddy can flow from running the ER/Trauma unit to scrubbing in on heart surgery.
I love that Link could go from an ortho case to working tirelessly to help the influx of people coming into the ER or the clinic. It was the case for Richard, Bailey, and many of the others as well.
As mentioned, I loved the portrayal of how taxing epidemics like this are on the EMT's, doctors, and nurses. The shot of an exhausted and emotionally drained Link, Richard, and Teddy hit the right note.
It's also something of which personal feelings will get entangled with the healing and helping. Jo picked up on that after Alex's blunt, impassioned statements to Stewart, the husband of the woman who lost her child at the park during all the commotion.
Alex has been taking more administrative roles since he has been chief, and he has expressed lament, especially while everyone was talking about Meredith breaking their longest surgery record.
This case still had him involved with a child, so that was something familiar for him. Wendy, little Truman's mother, was the perfect example of a high-functioning addict. She wasn't one of the homeless youth or a wild and out of control teen.
Jo: You were left in a park, right? By your junkie dad when you were three?
Alex: In a bar parking lot when I was six. I wish I was three, then I wouldn't be able to remember.
She was a married mother who was at a park scoring with her child. She's one of the faces of the new epidemic. It may have sounded harsh, but Alex was thinking about the child when he supported the father and encouraged him too.
Stewart was fed up and had a right to be, and he had to think about what was best for their child. Addiction is a complicated topic; there are many strong feelings about it, and most of them are valid.
Alex knew what it was like to be a child who was forgotten by an addict in a strange place, and that is something that he recalls and still haunts him. I wonder if the addition of that story is leading up to the return of his mother?
The hour managed to ease in some homelessness too. It's also something that is plaguing the country, and it was interesting how it became a B storyline in this hour by taking a backseat to the Opiate storyline.
Isn't that always the case with homelessness? It's a real and pervasive issue that touches so many communities, from the senior-aged who can't afford their housing anymore, to young teens and runaways, veterans, the mentally ill, and the low-income.
Much like addiction, homelessness doesn't have a set "look" nor is it an affliction, if you will, that only affects a specific type of person. Mr. Tennison went out of his way to tell doctors that while he was in the park, he wasn't an addict, but he did point out the suburban wife and Truman's mom who was.
I loved Jackson's brief pause after he realized that all the work he did on Mr. Tennison was on a homeless man. His next action was to find somewhere for the man to stay so that he could heal properly.
Jackson is adorable, and so are he and Maggie, but there is no way in hell you're going to drag someone who doesn't do outside activities at all camping. He wasn't even trying to ease her in with "glamping." He wanted to jump into the full experience.
Poor Maggie was willing to accommodate him to, more power to her. The result of him giving his gear and equipment to Tennison was better than watching an excited Jackson and "fake it until you make it" Maggie struggle through a camping trip.
Tennison's observation that Jackson had all of this stuff, that would be a precious commodity for him in the back of his truck as if it were nothing, humbled Jackson.
From humility to wonderment, many of the couples of Grey's are endearing. Levi's awe of Nico is adorable.
They are full-on in that stage of their relationship where they are enamored with every part of each other, and it's sweet. Much of this relationship played out in the background while other things took the forefront, and it's the same with Nico's development.
You're an artist, and I think it didn't occur to me because you're a work of art. Physically, like a statue in Rome.Levi
What stood out during this hour is how passionate he is about his craft, and he's so serious about it while at work. He didn't let Levi or his feeling for him distract him from the job, and I love that he doesn't give Levi special treatment.
They have this perfect balance of boyfriends (are they official?) and mentor/mentee. Nico has often been played up as one of the new hot guys, but it was nice to see that Levi's appreciation of Nico is beyond his physical appearance and his sexual attraction.
There is no way in which these two aren't adorable together. They're one of the best 'ships on the show at the moment.
DeLuca has also taken on being supportive "boyfriend" in awe of the woman he's with and her talent. He was right alongside Meredith the entire time she was beating that record; all 27 hours.
It was typical of Mer to be oblivious to beating the record because she was so focused on what she was doing. Every day it seems Mer is more and more like her mother, but minus many of the problematic aspects.
DeLuca was the ultimate cheerleader, but the best cheerleading came from Bohkee. That was the cutest scene of Mer's storyline during the hour.
Helm: You think she's part robot?
Mer: I can hear you.
Isn't that the first time Bohkee has spoken in all 15 seasons?! She got a line, and it was to call Meredith "wonder-woman." You have to love Bokhee!
Following that was Mer falling asleep against the wall, and DeLuca wheeling her into a quiet room and "tucking her in."
- Intern matters, outside of Levi, are often so subtle. Have you noticed that specialties are blossoming and mentor/mentee bonds are too?
- Casey is the cardio intern, and he and Maggie have one of the most underrated mentor/mentee relationships. Helm will probably head into General. Levi has found a genuine passion for ortho, and he's good at it. Quadri is harder to place, between her working with Avery in Plastics and Hunt in Trauma.
- It was reminiscent of Henry when Teddy scrubbed in on Maggie's behalf. She didn't want Amelia and Maggie's relationship to be affected if Not Betty died. - Teddy told Bailey about Tom, and she's the happiest she has been in a long while. Also, I missed Tom!
- That hug between Amelia and Teddy was the best.
- I can't be the only one who loved Link during this installment. He's a great guy and a great doctor. I would happily join him in Barbados at his blues bar.
- Anyone else getting Link and Amelia vibes? Maybe I'm still stuck on the guy being stood up.
What are your thoughts on the series addressing the crisis? Is Caterina Scorsone/Amelia blowing you away? Are their vibes between her and Link? How cute are Nico and Levi?
Hit the comments below with your thoughts!
You can watch Grey's Anatomy online here via TV Fanatic!
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.