The highly-anticipated Jo-centric hour is one of the most talked about installments of the series to date.
Grey's Anatomy Season 15 Episode 19 was a breathtaking hour which expertly covered sexual assault and violence against women and is a must-see, important hour of television everyone should experience.
Join TV Fanatics Rachelle Lewis, Paul Dailly, and Carissa Pavlica as they discuss "Silent All These Years."
Did the Jo-centric hour meet your expectations?
Rachelle: OMG, yes. It went above and beyond in meeting my expectations. Not only did the storylines interact perfectly, but learning about Jo’s abortion as well as her being a product of rape and her helping Abby is going to impact her for a long time.
Honestly, the episode was better than I could have expected. I felt for both Vicki and Jo coming to terms with what happened. Jo has been dealt so much in her life, and this is one blow she is going to have a hard time recovering from and not just her father being a rapist but her mother having a seemingly perfect life now.
Paul: This episode was a surprising one. Jo has never been my favorite character, but she's been growing on me as of late. I didn't know anything about this episode going into it, and it blew me away. There were so many revelations and things we didn't know about Jo's past.
Carissa: I watched it specifically because it was going to be out of the ordinary. It was phenomenal.
I've always liked Jo, so I appreciated some extra time to flesh her out a bit more. I could have done without Krista Vernoff and friends giving post-mortem interviews saying the Blasey-Ford thing led them to this episode, though. Let it speak for itself, and shut your gob.
How well do you feel the series did at tackling such delicate issues as sexual assault and domestic violence?
Rachelle: I think it is about time a show tackled these issues. Grey’s was able to handle the delicate topics in a manner that really gets people thinking.
I was so moved that each subject was dealt with in the same way it happens every day because it does happen every day.
It was one of the most powerful episodes in all 15 years of Grey’s Anatomy. It was honest and brutal but so necessary. Shonda and company definitely know how to deal with hot, sensitive topics, and this episode was no exception.
Paul: I don't think the show could have done a better job, to be honest. It was shocking but shed light on a variety of topics and handled them very well. It's amazing that 15 seasons in, the show still manages to be fresh as ever.
Carissa: It did very well. As someone who has experienced too much of it myself, it's something that everybody processes differently. The moments of anger and then wanting to draw back toward each other without really understanding why they were feeling as they did played out nicely between Jo and Vicki.
I wouldn't wish either of their stories on anyone, but I also appreciated that one of them gave life to their child by violence, and the other did not. It's a deeply personal decision, and neither made the wrong one.
Should there be follow-up on Jo and Vicki's meeting or do you believe their ending was sufficient?
Rachelle: I would like to see a follow-up but not right away. After all the heartbreak of her family drama, Jo deserves to find some happiness.
I would like to see her at least get the chance to know her siblings. I also think now that Vicki has admitted what happened to her, and Jo, her grown daughter, confronted her that it might change her perspective on having a relationship with Jo.
However, Vicki seemed pretty dead set on not having a relationship with Jo, so it might be over.
Paul: It would be silly not to have a follow-up, but the ending worked. Jo wanted some clarity, and she got it. I doubt Vicki is ever going to really welcome Jo with open arms, and that's always going to be in the back of Jo's mind. Whether or not she ever meets her siblings, she will always be second best.
Carissa: The reality of it would probably be that Vicki wants to know more now that Jo appeared, and the father is no longer a threat. Even if she decides against contacting Jo again, Vicki is in for a lot of emotions going forward. Given that she's Michelle Forbes, who wouldn't want to see the story explored further?
What are your thoughts on Abby's case and how Jo and Teddy handled it?
Rachelle: I think the way Jo and Teddy handled the case is the way all sexual assault cases should be handled. Her case was so sensitive, and again, one that happens too often.
But both ladies were aware of what Abby needed and handled her with the care she deserved. I felt for Abby and her desire to just want to forget what happened.
If Jo and Teddy had not handled her case so delicately, she may have simply gone home; who knows what could have happened to her physically and emotionally?
Paul: Abby's case was harrowing, and Jo and Teddy excelled at every turn. Abby didn't want to come forward because she was frightened, and I loved that the ladies empowered her to do so.
Carissa: I admit when Teddy initially balked at the direction Jo was taking with Abby, I was annoyed. If women don't know their only chance for retribution will be over if a rape kit isn't taken, it only means more criminals won't get caught.
And it's so damn tough when that's happening that being straightforward is the only way to get the point across. If it's a woman sharing the information, it's easier. If it's someone with experience, it raises it to a different level.
What are your predictions for Jo and the effects her visit will have on her and her relationship with Alex?
Rachelle: I think Jo is going to push Alex away for a while. She can’t deal with what happened. It is as though her self worth is lost now and having Alex there is only going to make it harder.
I wish after all they have been through, including her ex-husband, she would confide in Alex. But I don’t see that happening. Jo and Alex have been in wedded bliss all season, so I guess it is time for them to have some drama.
Paul: I agree with Rachelle. Jo has already started the process of pushing her husband away, and it's going to take some time for them to get back to where they were.
Jo has been dealt a lot of blows recently, and she needs to wait until she's ready to talk about everything. There will be some troubling times, but I'm sure Alex will understand in the end and give his wife some time.
Carissa: If Grey's wants to treat the situation with all of the tenacity that it did this episode, Jo will get her shit together soon. Pushing someone who loves her away will lead her more in the direction of Vicki and unresolved feelings and secrets held from her family. I hope Jo won't allow that to happen.
When Alex was asking to help her in any way possible, I was pleading with her (out loud) to let him in. LET HIM IN! After this episode, it will be hard if Grey's goes back to drama for drama's sake. I didn't set the bar, they did.
Is there anything about the episode you didn't like?
Rachelle: Honestly, no. I wish things had ended differently for Jo and Vicki, but it was an honest portrayal of that type of situation. It would have done the story an injustice to have them make up and be friends immediately. I just felt so bad for Jo sitting there crying as her biological mother walked away from her again.
Paul: Not at all. This episode was the show's best in years.
Carissa: No. It was beautiful and made me cry at many different scenes. What more could you want?
What was a favorite, poignant, or standout moment or quote for you?
Rachelle: Two things. One, when all the women lined the hallway as Abby was taken into surgery. It gutted me and made me cry so hard because It was such a powerful moment.
Second, when Teddy told Jo that what she did today handling Abby’s case was not protocol, but it should be, was the best line in the entire episode.
Teddy: What you did today with Abby that was not protocol.
Jo: I know, I know, and I'm sorry.
Teddy: I'm saying that it should be.
Paul: The women lining up in the hallway. That was the most powerful moment of the entire series for me. It really solidified what the episode was all about.
Carissa: For me, it wasn't any one moment, but how all of them cascaded together to form an emotionally striking hour.
Over to you Grey's Fanatics. Do you agree with us or disagree? How did you feel about this astounding hour? Hit the comments below with your thoughts and responses.
Grey's Anatomy airs Thursdays on ABC.
If you missed this must-see hour of television, you can watch Grey's Anatomy online here via TV Fanatic.
The RAINN National Sexual Assault Hotline is 1-899-656-HOPE, or you can go online to www.rainn.org.
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.