Grey’s Anatomy has done such an amazing job portraying the pandemic, and it continued to do so with the Black Lives Matter marches.
“Sign O’ the Times” was so powerful, but unfortunately, I don’t think the people who need to see an episode like this were watching. I hope I’m wrong.
This episode may have hit harder than it meant to, given that we are in the middle of the Derek Chauvin trial for George Floyd’s murder. Another African American was also just killed when getting pulled over by the police.
Dr. Maggie Pierce (Kelly McCreary) was already worried about her fiance, Dr. Winston Ndugu (Anthony Hill), driving cross country during the protests. Then when they are on the phone, he’s pulled over.
She told him to stay on the phone, but the police officer told him to hang up. When Winston tried to convince them to let his finance stay on the line, the cop asked if he wasn’t complying, so he had to hang up.
Maggie kept trying to call him back, but he wasn’t answering. She had an intern keep calling when she had to attend to a patient. She even had Dr. Richard Webber (James Pickens Jr.) hold on to her phone in case he called.
He finally called back. After the police had taken all of his stuff out of the car and had a dog sniff it and him.
Why?! All because his bike rack was obscuring his license plate and because he was black. I saw the fear on Winston’s face. Plus the emotions after it was all done. Anthony did such an amazing job portraying what being pulled over is really like. I felt his fear and how shaken he was after.
This is horrifying that this is a regular occurrence in this country. How do we make it end?
And who knew Richard had been marching for civil rights. He had a patient with a tear gas canister lodged in her shoulder, and she wasn’t fazed by it. It was just one of many scars she’s gotten along the way fighting for her rights.
Richard had his own scars from his marches. It was inspiring to hear their determination and their experiences. I know the feeling Richard is talking about from going on women’s marches. The writers did a good job capturing that feeling.
Interestingly, the episode started with Richard’s voiceover and Dr. Jackson Avery (Jesse Williams) running by a protest. It makes perfect sense now. Richard was a veteran at marching for civil rights, and Jackson is just now finding his way.
He’s been trying to make a difference. First with his checkbook and then trying to build a program to help. I did like the conversation with his mother, Dr. Catherine Fox (Debbie Allen). I’m sure she has done a lot of good work from the inside. But maybe that’s not Jackson’s path. He needs to find a way to express his outrage and create change.
The episode ends with him driving eleven hours. Is he going to Minneapolis?
Dr. Cormac Hayes’s (Richard Flood) kids were also finding their own path. But when they were protesting, there were counter-protesters. They almost hurt one of his sons. He stepped in and got hurt.
I can totally understand why he sent them home. But I’m glad he came around to letting them go out again when he’s there, of course.
These are all great conversation starters. There is a risk element going out. There shouldn’t be when you are peacefully protesting, but sadly there is.
Maggie’s patient got hit by a rubber bullet. It messed up his heart, and he had to have surgery. The point of these protests is to stop the violence on African Americans, and the police respond with more violence. They are the problems, not the protesters.
We did have a little bit of a breather through all this. Dr. Levi Schmitt (Jake Borelli) was in the hyperbaric chamber with Dr. Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) when an intern brought another patient into the chamber. That patient’s stomach erupted, and Schmitt had to jump in.
He heard Meredith’s voice walking him through the whole thing. She’s going to be so proud of him when she wakes up again.
It was definitely a needed B storyline. The entire episode was so intense.
“Sign O’ the Times” also touched on the covid non-believers. Dr. Miranda Bailey (Chandra Wilson) treated a patient that thought it was a hoax, and the doctors were getting paid for every patient they diagnose.
Bailey and Dr. Teddy Altman (Kim Raver) had a totally relatable dark humor moment talking about all the horrible things that have happened because of the virus.
How many times have we gone down that rabbit hole in the last year?
Somehow Grey’s is truly touching on every single element of the pandemic so seamlessly.
Bailey tried her best to get the patient to let her treat him for covid, but he refused and collapsed on the way out of the hospital and died.
Bailey had a powerful monologue at the end, saying she didn’t know how to fix the problem of some people believing it was all a hoax.
Grey’s Anatomy was heartbreaking as usual, but with vital messages. I hope the people who need to hear these messages are watching.
How much were you freaked out when Winston was pulled over, and Maggie couldn’t get a hold of him? Tweet me @MandyTTCarr or comment below.