All right, Shondaland fans, the longest-running show of ABC’s TGIT lineup is finally back this week with Season 14 premiere of “Grey’s Anatomy.” We’re breaking down everything you need to know from last season ahead of Thursday episode. Ready to scrub in?
1. Dr. Edwards quits
Let’s start with Dr. Stephanie Edwards (Jerrika Hinton), since her storyline ended with a literal bang, and her absence from the show will leave a snark-shaped hole in our hearts. After getting perpetually hounded by Dr. Minnick (Marika Dominczyk), she was put on leave until completing therapy.
Edwards convinces Dr. Webber (James Pickens Jr.) to sign off on her return just in time to help Miranda Bailey (Chandra Wilson), Maggie Pierce (Kelly McCreary), Jackson Avery (Jesse Williams) and April Kepner (Sarah Drew) with a couple whose car went off a cliff.
They come into the hospital in various states of undress, and the doctors assume the couple accidentally shifted the gear while getting it on in the car. But no, the story isn’t as would-be romantic as the docs imagine.
It turns out the the woman, Allison, was actually trying to escape from the man, Keith, who was trying to rape her. The residents don’t find this out in time, however, and Keith tricks Edwards into taking him out of his room.
What follows is a chain of events that reminds us of some of “Grey’s” classic disaster episodes. When Allison wakes up, she alerts Bailey and the others to Keith’s threat and the hospital goes into lock down.
Keith, aware that he’s been found out, orders Edwards to help him escape the hospital. But because of the lockdown, all the exit doors are locked. They end up in an abandoned wing of the hospital, where they run into Erin (Darby Camp), a young girl who’s been wandering the halls while she waits for her little sister to be discharged.
Keith is trying to start a fire so the doors will open, but Edwards manages to set him on fire instead. But when Keith runs too close to some chemicals in an abandoned lab, he causes a huge explosion. Edwards somehow survives, but Erin is injured. She is able to get them both out into the stairwell, but not before jumping through some flames.
Eventually, they make it to the roof, and Dr. Ben Warren (Jason George) and some firefighters find them. They both survive, but Edwards decides she’s done working in the hospital for now, and tells Dr. Webber that she’s quit.
2. Megan Hunt is alive
Meanwhile, some serious developments are happening in Dr. Owen Hunt’s (Kevin McKidd) relationship with Dr. Amelia Shepherd (Caterina Scorsone) — and in Meredith Grey’s (Ellen Pompeo) relationship with Nathan Riggs (Martin Henderson).
If you remember, Riggs and Hunt used to be best buds, and Riggs used to date Hunt’s sister Megan (Abigail Spencer). They were all in the Army together, and when Megan went missing, everyone assumed she died. But Hunt finds out that she’s still alive, and Amelia takes over organizing logistics as he’s in shock. And guess who Amelia organizes logistics with?
3. Dr. Teddy Altman returns
That’s right. Kim Raver’s back for Season 14.
As for how this news affects Meredith, well, she tells Riggs to go with Hunt and Amelia to see Megan. “If it were Derek, I’d already be gone,” Meredith tells Riggs, totally breaking our hearts all over again.
Meredith was previously worried about how spending so much time with Riggs would affect Maggie (who used to have a huge crush on him) and her children. Will Riggs get back together with Megan, or will what she’s been through strain their old flame? If he doesn’t get back together with her, will he be able to stay with Meredith?
4. Dr. Minnick gets fired
Then we come to Minnick, who during the lockdown/fire disaster wasn’t as helpful as she demanded that everyone else be. Yes, she actually forgot to tell the police that Edwards was missing. This looks especially bad as Minnick has been harsh on Edwards for weeks. Dr. Catherine Avery (Debbie Allen) wants to know how the disaster got so bad, and why it took forever to find the people missing.
Bailey insists that she groomed her doctors well — as evidenced by Avery, Warren and others’ concern for those missing and their determination to find Edwards and Erin. Finally, Minnick is let go. But she’s had a relationship going with Dr. Arizona Robbins (Jessica Capshaw), so we suspect she might not be gone for good.
We can’t wait to find out what happens next for everyone at Grey-Sloan Memorial tonight during the two-hour premiere at 8 p.m. on ABC.