Now that T.R. Night may be leaving the show, should "Grey's Anatomy" creator Shonda Rhimes exercise her will upon the network to bring Isaiah Washington back to the cast as Dr. Burke?
Washington famously caused a storm of controversy in late 2006 beginning when he allegedly referred to T.R. Night on set using a homophobic slur and ending with his tasteless comments at the Golden Globe awards in January 2007.
He later issued a lengthy apology and attended counseling, but ABC and Rhimes still decided to drop him from the show in June 2007. Since his dismissal, Washington has made no secret of the fact that he would love to have his old job back.
Meanwhile, it was rumored this week that T.R. Night has asked to be released from his contract mainly because he is unhappy with his storyline. And, despite the fact that Katherine Heigl (Izzy) embarassed Grey's writers lasty year with open criticism of what she deemed a lack of award-worthy material, this season is still not exactly looking worthy of Emmy nods.
A recent article by Scott Pierce quipped that "Grey's Anatomy" is on life support and "when the show's not dull, it's downright bizarre."
Just take a look at some of the haphazard plots we've seen so far:
#1. Interns operating on themselves for practice led by Lexie Grey. Analysis: Just plain stupid. All of the interns should have all be expelled and drug tested (not necessarily in that order), and in the real world no doubt they would have been.
#2: Dr. Erica Hahn and Dr. Callie Torez have a short-lived lesbian love affair. This somewhat interesting storyline was ended abruptly and now Dr. Hahn (who we liked) is gone from the show. Hopefully she at least got paid extra for that whole "I see leaves" gush before she got the boot. Still the worst (and arguably most disturbing) part of this whole affair may have been the scene where Bailey gave Torez a pep talk on exploring lady parts below the belt. Uhm. No.
#3: McSteamy is shagging Lexie (aka Little Grey). Can anyone say desperado---just exactly how many more co-workers must dizzy, jilted, little sister sleep with to feel validated? She may have a photographic memory but she is definitely no rocket scientist. Besides, this pair has absolutely nothing in common and zero on-screen chemistry.
#3: Alex is shagging Izzie. But first he treated her like gutter scum after she had his crazy, married, pregnancy-faking, stalker, ex-patient girlfriend admitted to the psyche ward. Then he shagged her. Now he loves her. Awwww...? But it doesn't matter since...
#4: Izzie is shagging Denny's sexy ghost (Jeffrey Dean Morgan). Loudly. A lot. (fyi...if you happen to be on the fence about Morgan's sexiness just check out his semi-nude scene in the movie "P.S. I Love You"). But Denny's hot bod notwithstanding...this storyline is just plain weird which, in turn, makes Izzie appear even crazier than she already was (is that even possible?).
#5: Enter Dr. Virginia Dixon (Mary McDonnell). The Chief is dying to hire her for her surgical genius even though she is clearly afflicted with Asperger's syndrome, a mental disorder that causes her social skills to be impaired. This lady communicates mostly in a series of incoherent grunts. That is until she decides to fluently explain to a grief-stricken teenager why her big sister should be promptly removed from life support (so her organs can be harvested while they're still nice and warm and fresh, of course). Cuckoo-cuckoo. We don't need another crazy. We already have Izzie for that.
#6: George (T.R. Night) passed his intern exam. He's really a real doctor now. Woop-dee-do.
#7: Major Owen Hunt (Kevin McKidd) aka McArmy was hired as the new head of trauma. Since he and Cristina shared a borderline sado-masochistic kiss in a previous episode (right after he sewed up her stab wound with no anesthesia), this storyline at first seemed promising. That was before we found out that the major now has some kind of post-traumatic stress disorder from the war which has transformed him from a brash, brazen lion to a confused, tongue-tied lamb. *sigh*.
#8: Cristina and Meredith are on the outs with eachother because Meredith didn't take up for Cristina when the Chief banned her from the solo surgery competition. Now Cristina thinks Meredith is a selfish troll. Is she really just finding that out? We thought that was the basis of their sick friendship in the first place.
#9: Enter Sadie (Melissa George). Meredith's old friend from who-cares-where is now an intern. One minute Sadie is crashing Meredith and McDreamy's bed to giggle with Mere about old times and call her by her old nickname, Death?. The next minute she's almost dying from unwisely letting the other interns attempt to remove her appendix. The next minute she flirting with Dr. Torez. Wha?
#10: Other miscellaneous plot foibles: A flooded ER and practice surgery on sedated pigs.
And if questionable storylines aren't damaging enough, the lack of multi-ethnic, male eye candy...er, talent...isn't helping either.
As Pierce noted, "the writers have obviously run out of ideas for the characters. And adding new characters is a way to extend the life of a show."
But what could be even better than adding a new character? Bringing back an oldy, but a goody.
Dr. Burke revisited could be just the uber-controversial, super-shocking, high-rating CPR that the show needs.