Thursday, March 26, 2009

Sympathy for the not-so Devil...

So...tonight, I went into Grey's Anatomy with a new attitude. I decided that I wasn't being fair on Izzie, that just because if I knew her in life, she'd drive me to the edge, it wasn't fair to be so harsh on her. She is, after all, dying.

Mostly, I went into it with the attitude that her impending health decline was going to affect her friends and I do care about them. George, for example. He and Izzie have been best friends, soul mates in compassion and caring. Yes, they had the ill fortune to have an affair but, in all honesty, in real life...that happens. Friends mistake friendship for...something more. It's a nice bond; sex is just the sealant on an already strong relationship. But it also becomes a corrosive, wearing away at the bonds of friendship; perhaps it wasn't good sex, perhaps the deep feeling of connection didn't last beyond the last passionate embrace. Whatever it was, their friendship suffered because of their attempt to take it further. He's hurting because he feels as though he's lost touch with Izzie. Only Callie, once the victim of George/Izzie's ill-fated relationship, could make George see how much Izzie really both of them.

I care about Christina's reaction to Izzie. Christina "the Robot" as Izzie dubbed her. Christina is a strong, amazing doctor but she's used to detaching from a patient so that she can be a better doctor. Try as she might, she can't do that with Izzie, for better or for worse. Izzie and Christina have always been polar opposites, one feeling too much, one feeling too little. Now, at last, they're finding a way to balance each other out which is, in my opinion, a reason to not hate Izzie. Christina is strong, so strong she's allowed Owen to hurt her, to strangle her and still she forgives him. Yet, alone in the dark with him, she realizes that even she, as strong as she is, is afraid. So she does the only thing she has the power to do, she lets go. It hurts...but she lets go.

Then there's Meredith who struggles to be a better, stronger person, a strong, smart doctor and a girlfriend who isn't imprisoned by her past mistakes. She's always tried to extend the hand of friendship to Izzie but has never understood her; Izzie found light in darkness, Meredith absorbed the darkness and let it become her. Yet tonight, Derek finally proposed the right way, the only way that he could possibly have done in order to get Meredith to say yes. I admit, I knew it was coming but...yet...I can't help but be ecstatic. The elevator non-proposal, the recap of their amazing moments together in surgery...everything about that was right and so I look to these two in the future to guide the show, to continue to make us care.

And Alex...poor Alex. He's opened himself up, fought his natural instincts to let Izzie into his heart. He fell for her, completely and utterly. He's never had anything to hold onto; his family was abusive and cruel, providing little foundation for healthy romantic relationships. Yet Izzie provided the stability he needed and, at last, Alex found sure footing on which to build hopes and dreams. I love how he struggled tonight; he wanted to run but he couldn't. He cares too much. He knows Izzie is the best woman he's ever had and so, rather than cut and run, he's there, sitting by her bedside, ensuring a future life will be made of their union. He's trying...and Izzie is the reason.

So, you see, I can't hate Izzie, no matter how irritating she can be. Her character has had an influence on everyone, good and bad. Yes, mostly, I want to make her stop talking, even before she had cancer that affected her brain, I wanted someone to take away her medical license so she couldn't hurt anyone else. I always though Izzie would make a fine social worker, her do-good nature perfectly placed to help others without the risk of killing them accidentally.

Yet that's not going to happen. I don't know what will happen to Izzie, whether Derek's skills as a brain surgeon will truly give her more time or if, as I suspect, they just postpone the inevitable. Last week, I pleaded for Izzie to die. I've had a change of heart. I do want Katherine Heigl to leave the show because I think it needs changes and I think she's bringing it down. I don't know if I want Izzie to die; it would make sense but it might not be right. The odds are against her, whether or not Derek gave her more time to live her life and, perhaps, say goodbye.

Here's what I suspect...Izzie will have a new lease on life. She will seize the day with Alex; I wouldn't be surprised if a wedding is in their future. Yet I also suspect the happiness will be brief. We may not be witness to Izzie's sad death but, then again, I don't rule anything out. I do think Alex will be crushed and have to rise out of the ashes to regain his grasp on life. I hope he does. I hope all of my troubled yet brilliant residents at Seattle Grace can deal with Izzie's illness appreciating that which she gave them but knowing that they have to carry on, no matter what the outcome.

So, you see, for once, I'm not rooting against Izzie Stevens. Instead, I'm rooting for her. I did feel sorry for her tonight, she sat alone in her hospital room, terrified but trying to be brave. Bailey was there for her, reassuring her through science, comforting her with facts. Her friends were too scared, too afraid of what Izzie's illness means to them. Yet, in the end, they were there, terrified with her, hoping that she would be ok, proving that they are truly the 'people' that Izzie needs.

It took a while but I might be finally jumping on the bandwagon. Don't get me wrong, it still doesn't excuse Dead Denny but it does, at last, make me care about Izzie. It took long enough and it's scary's happening. I just hope it lasts.

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