For the last blog post I’d like to talk about the format that makes Grey’s Anatomy stand out from many other television shows.
Let’s start with the overall tone of the show. Episode five of season one starts with Dr. Meredith Grey holding a woman’s heart after being awake for forty-eight hours. Soon after she releases the heart into the woman’s chest, the heart stops beating. Luckily, Dr. Burke is able to revive the heart with a defibrillator. It is later revealed that Meredith’s glove had a puncture in it and she may have punctured the heart as she was dealing with it. What does this have to do with the show? Well, this entire scene was part of the first ten minutes of the episode. The conflict is established and the show is already able to spark the audience’s interest before it even plays the intro sequence. The reason this is so interesting to the viewers is because throughout Grey’s Anatomy, many lives rest upon the hands of the main characters and when lives are at stake, people tend to take things much more seriously.
The episode continues with another patient who undergoes a surgery in which a towel is discovered inside her lungs. The towel is promptly removed but the situation is investigated. It is found that Dr. Burke, a highly ranked surgeon at the hospital was the leading surgeon in the surgery that the same women underwent five years prior. This sparks even more interest in the audience since the situation is somewhat similar to the one that is presented at the beginning of the episode, however, this time the stakes are much higher because a mistake such as leaving a towel inside a patient is something that can get someone fired, and when the audience finds out that the person responsible is one of the main characters of the show, the question that stems from that is “will Dr. Burke get fired?”