Sorry, Cristina-Owen fans, but tonight's scandalous sweeps episode of Grey's Anatomy is going to be a little rough on you.
As the Canadian promo for tonight's episode teases, Cristina Yang (Sandra Oh) is going to be cheating on Owen Hunt (Kevin McKidd) with the "Hotness Monster" himself, Mercy Wester Jackson Avery (Jesse Williams). The hookup goes down against the backdrop of a huge pediatric case led by our girl-crush, Arizona Robbins (breakout star Jessica Capshaw).
We've interrogated both Jessica and Jesse exclusively to find what goes down tonight, and it sounds like it's exactly the kind of major relationship trouble you "Crowen" fans have been fearing...
Jessica Capshaw, who calls tonight's Arizona-centric tearjerker episode an "amazing opportunity" for her as an actress, says the Cristina-Owen sideshow is also pretty spectacular: "I think [the makeout session] is gonna be really hot and really provocative. This show is really great at creating conflict, and it's really great at telling a story and sort of giving an alternate universe where if we acted on all our impulses what we might do." Awww, Cristina. We thought you had more self-control. Blergh. (P.S. Jessica did give us a tiny bit of hope for you Crowen partisans when she told us that the mood on the set during the makeout scene was more silly and goofy than hot and heavy...so that's something, right?)
OK, so the makeout session is real. But what does it mean? Jesse Williams (a sweet young actor who clearly has his head on straight) tells us that, "The meaning will be left open to interpretation after tonight's episode, but I think it's a combination of a couple things. There's competition between Cristina and Jackson, but there's an attraction that's both physical and out of respect for her style, her swagger, her adventurousness and her kind of no-apologies approach. I think we have that in common."
So could this attraction turn into something long-term? Says Jesse, "I don't know where it's going to lead. As it stands, it's going to be unresolved. It's not over. And I think that Jackson is not as in the loop as the audience is in terms of Cristina being with Owen. He doesn't know what he's walking into. He might be a little more ambitious that he should be."
And for those of you hoping Jackson's "Mercy Wester" status will automatically put him in peril and will doom him to leave the show sooner rather than later, hold those horses. Jesse says there is every possibility of one or more of the Mercy Westers sticking around: "I think we were brought in for a reason. It creates some new tension and drama and excitement from the outside as opposed to what's happening on the inside. I would be very surprised if we didn't stick around in some form or fashion."
Sounds like the triangle between Cristina, Owen and Jackson is closer to a beginning than it is to an end. Eeek.
As for the rest of the episode, let's put tragic romance aside for a second and talk about the other side of Grey's Anatomy: heroic doctoring. As you already know if you've seen the sneak peeks, tonight's episode focuses on Arizona Robbins and a desperately ill little boy whom she's been treating for several years.
According to Jessica, "Tonight harkens back to when I first came on to do about three episodes, and in the second episode it became quickly revealed that when you are a doctor who works only with children, there is a very delicate balance to pay attention to with regard to how much you get invested. It's life and death for anyone, but somehow because children are so vulnerable when something bad happens to them, more when they're sick, it's just so much more heartbreaking. You get to see again how much she cares and how much she takes initiative to help each child as they need to be helped, as opposed to thrusting herself upon them."
The big medical crisis splits the team in two, which is how Jackson and Cristina end up working together. As Jessica explains it, "The episode starts basically in the very wee hours of the morning. There are two cases coming into the ER. One of them is Arizona's, and one of them is Callie's. And then they respectively enlist doctors to help them—Owen with Callie and Karev with me, and so on."
And then of course there are the crucial politics of it all. Jessica says, "It's the first time you see Arizona involved in the politics of the hospital, and it's also happening all around the time of her birthday."
Well, happy birthday, Arizona! You and your fabulous speeches have been a marvelous addition to the show!
So what do you guys think? Can you Crowen fans stay loyal to your pairing through this hiccup, or are you too brokenhearted to go on? (Plus, be sure to check back on Monday for more from Jessica and Jesse in the Spoiler Chat!)
Bonus Grey's Anatomy trivia question: Jessica Capshaw and Katherine Heigl costarred in what movie? (No fair peeking at IMDB!)
Grey's Anatomy airs tonight at 9 on ABC.
If you haven't seen them yet, don't miss the four sneak peeks of tonight's episode of Grey's Anatomy.