Addison Montgomery is back in the building!
Kate Walsh’s return during Grey’s Anatomy Season 18 Episode 3 was everything one could’ve hoped for, and it didn’t disappoint.
It felt as if she was back home, and most of the laughs, callbacks, and emotional moments of the hour involved her character.
The streak of Grey’s feeling like its old self again continues, and the series is much better for it.
The cooling system konking out in the middle of a heatwave felt like something that would happen at Grey Sloan, and it led to some funny, unorthodox, and cool (pardon the pun) developments.
One of the things the series is killing us with this season is exploring new dynamics. Finally!
Each installment so far has given us a new relationship to enjoy. During this one, we got Owen and Winston teaming up and going rogue (with an assist by former Grey Sloan renegade Ben), and Link and Teddy chatting about Amelia as they attempted to fix the AC or incorporate fun.
Of course, Hayes and Bailey have already proven before that they’re a fun duo, commiserating over the stresses and ails of parenthood.
It was satisfying to learn that they weren’t dropping Rashida’s case after the news of her transplant. The case continued with Winston working to ensure that it was a success.
It means you’ll be coming with me. Nice to meet everyone, I’m Dr. Addison Montgomery, and you must be the residents that are screwing up the program.
Winston approaching Owen for assistance after Bailey’s orders meant Rashida wouldn’t get it there was a smart move, and it makes you wonder if he heard about Owen’s reputation.
Owen was ready to go from there. Kudos to them both for their innovation by enlisting Warren’s help and the med truck he used as an OR on wheels.
Winston is new to the going rogue bit, but it’s good to know he has the spirit. Can you work at Grey Sloan without playing renegade every now and then?
It was fun to watch them work together and sneak around to save Rashida. And her surgery was a success, which is all Winston wanted.
He continues to shine on his own without Maggie, and he deserved this opportunity. He’s a much more dynamic character now that we’re getting to know him better.
Winston’s actions inspired Owen, too, and he may have made some headway with reaching out to Noah and getting him on board.
The country lets veterans down often. Too many others are in Noah’s situation and in need of truth and advocacy. It’s good that Owen intends to be the person to fight for them.
I’m all for a season of the doctors of Grey Sloan getting into some good trouble.
You know my body adapted to extreme heat in Iraq. I’m not even sweating.
Teddy and Link’s interactions were refreshing, and it’s funny that we never got to see them much, considering how bonded they are through Amelia, Owen, and Leo.
Initially, it was absurd to hear that Bailey placed Teddy in charge of fun to boost morale at the hospital. But then she proceeded to remove all doubts about that assignment when she killed it with humor.
Teddy was hilarious. Her ongoing spiel about how she wasn’t hot because of the time she spent in Iraq while everyone around her was sopping wet and sweltering was entertaining as hell.
And, of course, she would be the person to come up with sno-cones in the OR.
Teddy feels like herself again, and it’s nice to have this version of her back. She even served as a listening ear for Link as he lamented that he doesn’t know what to do with Amelia and how to fix things.
She didn’t offer a bunch of meaningless, unsolicited advice. She spoke her opinion, but she mainly let him vent, and that worked best. She knew she wasn’t exactly the person who could given anyone advice on love.
Link’s anguish hurts, and it remains sucky that they came up with this contrived reason to break him and Amelia up. But they chose to shed a bit of light on his odd about-face change when he mentioned that he didn’t want Scout to experience what he did with his parents.
It makes a bit more sense now, even though he needs to reach a point where he recognizes that commitment doesn’t have to mean marriage.
However, Link may have a point about how easy it was to fall from Amelia’s graces as she moves on. Link is distraught over his relationship with Amelia, and it’s consuming his every moment.
Meanwhile, Amelia is getting hot and flustered over Bartley. It sure as heck looks like she’s ready to move on and dive into something new.
As an Amelink fan, losing the couple to nonsense genuinely sucks, and the storyline doesn’t serve Link well at all. However, the potential of Amelia and Bartley is also intriguing, and it would mean exploring an aspect of her character that they introduced and abruptly dropped.
Well, now, they’re picking it back up again, but damn it all, at what cost?
Sorry, I’m hot, but I just wanted to fix something. I just wanted to fix something.
It was hard to ignore the sparks and chemistry as Bartley talked Amelia through cooling down smooth as all hell. They’re making it hard to stay angry about Amelia and Link.
Bailey and Hayes are also an endearing dynamic as they connect over parenthood, and Hayes is fairly effective with his patients when he gets to spend time with them.
The blown-out pelvis thing with Lily made you want to cross your legs, but it was troubling that she had so much going on and didn’t want to contact her parents.
Hayes was able to talk her friend into giving up the information eventually. The mention of poop in a bag helped the cause.
But more than anything, when do we get to follow Hayes home again and see him interacting with his kids? He’s struggling a lot with them right now.
They’re all he keeps talking about, and we already know it’s the issues with his teen that caused him to stop dating Mer. It sounds like his boys need more therapy or something else.
Parenthood is kicking his ass, but at least he can confide in Bailey about it.
And it took the entire installment for Mer to work up the nerve to tell Webber about her plans. She should’ve known that he would accept the news and be happy for her.
Besides, it’s the first time in a long while that Webber has been this excited about his job, so he has no problem taking over the residency program permanently while Mer is in Minnesota.
The residency program is thriving, and it’s a blast that they’re spending time with them even if we still need more time to get a feel for all of the residents.
Sun and Chee are severely underdeveloped. Perez is hilarious and underrated. Levi still dominates, and Jo reverting to residency makes things interesting. Ortiz is starting to stand out more. Working with Winston has helped with that.
Helm needs to put a BOLO out on her personality. She’s a one-trick pony right now with her obsession with Meredith. She was doing well for a bit, but it cannot be her entire personality.
Get me Meredith Grey.
She was in her feelings the entire time Addison was there because of rumors and speculation about the two of them having beef.
Fortunately, Mer and Addison seemed to have fun with that; it led to some cute moments.
Addison’s uterine transplant was insane. It’s another one of those cases that was innovative and reminded you of the good old days.
Addison is going for her Catherine Fox award, and dammit, she deserves it!
It was so good to have Addison back. The play on her iconic line when addressing the residents was squee-worthy.
Of course, it was an awesome moment when she announced that she needed Meredith Grey to help her with the surgery in half the time.
Addison had a short but gratifying moment with Amelia at the end of the hour, and her time with Richard conjured up some nostalgia.
But it was her time with Meredith that was best of all. The elevator scene was easily the best moment of the hour.
We didn’t get to see Addison at Derek’s funeral, though the show implied she was there. Thanks to the elevator scene, we caught a glimpse of Addison grieving her ex-husband and old friend.
It felt right that she shared that with Meredith. They were allowed to sit in that for a bit in the elevator.
Meredith had a chance to make peace with Derek in a new way while she was battling COVID, so she’s in a better place with that. However, for Addison, it hurt Addison that she was back in Grey Sloan, and she couldn’t feel Derek there anymore.
Oddly, there wasn’t a mention of Mark in that regard either, and he died there. But it had to be difficult stepping into this place that felt like home for years and seeing that everything has changed, most of the people you loved are either dead or gone, and all you have left is memories.
She didn’t feel Derek there anymore, and it was one of the things she was searching for when she arrived. But Mer told her that pieces of Derek are in other parts of her life.
She has the kids, and she sees Derek in them every day.
The invitation to meet the children was natural, and not only did Walsh sell that overwhelming bout of emotion in the elevator, but it carried over to talking to the kids too.
The kids calling her “Addie” like Derek had one undone with feels.
It’s a good thing that Addison isn’t going anywhere just yet, though. It’s so much more they can play around with and address. She and Jo barely had time together beyond that hilarious scene when she sent Jo for coffee.
Addison: I thought coming back here to Seattle to Grey Sloan that he’d be here that I’d be able to feel that he was still here, with things that he loved, with people that he loved, but he isn’t, and it’s real. He’s not here. And Im really sorry to be doing this in front of you because you were the one who had to go through it.
Mer: Addison, he is here, and he’s in his children, and they are very real, and I would love for you to come and meet them.
And there are a few characters who could do for a bump in with the queen that is Addison Montgomery.
Over to you, Grey’s Fanatics. How stoked are you about Addison’s return? Hit the comments below!
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Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.