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Grey’s Anatomy Showrunner Says Meredith & Derek’s Relationship Would Never Work Today

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There is no denying that Grey’s Anatomy‘s Meredith Grey and Derek Shepherd are one of the most iconic TV couples of all time. For more than a decade, we watched their relationship through its ups and downs, only to be heartbroken by Derek’s untimely death on season 11. We’re still not over it TBH. They were the definition of #CoupleGoals and still are. However, the pair’s romance would probably look very different if the first season of Grey‘s would have premiered in 2018.

During a recent interview with the Los Angeles Times, Grey’s showrunner Krista Vernoff pointed out that the beginning of Ellen Pompeo and Patrick Dempsey‘s epic on-screen relationship certainly didn’t age well in light of the Time’s Up and #MeToo movements.

“If you look at, for example, Meredith Grey and Derek Shepherd through the lens of Time’s Up and #MeToo, he was her boss, she was an intern, and she kept saying, ‘No, walk away from me,’ and he kept pursuing her, and that is probably not a story we would tell on the show today,” she explained, adding that “it’s a beautiful reflection of the changing times.”

Here’s the moment she’s referring to:

It is pretty awkward — especially the part where Meredith flat out tells Derek “you’re sexually harassing me.” He disregards her concerns and they then go on to make out in the elevator. But while we agree that MerDer’s love story could have begun differently, the viewer could see that Meredith was genuinely interested in Derek. Even so, verbal consent is always necessary — and she didn’t really give that.

If you’ve been watching season 15 of Grey’s, then you’ve noticed that Meredith has a connection with her resident Dr. Andrew DeLuca, played by actor Giacomo Gianniotti. However, this time around, the writers are taking extra precaution and are “doing a little bit of a reversal” for this storyline. They obviously can’t go back in time to change the beginnings of MerDer, but the show has been given the opportunity to handle a similar storyline in a different way.

“We’re doing a little bit of a reversal as we begin to build this love triangle that’s emerging with DeLuca as one the people in that triangle, and he is a resident and Meredith is an attending, and we’re having to address it differently than we ever would have before,” Krista said.

A role reversal isn’t the only thing that needs to be changed. “We’re having to talk about and look at power dynamics,” she continued. “It is an ongoing conversation in the writer’s room. How do we tell that story in a way that feels honest and romantic and sexy and yet proactive and progressive?”

Honestly, they’re doing a great job! We’re loving Meredith’s new storyline and now that Dr. Link – a.k.a the Ortho God – is involved, we can’t wait to see how her love story unfolds.

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