ABC’s hit medical drama “Grey’s Anatomy” is still going strong in its 18th season thanks to its legion of loyal fans. Even though the series’ viewership has dropped in recent years, its lowest ever series still managed to get 3.5 million views on Season 18 Episode 7, which is impressive considering how long it’s been on the air.
One of the reasons the medical series has managed to remain compelling over the years is due in part to its constantly rotating cast. Surgeons at Gray Sloan Memorial Hospital often take on new jobs elsewhere, get fired for some kind of insane violation of protocol, or die in a freak accident.
Who could forget the heroics of George O’Malley (TR Knight) dying after saving someone from an oncoming bus in Season 5? And, of course, there were the heartbreaking deaths of Lexie Gray (Chyler Leigh) and Mark Sloan (Eric Dane) after Season 8’s devastating plane crash. Not all character departures are as dramatic, however, as we see with Jackson. Avery (Jesse Williams) in season 17.
When Jackson Avery arrives at the hospital then called Seattle Grace on “Grey’s Anatomy” season 6, fans fell in love with the handsome and ambitious doctor. But Jackson runs into several obstacles throughout his stay in Seattle. He has a rocky relationship with Dr. April Kepner (Sarah Drew) and once they find out about her, her son dies shortly after birth due to osteogenesis imperfecta.
Also, his mother has a brush with cancer and confronts her father, who abandoned him. So when season 17 rolls around, the producers figured it was time to say goodbye to Jackson so he could take over his famous family’s foundation in Boston. He got a proper send-off with April agreeing to move in as well so he can be near her daughter.
According to Williams, Jackson’s departure was necessary for his character’s journey of self-discovery. And the actor himself came out before clarifying the doubts about his departure that he was happy with how he finished the story of his character on the show after so much time in the role.
“He will feel alive like never before, which is very exciting,” said the actor.