Warning! SPOILERS about the upcoming 18th season of “Anatomy of Passion”
The announcement of Kate Burton’s return to portray Ellis Gray in the 18th season of “Anatomy of Passion” led many to speculate that Meredith was close to being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, but the reason for her presence actually pointed to how bad Ellis Meredith’s curse is. Ellis and Meredith’s relationship with her was much more important in seasons 1 to 3 of Anatomy of Passion, although Ellis appeared regularly throughout the show. However, as Meredith’s career has progressed, despite her success being increasingly compared to her mother’s, it would be easy to think that Meredith has finally freed herself from the expectations of getting the greatness of Ellis Gray.
While viewers have always seen Meredith as an independent character, and her successes and mistakes were the result of Meredith’s choice, and not an exaggeration of Ellis’ influence on them, the 18th season of “Anatomy of Passion” showed how strong the power of Ellis’ image over Meredith was. her daughter. Despite traveling to Minnesota to meet David Hamilton (Peter Gallagher) to see the newly built Gray Center in Ellis’ honor, Meredith’s nightmares about Ellis almost didn’t exist when she started her job in Minnesota, while much more was present in Seattle. Meredith’s fear of not doing useful work in the extra time she was given after the Covid-19 illness was voiced by her at the beginning of the 18th season of “Anatomy of Passion”, but it seemed that her problem with dreams and vision of Ellis had less to do with this and much more, comparing her life and career choice with her mother’s choice.
The season 18 finale of “Anatomy of Passion” revealed the true power of Ellis’ curse on Meredith. No longer banished only to the realm of dreams, Ellis appeared to Meredith as if she were real, during a complex operation in the 18th season of “Anatomy of Passion”, episodes 19 and 20. Although the operation could not be completed and resulted in the death of the patient due to a national shortage of blood, which was particularly severe at the Gray Sloan Memorial, the impact of Ellis’ harsh words on Meredith during the operation was undeniable. Although many years have passed since Ellis’ death, the 18th season of “Anatomy of Passion” showed how Meredith still felt that she was being judged by Ellis’ standards and considered herself insufficient.
The overwhelming influence of Ellis’ standards on Meredith was nothing new, only highlighted by Ellis’ return to The Anatomy of Passion. In the 14th episode of the 3rd season of the medical drama, Ellis scolded Meredith in one of her few conscious states because her daughter focused on her personal happiness and not on work-related successes when she informed Ellis about what was happening in her life. Ellis’ ruthlessness when she shared her opinion about Meredith’s choice, no matter how Meredith felt about it, urging her to be outstanding in her career and not just fall in love with someone, greatly influenced Meredith at that time and later. The 18th season of “Anatomy of Passion” showed how much she was affected by the fact that Meredith’s uncertainty that she had made the right choice for her career after leaving Gray Sloan Memorial Hospital took the form of Ellis’s dismissive attitude towards Meredith’s every decision, even during surgery, as Ellis has always been the harshest critic Meredith.
It is unknown whether Ellis Gray, played by Kate Burton, will also be present in the 19th season of “Anatomy of Passion”, as well as in the 18th. she will have to face her demons, who present themselves in the image of Ellis Gray. In the end, the “Anatomy of Passion” accurately determined the influence of Ellis’s opinion on Meredith’s choice, thanks to which Meredith finally freed herself from it and became the longest and happiest for her.