Grey's Anatomy Season 14, Episode 12 Recap: "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger"

Photo: Courtesy of ABC.

Since she lost her own personal Jesus, Kepner (Sarah Drew) has been drinking and hooking up with an intern, and frankly, this turn for the dark side is way more interesting than her crazy control freak of contest judge side, but the latter is the premise for tonight's episode so prepare to roll in. I'll say this for Kepner: she can pull a hottie.

And with that, Grey's Anatomy brings you: cool stuff you can do with medicine to fix some incredibly pressing problems!

The doctors are competing for a grand prize of $5M in research money, and Jackson (Jesse Williams) is gonna make spray-on skin which is probably the most plastic surgeon thing he could explore. However, Dr. Valez (Candis Cayne) comes to Jackson and his mom, Catherine (Debbie Allen), with the idea that will revolutionize gender confirmation surgery, work for vaginal canal issues in cis women, and possibly give us all better orgasms. The reveal comes when she reveals to the duo that she is transgender and wants them to perform the surgery on her -- oh, and use it as their $5M project. They fight about it for most the episode and, weirdly, Jackson is the least woke person in the conversation. It takes an entire cavalcade of women telling him this surgery is cool for it to sink in. In the end, he signs on.

Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) and Weber (James Pickens, Jr.) are treating one of his friends who is a recovering alcoholic with cirrhosis who cannot get a liver transplant. I guessed at the outset of the episode that he is going to inspire her in her project for the contest because she is blocked under pressure. When they reintroduce her spleen removal from the hacking who grew new tiny spleens in her brain, I placed my bet on the two of them working together. Also, I had my gallbladder removed, and I am looking that condition up on Wed MD as soon as this episode is over because holy shit. It was at approximately 37 minutes into the show that Jo (Camilla Luddington) gave her the a-ha moment that was obviously coming. She's going to develop and harvest organs based on this anomaly. She's welcome to all the tiny gallbladders that I assume are floating around inside me. Putting Jo on the paper and naming her, at her request, as Dr. Josephine Brooke Wilson, is the icing on the "Paul is dead" cake. No Beatles jokes.

I am rooting for Maggie (Kelly McCreary) to win this contest, honestly. She wants to invent a wireless way to charge heart LVATs through the skin, which is not as flashy but so necessary. If she doesn't take the $5M, she should at least get one of the $1M finalist prizes. She also ends up signing on to a project with Weber for a magic wand, and all you need to know is that it was developed in memory of her mother to detect cancer. Also, neither of them can dance salsa.

Arizona (Jessica Capshaw) and Lady Deluca (Stefania Spampinato) have a conversation that gets the former thinking about motherhood mortality rates. She raises an issue I'd like to see addressed: why is America's so high compared to the rest of the developed world? Her speech to Kepner as her verbal paper about fixing preeclampsia and the death rate for mothers was the moment in this episode that made me cry, readers. Changed my mind, this project should win. That somehow ended with her becoming life partners with Lady Deluca because Italians do it better.

We've been going to the Emerald City Bar with doctors since the very first episode of this show, but we've never seen the entire cast there, and it seems either noteworthy or like a weird slip up.

Karev (Justin Chambers), Amelia (Caterina Scorsone), and the intern are treating a singing savant named Kimmie Park who just wants to make it to her audition but can't because of her brain tumor. They find they can't operate on it without severe consequences for her speech center. They develop a theory that they can shatter the tumor with a sound, like singing a note shatters a glass. They submitted a paper to test their idea but didn't make the final cut. Guys, you know what comes next: a dangerous decision is headed our way.

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