First – To my Hubby: I cite a loophole in our Grey’s Anatomy deal. I get to leer at Patrick Dempsey for an hour a week. Two hours on special occasions or when Shonda Sunshine so decrees. There’s no clause about blogging. So there!
This is a post about Grey’s Anatomy that’s not about Grey’s Anatomy. It’s an ode to Shonda Rimes and her writing team. It’s also an ode to every writer who gets the big one right. Sometimes that includes me.
How to set the scene for the proposal? Most of the time it’s all led up to this. It started with that first meeting when the dynamic duo eyed each other for tender spots where a knife or a high heel would do the most damage. By the second meeting they notice tender spots that would taste just right. A few rounds later, they can’t be in the same room without battling the urge to rip off clothes and find the most tender spot of all. After all the angst and the obstacles, the hope and the despair, he finally plans to ask the M question because he has to. You know what else he has to do? He has to get it right.
True, he has to get it right for him, for her, for them. But most of all, he has to nail it for the readers or viewers who laughed and cried with them, who suffered and soared with them. They rooted for the romance, believed in it even when the dynamic duo had boogled on to other people. Those readers and viewers watched each of the pair waste time on wrong people and got through the rocky times by imagining the duo reunited, picturing the pivotal moment when two agree to become one. So when the moment arrrives, the hero has to make it McDreamy.
What Grey’s showed is that perfect may be perfectly wrong. Had Derek proposed in Meredith’s bedroom, surrounded by roses, he’d have gotten it right by storybook standards, but not by the standards of his story. He might have even gotten the wrong answer. Surely, Mer would have wondered why he didn’t know she wasn’t a rosy kind of gal. In the end he figured it out – Mer’s more elevator than rose petals, which is one of the reasons she’s perfect for him.
Making it McDreamy means making it fit the characters and the arc of their romance. For Grey’s, since it was a planned proposal, that meant location, location, location. Only a few I can think of would have fit. He could have popped the question on the barstool at Joe’s. He could have asked in a supply closet or on call room. The second best place would have been THE exam room he chased Mer to at the dance. But yeah, given the overall history, that elevator was perfect. And forget the roses, the scans were the best dark and twisty bouquet.
In thinking about this post, I realized that so far, I’ve written only one planned proposal. The others have occurred rolling around in the mud, under a cloud of circling glass from all the bottles polished off the night before, in a hospital bed (not from being cut by the glass) and in a gazebo after a quick dash to change clothes. The planned proposal wasn’t even traditional. It was under a willow tree with a fully set table – white cloth and all. But it was outdoors with servants holding back an angry horde. Now that’s romance. In the story, yeah, I hope so.
Guess what it all means is that romance is as different as lovers. My McDreamy might be your McNightmare. Hopefully not in my books though. There, I hope that like Shonda, I get it right. Kudos to Ms. Rimes and her diabolical minions!!
“Just when I think I’m out, they pull me back in.”