‘Grey’s Anatomy’: Krista Vernoff reveals why Alex Karev didn’t die in season 16


Alex Karev (Justin Chambers) out Grey’s anatomy Season 16 had divided fans. While some viewers were happy that Alex left without a scar death, others would have preferred to see the character die rather than abandon Jo Wilson (Camilla Luddington). So why did the pediatric surgeon receive the rejection he made? Recently, Grey’s anatomy showrunner Krista Vernoff revealed why the writers decided not to kill Alex.

How did Alex Karev leave ‘Grey’s Anatomy’?

Justin Chambers as Alex Karev in Grey's Anatomy
Justin Chambers plays Alex Karev in “Grey’s Anatomy” | Television by Mitch Haaseth / Walt Disney via Getty Images

In Grey’s anatomy Season 16, Episode 16 – titled “Leave a Light On” – Alex leaves mysterious letters to Jo, Meredith Gray (Ellen Pompeo), Richard Webber (James Pickens Jr.) and Miranda Bailey (Chandra Wilson). At this point in the season, Alex is MIA and everyone is worried. But according to the letters, Alex is with Izzie Stevens (Katherine Heigl) in Kansas with their twins, Alexis and Eli.

Alex reveals that he reconnected with Izzie when he contacted her for Meredith’s medical license trial. Then, as Jo would say, one thing led to another. During their call, Alex discovered that Izzie had used the embryos she had made when she was diagnosed with cancer. Alex therefore chooses to stay with Izzie for their children. He also admits that he is still in love with her.

Finally, Alex leaves his share at the Gray Sloan Memorial to Jo. He also sends her signed divorce papers. Meanwhile, Alex strengthens Meredith is his own person and is strong enough to fend for himself, without him.

Krista Vernoff explains why ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ didn’t kill Alex Karev

After the Grey’s anatomy On April 9, the season 16 finale, Deadline published an interview with Vernoff to discuss the current cycle, including the mass release of Alex. And finally, it looks like the Shondaland series didn’t kill Alex because they wanted to give the character a better start than an off-camera death.

“I think there would have been at least as much an outcry if we had killed this character off-camera, and that was our choice,” said Vernoff. “It was killing the character off camera, or finding a credible way to get it happily ever after. “

She continued, “Some fans have asked, ‘Well, he could just have been off screen in Seattle like April Kepner [Sarah Drew]. “But then you have an actress on the show who can’t make the fun, sexy and playful thrill we are known for.” Then you penalize the actors who stay in the series by limiting what you could creatively do with them. “

Vernoff also recognized Grey’s anatomy fans who were disappointed with the episode. “I was not surprised by the reaction of the fans,” she said. “But I know it would have been just as angry if I had killed him. It felt like it was your choice, and I felt really happy with what we chose. “

Why Krista Vernoff loved Alex Karev’s starting episode in season 16 of Grey’s Anatomy

Although many Grey’s anatomy fans were upset with Alex’s release, others were pleased, including Vernoff. Still speaking with Deadline, the showrunner shared that she was “proud” of the episode. Vernoff also praised the show’s writer Elisabeth Finch for “doing an extraordinary job with an almost impossible task.”

Meanwhile, in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Vernoff went deeper into why she liked Alex’s sending episode.

“I love this episode,” said Vernoff. “I thought it was beautiful, romantic, heartbreaking, painful and the perfect combination of how so many stories happen in Shondaland, where you cry together with joy and cry with grief. It was perfectly imperfect and it was perfectly messy. “

She also explained how the end of Alex not only showed the character’s development, but will push others to move forward.

“It allowed Alex to grow up as a human in a variety of ways and still be imperfect and disappoint a woman he loved so much,” said Vernoff. “This allows Jo to have been a person who really healed him and in many ways he is now able to become this wonderful father for these children. And that made it possible for the characters who are still at Gray Sloan not to have to go through another massive chapter of grief. “

Vernoff continued, “I thought it was beautiful and I’m really proud of it. It was amazing to be able to watch 16 seasons of material. To go back to the chronology of a character, 16 seasons, and so that these are really things that we shot in the series? It’s rare on TV. “

When Alex left Grey’s anatomy, the Shondaland series made it clear that there was no good time to say goodbye. And although we are sad about the character’s release after 16 seasons, the writers are happy with the path they have chosen. Who knows? That leaves Alex – and maybe even Izzie – open to come back one day.

“When I left the series in Season 7, people asked me if there was a chance I would ever come back, and I was smart enough to say,” Never say never, “said Vernoff to Deadline when asked about Alex’s return. “Here I am, so who knows?” “

Read more: Why fans of “Grey’s Anatomy” don’t believe in the romance of Meredith Gray and Andrew DeLuca


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