No one was prepared for the death of Derek Shepherd. Millions of fans took to Twitter and other social media sites to display their outrage, shock and feeling of betrayal. People who don’t watch the show are tired of hearing about how hard the rest of us are taking it.
Game of Thrones and Walking Dead fans are quick to respond by informing you, “People die all the time; nobody is safe.” But there is no comparison! Grey’s fans are so heartbroken because the death of Derek Shepherd doesn’t just ruin the potential future of Grey’s Anatomy, but it ruins the past too.
I like to rewatch series during the summer, and I just felt sad at all the sweet moments between Meredith and Derek and the times he did escape death, now that I know when they got it together finally, they lost it all.
No, I’m not delusional. I know bad things happen in real life, and the possibility is real that you will meet your soulmate, have two kids and want a third, then your soulmate will die in a car accident. However, I don’t watch TV for true life; I watch it for fantasy.
For one hour, once a week, 22 weeks a year, I can escape and believe that my boyfriend won’t laugh in my face if I say something like, “Pick me, choose me, love me.” I can believe that he will tell me he wants to build a house for me and to marry me on a Post-It note. I can believe no matter how hard I try to stay away, something draws me to him and him to me — besides tequila and sex.
If the writers behind Grey’s wanted to let audiences see a widow grieve, they could have done so with Teddy, but this relationship was essentially the heart of the show. To make the choice to take so much from Mer — her mother, her sister, basically her father, her friends, her patients, her best friend and now the love of her life — is indeed cruel.
The thing is Derek was dreamy, but he wasn’t perfect. He was this perfectly flawed human who made mistakes but also learned from them. He didn’t make us want some unattainable Prince Charming; he made us believe that mistakes happen and people mess up, but love can win out when push comes to shove.
We watched Meredith overcome so much in the first 11 years of the show. We are always rooting for her. Some fans can’t get over the shock of McDreamy’s death, so how is it that Meredith seems to be moving on, onscreen?
Yes, her first sexual encounter post-Derek ended with her waking up and kicking him out, followed by a day-long cleaning fit. When she said, “That part of my life is over, and I’m fine with that,” we felt a bittersweet relief that we wouldn’t have to see anyone try to fill Derek’s shoes.
The new season is kicking ass. Don’t get me wrong: I still miss Derek, but thanks to last season’s time hop for Mer and the gang, it’s been years since Derek died in their lives. For us, it’s only been a year and still feels like yesterday.
Rest in peace, McDreamy. We will never forget you.