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Grey's Anatomy Season 20 Ending Explained

Warning! This article contains SPOILERS for the Grey’s Anatomy season 20 finale.


  • The Grey’s Anatomy season 20 finale had cliffhanger endings, multiple plot twists, and major catastrophes, setting the stage for season 21.
  • Grey’s Anatomy Season 21 faces changes due to budget cuts and reduced cast roles, leading to uncertainty for characters and interesting storyline developments.
  • The good news for fans is Grey’s Anatomy season 21 has been confirmed, promising answers to cliffhangers and fresh twists after 20 seasons of drama.

The Grey’s Anatomy season 20 finale continued the medical drama’s trend of cliffhanger endings, major catastrophes, and multiple plot twists. Grey’s Anatomy season 20 had an abridged 10-episode season due to the writers and actors strikes, marking a big change from its 20-episode season 19. With Grey’s Anatomy season 21 already confirmed, it’s unclear how many episodes the next season will be, but season 20 did a great job of still fitting a great deal of plot into the shorter season. The confirmation also allows viewers to breathe a sigh of relief, as the cliffhanger question will eventually be answered.

Sadly, two characters are leaving in Grey’s Anatomy season 21, and the season 20 finale teased that number going up with changes for multiple characters. The series is facing budget cuts and reduced roles for cast members, raising questions about who will be affected and how. While Grey’s Anatomy cliffhangers can be frustrating for viewers, it also causes excitement for the following season and proves that the medical drama can keep things fresh and interesting after 20 seasons. It wouldn’t be a Grey’s Anatomy finale without a major disaster, and the season 20 finale was centered around a wildfire.


Grey’s Anatomy Losing Its Best Meredith Replacement Is A Big Problem For Season 21

Grey’s Anatomy season 20 has a Meredith Grey problem: Since Ellen Pompeo cut down on her screentime, the show has struggled to find a new center.

Is Lucas Getting Fired In Grey’s Anatomy In Season 21?

The Interns & Bailey Stood Up For Lucas In The Grey’s Anatomy Season 20 Finale

Since the end of Grey’s Anatomy season 19, Lucas’ future at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital has been up in the air. While the interns kept their jobs after multiple errors made in the Grey’s Anatomy season 19 finale, they were still under independent investigation for what happened to Sam Sutton. Given it was Lucas’ decision to perform unsupervised and unauthorized surgery on Sam, he became the main focus of the investigation. When the council recommended he repeat his intern year, Lucas was given a few options.

Lucas could either take the council’s recommendation, or he could leave Grey Sloan and follow Maggie to Chicago, where she offered him a job to pursue cardiothoracic surgery. Since the failed surgery in the Grey’s Anatomy season 19 finale, Lucas has improved as a doctor, even earning the highest ABSITE score in his intern class. Knowing this, all the Grey Sloan interns went to Catherine Fox’s office to ask her not to take the council’s recommendation and allow Lucas to continue with his class.

They all threatened to quit if she didn’t, and while Catherine wasn’t going to back down, Bailey threatened to quit as well. Bailey’s work with the season 20 interns brought back what made the season 1 group so great by forcing them to work together. It was also a callback to the season 1 interns standing up for Izzie when she cut Denny’s LVAD-wire. The Grey’s Anatomy season 20 finale ended before Catherine made a decision, but with Bailey on Lucas’ side, it’s more than likely that everyone will keep their jobs and Lucas will stay with his intern class.


Grey’s Anatomy Season 20 Just Exposed A Huge Problem With The Show’s Doctors

The interns’ fate was revealed in Grey’s Anatomy season 20’s premiere, but 1 exchange also highlighted a lack of accountability for some characters.

Grey’s Anatomy Season 20’s Station 19 Crossover Explained

The Station 19 Series Finale Followed The Grey’s Anatomy Episode

The season 20 finale of Grey’s Anatomy was a crossover with Station 19. Unfortunately, it was also their final crossover, as the Station 19 season 7 finale was its series finale. Station 19 season 7, episode 9 teased the crossover when Theo saved Travis’ life and a tree fell on him, leaving him in critical condition. He was taken to Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital, making him one of the main patients in the Grey’s Anatomy season 20 finale.


8 Ways Grey’s Anatomy & Station 19 Crossovers Changed Both Shows Forever

Most Grey’s Anatomy/Station 19 crossovers were both action-packed and impactful for the shows, but only a few truly changed the course of them.

Additionally, Bailey spent much of the finale worried about her husband, Ben, who was fighting the wildfires with the rest of the Station 19 team. The Grey’s Anatomy crossover continued into the Station 19 series finale with Andy being taken to the hospital for surgery after running as well. Fortunately, both Andy and Theo survived thanks to the Grey’s Anatomy doctors. Though there won’t be any more crossovers, Ben will likely be returning to Grey’s Anatomy in season 21, as the Station 19 series finale revealed he was leaving firefighting behind to return to medicine.

What Happened With Meredith & Amelia’s Alzheimer’s Research

Meredith Prioritized Her Research Over Her Job At The Fox Foundation

While Meredith and Amelia made a major discovery in their Alzheimer’s research in Grey’s Anatomy season 20, episode 9, they also ran into trouble with Catherine Fox finding out about the work they’d been secretly conducting behind her back. Catherine had already fired Teddy and threatened to do the same to Amelia and Meredith in the season 20 finale. Meredith and Amelia are on track to finding a way to prevent Alzheimer’s, but Catherine was more concerned with getting revenge than the research itself.

Catherine gave Meredith and Amelia until the end of the day to turn their research over to Tom Koracick, claiming it belonged to the Fox Foundation and Koracick would take over for them. The research is incredibly personal to Meredith, who lost her mother to Alzheimer’s, and Amelia, as Derek had worked hard to find a cure to the disease. In the Grey’s Anatomy season 20 finale, Meredith published her and Amelia’s abstract without telling Catherine and quit her job at the Fox Foundation, prioritizing her research over her job.

What’s Next For Teddy, Amelia & Owen?

Catherine Fox Fired The Attendings In The Grey’s Anatomy Finale

Though Catherine fired Teddy in Grey’s Anatomy season 20, episode 9, she still showed up to the hospital in the finale in hopes that it was an empty threat. Unfortunately, she was wrong, but her showing up saved Theo’s life. Catherine tried to prevent Teddy from performing surgery, but Owen put her in her place, telling Catherine,

If you need to go on some power trip, I can’t stop you, but I have too many patients, not enough doctors. So if this man dies because your ego won’t let one of our best doctors do her job, then his blood will be on your hands.

It was a powerful moment, and Catherine let Teddy do surgery on Theo, but it could be her last at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital. By the end of the Grey’s Anatomy season 20 finale, Catherine fired Teddy, Amelia, and Owen for their insubordination. Owen was putting together a program to teach patients to stop intense bleeding, so he could continue that work elsewhere. Amelia could also focus on her and Meredith’s research wherever they decide to try and continue it.

At the end of Grey’s Anatomy season 18, Teddy and Owen went on the run to avoid a potential trial and were able to return to Grey Sloan in season 19 with minimal issues. Hopefully, this will be the case with them and Amelia in Grey’s Anatomy season 21. Grey Sloan losing their head of neurosurgery, chief of surgery, and head of trauma all in one day could spell disaster for the hospital’s future.


Grey’s Anatomy Season 20 Just Set Up The Perfect Exit For 2 Long-Standing Surgeons

Grey’s Anatomy season 20’s final few episodes have set up the perfect way for two of Grey Sloan’s longest-standing surgeons to exit the series.

Why Jo Collapsed In The Grey’s Anatomy Season 20 Finale

Jo’s Pregnancy Test Earlier In The Season Was A False Negative

Most of Jo’s storyline in the Grey’s Anatomy season 20 finale saw her arguing with her best friend and roommate Schmitt. When Jo collapsed mid-argument and Schmitt ran tests on her, he was upset because he assumed she’d been hiding her pregnancy from him. Yet, Jo hadn’t known she was pregnant because the test she and Link took in Grey’s Anatomy season 20, episode 5 was negative.

Though Jo told Link she wanted to have a baby with him some day, she wasn’t ready to have one yet, as they already each have a toddler of their own. When Link asked Jo why she collapsed, she made something else up, not ready to tell him the news. Jo will have to tell him in Grey’s Anatomy season 21, with her pregnancy sure to be a major storyline.

Kwan’s Connection To The Asthmatic Patient Explained

Kwan’s Ex-Fiancée Lost Her Memory

One of the wildfire patients who arrived at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital in the Grey’s Anatomy season 20 finale was a woman named Molly. She came in with smoke inhalation and a sprained ankle and Lucas treated her. Molly also has long-term memory loss from a car accident. She told Lucas her memory issues were initially frustrating, as she kept trying and failing to get her old life back. Eventually, she decided to start over and believes she was supposed to lose her memory for her life to end up the way it has.

When Molly started to have trouble breathing and Lucas wasn’t there to help, Kwan came to the rescue. Molly seemed to recognize him, but when she asked if they knew each other, Kwan said they didn’t. However, he privately revealed to Adams that Molly was his ex-fiancée, meaning he was part of the life she left behind. Molly arrived at Grey Sloan with a new boyfriend, further complicating things. Though it’s unclear if Molly will return in Grey’s Anatomy season 21, the season 20 finale unlocked more of Kwan’s interesting backstory.

What Happened With Jules & Mika’s Patient?

Richard Let Jules & Mika Do An Advanced Procedure On A Patient

Richard had a patient named Garrett who was being discharged due to the wildfires and Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital not having enough space. However, just before he was going to leave, his aneurysm ruptured, and Richard took him into surgery with Jules and Mika. Richard allowed them to do a more advanced procedure, suturing the interior wall of his aorta, and while he felt it went successfully, Garrett unexpectedly died after the surgery. Winston was shocked and upset that Richard had let the interns do the procedure and blamed them, but Richard realized it wasn’t their fault.


Grey’s Anatomy Season 20 Teases Paying Off An Old Richard Story From Season 3

Richard’s main storyline in Grey’s Anatomy season 20 sees him struggle with returning to the OR, making 1 option Richard had in season 3 more likely.

When Jules and Mika found out Garrett died, Mika panicked, believing she’d be fired. Once again, Jules calmed Mika down. Yet this time was different, with Jules and Mika almost kissing before Kwan walked in and interrupted them. The Grey’s Anatomy season 20 finale doesn’t explain exactly what went wrong with Garrett’s surgery, but it showed Richard about to take the blame. If the interns end up being at fault, it could explain why Mika is leaving, but if it’s Richard’s fault, he could finally be retiring in Grey’s Anatomy season 21.

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