‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Season 16: EP Talks Alex And Jo, Jackson’s Future And The Owen Love Triangle

Grey’s Anatomy is still bringing the drama after 15 seasons, and in the most recent season finale, the ABC medical drama left fans with a lot of unanswered questions. One of the biggest mysteries is what the future holds for Drs. Alex (Justin Chambers) and Jo Karev (Camilla Luddington), who tied the knot at the end of Season 14. But, just one season later, they could be headed for a split.

'Grey's Anatomy' stars Justin Chambers and Camilla Luddington
‘Grey’s Anatomy’ stars Justin Chambers and Camilla Luddington | Jennifer Clasen/ABC via Getty Images

Jo headed to treatment in the ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Season 15 finale

Last season, after going through a “painful mental spiral” when she discovered her birth story, Jo threatened to leave Alex but ended up going to treatment at Grey Sloan to get some help. Grey’s Anatomy executive producer Krista Vernoff says that the couple is “pretty great together,” but Jo’s trauma might be too much for their relationship to handle.

“I hope therapy brings her back to herself and Alex,” Vernoff told TV Line. “[I hope] he gets to heal that wound that keeps repeating, where he chooses women who go into mental health crises.  I’d like to see that story complete for him, with Jo returning to him in a way that’s beautiful.”

However, Vernoff quickly made it clear that “we’re not in the writer’s room yet for Season 16.” And, that means Jo and Alex’s future remains up in the air. Vernoff added that Jo needed treatment “to come back to herself.”

What will happen to Meredith?

The Grey’s Anatomy Season 15 finale also saw Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) turning herself in to authorities for her role in committing insurance fraud after DeLuca took the fall to protect her. Her confession led to both Alex and Richard standing up for Grey and taking partial blame, and the result was that all three lost their jobs.

Vernoff says that Bailey firing “the three OGs” was something fans had never seen in 15 seasons, and she shocked herself when she wrote it. However, the executive producer says that it was an appropriate thing for their actions to have real consequences.

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She also admitted that the scene was a wink to the famous LVAD wire incident from Season 2 because these characters have been together for a long time, and there is a lot of love, friendship, and mentorship. Vernoff explained that both Richard and Alex thought that standing up for Meredith would keep Bailey from firing them. Bailey ends up doing “the thing they thought she couldn’t possibly do.”

Jackson disappeared in the fog

Vernoff says she wanted something dramatic for the end of Season 15, and she also wanted a cliffhanger that would bring viewers back next season. She thought that Jackson (Jesse Williams) disappearing into the fog was something that Grey’s Anatomy viewers wouldn’t expect, and it was also the start of a new journey.

The EP admits that Jackson disappearing once before earlier in the season helped mislead, and no one expected when he walked into the fog that he wouldn’t return. She says Jackson’s previous disappearance laid the groundwork for the shocking end to Season 15.

‘Grey’s’ Anatomy is always blowing up expectations

Vernoff says they set the stage for Season 16 by blowing up expectations in the last act of last season, and now no one knows where anyone stands.

“Nobody knows where anybody’s relationship stands, and nobody knows what it’s going to mean to Grey Sloan to have these three doctors be fired,” says Vernoff. “Nobody knows what it’s gonna mean to the series to have these three doctors fired. We’re excited to get into the writers’ room and see where it goes from here, but we definitely blew s**t up.”

Vernoff also revealed that the one thing the writers went back and forth on the most was how the Owen-Teddy-Amelia love triangle was going to play out. Different writers shipped different couples, and that led to a lot of fights. But, when they figured out where the story would land, it all felt right because it gave the writers the best possible story for next season.

While Season 15 of Grey’s Anatomy was the “season of love,” Vernoff doesn’t have a theme yet for Season 16. However, she will have that figured out by the end of the summer.