‘Grey’s Anatomy’: Why Bailey Doesn’t Act Like ‘The Nazi’ Anymore

Miranda Bailey, as played by the respected actress Chandra Wilson, is one of the most enduring and beloved characters on Grey’s Anatomy. As one of the original characters, featured when the show premiered in 2005, fans have followed her journey for over fifteen seasons.

Bailey has had one of the most interesting character arcs of anyone else on the series, including dealing with a common mental disorder, growing a family, and establishing a career that is the envy of many of the hospital residents.

With the all-new season of Grey’s Anatomy set to debut in September, fans recently took to Reddit to dissect her character and how she has changed over the years.

What was Bailey’s early nickname?

Chandra Wilson / Miranda Bailey
Grey’s Anatomy | Richard Cartwright/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images

Grey’s Anatomy premiered on television in 2005. Viewers were introduced to a roster of doctors and residents at Seattle Grace Hospital, all working their way towards vibrant careers while also trying to establish solid personal lives. Miranda Bailey was one of those characters, starting out as a resident of the hospital. Bailey was a tough nut to crack, firm and strict, especially with the interns. 

In fact, Bailey was so difficult in the early years that she became known as “the Nazi.” Bailey seemed to go out of her way to be unpleasant to everyone, and in spite of her reputation as an excellent doctor, Bailey found it difficult to make friends.

Still, some fans have pointed out that Bailey wasn’t being notoriously tough in order to distance people — rather, that she might have had to develop that personality for a whole different reason.

How has Bailey changed in the past several seasons?

Reddit users broke down Bailey’s path from “Nazi” to a warmhearted surgeon in a recent post. The original poster pointed out that Bailey’s qualities of strength and caring have somewhat dissolved into softness.

Other Reddit users commented that Bailey’s original persona was likely just developed because she thought that she needed to be extra tough in order to earn respect in the cutthroat world of hospital residency.

Fans chimed in, agreeing with the idea that rather than Bailey becoming “too soft,” rather, she might have just learned to become more comfortable in her own skin. After all, Bailey has gone through a lot of major life changes in the past fifteen seasons, including facing close friends and patients dying, divorce, abrupt changes in career trajectory, and, of course, struggles with her OCD.

Perhaps Bailey’s character changes actually speak to subtle nuances in writing rather than sloppy character development, as has been theorized by some critics. 

What’s in store for Bailey in the sixteenth season?

Grey’s Anatomy is set to return in late September and fans can barely wait to see what happens with their favorite doctors. After having made some emotional decisions in the season fifteen finale, Bailey will likely be facing some difficult days ahead.

Showrunner Krista Vernoff recently revealed that the show will pick up directly where Season 15 left off and that the series will start to address some pretty hard-hitting political issues. 

Chandra Wilson is one of the only actors who is confirmed to return to Grey’s Anatomy in the fall. The actress recently spoke out and said that she still loves playing the character of Miranda Bailey and that she truly loves to bring joy to the countless fans who tune in every week to Grey’s Anatomy.

While the show won’t last forever, for the immediate future at least, fans can count on seeing the beloved doctors of Grey’s Anatomy on screen – including Miranda Bailey, the reformed “Nazi” with a heart of gold.