Which ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Season Finale Is the Best So Far?

Grey’s Anatomy has enjoyed one of the most astounding runs on TV, having lasted for 15 seasons so far with two still to come. It has run for 352 episodes and counting, making it the third-longest scripted show still running after Law & Order SVU and NCIS.  

With so many seasons, so many lists and so many different websites, it can be a little challenging to sort out which of the 15 season finales are the worst and the best so far, but we arrived at what seems to be a general consensus: the best ones came early in the show’s run, the worst tended to be later.

The worst was the most recent

Grey's Anatomy
Grey’s Anatomy | John Fleenor/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images

Season finales should leave you hanging and wanting more. People seem to think the season 15 finale did not.  Grey’s Anatomy has become such an institution that sometimes it feels like people tune in out of habit more than anything else. So people will watch season 16 because of overall affection for the show, and not because season 15’s finale made people say “OMG what happens next?” 

The Season 15 finale was titled “Jump Into the Fog,” and some viewers received it with a fog of indifference. Screen Rant said, “This most recent finale was so uneventful that you’d be forgiven if you didn’t realize that it was the capper to Season 15 at all.”

EW went in a different direction, although their list had a somewhat different premise, ranking their finales from most to least shocking. Their pick for least shocking was Season 7, writing that it “ended not so much with a bang as with a baby…and a lot of couples fighting and sleeping in separate places.”

Screen Rant agreed, noting that it had the misfortune of following the most harrowing finale of all.

The best was the one with the shooter

The Season 6 finale was titled “Death and All His Friends,” and despite being seven years old now still lingers in the memories of fans and critics alike. This was when a shooter who had lost his wife storms into the operating room and demands they stop working on Derek, whom he had shot earlier. The surgeons are in a terrible dilemma, trying to save a patient while worrying that they  need saving themselves.

Screen Rant wrote, “This was a story that the show had spent much of the season building towards, so when it all came to a head, it was incredibly intense.”

EW went in a somewhat different direction again, picking instead the very first season finale, titled “Who’s Zoomin’ Who?” They wrote, “Nothing will ever top the subtle shock of the season 1 finale when fans realized that the dreamy love story they’d fallen for was a lie because McDreamy himself…WAS MARRIED.”

What do the fans pick?

For once, fans and the media are more or less in agreement. Over on Reddit, a fan who started the topic picked “Death and All His Friends” for best and “Jump Into the Fog” as the worst. The fan wrote: 

Best: Season 6. This one left me on the edge of my seat. It was intense, shocking and the most unforgettable. I still get anxious everytime I watch it even though I know what’s going to happen.

Worst: Season 15. It was very anticlimactic and the cliffhanger was underwhelming. When Jackson went missing I didn’t care because I was over him and Maggie arguing. The penultimate episode had better cliffhangers and more suspense imo. The Season 7 finale was also pretty bad.

Other fans concurred with these choices too. The IMDB ranking of all Grey’s episodes put “Death and All His Friends” at number 2, making it the top season finale. The top-ranked episode of all was “Sanctuary,” which was the immediate predecessor to “Death and All His Friends.”