BWW Recap: Jackson and April Take on Montana in this Week's GREY'S ANATOMY
Last night's GREY'S ANATOMY, entitled "Who Is He (and What is he to You)" and directed by Kevin McKidd, was billed as 'Japril the sequel' - a Jackson and April centric episode that finds them jetting off to Montana to perform a throat transplant. Jackson does the Voice-Over that typically goes to Meredith and the only other regular character that we see is Katherine Avery. GREY'S fans might slightly miss the regular shenanigans over at Grey-Sloan Memorial Hospital, but regardless of how invested they are in the Jackson-April pairing, they will certainly still appreciate this episode. We finally get to meet Jackson's father...and so does Jackson!
We learn during Jackson's car ride to the airport with Katherine, that the donor and recipient are at the same hospital-which is why he needs to go to them...or is it??? We also learn that he thinks that Meredith will be joining him, but low and behold...who drives up in a taxi but April Kepner. Katherine has arranged this and states that Meredith had to stay home because Zola has the flu...or does she??? The flight is awkward, but April still takes the opportunity to enjoy the fact that the Avery family owns a jet. Jackson is less enthusiastic about it.
When they arrive at the hospital, they discover that the other doctors have not actually informed the donor's father that he is a donor. The father, Eric, is hoping Jackson and April have come to deliver a miracle for his son Brian. When he finds out that they are there for the transplant, he is understandably upset. Jackson shares details about baby Samuel in order to help convince Eric to agree to let Brian be a donor. Later, when talking to the recipient, Caroline's moms, he mentions that he is a dad. This upsets April. She feels like Jackson is using their tragic story for his gain. I suspect she is also a tad blindsided. Jackson states that he didn't do anything wrong and then takes off stating he has somewhere to be. "In Montana???" April asks, incredulously.
While Jackson is MIA, April gets a call from the hospital. There is a lesion on Brian's throat, meaning that the transplant can't happen. The vest best now is to remove Caroline's vocal chords in order to remove her tumor. He mothers do not want to do this, as she will never be able to speak again. April sees no other option. After the consultation, she finds Jackson drunk and grumpy at a local tavern. It is only after he storms out that she realizes that the tavern owner is Robert Avery...Jackson's dad (played by Eric Roberts!).
She eventually confronts Jackson about this and how this is clearly the real reason they are in Montana right now. At the same time, Caroline's mothers have decided to take her elsewhere for an experimental procedure that Jackson and April think will likely kill her. Jackson states that he has an idea and asks for a day to sort it out. They are granted the day, but then Jackson admits to April that he does not in fact have an idea.
Jackson is clearly distracted so April urges him to confront his father. Jackson tries to do so, but Robert is apparently oblivious to the fact that if you abandon your infant son, he may hold a bit of a grudge. He hugs Jackson, offers him coffee and starts talking about how much he loves his life. Jackson freezes up and does not know how to confront him, so he just leaves. While describing the encounter to April, he incorrectly uses the colloquialism "my heart was in my throat" and instead says "my guts were in my throat". As they debate what the actual saying is, Jackson has an epiphany (read: Gregory House moment). He can use some of Caroline's intestine to make a new vocal chord. REALLY? (I have not researched the science on this. I'm just gonna go with it).
The surgery is successful and afterwards, Jackson and April totally hook up. As Jackson puts it...they have a bit of a track record in hotels! What will this mean for their former marriage...who knows...but in terms of their relationship in general, they are most definitely in a better place!
Jackson returns to the tavern and finally tells Robert what he wanted to tell him. He is not his father, unlike Jackson, he broke that promise. He ran...so he doesn't get to be a father. With that, Jackson leaves. Triumphant.
Upon return to Seattle, Jackson takes a moment to thank his mother (who must have known that this family reunion was likely going to happen) "thank you for everything". It is a sweet, understated moment, and it is nice to see Jackson finally comfortable in who he is. Unlike his father, he absolutely did live up to the Avery name...he stuck around for his kid.
This episode was really more Jackson centric than Japril centric, and it was great to see something that Jesse Williams could really sink his teeth into! It will be interesting to see how this moment affects him moving forward.
Side note: I keep thinking...what would have happened if it WAS Meredith who went on the trip with Jackson instead of April like she was supposed to. I suspect she would not have even noticed he was distracted....but if she did...she knows a thing or two about dads who more or less abandon their kids!
GREY'S ANATOMY airs Thursdays at 7pm on CTV and 8pm on ABC.
GREY'S fans...Tune into BWW TV World on Monday morning for coverage from the Red Carpet and Panel at Sunday's GREY'S ANATOMY Paleyfest event!
Photo Credit: ABC/Richard Cartwright