Who won't be surviving tonight -- on CBS or ABC? More after the jump ...
"Survivor" briefly: Spin city. Bossy Sylvia looks like a goner based on previous animosity from folks in Ravu. Then Erica got (justifiably) emotional during the immunity challenge, lost by Ravu, ample excuse for everyone to accuse her of a freak-out. THEN there appeared to be second thoughts about both Erica and Sylvia. "Gives me cramps in my brain to think about," says Anthony. In council, Sylvia admits to feeling "kind of like an outsider." Rocky drops a "dictating ... in a positive way" on her. Sylvia acts as if she's going to be around, recommends that they assign a leader after council. Right. Beginning to feel as if the editing has put Erica in more jeopardy than she really is. First vote: Erica. Next: Sylvia. Next: Erica. Next: Sylvia. Next: Erica. Next: Erica. Next vote boots Erica. So the editing was building suspense the other way, making it seem as if the Erica second thoughts had more oomph than they really did.
And on to Grey's Anatomy!! Let's watch together!
"Previously on" ending with Meredith going into the water. Meredith narration, shot of water with people's images superimposed. Meredith reaching up out of the water; apparently can't swim. Goes under, whispering "I've disappeared."
Back to hospital. Cristina pondering. Badgered by others, but in control. Asks where Meredith is, no one knows, concern.
George in surgery, lies to patient about missing kid. "He'll be waiting for you after surgery." Bailey, sotto voce, asks what happens when she wakes up. George says she'll at least be alive. Bailey says to find the kid.
Conference: Burke, Chief, Addison, discussing Jane Doe. Alex joins, saying there's a mob scene looking for family members. Chief tells him he's the system for handling it. Addison wonders if anyone would notice if she was gone.
Back to disaster scene. Izzie and the guy close to death. She doesn't know what else to do. Buddies beg her for more help. "I'm out of practice ... ," she laments. Buddy begs her again. She swallows, asks for cell phone.
McDreamy elsewhere. Guy Meredith helped, covered in her jacket. McDreamy spots the little girl. She stares. (Duh.) He asks if Meredith is OK? She shakes her head no. Another shot of Meredith sinking.
And now a word from Windows Vista. And other products. Lots of other products.
We're back. People receiving treatment, George with a photo of the missing kid. Quizzes a kid, not the right one. Alex in the crowd. People want a new list. "Nobody knows anything right now," he says. More yelling. "That list is all I have ... Give me a minute to think and I'll come up with a damn system." Perky Doc offers help or a hug.
Izzie calls the Chief. He says stay calm. She says "Calm is an impossibility." The Chief says she has to make some holes; he doesn't know the procedure and is going to have to talk Izzie through it. McSteamy appears. He knows the procedure.
Izzie asks the buddies for a drill.
George searching more. I am beginning to think the kid's an illusion or long dead, the mother delusional.
Alex posts pics of patients for the family members to ID. Perky has a list of details. Some people can't find their loved ones. Alex looks uncomfortable, doesn't want to say people are dead. A guy's looking for his wife -- who's pregnant. Could this be Jane Doe's hubby.
Back to the pier. Staring Girl. McDreamy tries to talk her through. She goes to the water. Still staring. McDreamy asks where exactly Meredith is. Still staring, then points at the water. If that's not a commercial break point ...
We're back. Meredith is still sinking. Then to surgery on Jane Doe. Alex enters, says he's found the husband. "How do you know?" Addison says. Hundreds on the ferry. Says do not give the man hope until everything has been checked. Alex takes a polaroid of Jane Doe. Addison, Burke talk about the young people. Beeping. Jane Doe's hypertensive. Burke fixes it apparently.
Alex passes George on stairs. George talks about how hard it is to find a kid. Alex says he knows where a kid might be. Next scene: the morgue. George hadn't checked there. Alex says "tell me if you find a pregnant chick." George stresses about a body turned the wrong way. Alex and George talk about death. The body's a woman, seven months pregnant. Alex takes another photo.
Chief is talking Izzie through the drilling. She keeps wanting to clean it. He tells her to get on with the drilling. More talking. McSteamy also offers guidance. Izzie tests drill, buddy looks grossed out, Izzie says none of that (although at greater length and with some repetition). The drilling. Ewwwwwwww. Marks for a second hole. In she goes again. Almost seems to smile as she drills. Chief says to drill around the hole to expand the opening. She complies. Chief, McSteamy tell her how to deal with the clotted blood. She says brain is pulsating, which is good news. Chief says "nicely done." Much joy at the scene.
Staring Girl at the water. Coast Guard asks her if she's OK, says she needs to come with him. More staring. Sound from the water. MCDreamy appears on a stairwell from the water with a very, very pale Meredith. Commercial.
Ambulance. McDreamy doing CPR on Meredith. Surgery. George checks on the woman. Bailey asks if he's found the son. "He's lost, or ..." George says. Bailey says after surgery she'll get to tell the woman she's not going to die, "she's just going to want to die." Izzie arrives with her patient. Offers many ideas. The Chief says "you saved his life" -- and sends her to the OR, "officially off probation."
Izzie starts telling Cristina about the brain drilling. Cristina says "I need to know where the hell Meredith is." Izzie is still jazzed about her "rock star" moment.
Alex posts photos of fatalities. Grief-stricken recognition. Izzie in surgery with McSteamy, working on her accident guy. She gets to use the surgical drill. More people looking at photos. More grief. Alex looks for the husband. He shows the two pictures. Guy asks for more details. Jane Doe is not his wife. He asks for the other photo. The dead woman is his wife. Tears. Alex looks pained.
Ambulance arrives with Meredith. McDreamy's still doing CPR. Bailey wants to know how long she was down. Calls for help STAT. Commercial. Every break seems tied to a Meredith moment.
Hospital. Burke approaches Cristina. She is peeved. They go to a private room. He asks what her problem is. Cristina misses Meredith -- hasn't been able to tell her about the engagement. Burke wonders if Cristina wants Meredith's approval. "She's my person," Cristina says. Burke is now peeved.
Izzie in surgery. Pager goes off. Alex checks on Jane Doe. Addison is there. Alex says, "I'd notice. ... If you went missing, I'd notice." Leaves. His pager goes. George on the stairs again. Sees there's a 7-year-old John Doe on the surgery schedule. Callie's doing the work. Shows Callie the kid's picture. "Please tell me it's him," he says. Callie says, "Oh, yeah."
George promises Callie a world-class kiss-related event later. (My description. He's stopped before giving his.)
Staring Girl. She's with the families now. Mom finds her.
McDreamy still CPR'ing Meredith. Bailey, the Chief move him aside. "We need to save her life," the Chief says. "Go." She is so pale. And, commercial.
Burke. Finds McDreamy crying. "They threw me out." "What do you need?" Burke asks. "I need you to go in there," McDreamy says. He does. Meredith's temp only 80 degrees. Needs defib. Addison enters. "Oh, my God." Suggests other treatment. McDreamy in the hall. McSteamy comes to sit with him. Intense music. More work on Meredith. Temp only up to 81. More gathering. Cristina arrives. "She will come through this," Izzie insists. George not sure. "I believe Meredith will survive this," Izzie says. "I believe in the good." Alex looks doubtful. "I believe that ... in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, we will all be OK," Izzie continues. Then goes into illusions she believes. Then tells George she believes he made a terrible mistake in marrying Callie -- but that it's OK to say so because they are best friends.
IS SHE OUT OF HER MIND? Well, yes.
Still working on Meredith. Still pale. "We're losing her," the Chief says. Flatline on a monitor. White screen. Meredith coughing in bed. At her side is Kyle Chandler, the dead bomb-squad guy. "Am I dead?" Denny Duquette says, "Damn right you are."
Episode ends. Promo for next week. "The devastating conclusion to the season's most unforgettable event."
A couple of notes: ABC's press release about next week's new episode says: "One person's fight to live affects everyone at Seattle Grace."
From TV arcana, if Meredith does die (which still seems unlikely), it would not be the first time the title character in a series was killed off. One example: "Nichols," a 1971-72 series starring James Garner. Nichols was a Maverick-like character and, as the first season neared its end, someone decided he was too unlikable. So Nichols was killed in the show's final episode -- and succeeded by his twin, who was more heroic. The idea, as "The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows" notes, was to keep the series going into a second season with the nicer Nichols at the center. But the show was canceled at the end of the first season.