For Grey’s Anatomy’s 19 seasons, Ellen Pompeo’s Meredith has provided the voice-over narrations, but this creates a major problem for season 20.

Ellen Pompeo’s Meredith Grey is leaving Grey’s Anatomy in the season 19 winter premiere, and while her voice will still be heard in narration, this creates a problem if the series is renewed for season 20. Throughout the show’s run, Meredith has started and ended almost every one of Grey’s Anatomy’s over 400 episodes with her narration, and there are only a few examples of other characters taking over that role temporarily. Meredith’s Grey’s Anatomy exit marks the end of an era for the series, but the beginning of a new one, and season 20’s voice-over narration problem is a prime example of this.

The voice-overs would continue throughout the show’s many seasons, even spawning a Grey’s Anatomy theory about the narrations being spoken by future Meredith. They began in the Grey’s Anatomy pilot, “A Hard Day’s Night,” which started with narration from Meredith Grey ahead of her first shift as an intern at Seattle Grace Hospital. The episode ended with more narration from Meredith after her first shift, which revealed she had been talking to her mother, Ellis, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. The voice-overs have become an iconic part of Grey’s Anatomy, but season 20 could mark the first season without them.

Related: Grey’s Anatomy Hinted At Meredith Moving & Studying Alzheimer’s In Season 18

Meredith Grey Should Stop Doing The Voice-overs In Grey’s Anatomy

Ellen Pompeo as Meredith Grey in Grey's Anatomy.

Though Meredith will not physically be a part of the rest of Grey’s Anatomy season 19, Pompeo’s character will continue doing the voice-overs for the rest of the season. The voice-overs will make Meredith a constant presence throughout Grey’s Anatomy season 19, but that creates a season 20 problem. Grey’s Anatomy season 20 would mark the first full season of the series without Pompeo and Meredith, and it should be given the chance to continue without Meredith’s presence looming over it. Grey’s Anatomy can continue after Meredith, but to truly prove this, she would need to stop doing the voice-overs.

One of Meredith’s most iconic voice-overs came in Grey’s Anatomy season 11, episode 21, “How To Save A Life,” the episode in which Derek died. In her voice-over narration, Meredith repeated a narration from the season 11 premiere with an added phrase she had learned from her mother, “The carousel never stops turning. The quote is about how life will always continue to move on, whether you are ready for it or not, and Grey’s Anatomy follows the same pattern. It has endured loss after loss and will continue to go on after Meredith leaves Grey’s Anatomy, but for the carousel to continue turning, changes will need to be made.

Every Character Should Narrate Grey’s Anatomy Season 20

Caterina Scorsone as Amelia, Ellen Pompeo as Meredith, Harry Shum Jr. as Benson, Midori Francis as Mika, and Niko Terho as Lucas in Grey's Anatomy season 19

Although there are characters who could replace Meredith as Grey’s Anatomy’s main character, the series will likely thrive most as an ensemble. Thus, the best and easiest solution to Grey’s Anatomy season 20’s narration problem is having every character provide voice-overs for the episodes. It would not be the first time characters other than Meredith have gotten the chance to narrate in certain episodes. For example, Webber narrated two episodes when he was electrocuted, April did the same when she gave birth to Samuel, Derek did part of the narration when Meredith drowned, etc.

It would be a satisfying shift if every main character got the chance to narrate in future Grey’s Anatomy seasons, and not just when the episode is all about them. Meredith’s voice-overs narrations are not always about herself either, and often deal with different Grey’s Anatomy storylines. By having characters share narration duties, it will send the message that not only is Grey’s Anatomy an ensemble show, it is full of interesting characters beyond just Meredith Grey – which is how it was able to reach season 20 in the first place.

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