7 Midseason Cliffhangers That Have Me SCREAMING At The TV
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7 Midseason Cliffhangers That Have Me SCREAMING At The TV

We now interrupt your regularly scheduled programming for a dramatic midseason pause-- how many of the shows on my list blew my mind? (Spoiler alert: it's all of them.)

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7 Midseason Cliffhangers That Have Me SCREAMING At The TV
ABC

Don't get me wrong, I love the December season! Everyone is always super festive and excited, the semester is wrapping up, super fun sales...it really is a magical time of year. The only problem I have with it is that ALL MY SHOWS ARE LEAVING ME!

The regular TV season is taking a break in favor of another programming--holiday things, lighter reality shows, etc--and of course, with the expectation that many people may be spending evenings with family or friends, especially around the holidays. As a result, all of the major networks are airing "midseason finales," which is the last episode of the year before going on a month or longer break.

Tis the season, my friends: Midseason Season, that is. All but one of my dramas have wrapped up in the past week, so here's my take on the drama shows that made my list this year:

MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD!! PROCEED WITH CAUTION!!

Grey's Anatomy (ABC)

Watch the midseason finale here.

Veteran medical drama "Grey's Anatomy"is in its whopping 15th season, establishing itself as one of the longest-running TV dramas in history. It's developed a consistently massive following and has broken ground on so many levels, especially in portraying women in powerful jobs. Though many fans agree that the show's quality has declined (I'll save that discussion for another article), it still remains as popular and twisty as ever.

In the fall finale, Seattle is hit by an intense windstorm. The ER once-estranged with patients, many of whom have been impaled. The Karevs are stuck at home because it's too dangerous to go out, so Dr. Bailey assumes control of the hospital for the day while they share a second honeymoon. Dr. Bailey had taken a stress sabbatical from not just her job, but her marriage [see "Station 19"], which Richard briefly calls out for being pretty much insane.

Meanwhile, Meredith has just picked Richard up from a quick stay in jail and is worried about helping him get back on his feet. Richard doesn't yet know that his wife, Catherine, has a very dangerous and difficult to treat a tumor, so Meredith is especially concerned about how his alcoholism may take a hit. Richard tries to call Catherine, but her phone is answered by Dr. Koracik, leading him to believe that his wife may be having an affair. And Meredith herself is dealing with romance stuff of her own-- she's finally said yes to Atticus Lincoln (Link)'s requests for drinks together, but minutes later, Andrew DeLuca confesses feelings for her!

In the OR, Teddy, Owen, and Jackson share a patient who had been impaled in the chest with a candy cane (no, I'm not kidding). Right before scrubbing in, Teddy asks Owen if they can talk later. Obviously, this is super suspicious and weird, so Owen spends the surgery wondering what the heck might be going on, wondering if everything is okay, with Teddy trying to delay the conversation to a better, more private time. So much for that: Teddy ends up blurting it out to a shocked Owen and an uncomfortable Jackson in the middle of their surgery. Earlier that day, Owen's foster baby's mother (it's complicated, you gotta watch) reappears, much to the relief of him and his ex-wife, Amelia. Amelia and Owen had been working together to take care of Leo (the baby) and Betty (Leo's mother and a recovering drug addict), and Betty had been missing for several days.

Oh, and also, Levi Schmitt (better known as glasses) is with Nico (new ortho fellow), whom he kissed a few episodes ago. In a climactic scene, Levi gives a speech on how meaningful that kiss was for him and the two of them, trapped in a parked ambulance in the middle of a windstorm, quickly kiss again.

Cliffhanger time, right? The episode ends with several key groups stuck in elevators all over the hospital. "Grey's" is famous for its elevator scenes, but this one's a doozy: we wrap up the first part of Season 15 in three separate elevators: one with Meredith and Andrew DeLuca (post love confession); another with Dr. Bailey and an intern heading upstairs with a patient for surgery; and Teddy, Amelia, and Owen in the midst of starting to figure out the whole "Teddy + Baby makes 6" situation. Pretty bad timing, but the windstorm knocks out all the elevators, so we've got those groups trapped in elevators, a patient's life on the line, Bailey's marriage in limbo, and Nico and Levi in an ambulance making out. And they're making us wait until JANUARY (probably). UGH!

Winter premiere TBA-- likely sometime in January 2019.

9-1-1 (FOX)

Watch the midseason finale here.

Y'all, this one has me SHOOK. Sophomore drama "9-1-1" follows the lives of several first responders: a group of firefighters/EMTs, a police officer, and a 9-1-1 operator. The show is exciting, heart-wrenching, and shocking all at once. Each episode covers several calls, usually centered around a common theme. Earlier this season, an episode theme centered around the concept of being "stuck" in one place. The teams performed rescues on individuals that were, for whatever reason, stuck in a dangerous situation, while the main characters found themselves socially or metaphorically stuck in their lives somehow. It's all quite clever, and the cases are always interesting and mind-blowing.

In this episode, fittingly titled "Merry Ex-Mas" (you'll see why), we see holiday-themed calls: a man that takes the decor competition too far when his inflatable snowman literally throws him off the roof, an employee getting stuck in a sealed Christmas package, a drone at a restaurant crashing into a waitress' nose, and a Marine in a bus accident that delays his plans to surprise his family at a school concert. They're a mess, and luckily, everyone turns out okay.

In the characters' lives, however, things are a little more complicated. Eddie, a new firefighter with a young son, has reunited with his once-estranged wife....unbeknownst to the son she abandoned a few years ago. Yup, the son has NO idea she's around and even asks Santa to bring her home for Christmas. They've been spending more time together...in bed...but Eddie hasn't taken the step of telling their son that she's back in his life. She's less than thrilled, and tells Eddie to get his thoughts together because she wants to be back in her son's life.

At the beginning of the episode, Athena abruptly invites Bobby to move in with her. Bobby's shocked and doesn't answer right away. He needs to think about it since it's fast and she's got kids and a whole family, plus his tragic history with his own family. The rest of the episode for them is kind of...awkward. Bobby is taken aback and doesn't know what to do. He knows he cares about Athena, but he's just not sure if it's time to move forward in this way. They don't address it until the very end...but let's hold on this thought.

Meanwhile, Maddie isn't in the holiday spirit because it reminds her too much of her abusive ex-husband. In an attempt to cheer her up, Buck (her brother) and Chimney (who should date her because they'd be adorable together) go out in search for a Christmas tree, only for Maddie to reject it because she's just not doing Christmas this year. Chimney wants to try again, to create a Christmas up to her standards given what she'd been through, so he goes in search of "Die Hard," a violent + favorite non-traditional Christmas movie and takeout, thinking it'll be a lot better for Maddie to have a lowkey holiday. As he reaches the counter to pay for the movie, he realizes he's lost his wallet. Luckily, Jason, a friendly stranger who Chimney had coincidentally run into at the tree farm, steps forward to pay. Chimney surprises Maddie with the movie and food on Christmas Day, pleasantly surprised to see that she's decorated after all. Her husband will NOT ruin Christmas for her, too!

Cliffhangers? Buckle your seatbelts. Eddie invites his formerly estranged wife to Christmas, surprising their son with an outdoor Christmas tree and hugs from his long-lost mom. But there's a sense of discomfort here anyway: we know that he doesn't exactly trust her yet, so the steps ahead in their reunited family are definitely rocky. Bobby makes a decision about living with Athena; he shows up to her house on Christmas Eve with a key, the promise to move in together, and an engagement ring!! She immediately says yes, and their friends help them celebrate the occasion on Christmas Day. The last scene of the episode is a flashback: Maddie's Christmas last year was her worst ever because of her husband, Doug...revealed to be "friendly" stranger "Jason," who stole Chimney's wallet and followed him to Maddie's house. I knew I had a bad feeling about him. So now I'm excited to see the next steps in our first responders' families, but I'm also so scared for Maddie! AND I HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL MARCH for the next episode! I don't know about you, but I'm freaking out.

"9-1-1" returns March 18, 2019 on FOX.

The Resident (FOX)

Watch the midseason finale here.

All I can say about FOX's second-year medical drama is YIKES! The show quickly established itself as the type that will critique the system, portraying a major storyline in Season 1 about a doctor falsifying her patients' need for chemotherapy so that she could profit off their treatment. With her behind bars thanks to some excellent sleuthing on our main characters' parts, Season 2 has been looking at another potentially dangerous money-grabbing technique in the show: medical devices, with varying degrees of testing and approval, being on the market for patient use. Chastain Park, the fictional Atlanta hospital featured in "The Resident," is again the site of a major medical scandal.

Of course, the major system issues don't distract from other common medical drama plot lines, and the fall finale of "The Resident" is no exception. In the beginning of the episode, Dr. Conrad Hawkins' formerly-estranged father is admitted to the hospital with flare-ups of Crohn's disease. He has to have surgery, and leaves his power of attorney in Conrad's hands. Conrad isn't thrilled-- his father has only just come back into his life. They barely know each other. How can he possibly be expected to make major decisions on behalf of his father? They have a brief heart-to-heart about his upbringing, clearing up some assumptions Conrad made as a child that were never quite explained. Conrad heads to his colleague's wedding, happy that he has the opportunity to start anew with his father.

Speaking of Dr. Devon Pravesh's wedding...yeah, that's not happening. A few episodes ago, he kissed medical device rep Julian, and he hasn't been able to stop thinking about her since. He doesn't feel like it would be the right or honest thing to do to marry Priya, especially in light of their job situations. Priya was just offered a really huge job opportunity across the country, but Devon doesn't want to give up his residency and position at the hospital. It's hard, but he's doing well and wants to keep at it. He meets with a shocked and angry Priya as she finishes preparations for their wedding, and then goes to tell their guests that there will not be a wedding to witness that day.

Meanwhile, Dr. Bell (former/current?) lover of the doctor who took advantage of cancer patients and is now sitting in jail, is facing a very different dilemma. She's blackmailing him-- he pays for bail and the best lawyer in town to help her get out and continue on with her life, or she releases a damning video of the two having sex, implying that Dr. Bell and his hospital might have been complacent in her sketchy treatment processes. Dr. Bell knows he needs money and FAST, so he gets in touch with the head of medical equipment company QuoVadis, Gordon, asking for a deal that will get him the money he needs. They agree, and Dr. Bell is placed on QuoVadis' board.

Which brings us to QuoVadis medical equipment, the scandal of the season. Julian, the medical device rep, can tell that there's something sketchy going on with her company. After talking to Gordon, her boss, on last week's episode, she figured out that QuoVadis devices aren't made in the US as advertised-- they're made in China and repackaged in Atlanta! With a little bit of behind-the-scenes touring, Julian discovers that her company is defrauding everyone. She calls the FDA, ready to report her own company. She fears the damage that could be done to patients receiving these devices, including a young boy at Chastain. Turns out the FDA guy is close friends with Gordon, who intercepts her in a supposed meeting with an FDA representative. Gordon is not happy, and it's hard not to get major creepy vibes from him as he appears to threaten Julian. She calls him out on his fraud, horrified that her company could do something that could be so dangerous to so many people.

Cliffhangers? Conrad's father is in surgery with none other than Dr. Bell, whose surgical abilities have been called into question for the whole show after he botched a routine procedure. Devon just left his longtime partner at the alter because he might have feelings for Julian, who is currently being chased off the road by a QuoVadis car. She drives off the road and into a river, leaving viewers to worry if she'll ever be able to help bring her company to justice. Oh, and don't forget that Dr. Bell just borrowed a lot of money from QuoVadis in an effort to help his ex-doctor/lover Lane Hunter--who, let's be honest, does not deserve to get out of prison.

This is all super messy. With the fate of two major characters uncertain and a collection of confusing legal issues, it's safe to say that the return of "The Resident" will be highly anticipated.

"The Resident" returns on Monday, January 14, 2019 on FOX.

Station 19 (ABC)

Watch the midseason finale here.

The same storm in "Grey's Anatomy" is hitting its spinoff show "Station 19," as well. Our heroes gather at the boathouse for a "Friendsgiving," but are quickly called into work because of the wind.

Andy's longtime friend and police officer, Ryan, is reunited with his estranged, criminal father, but starts off his Thanksgiving with a notice that his father is wanted by the FBI for fraud. There's a warrant out for his arrest, and being a police officer, Ryan is pretty obligated to take care of that. Ryan's put in a position where he has to choose to arrest his father or try to mend the relationship. (Former) Captain Herrera decides for him, closing the phone and telling Ryan that he can't arrest somebody if he never knew about the warrant (wink, wink).

Everyone heads to the station, including the Friendsgiving meal. Jack stays behind at the firehouse with Captain Pruitt Herrera and Grant (Travis' boyfriend), while everyone else goes to help a man who's gotten stuck in his car underneath a carport. They're joined by Fire Chief Ripley (also Vic(toria)'s currently undefined sexual partner), who's observing Maya and considering her for a promotion to Lieutenant.

Andy and Captain Sullivan are called to a hit-and-run car accident on the same road where Sullivan's wife had a fatal accident years ago. The two of them work together to help the patient, but they can't get to a hospital because of the conditions outside. It's far too windy to drive safely, the roads are shut down, and all the hospitals are filled. But when the wind starts to move the ambulance independently, the firefighters know they can't stay there. They agree to try to get to a hospital despite the weather.

Cliffhangers for this one? Ryan's left his dad with an ultimatum: either I take you into jail, or you walk out of here as if I'd never seen you, and you never talk to me again. Chief Ripley has announced that Maya WILL be promoted to Lieutenant....at a different station. Ben and Miranda's marriage is still on ice because she needed a break from worrying about him. Grant's just off-handedly mentioned to Travis that he's got no interest in marriage. Jack's laying down in the firehouse after some troubling signs of PTSD from his incident in the skyscraper fire, after lashing out at Ryan and a very concerned Pruitt Herrera. And most dramatic? The episode ends with a shot of Andy and Sullivan's aidcar in a ditch, far beneath the road. YIKES. This one's not back until January either-- it'll probably return with "Grey's." So we've got to wait to figure out what happens to Andy, Sullivan, and everyone else.

Winter premiere TBA-- likely sometime in January 2019.

The Good Doctor (ABC)

Watch the midseason finale here.

ABC's "other" medical drama, "The Good Doctor," may be from the same network as "Grey's," but they are far from the same show. The second season drama centers on Dr. Shaun Murphy, a young surgeon with Autism Spectrum Disorder and his personal and professional relationships. The show does a good job portraying how Shaun's symptoms affect his ability to function while also, at times, becoming a great strength.

In the Season 2 midseason finale, Shaun is caught in the middle of a dangerous airborne outbreak. It's right before Christmas, so the hospital is understaffed, and two patients are brought in from the airport experiencing odd symptoms. They've just flown in from Malaysia and they both have a strange rash, but they've never met and weren't sitting anywhere near each other. When the first patient dies, they quickly quarantine the other, but cannot save her either. The paramedic that brought one of the patients in is infected too and dies within hours. It requires a very frightening and urgent quarantine of the entire Emergency Room, including the waiting area with many patients who came in for much simpler reasons.

Upstairs, Dr. Brown and Dr. Melendez are fighting to save a patient who's waiting on a bone marrow transplant. He has no immune system and has been fighting Leukemia for years, and they are determined to make sure he lives. One problem? His donor is stuck in the quarantine area: nobody can go in or out, which means they have to find another donor and fast since their patient has signed a DNR order. Meanwhile, Lea must take Dr. Glassman to his radiation appointment, since Shaun is literally stuck in the hospital and Dr. Park's visiting son is also stuck in the quarantine area.

This episode ended before I was ready, with all of the cliffhangers falling into place at once. Shaun is in the quarantine area trying to help a fallen diabetic patient. Triggered by a broken light in the ER, Shaun collapses into an anxiety attack, unable to help either the diabetic patient or Park's son, who's having an asthma attack. A few rooms away, Dr. Morgan Reznick is trying to save another patient, performing bowel obstruction surgery without an Operating Room or most of the necessary help-- while Dr. Lim, newly infected, collapses on the floor in the high-security quarantine area. Elsewhere, Dr. Glassman's cancer is back and Dr. Melendez is ignoring the DNR to save his patient, opening himself up to a lot of legal trouble if something goes wrong.

The last two minutes of this episode are super stressful. January can't come quickly enough!

"The Good Doctor" returns on Monday, January 14th, 2019 on ABC.

Manifest (NBC)

Watch the midseason finale here.

I wrote about "Manifest" recently, but in case you missed it, "Manifest" is the most fascinating new drama of the season. Long story short, a plane disappears for five-and-a-half years and returns with its un-aged passengers who were long assumed dead. Now, they're all receiving mysterious calls and seeing unexplainable images.

In recent episodes, the passengers have been investigating the whereabouts of several missing people from the flight. They've discovered that they were taken to a secret lab, where suspicious people have been running neurological tests on them to determine how their brains are connected post-flight. Worse yet, one of these passengers appears to have a strong link with Cal, the young boy with cancer who landed with his father, Ben, and Aunt Michaela. When the experimented-on passenger feels pain, Cal feels it too, and that landed him in the hospital a few episodes ago. Ben and his "team"--Fiona (a neurology professor and researcher), Vance (the NSA agent that was formerly really suspicious of the passengers), Saanvi, Jared, and Michaela--finally found the location of the passengers and the secret lab. They move in to disconnect the victimized passengers from the experiments and take them to a safe location. As Ben and Fiona lead them out of the sketchy underground tunnel to safety, Vance and Jared have chased down and arrested those responsible. Belson, after ordering everyone to destroy all the evidence of the experiments, takes off running, only to be caught by Vance. As they're finding their way out of the tunnels, the destruction leads to an explosion while they are all still inside.

The cliffhangers? First of all, what happens next to the rescued passengers? Also, with Vance's tragic death, Ben and co are now down an important player. Their supporter with power and knowledge in the government is gone, and just after they started trusting them. Vance may have been the key to fixing a lot of this from the governmental side of things, so his absence is going to cause problems. Meanwhile, Jared was injured in the blast, and he's okay; but only, Michaela said, because she asked the Calling to save him. Also, Autumn, a "rescued" passenger that helped the group find everyone else, is revealed at the end to be in cahoots with Belson. She's gotten Ben to trust her, which could be dangerous. Ben himself is also now facing some problems at home: his wife Grace has reached the end of her rope. She's sick of him running off into danger when he should be focused on their family, even if he's trying to protect them. Ben moves out, leaving behind Cal and a broken-hearted Olive.

This is a natural place for the series to pause, and I'm looking forward to seeing what happens next.

"Manifest" returns Monday, January 7th, 2019 on NBC.

New Amsterdam (NBC)

Watch the midseason finale here.

First-year medical drama "New Amsterdam" has its issues, but it's still getting a lot of attention. The show's premise is simple: this hospital, in a low-income area of New York, treats everyone, regardless of their insurance coverage, and advocates for all their patients' well-being, even if it means arguing with more powerful people, like the police or the law.

Dr. Max Goodwin, the new medical director of New Amsterdam who champions this ideology, has just been diagnosed with cancer but is determined to continue working during his treatment. The midseason finale opens with this exact argument: Max is not budging from the fact that he wants to keep working to make his hospital a better place, but Dr. Helen Sharpe, his colleague and treatment provider, is concerned. She agrees that chemotherapy is brutal, but she also insists to Max that it's his best option; it's horrible, but it works. A clinical trial like Max wants to do isn't proven. It's a lot more dangerous and a lot less likely to give him the results he needs. He gets his wish, though-- he's accepted into a clinical trial despite Helen's concerns.

Meanwhile, fellow doctor Lauren Bloom is a little bit frazzled. She's randomly secretly taking pills, and almost assigns the wrong medicine to a patient, which could have had deadly consequences. Her co-worker, Casey, fixes her mistake but also expresses concern. He tells her that it isn't the first time he's had to cover for her, and he suspects it won't be the last unless his supervisor gets some help. Dr. Bloom is a brilliant doctor, but her lack of focus and need for rest could be dangerous for her and her patients.

The cliffhangers for this one aren't as major as some of the other shows but are concerning nonetheless. At the end of the episode, Max collapses in the middle of the woods, leaving his wife screaming for help out in the wilderness. Of course, we have reason to be concerned for Lauren and her ability to focus. And in happier cliffhangers, Helen has just been asked on a date by the man running Max's clinical trial! We have to wait until January for updates on these characters, so in the meantime, we'll just have to hope that New Amsterdam can run smoothly with Max out of commission.

"New Amsterdam" returns on Tuesday, January 8th, 2019 on NBC.

Okay, that's all everyone. One more of my Drama shows (CBS' "FBI") will air its midseason finale next week, and my comedy shows should be wrapping up for 2018 soon as well. I don't think I'm going to make it to January. Sound off in the comments if you're as shook as I am.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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