Small Screen

Grey’s Anatomy: The memorable journey of the ‘twisted sisters’

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Yes. It has happened. Ten seasons. Innumerable magical moments. Life long memories. And Sandra Oh has bid the final adieus to Grey’s Anatomy and her on screen shade – Doctor Cristina Yang.

As fans across the world cope with the departure of one of the strongest characters of television and the GA fans wait for the next installment of show starting from September 25th,2014  here is the journey of Cristina Yang’s life  and her friendship with Meredith Grey in twelve highlights.

 1. The getting along of the ‘Twisted Sisters’

The beautiful relationship of Meredith Grey & Cristina Yang that went through all phases of happiness, gloom, success, failures, irrevocable personal losses and proud professional highs has had to its credit an equally dramatic start. Both of them, as interns at Seattle Grace Hospital,  were working upon the same case. Grey got to be the intern who performed the surgery which Yang longed for. However, the professional competitiveness soon subdued, for the relation had to thrive.

Cristina – “We don’t have to do that thing, where you know, I say something, and then you say something, and somebody cries, and there’s like a moment…”

Meredith – “Yuck”


2. My person, my soul mate, my sole partner in crime

As Meredith drowns in a lake while rescuing a patient in an outstation medical emergency, Cristina gets worried over her sudden disappearance. Cristina, on being questioned about her anxiousness by her husband to be Dr. Preston Burke says, “She’s my person. If I murdered someone, she’s the person I’d call to help me drag the corpse across the living room floor. She’s my person.” 



3. All they could do, was to keep breathing!

Dressed in a white wedding gown, Cristina Yang is all set to get married to Preston Burke. The man she loved, for whom she got her eyebrows plucked and the person for whom she performed dozens of extra ordinary Cardiothoracic procedures she wasn’t authorized to, left her at the altar on their wedding day. Yang gets overwhelmed and Meredith consoles her and gets her out of the wedding gown. However, this incident inspires Yang to stand up,  for all she says after she retains her composure is, ” He is gone, I am free, Meredith.” 


4.  Have some fire and be unstoppable!

Cristina who had been the significant pillar for Preston Burke when his hand injury had rendered him incapable of performing surgeries, got no mention when the latter won the prestigious Harper Avery award. This along with her disturbed personal life, made her grow ruder day by day. On being questioned about her well being by a fellow, she said what became, one of the most famous quotes of the show.

Lexie Grey: “Are you okay?”

Cristina Yang: “Don’t ask me if I’m okay. Have some fire. Be unstoppable. Be a force of nature. Be better than anyone here, and don’t give a damn about what anyone thinks. There are no teams here, no buddies. You’re on your own. Be on your own.”


5. The ‘Cro-wen’ Paradox

Cristina Yang gradually falls in love again with a trauma surgeon, Dr. Owen Hunt who joins work at hospital after a tough life as a surgeon in the army. The spark between the two is amazing, the love is bold and passionate. However, their life isn’t that easy, courtesy Owen’s initial aggressive flashbacks and their different desires from and meaning of life.




6. Had I known how to save a life!

As a shooter enters the premises of Seattle Grace Mercy West Hospital in a bid to murder all the surgeons to avenge his wife’s death, Dr. Derek Shepherd is shot in chest. To save the life of her friend’s husband Cristina performs a surgery with gun at her temple with amazing grit and smartness. This by far continues to be, one of the strongest moments of the show.



7. I know she likes the trauma

The act of shooting and operating at gun point leaves Dr. Yang traumatized for months. Not being able to come to terms with the excruciating pressure, she gives up medical practice and finds alternative employment, including bar-tending at Joe’s bar. However, as Derek takes her off on a fishing spree, she catches a giant one. As she feels the taste of success and rush of adrenaline again, she realizes what is missing from her life after giving up surgery. That moment of tears of happiness from Cristina Yang’s eyes, priceless!

8. The continuous consuming interrogation by Teddy Altman

After months of training under cardiac surgeon Dr. Teddy Altman, Yang has to perform an emergency surgery on Altman’s husband due to her pre-occupation. Cristina puts the best of her medical skills to test, but the patient dies. When informed about Henry’s death,  she asks Cristina to repeat the procedure followed time and again to evaluate it. She says, “You did all what I would have done in that OR, Don’t be sorry.”


One of the most emotional scenes of the series, it shows the actress’s talent of conveying most  in the minimal words.


8. Seattle Grace Mercy ‘Death’, the place where bad things happen

Post the plane crash that claims the lives of two major doctors of the hospital and with terrorist attacks and shootings in backdrop, Cristina Yang gets sick of the place replete with deaths, dearths and disorders and decides to leave the hospital for a job elsewhere. However, her tuning with Meredith is the same, relationship is no where strained, they stay in touch. The catch phrase “You’re my person” comes up again, Yang gradually overcomes the fear of planes and ultimately gets back to her parent hospital to revive it from a financial crisis. ( now called the Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital.)


9. Somebody that I used to know!

Competition, jealousy and ego can ruin all relations. The same happened in the  relation of ‘the twisted sisters’. As Meredith became a family woman, Cristina’s career scaled new heights. Consequently, there were things said and interpreted, all of which envisaged a cold war. However, soon came a face off, where in things got cleared.


10. If love could be ‘enough’ to keep people together!

Cristina and Owen were deeply in love, but sadly there wasn’t a way in which both of their lives could run in parallel without making the compromises that would alter their individual definitions and existence. Hence, Cristina found that the best way was to let it go.


11. Tall towers, false shadows: The Harper Avery fiasco

One of the most hyped and prestigious awards in medicine, the Harper Avery Award – 2014 had Cristina Yang as a nominee, she being one of the five forerunners. However, the internal politics at the Harper Avery Board and Board’s relation with the Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital screwed up the chances of Yang winning the award, even though her 3D conduits had the jury’s vote.



12. This is not the end, this is not the beginning!

While addressing a conference about her 3D conduits in Zurich, Yang meets Preston Burke again, the man who once left her at the altar, offers Yang to takeover for him at a research hospital in Switzerland. Yang knows this is the next step for her, gradually finishes over her work and dealings at Seattle and shifts her base of operation to Switzerland bidding adieus to her companions of over ten years with some ‘stay in touch’ promises, compassionate hugs,pieces of advice, emotional goodbyes and the last ‘Cristina -Meredith’ 30 seconds dance party.

It is rather magical how both of the friends have been there for one another in all times, despite of difference of opinions, attitudes and cultures. Even though the television saga would continue to go on without her, but for sure, both the friends would continue to influence each other’s lives for ever. For that’s what friendship means, to be together, even if not physically around.

Thank you Sandra Oh for the beautiful, motivating and unforgettable portrayal of Dr. Cristina Yang.

You’ll be always remembered and thoroughly missed!

Happy friendship day to all our readers and Grey’s Anatomy fans!

Featured Image Credits: Meredith Grey Quotes ( Facebook Page)

Mridul Sharma is a final year B.Com (Honors) aspirant from DCAC, a patron of meaningful cinema and good soft music and has deep love for writing. He is more of a poet, feels whatever he writes and writes to understand what he feels, a little better. Currently, the Associate Web Editor at DU Beat, he is looking forward to his final year and can be contacted at [email protected]

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