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Alternate realities and timelines can be a lot of fun in a TV show. See Community for evidence of that. Grey’s Anatomy will be exploring the idea of various what-if scenarios called “If/Then” and the episode will bring Kate Burton’s character back to life for the episode. Kate Walsh is also set to appear.
Once upon a time, Kate Burton delivered numerous phenomenal performances as the often harsh, but also confused Ellis Grey in the earlier seasons of Grey’s Anatomy. In addition to helping us understand where some, if not all, of Meredith’s issues stem from, Burton’s character also tied in to Chief Weber’s story as the two were having an affair. Ellis Grey, who was suffering from Alzheimer’s, died seasons ago, but according to Entertainment Weekly, Burton will be back in an episode next February, reprising her role as the renowned surgeon.
?EW describes “If/Then,” which airs next February, as a “dreamscape episode,” part of which imagines the ways Meredith’s life would be different, had her mother not gotten sick and died. We will also apparently get to see how things would have played out if Kate Walsh’s character Addison were still with Derek. The Private Practice star is also set to appear in the episode.
At this point, Walsh is the only other series regular set to appear in the episode, but who knows what can happen? What are the odds that another Grey’s vet from years past might show up? Katherine Heigl and Isaiah Washington seem unlikely, but maybe T.R. Knight could make an appearance. I’m sure there are a lot of George O’Malley fans who would love to see the character brought back to life for an episode.