Grey's Anatomy brought back a number of familiar faces in Season 17 thanks to Meredith's COVID coma opening the door for appearances from characters who have been long dead, as well as Jesse Williams' departure as Jackson Avery bringing about the return of Sarah Drew as April Kepner. Not all past fan-favorites got to show up again in Season 17, but now a major player from nearly ten years ago is on her way back. Kate Walsh is on the way in Season 18, and she announced the news herself in a fun video.
Kate Walsh last appeared on Grey's Anatomy as a special guest star back in Season 8, although it was technically a dream episode that aired while Walsh was still leading lady over on the Private Practice spinoff. Private Practice wrapped in 2013, and Walsh's excitement about returning to her iconic character is clear in her announcement video on the Grey's Anatomy Instagram account. Check it out!
"Well, well, well" indeed! Not only is it fun to see that Kate Walsh is excited, but I for one find it very touching that she referred to returning to Grey's Anatomy as being "home again." With a shout-out to Ellen Pompeo, Shonda Rhimes, and the rest of the cast (some of whom Walsh won't have worked with before thanks to her nearly decade away from Grey Sloan), I think the actress just successfully hyped up fans looking forward to Season 18 more than ever.
While Kate Walsh didn't give away any details about her return to Grey's Anatomy, Deadline reports that she will appear in multiple episodes, which means that she'll have a longer stint back on the show than Sarah Drew did with her one-off return in Season 17. No details are available just yet about the storyline that brings Addison back for Season 18, but at least Addison's return is easier to explain than another's. Kate Burton will be back as well to reprise her role as Ellis Grey, who of course has been dead for years.
Kate Walsh may have left Grey's as a regular back in Season 3 to star in Private Practice (albeit with some guest appearances that followed her departure as regular), but at least Addison was still alive at the end of Private Practice. Addison's return could be as simple as Grey Sloan needing her expertise as a doctor. News of Walsh's return comes just a few weeks after she and Ellen Pompeo had a fun Grey's Anatomy exchange on a viral video, which in hindsight maybe should have been a clue that they're working together again.
In a video that she posted on her own Instagram account following the big announcement of her return to Grey's Anatomy, Kate Walsh revealed that she's already back at work as Addison, complete with costume:
Hello again, Dr. Montgomery! Kate Walsh revealed her transformation back into her Private Practice and Grey's Anatomy character with a video that involved dancing, a big smile, and of course the immortal and frequently meme-d "Surprise bitch, I bet you thought you'd seen the last of me" line from American Horror Story: Coven.
Although there's no saying at this point how many episodes exactly Kate Walsh will appear in for Season 18, at least Grey's Anatomy fans don't have to wait too much longer to see Meredith and Co. back in action. Grey's Anatomy returns to ABC for Season 18 on Thursday, September 30 at 9 p.m. ET, following the Season 5 premiere of Station 19.
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Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).