A Million Little Things Creator Appears To Reference Grey’s Anatomy When Explaining Why The Show Is Ending After Five Seasons

Katherine, Regina, Rome, Eddie and Maggie on A Million Little Things.
(Image credit: ABC)

Fans of A Million Little Things are steeling themselves for what is promised to be an emotional final season, as creator D.J. Nash brings his story of the close-knit Bostonian friend group full circle. Many fans are upset to see the series ending after just five seasons, especially given the longevity of other ABC dramas. Grey’s Anatomy, for example, is in its 19th season on the network, and Nash appeared to reference the hit medical series to illustrate the difference between it and the show that he’d always intended to end after five years.

The Season 4 finale of A Million Little Things offered a shocking twist when it revealed that Gary (James Roday Rodriguez) had been secretly undergoing treatment for lung cancer, and the gang will undoubtedly be dealing with that when Season 5 premieres on February 8. Whatever happens to Gary, we will know it was all part of the plan, as D.J. Nash explained to Variety how his story is different than the other dramas we see on ABC: 

We’re not a hospital show where new interns can come in. We’re about a group of friends that are real and a lot of things have happened to this group of friends. I didn’t want us to become the issue-of-the-week show. I knew from the beginning it was five years. I wasn’t as public about it because people want it to go longer, but this is the right time.

Though D.J. Nash didn’t mention Grey’s Anatomy by name, it’s pretty obvious that’s what he was referring to, as Season 19 of the medical drama introduced five new interns in a quasi-reboot to help usher out series star Ellen Pompeo. A Million Little Things is a series focused on its main cast, with character arcs that Nash has had planned from the beginning.

Even before it was announced that Meredith Grey was leaving Grey Sloan Memorial, and McDreamy’s nephew would be among the incoming new first-year surgeons, Grey’s Anatomy always included side plots featuring the patients in the hospital and the medical miracles performed in the OR. A Million Little Things was never that, and it has addressed a myriad of real-world issues exclusively through the eyes of its main characters. 

It is tough for us Millionaires to accept that the end is near, but there’s undeniably something beautiful about D.J. Nash getting to tell his story from beginning to end, the way he’d always envisioned it. He’s said he always knew that Gary’s cancer would come back, in the same way that Rome (Romany Malco) would continue to battle with depression, and Eddie (David Giuntoli) would never walk again after being paralyzed in a hit-and-run.

I’m excited to see what he’s got in store for the final season, and thankfully, we don’t have to wait long to find out. A Million Little Things Season 5 premieres at 10 p.m. ET Wednesday, February 8, on ABC. In the meantime, the first four seasons are available to stream with a Hulu subscription. Meanwhile, Season 19 of Grey’s Anatomy will resume at 9 p.m. ET Thursday, February 23 on ABC, and be sure to check out our 2023 TV schedule to see what other premieres are headed our way soon. 

Heidi Venable
Content Producer

Heidi Venable is a Content Producer for CinemaBlend, a mom of two and a hard-core '90s kid. She started freelancing for CinemaBlend in 2020 and officially came on board in 2021. Her job entails writing news stories and TV reactions from some of her favorite prime-time shows like Grey's Anatomy and The Bachelor. She graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a degree in Journalism and worked in the newspaper industry for almost two decades in multiple roles including Sports Editor, Page Designer and Online Editor. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Thrives on New Orleans Saints football, The West Wing and taco trucks.