Grey’s Anatomy Showrunner Promises More ‘Delightful Surprises’ After News Of Jesse Williams’ Return

jesse williams as jackson on grey's anatomy
(Image credit: ABC)

Even though Grey’s Anatomy’s namesake, Meredith Grey will be playing a smaller role in Season 19, it’s been revealed that viewers can expect a lot of fun surprises and old faces throughout the new season of the ABC classic. It’s already been confirmed that Jesse Williams will return as Jackson Avery at some point this season, but it’s exciting that we can also expect even more fun surprises. 

While we’ve gotten quite a bit of Meredith in the first few episodes, she will not be nearly as present in the later part of the season. Ellen Pompeo got candid about taking a step back, saying while she will always be part of the show, to do her best work she needs to “tell less of Meredith’s story.” Clearly, the show won’t be the same without the presence of Pompeo, but, showrunner Krista Vernoff told TV Line while it’s a challenge not to have her around all the time, she’s excited about what’s to come. 

It’s a big challenge to — not ‘say goodbye’ to Meredith Grey, but say ‘see you later.’ We’ve got a tremendous cast, but that’s a big loss. So how do you fill that void? It’s unfillable, but we’ve peppered delightful surprises throughout the season to try to fill a little tiny bit of that space.

While these surprises could be anything, personally I hope it's more returning characters from earlier seasons. I think this is entirely possible with Grey's history of bringing characters back for a bit, and the multiple people who are already confirmed to return.

In the Season 18 finale, we saw the return of Jesse Williams and Sarah Drew as April Kepner. While we know we’ll get Jackson back, hopefully, we’ll get April too, especially after finding out they were back together. 

In Episode 3 of this season, we saw the promised return of Kate Walsh as Addison Montgomery. She returned for an episode called “Let’s Talk About Sex,” and at the end mentioned she’d be in Seattle for a few more days, so hopefully that means we’ll be seeing a bit more of Dr. Montgomery in the coming episodes. With how the episode ended, it seems like Bailey and Addison are both determined to work toward ensuring women’s reproductive rights, so I could see Walsh sticking around for a bit longer as this story continues. 

Along with Williams and Walsh, Greg Germann, who played Tom Koracick is confirmed to come back for the Nov. 3 episode, according to TV Line. The neurosurgeon who left Grey-Sloan to work for Jackson will return in the same episode as his boss. 

I’m curious to see if other characters return to Seattle in the coming season. Will it be one of the old interns from the last few seasons? Maybe an attending from earlier seasons? No matter what, it’s always fun to see a familiar face return to Grey’s after some time away from the show.  Plus it'll be entertaining to see how returning characters interact with the new bunch of interns

To see these fan-favorites return and to check out the fun surprises Grey’s Anatomy has planned for Season 19, stay tuned to the fall TV schedule, and catch new episodes every Thursday at 9 p.m. ET on ABC. You can also stream new episodes the day after they air with a Hulu subscription.  

Riley Utley
Weekend Editor

Riley Utley is the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. She has written for national publications as well as daily and alt-weekly newspapers in Spokane, Washington, Syracuse, New York and Charleston, South Carolina. She graduated with her master’s degree in arts journalism and communications from the Newhouse School at Syracuse University. Since joining the CB team she has covered numerous TV shows and movies -- including her personal favorite shows Ted Lasso and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. She also has followed and consistently written about everything from Taylor Swift to Fire Country, and she's enjoyed every second of it.