Original Post on “Elevator Love Letter”


One of the best episodes for Cristina and Owen. (Credit for screencaps used goes to In_The_After)


(Thank you to LovesmesomeOwen for searching through the YH Thread and finding my post! Also, I did fill in some of the blanks that I’d posted elsewhere so that no scene is missing.)

Holy freaking cow.  They have sex.  And the thing was, the writers were right.  It was like a good-bye.  Don’t get me wrong, it was the most tender lovemaking we have probably ever seen on this show.  And that was definitely the way to go, to juxtapose against what had happened previously.  But it was definitely bittersweet.  He had hurt her, and the way he kisses her neck was so heartwrenching.  Yes, we are sticking with this couple, even though Cristina broke up with him — and really, that was the right thing to do.  He needs help, and he needs to heal on his own before he can be there for her.  Healthy and whole.  And thank goodness, he is on the way to healthy and whole.  (I don’t even care what the curveball is.  These two are going to end up together.)

The opening scene of Owen just hanging out at Cristina’s says a lot.  I don’t think it’s the first time that Owen’s come over to hang out.  But I do think it is probably the first time that he spends the night.  Anyways, I just like the idea of these two hanging out with each other after work.  And Owen learning more about Cristina and what type of person she is.  And that’s the type to watch surgical videos to “unwind.”  Which Owen finds adorable.  Yes, Owen thinks Cristina is “adorable,” but he’ll never say that to her face.  I hope we get to see more moments like this one of the two of them just being a couple.  It’s a rare sight on Grey’s Anatomy, where they spend most of their time in the hospital trying to save lives.  But I do love it when we get to see them at home.


The calm before the storm. And what a "storm" it was. (Credit for screencap goes to In_The_After)

Now, onto the explosive sequence of events…

I can’t watch the choking scene again, so I’m going to breeze right over it.  Although I will say that he was having a night terror and that people who would call this abuse are completely wrong.  There is a huge difference.  And although it’s a horrific sight to see, Owen’s actions are not conscious and are a part of his disorder.

The “hug of life,” as so many people are calling it.  It was a bit of a surprise.  Cristina doesn’t do hugs.  But she hugs Owen.  And the reason that Meredith and Callie are so shocked is the simple fact that all they see is Cristina hugging her attacker.  They don’t know what he’s going through.  They don’t know what these two mean to each other.  Cristina has kept most of her relationship with Owen under wraps.  And thus the shock on Meredith and Callie’s faces when Cristina does the unthinkable and comfort Owen — when really, they think it should be the other way around.


The "hug of life." (Credit for screencap goes to In_The_After)

I love the implications of Meredith and Cristina’s friendship within this scene.  Meredith is willing to kick Owen’s ass for Cristina.  And the mere image of this tiny blonde woman trying to take on the much bigger and stronger Owen is laughable.  But she’d totally do it.  Cristina is her “person,” and no one messes with her “person.”  But as a result of their falling-out in the episodes before, Meredith doesn’t know the true extent of Cristina’s feelings for Owen.  I think no one ever will — other than Owen, perhaps.  But she’s always been that way: keeping her private life private.


The way Owen knocks on the door and asks Meredith if Cristina is okay was so heartbreaking.  You get the sense that Owen needs to know that Cristina’s all right.  He doesn’t assume that he’s allowed to talk to Cristina directly or see her for himself — though he’d love nothing more than to be able to see him.  He knows what he did was horrible, and he has no expectations of Cristina being able to face him.  But she does.  And that really speaks to the bond between these two.  She shows him that she’s okay.  She tells him that she’s fine.  I don’t think he would have believed it had anyone else said so.  She tells him, “Look at me.”  She gets that he needs to see her.  And what’s more, I think she needs to see him, too.  And it’s important that it is her who initiates the hug because you just know that he won’t make the first move.

I thought it was perfect that Meredith and Callie stood up for Cristina and protected her from him.  They are her people, and it is their job.  And Owen needs to know that although Cristina forgave him, these two are going to watch out for her.  That’s what friends do.

Meredith and Callie on the defense. (Credit for screencap goes to In_The_After)

The vent scene.  The look she gives him and the way she stops him from moving closer.  Heartbreaking.  And I’m glad Owen realizes that this is not okay.  It isn’t.  Though, even though he knew, he still couldn’t really leave her.  And who can blame him?  He’s completely in love with her, and she’s the only real person in his life.  But he recognizes that he had just harmed the love of his life and that he is now the threat to her.  And Cristina, at this point, still willing to stay by him is just proof that she indeed will not give up on him (even if she breaks up with him later).


As the song says in the background, Cristina's "not ready." (Credit for screencap goes to In_The_After)

Also, as Owen moves in to kiss her or hold her, Cristina lets out this little cry.  It’s faint.  I might be going crazy.  But I think it’s there.  I believe this is why Owen asks her if he can hold her later, because he doesn’t know if she’s ready for him to hold her.  (That, in itself, should’ve been a signal to us that things were not going to end on a happy note.  You shouldn’t be afraid of the person you love.)  Anyways, I think Owen realizes that Cristina, not necessarily flinches, but is unable to let him touch her just yet — and THAT kills him.  You can see it in his face.  Okay, really going to bed now.

It definitely tugged on my heart strings when Owen asked her if he could hold her.  He’s afraid to touch her without her permission.  That fear of his strength will take a while for both of them to overcome — and I believe that they will.  It was so sad to see how frightened Cristina was.  Here she is, lying in his arms, and she’s supposed to be reveling in afterglow.  Instead, she can’t relax.  She can’t relish the moment and celebrate she had just had G.I. Joe because now Cristina’s traumatized.

The moment that caused all Cristina/Owen fans to squee their heads off. Kissing? We expected. A full-blown love scene? Not so much. 19 episodes of waiting definitely paid off. Thank you, Shonda Rhimes. (Credit for screencap goes to In_The_After)

Alex’s voice-overs are encouraging.  Our couple needed this trauma to move forward.  Owen needed, as others have said before me, to hit rock bottom in order to get to a better place — to get back to the fun-loving man he was in the season premiere: the man who would kiss a woman he’d just met a few hours ago because cupid had shot him with an arrow.

And now the words of comfort for the future: They will pull through.  You can tell that Cristina doesn’t want to break up with him.  And the way Owen looks at her as he realizes that he’s done this to her, frightened her — that she is afraid of him, tearjerking.  The separation is a necessary thing but is reluctant.  They obviously want to be together.  The way Cristina is so heartbroken over having to break up with Owen.  (And wasn’t it great that Meredith was there for Cristina, even though she had just gotten engaged and could have been having celebratory sex with Derek?  Also, the first person Meredith tells is, of course, Cristina.  Love those two.)  It was not something she thought she would have to do.  But without it, Owen would not have fully realized just what he could lose if he didn’t seek treatment.  And immediately after they break up, he asks Derek for help.  The timing of that is just too important to ignore: make no mistake, he is seeking help and treatment with one main goal in mind — to be able to be with Cristina, and so that they can have a wholesome and healthy relationship.  Obviously, he wasn’t willing to seek help for his own sake.  So, even though it breaks our hearts to see them suffer and be apart, I applaud the writers’ choice in taking us down this path.

And also, as someone said earlier, there will be loads of sexual tension between the two (which is why I think they chose to have these two sleep together in this episode — to make it all the more palpable when they have their eye sex).  And the make up sex / reunion?  Forget about it.  I can already predict that it will be insanely amazing and romantic.



2 responses to “Original Post on “Elevator Love Letter”

  1. Hey Shli,

    Your analysis is “SO” right on. I think they could use you on GA as a writer. I also loved this epi and will be re-watching ELL this afternoon. I put in S5 last week and have enjoyed it even more than the first time.

    What an amazing couple. I’ve been a little upset with they way the SL is going right now but, I think Shondra will bring this amazement back in 2010. Can’t wait for tons of Owen and Cris. It also looks like she gets her first cardio solo surgery.

    • Hi Alyssa,

      Thank you “SO” much. 🙂 I wish they would take me as a GA writer, but I have a feeling that things wouldn’t go so well if all I wanted to have in the episodes was Cristina and Owen, lol. And what a great idea to re-watch Season 5! I’ve been doing it, too.

      They truly are an amazing couple, and I think you’re right in thinking that Shonda will bring back this “amazement” in the latter half of the season. I mean, we got the bulk of great Cristina/Owen moments in the latter half of season 5, so who’s to say we won’t in season 6? And yeah, I’m really excited to see her doing a solo surgery. “Mama needs to cut.” Thanks again for commenting!

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