Izzie Stevens, the black sheep OG and why she deserved better
You know what drives me mad?
Izzie Stevens was originally written as this perky, compassionate and overly attached optimist, princess-type character who raised herself from the ground up. She never gave up on people, she always believed Meredith would survive her drowning. She was white trash but made it as a surgical intern and had to face the sexism and childishness of Alex Karev and her male co-workers shaming her for modelling and it was viewed in an empowering feminist light.
Izzie Stevens, 6 seasons in, becomes a total shell of her former self. No longer is she perky or optimistic, she’s cold and unforgiving. She walked out on Alex for what seemed to be months without an explanation, and came back blaming him for getting fired. I can understand Izzie’s feeling of having lost everything, because she did, but it is just so out of character for her to give up so easily like that and leave. I feel like they never anticipated Katherine Heigl permanently leaving so this storyline would be swept under the rug but she did and now the fact that it now REFLECTS HER ENTIRE CHARACTER is such a mind-fuck to me, because now all I see is people hate Izzie for reasons that were the total opposite of her development throughout the show.
Also, it’s just a mindfuck because Izzie’s very last episode paints her in such a negative light. She looks like a total moron. She walks out on her husband, comes back expecting a steady relationship recovery & he says he deserves better naturally and that’s it. She looks so pathetic, as she walks off in a huff after he breaks up with her, but in a way I can’t help but feel sorry for the character that should have been. Izzie should have died of cancer bravely trying to fight it, (and as Addison once said) Izzie is a fighter. She would not back down and walk out and disappear FOREVER. (Now I know Izzie was supposed to come back in 6x20 and resolve shit properly, and fine okay, Katie left after ML, but she did wanna come back for season 8 and that would have fixed everything, but Shonda would rather hold a grudge and ruin an original than stay true to a character’s development).
And you know what’s sad too? Originally this was a good girl/bad guy on-off relationship and Alex was the mean one, who emotionally abused her, cheated on her, was emotionally unavailable, etc. Nowadays I see people treat Izzie like the devil back in season 2 for saying “you’re not good enough for me or anyone” when that is totally out of context because A. Alex was being a dick to Izzie in the scene B. He was not concerned about her medical career, it was jealous ex-boyfriend crap, and he was saying “your boyfriend’s gonna die, your real option is me”, not “this is your patient and this is against the law” (Alex does mention him being her patient but it’s not in that context, Alex doesn’t give a shit about it, he doesn’t even back her with the LVAD wire situation, so if he actually cared about her professionally, he would have backed her up).
Anyway those are my thoughts and frustrations with the ending of Izzie Stevens. In the correct alternate universe, Katherine never renewed her contradict and they failed to revive Izzie after the season 5 finale, giving George and Izzie beautifully tragic endings, in a perfect universe, Katherine came back after her maternity leave and she and Alex are an 8 year married couple on the show till this day, or even better, Izzie does leave eventually, but in Cristina-style fashion before the show went to shit.
I’m always bummed Izzie got shit on in the end by Shonda and Katherine. They both are responsible for not fulfilling their duties to the character and they’ve left the character in a massively antagonistic light. I roll my eyes at every time they mention Jo leaving but it not being about Alex. It’s nice how you reflect on Izzie. Not the believer, not the one who stood up for herself against sexual harassment twice, sexist slut shaming another two times, who spoke out against animal cruelty against Owen, the one who believed when no-one else did, the one who tried to make her friends happy and only wanted the best for them, even if she was annoying, nosey and needy doing it, she meant well, no, she’s the bitch who left Alex. The sexist bias is infuriating.
I’m not even going to go into a rant about how Meredith, Alex & Cristina casually addressing Izzie as being “gone” and how ridiculous and unbelievable it is they would not go to find out what happened to THEIR FRIEND THEY WERE WILLING TO RISK THEIR MEDICAL LICENSE FOR and who they went through EVERYTHING with is, but I’ll leave you with that thought.
Let’s review the ultimate fates of MAGIC:
M & A - Meredith Grey and Alex Karev:
2successful attendings still at the hospital and main characters on the show.
G - George O’Malley
The patriot hero who wanted to serve in the army but got hit by a bus and died saving someone else’s life.
C - Cristina Yang
She fulfilled her dreams as a cardio god owning a hospital in Switzerland.
Then there’s Izzie.
She amounted to nothing. She had nobody in the end. She left after an argument with Meredith and we never heard from her again. Every reference to her afterwards is to reference how stupid, crazy, cruel or mean she was. Every relationship she had is minimised and treated like it was nothing. Remember how caring and protective Bailey was to Izzie? And Bailey hasn’t mentioned her since. Nothing from Mer either.
And it makes me sad.
Anyway if this gif doesn’t epitomise my thoughts on how horrible her exit was, I don’t know what will: