ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy will definitely earn having the phrase “long-running” in front of it now. Thursday’s episode, “We Didn’t Start the Fire,” will be its 332nd, officially making the ABC Studios series, now in the midst of its 15th season, the longest-running primetime medical drama in TV history. It is passing NBC’s ER.
Grey’s, which had its season order increased in January to 25 episodes, remains a strong earner for ABC in ratings performance, popularity and longevity. It went into its winter hiatus averaging a 3.1 adults 18-49 rating (Live+7) to rank as the network’s No. 1 TV show of the 2018-2019 season in the demo. It also regularly ranks among the top most binged series on streaming.
Grey’s already tied ER as the longest-running primetime medical drama ever at 15 seasons apiece. However, ER produced 22 episodes or less in every season except the first, which gave Grey‘s a leg up on the episode number. (Grey’s Anatomy has remarkably aired 24 or more episodes in every full season it has had, only airing fewer in Season 1 — in 2005 — because it premiered in midseason, and during the writers strike-plagued 2007-2008 season.)
In Thursday’s episode, written by Andy Reaser and directed by Chandra Wilson, nothing goes as planned when Jackson throws a party to celebrate Catherine’s surgery and those who worked to save her. Meanwhile, Helen pays Alex and Jo a surprise visit. Jennifer Grey, Jason George, Lindsay Wagner, Debbie Allen, Greg Germann, Peyton Kennedy and Jaicy Elliot guest star.
ABC teased the upcoming milestone in a promo (see it below).
Grey’s Anatomy currently stars Ellen Pompeo, Justin Chambers, Wilson, James Pickens Jr, Kevin McKidd, Jesse Williams, Caterina Scorsone, Camilla Luddington, Kelly McCreary, Kim Raver and Giacomo Gianniott. It was created and is executive produced by Shonda Rhimes. Betsy Beers, Mark Gordon, Krista Vernoff, Allen, Zoanne Clack, Fred Einesman, Reaser and Meg Marinis are executive producers.