When Will ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Season 17 Return In 2021? The Winter Hiatus Is Long

Winter is here, which means that people everywhere are taking a break from the usual grind to relax. Even TV shows take a little time off in the colder months, much to fans’ disappointment. Grey’s Anatomy is among the show taking a winter vacation this year, and it turns out that it’s a pretty long one that’ll last into the new year. When will Grey’s Anatomy Season 17 return in 2021? It’ll be a little while before fans get to spend more time with Meredith and the doctors of Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital.

The winter finale of Grey’s Anatomy Season 17 airs Dec. 17 with a two-hour Station 19 crossover episode. After that, it’ll be a long few months until fans get to watch the next Grey’s Anatomy episode. The series will return in 2021 on March 4.

This season of Grey’s Anatomy has been tackling the coronavirus pandemic head-on. Multiple characters and their relatives have contracted COVID-19, including the center of the Grey’s Anatomy universe, Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) herself. Both the season’s storylines and production have been affected by the pandemic, and so the show’s writers have had to take into account real life world events as they create this season. Since we’re currently living through the pandemic, no one knows exactly what life will look like when Grey’s Anatomy returns in March and how that might impact the show’s stories.

Chandra Wilson, who plays Bailey, talked to Variety about how this season of Grey’s Anatomy is impacted in a big way by current events. She said, "I’m not sure how much the current circumstances are changing our overall arc. Our arc has had to remain very fluid this season, based on even if we’re allowed to work at a certain point, depending on how our national numbers do. The relevance grows episode-by-episode, and I think it makes for an interesting journey for our writers right now to figure out where the arc goes because I think it’s about as fluid as the times are right now."

The teaser for the winter finale shows Meredith waking up from her beach dream-filled coma, so she may be through the worst of her personal experience with the virus. But, there’s still a long journey ahead for everyone on Grey’s Anatomy, one that will continue when Season 17 returns in March.

The winter finale of Season 17 of Grey’s Anatomy airs on Thursday, Dec. 17 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.

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