Spoilers ahead for Grey's Anatomy Season 17, Episode 14. Just as the nostalgia of Jackson and April’s reunion in Grey’s Anatomy’s May 6 episode began to hit its peak, actor Jesse Williams announced he’s leaving the ABC medical drama, adding a whole new flood of emotions. The good news? Japril could be endgame. The bad? They’re moving to Boston, and viewers won’t be going with them. Naturally, fans went directly to Twitter to sort out their feelings.
As some suspected, Jackson’s abrupt road trip out of Seattle took him for a surprise visit to father Robert Avery’s (Eric Roberts) Montana diner. After all, the former surgeon had given up his medical career and family fortune for a simpler rural life, though that also meant leaving behind his son in the process. So who better for Jackson to get answers from as he mulled over whether to take over his family’s foundation in Boston, despite his and April’s (Sarah Drew) daughter Harriet being located in Seattle?
As a regretful Robert explained to his emotional son, however, the apple does fall far from the tree, at least in one sense. “You have it in your soul to do the right thing,” he told Jackson. “If you don’t want to stay, don’t. But don’t blame it on me, because on your worst day, you are ten times the man I am.” Cue the waterworks.
Jackson’s final epiphany: “The trick is to take the people who were there for you with you to remind you you’re not alone,” as he said in voiceover. But first he had to convince April, who later revealed she and Matthew had split up, to move to Boston with him. That, of course, didn’t go as smoothly as he’d hoped, initially squashing fans’ hopes for a happy Japril reunion.
The pair went back and forth about Jackson’s decision to use a position with the foundation to help achieve racial equity in medicine, though at the expense of April uprooting her life in Seattle to move all the way across the country. While some tweets wondered why they were wasting their reunion arguing, others didn’t seem to mind as much. After all, it is classic Japril. As April herself later joked, “That was actually our thing: arguing until we’re blue in the face, then having sex.”
After sleeping on it, however, April made up her mind that she and Harriet would move to Boston with Jackson. “You deserve this,” she told him. “We will make Boston work. I’m saying yes.”
It might not be a happy ending all around though. Some fans noted the fact that Williams, and by extension, Jackson is leaving Grey’s doesn’t necessarily bode well for the series, given ABC has yet to order a Season 18 renewal. As one viewer pointed out, Meredith is awake and, as Jackson explained to April, getting better and stronger everyday. She also seems to be doing just fine while saying goodbye to Jackson in the promo for the May 20 episode, which will be Williams’ last. Between now and then, Grey’s is devoting May 13 to re-airing two fan-favorite throwback episodes, another worrying clue.
Regardless, fans were happy they got to spend an hour with the beloved one-time couple. Although it remains anyone’s guess if Jackson and April will get back together for good, as they both said, “fingers crossed for new horizons.”