Grab the tissues because a month from now, Arizona Robbins and April Kepner will say goodbye to you and everyone at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital. TVLine just reported the Season 14 finale date for Grey's Anatomy, and it's Thursday, May 17. So, set your calendar because things are bound to get emotional.
The Season 14 finale will mark the final appearances of Arizona and April, played by Jessica Capshaw and Sarah Drew, respectively. Last month, Grey's Anatomy co-showrunner Krista Vernoff revealed why Capshaw and Drew are leaving in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter.
"As writers, our job is to follow the stories where they want to go and sometimes that means saying goodbye to characters we love," she wrote, hinting that Season 15 could be taking a new direction. This season Martin Henderson, who played Dr. Nathan Riggs, was also written off the show, providing yet another clue that things could be different.
The news was a shock for Drew, who released a statement on Twitter, thanking fans for nine great years and promising them that April's story "isn't over yet." At the time of the announcement, she was still on the set "shadowing one of my favorite people, Kevin McKidd [Owen Hunt], with my beloved Grey's family," which gave her time to "process all of my feelings surrounded by the community that has nourished and nurtured me for almost a decade."
Earlier this week, Capshaw tweeted about her last Grey's Anatomy day, which, no surprise, was emotional. "Last drive from home to the studios this morning," she wrote. "Ten years of commuting to reflect upon in 35 mins."
This got a reaction of out of Drew, who responded with a sweet message and a whole lot of heart emoji, "Love you sister."
But, even better might be the reactions fans have had to the news that the two actors are leaving. While some have said they'll boycott Grey's Anatomy altogether, a few very creative ones started a GoFundMe for a special gift. Those fans gave Capshaw and Drew an airplane banner that said "We <3 Sarah Drew & Jessica Capshaw" and it didn't go unnoticed. "A plane?? Really guys?? A plane???" Drew wrote on Instagram, adding, "Pure joy."
Finding out she wouldn't be on the show next season was also emotional for Capshaw, whose character Arizona is the only lesbian character on the show currently. (Drew's April was the only devout Christian character.) It was something that meant a lot to not just to LGBTQ+ fans, but to Capshaw.
In a statement on Twitter last month, Capshaw called playing Arizona a "rare privilege" because she was "madly in love with playing her." There were many reasons why, too. "Arizona Robbins is kind, intelligent, funny, insightful, bold, playful, fierce and really good at her job," she wrote. "She was one of the first members of the LGBTQ community to be represented as a series regular role on network television."
Even if these characters will be gone after the Season 14 finale, they won't be forgotten. "The characters of Arizona and April are permanently woven into the fabric of Grey’s Anatomy thanks to the extraordinary work of Jessica Capshaw and Sarah Drew," Vernoff wrote in her THR statement. "It has been a joy and a privilege to work with these phenomenally talented actresses."
Capshaw and Drew won't be forgotten either even when the credits start rolling on the finale. Already, Drew has lined up her next show after Grey's Anatomy. She'll play the co-lead in CBS' reboot ofCagney & Lacey. So stock up on the Kleenex before May 17, but make sure some of those tears are happy ones since the actors who play Arizona and April are going to be just fine.