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#TGIT: 7 stars who rule ShondaLand

How many die-hard #TGIT fans have ever come up with the theory that Henry Burton never actually died on Grey’s Anatomy, but was actually always Jake Ballard from Scandal on some Seattle B613 work? It’s kind of a crazy thought, but it can easily come to mind because Shondaland has a bit of a reputation for keeping it in the family.

Sadly, there’s pretty much no way there can ever be a logical crossover episode at this point because Thatcher Grey is the president’s chief of staff and that doesn’t make any sense. The amount of overlap across Scandal, How to Get Away With Murder, Private Practice, and Grey’s Anatomy is both subtle and numerous, so clearly it needs to be ranked.

Let’s establish some rules:

  1. To qualify for the ranking, an actor must have appeared in three shows minimum.
  2. Any considered actor must have been prominently featured in one of those shows.
  3. Off the Map will not be considered because it only lasted one season, and if it’s included, this could go on forever.
  4. Your participation is encouraged! Please share your own Honorable Mention candidates.

Honorable Mention: Kate Burton (Ellis Grey, Sally Langston) and Jeff Perry (Thatcher Grey, Cyrus Beene)

Who would have thought that in another life, Ellis and Thatcher Grey would team up to hide the murder of the vice president’s gay husband? Life’s funny like that, you know?

5. Bellamy Young (Kathy, Kathy, and Mellie Grant)

Bellamy Young kind of breaks the rules because she was Kathy in the Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice crossover episode—but it’s okay because Mellie Grant is too fantastic to leave off any list. As Kathy, Young played a woman whose husband couldn’t seem to find his mojo in the bedroom only to find out that an inoperable tumor on his kidney was keeping him from making the mark. On Scandal, she plays the wife of a man who can’t seem to control his bedroom urges—in the Oval Office or otherwise. Kathy was a one-time gig in the season three finale of Grey’s and backdoor pilot of Private Practice, but can watch her in all her forms of first lady Mellie Grant on Scandal.

4. Katie Lowes (Blood Donor, Kendra Walker, Quinn Perkins)

If you blinked twice, you probably missed Lowes on Grey’s Anatomy, but her role was pivotal. As a blood donor amid a plane crash who can’t remember when her last period was, her own forgetfulness makes Cristina realize she might be pregnant herself. On Private Practice, Lowes played Kendra Walker, the mother of a baby who suffocated after being left in a car. And then of course, on Scandal, she currently plays Quinn Perkins—the girl whose boyfriends either die or try to kill her. Oy, Quinn.

3. Joshua Malina (Seth Hammer, Jason, David Rosen)

Joshua Malina in Grey

On Grey’s Anatomy, Malina played the husband of a hypochondriac whose “stomach cancer” was actually a condition caused by taking antibiotics not prescribed to her. On Private Practice, he played the father of a young girl with a prognosis of only six to 12 months to live. Unfortunately, on Scandal Malina’s road doesn’t get any easier as U.S. Attorney General David Rosen. It’s his best gig yet, but David too often gets wrapped up in the less-than-legal dealings of Olivia Pope—keeping him from the happily ever after that always seems to escape his characters.

2. George Newbern (Stan Mercer, Dr. Brian Reynolds, Charlie)

Poor George Newbern never gets to play the good guy. In the world of Grey’s Anatomy, he was Stan Mercer, the broken link in the domino kidney transplant that Dr. Bailey was planning. The random donor completing that chain of seven transplants wasn’t so random after all—it was Stan’s mistress. Yikes. On Private Practice, he played Dr. Brian Reynolds, who agreed with his patient when she decided to withhold any more chemotherapy. Double yikes. And then on Scandal, he plays Charlie—the B613 member who might have killed more people on the show than anyone else. But I’m sure George Newbern is a nice guy in real life. Hopefully?

1. Liza Weil (Allison Clark, Andi, Amanda Tanner, Bonnie Winterbottom)

Liza Weil in HTGAWM, Private Practice, Grey

How to Get Away With Murder should have been called How to Get Away With Casting Liza Weil 4 Times, because she is the understated queen of ShondaLand. She played Allison Clark on Grey’s Anatomy back in season 5—until she died of lung cancer. On Private Practice, she played a woman with a multiple-personality disorder, and on Scandal, she played Amanda Tanner—the young White House staffer who became the Monica Lewinsky case gone wrong. After too much talking, Amanda was killed and thrown in the Potomac. But as of now, Weil is alive (definitely) and well (maybe?) on How to Get Away With Murder as Bonnie Winterbottom, an associate attorney at Annalise Keating’s firm. Here’s hoping that Liza continues to rule ShondaLand for years to come. Long live Bonnie!

Who is your favorite Shonda star? Is there a chance we’ll see even more faces when How to Get Away With Murder gets renewed for a second season (fingers crossed!)? Or should some of these characters just … stay dead? (Never, Paris Geller: Liza Weil for president!)

Catch the whole #TGIT lineup when Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away With Murder return Jan. 29, starting at 8/7C on ABC.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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