It's the moment we've been waiting for: the Grey's Anatomy residents are taking their medical boards this Thursday, and we'll finally get to see how each of the docs handled it. By the looks of the sneak peek below, Jackson (Jesse Williams) is just as nerve-wracked as the rest of them. Why? Well, he did just sleep with his best friend, and then learn that his mentor and his mother hooked up. TVGuide.com turned to Williams to get the scoop on the medical boards, the future for April (Sarah Drew) and Jackson — and Jesus, apparently — and how Jackson will handle a possible Slexie reunion.
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How will the Seattle Grace residents handle the boards, especially Jackson?
Jesse Williams: It gets pretty entertaining because he was stressed about it — everybody is really stressed about it — but he is uniquely stressed in that this is his family legacy, and he's frustrated not to just pass the boards, but he's got to get the highest damn mark. He's angry. He's going to make some calls, his grandfather is going to be making calls, and his mom is going to be making calls. Everybody wants to make sure about the outcome. The pressure is never going to stop for him.
And on top of that you have the distraction of his mom being there. Catherine Avery (Debbie Allen) does not show up quietly. She's usually there and ruins something for him. He's spent his whole life getting ready for this weekend to pass this test and that's when she shows up and has sex with the Chief (James Pickens Jr.)? Really?! I don't think he'll ever forgive her for this, for putting him in a position like that because it really is distracting for him. It's not like it's just par for the course. It's just a major, major distraction.
How will one of the residents failing the boards end up affecting the rest of the group?
Williams: It's going to affect them all a lot. I think it's scary. It's a reality check, and it's also something that could happen to anybody. Never mind that there's personal connections to people, it certainly matters because it cannot go unnoticed.
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Turning to April and Jackson, she revealed that she regrets her actions because now Jesus hates her. How will this affect what's going on between them?
Williams: He's going to deal with, "Wow, that's amazing. I did not see that coming. I was worried about you and your virginity. I didn't think there was a whole other being in the picture — which was Jesus — and you are keeping yourself for him. And second of all, we are best friends. How the hell did I not know that? Why didn't you tell me that? I thought we shared each other's secrets? I thought we counted on each other? Why did you feel that you couldn't tell people? Isn't that difficult to be a doctor of science and medicine and hold such strong beliefs?"
Jackson, first and foremost, is her friend and sometimes he's her protector. That's one thing that makes it really unique and interesting about the beginning of this relationship, really having formed a platonic bond first. But then there's also how this plays out if we are still going to be friends. What if we go even further and become a romantic thing? Where are my religious beliefs? Does that matter? Are they in conflict with yours? There are many ways that this can work beautifully, and I think that we will also see many ways that this can be doomed. That's just realistic.
Because she loves Jesus, but she already gave herself away to you, does that mean they have to get married now?
Williams: That's interesting. Part of her wants to hide and pretend that this didn't happen, but they want to be around each other. Whether they like it or not, they are each other's go-to person. What happens if they can't do that? What's more important for them: to protect the friendship, the romance, the intimacy, or them being independent people? On top of that, they've got to get new jobs and try to become real doctors and see if they can pass their boards. They have to get out of this weekend, never mind this week or this month.
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With the possibility that Lexie (Chyler Leigh) and Mark (Eric Dane) could rekindle, how will Jackson feel about that? Or is he too busy worrying about the April stuff?
Williams: He cares about Mark, he like's their relationship. He cares about Lexie. He put himself out there, and he got burned. It doesn't seem like he's trying to resent her for that, but he was right, she lied to him about still having feelings for Mark. It played itself right out in front of him. As long as he's buddies with Mark, there's going to be Lexie around. So he's trying to handle it maturely, trying not to take it out on Mark, trying not to take it out on her, and trying to move on with his life. But when you get burned maybe that had something to do with why he's not running away right away from being around April. Because at least he knows that he can trust her, and that she will protect him.
Is there ever a point where after being burned by Lexie and now the awkwardness with April, that Jackson will decide that he really needs to get away from Seattle Grace?
Williams: It could be. He tried to avoid having a girlfriend for a long time. He was focused on his work and trying to get accustomed to this crazy hospital with the shooter and everything. This could be the straw that's just like, "I have really bad luck with women. I've got to pick a normal life or being a doctor because I have trouble juggling both." Who knows? I think that Jackson can handle it, so we will see.
Which resident do you think failed the medical boards? And should April and Jackson actually get together? Check out this sneak peek of Thursday's episode (9/8c on ABC), then hit the comments with your thoughts.