That sound you just heard was the hearts of millions of Calzona fans smashing into pieces.
On Thursday's pivotal episode of Grey's Anatomy, Callie (Sara Ramirez) and Arizona (Jessica Capshaw) put forth a valiant effort to save their marriage — and then ultimately realized that maybe they're better off just calling it quits.
To recap: The episode, titled "Bend and Break," spans a little over a month, during which time Callie and Arizona — with the help of a couples therapist — engage in several yelling matches while trying to work through their issues, and eventually decide to do a trial separation. They'll still live in the same house, but for 30 days they have to sleep in separate rooms, can only talk about issues relating to work or Sofia, and can't have sex. (What could go wrong?)
As the separation starts, Arizona is totally into respecting the boundaries that have been set for them, and Callie is less so. Predictably, they slip up — and their therapist makes them start from scratch after they confess to her.
In the meantime, at the hospital, Arizona's having a tough time with Dr. Herman (Geena Davis) while Callie is completely thriving with the veterans project she's spearheading with Owen (Kevin McKidd) and Jackson (Jesse Williams). At the end of their trial separation (and after one more slip-up on Day 29 that they don't tell the therapist about), Arizona realizes how much she loves Callie and needs her in her life. Hooray! But — wait a second. Oh dear. Callie doesn't feel the same way. She's learned how much she can succeed and do well on her own, and she doesn't want to work on fixing their relationship anymore. And every Calzona fan is like:
So, are Callie and Arizona really done? It sure looks that way — at least for now.
"These are two characters that have been together for seven years," Capshaw tells TVGuide.com. "They have a child. Even saying it's over, it's never going to be over between them, because they have made a commitment to each other that goes deeper than anything, which is having a child together. So they'll always be a part of each other. I think that there is going to be a redefining of their relationship, and who knows how that will work itself out? ... But I think the most important thing is that they are both finally on a road that will end in each of them being happy, together or separate."
Read our full Q&A to find out where Callie and Arizona go from here, and whether there's any hope for them to reconcile:
So that's it? Are Callie and Arizona done for good?
Jessica Capshaw: [Showrunner Shonda Rhimes] knows a lot of things, but then I think that it seems like she also enjoys being able to have a little bit of spontaneity and let an idea come to her. And she's famously said that she's 50/50 on Calzona. So we'll see. I know this is a couple that she's very invested in. ... The thing that I also feel like is worth saying about this couple is, seven years is not a failure. Being together for seven years is a long time, and they've done their best, man. They've shown up for each other as best as they possibly could, but they've been through a lot. Car crashes, plane crashes, babies, going off to Africa, infidelity. I mean, it's a lot. It's a lot.
Do you think they should continue to work on things?
Capshaw: I don't know. Every person only brings their perspective to the game. When I think about the laundry list of things that they've gone through together, I think those would be some hefty things to get over. And yet I know couples who have weathered super huge storms and come out stronger. So I don't know. It can go either way, right? But again, I really champion the idea of them being just happy, and going back to some of the joy and excitement and passion that they had earlier on in the series.
They had a couple of slip-ups in this episode, so there's clearly still a connection there. What do you think is the core issue that they can't get past?
Capshaw: I think that someone put them into the washing machine and pressed spin. (Laughs). They just keep going around and around on the same issues. ... And at a certain point I think in a relationship — and certainly even as the actors playing it, because we're human — we'll be like, "We're doing this again?! (Laughs). My complaint is X, Y or Z again?" But I think that's part of the genius in the storytelling, because as a viewer, you're going to have to get so sick of something that you actually are ready for it to become something different and move on.
How did you prepare to shoot this episode?
Capshaw: I went back and I started watching some scenes from Season 6. ... I was watching particularly the story line where it comes up that Arizona doesn't want to have kids. Callie's like, "I want to have kids." And Arizona's like, "I'm not having kids." For some reason, seeing it again really surprised me because that was a facet of her personality and who she was — and being true to who she was, was someone who did not want to have a child. ... But that was sort of the first of many instances where they were asking the other one to pound a square peg into a round hole. And when you have that happening in a relationship, I think the obstacle just ends up becoming greater and greater and greater, if you're not listening to your person and your person's saying something and you're saying, "I want something different." They started off not really listening to each other very well, in terms of answering each other's expectations or doubts or hopes.
Tell us a bit about what Arizona realizes through their trial separation.
Capshaw: Part of the trial separation was Arizona weathering all these storms again, and Callie was the person that she always went to to talk about it, and she can't do that anymore. So I think she realizes that she misses that part. But again, the whole is kind of what ends up getting them in trouble. And then very sadly, when Arizona realizes that she thinks this trial separation has made her see the light and that they should be together, Callie has had a completely different experience, which is that she has felt very free being without Arizona, and felt very alive and smart and proud and robust and all these great things. So, I think that her reflection that being together is actually not good for either one of them is heartbreaking, but true for her in that moment.
It's funny to see Callie and Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) bond over their troubles, but it's also kind of heartwarming to see the interactions between Arizona and Alex (Justin Chambers).
Capshaw: Alex is always kind of her person. It's really funny — Justin and I are good friends outside of the show and when we go to do these scenes, he's such a great actor and he's been playing this part for so long that his reactions and his playing of the character comes very easy to him. And it is very Alex. He's a boy and he's like, "Dude, get over it." Of course, I come to it as Jessica playing Arizona, and then Justin'll be like, "Dude, get over it." I'm like, "Can you please be nicer to me in that scene?"
How would you describe the dynamic between Arizona and Dr. Herman?
Capshaw: I think that it's ultimately a situation where we're not really sure yet what's going on with them. We know that Dr. Herman has this wealth of information and she kind of has the keys to the kingdom, and she can teach Arizona all these things. And again, going back to that Season 6 dilemma of Arizona saying, "I'm not having babies," Arizona's really ambitious. It was such an incredible part of the way that Shonda created the character. She was this incredibly ambitious know-it-all and she's not afraid to say anything to anybody. ... Now is the time where she's again ambitious. She's got her game face on this season, I think. She's in it to win it. She's like, let's do this.
Obviously a lot of fans are feeling pretty devastated right now. How did you feel after the episode wrapped?
Capshaw: I feel very lucky. ... I think that we felt — I can't speak for Sara, but I felt that I was glad that there was a moment where [they dealt with their problems]. I get a lot of tweets and comments where people are like, why aren't they dealing with their problems? Why do they always have problems but they don't deal with them? And we did. We put Band-Aid on top of Band-Aid on top of Band-Aid. And I think this is the ripping of the Band-Aid, and this is what's underneath the Band-Aid. It's not so pretty, but it's going to heal. And again, it just might, when it heals, come back together stronger but redefined in a different way.
What did you think of the episode? Are you heartbroken over Callie and Arizona, or do you think there's still hope for them? Sound off in the comments!
Grey's Anatomy airs Thursdays at 8/7c on ABC.