It's been a couple of weeks, but some of us are still trying to recover from the DeLuca (Giacomo Gianniotti) and Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) elevator scene from the Grey's Anatomy winter premiere. Their intimate exchange while waiting for the generators to come back on during a windstorm kicked Meredith's romantic life into high gear and sent the audience's thirst to a new level.
"The fan response has been really great so far. They are in a place where they can accept that Meredith is in a place where she can find love and not just a fling or hook-up, but something real again," Gianniotti told TV Guide at the Television Critics Association winter press tour on Tuesday. "We are having a good time telling this story."
DeLuca is only one side of Meredith's current love triangle though, with Link (Chris Carmack) also taking some of her attention. Gianniotti isn't too concerned about other men, and he confirms that DeLuca isn't sweating the competition either.
"I think DeLuca likes to think he has it in the bag already and I'll just stick with that answer...He's Italian and he's romantic. Who doesn't love a romantic man?," the actor mused. "[DeLuca] is just trying to focus on his path. If someone gets in his way, I'm sure [DeLuca] will find a way to out maneuver him. That [scene] was some really good time to spend and I think he made a great stride ahead of Link in that elevator. He was vulnerable and able to open up about his childhood, the mental illness of his father. I think whether you're a man or a woman or anywhere in between, to be with someone who is okay being vulnerable and talks about their emotions is attractive. I hope that she saw that as well."
DeLuca is also willing to go the extra mile because he knows Meredith is a once-in-a-lifetime catch. "Her power, her intelligence, her independence and how good she is at a job and how respected she is is extremely sexy to him. There's a love in there for him that he sees," Gianniotti explained.
The two will start to get closer in upcoming episodes as we learn even more about DeLuca's backstory and what lead him to medicine.
"I think we are [going to learn more about his family]. The next couple of episodes we'll be seeing more of DeLuca, his sister and their past," he said. "Hopefully it will create some more common ground between him and Meredith."
But can we expect any more elevator-caliber scenes from these lovebirds? Gianniotti couldn't give away any specifics, but he did make us this promise: "Things are definitely going to heat up."
Bring it on.
Grey's Anatomy airs Thursdays at 8/7c on ABC.