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HomeNewsGrey's Anatomy: 10 Hidden Details About Richard Webber That Everyone Missed

Grey’s Anatomy: 10 Hidden Details About Richard Webber That Everyone Missed

The grand ol’ dad of Grey’s Anatomy, Richard Webber, has been around since the show started its long run, way back in 2005. Like the interns and residents at Seattle Grace/Grey Sloan Memorial, Webber too has gone through his fair share of ups and downs.

Dr. Webber started out as rather peripheral to the core cast that consisted of Meredith Grey and her gang of friends, yet he soon became integral to the storylines over the years, and in Meredith’s life, being the closest thing to a father figure she had ever really known. Let us look at a few details about Dr. Webber that might have escaped notice.

Richard Faced Racism In His Early Years

During his early years when Richard was an intern in Seattle Grace, he had been subjected to racial discrimination.

In season 6, episode 15, ‘The Time Warp’, where three of Seattle Grace’s doctors—Callie Torres, Miranda Bailey, and Richard Webber—are asked to give lectures and presentations on unique cases from their own past, Richard narrates how he along with a young Ellis Grey had been thrown together a lot during their surgical internship in 1982, presumably because he was black and Ellis a woman. His supervisor had even reminded him that a decade ago, that is in the early 1970s, Richard would not have been accepted as part of the surgical program, again apparently because of his skin color.

Richard Was Jealous Of Ellis Grey

Although Richard had an affair with Ellis Grey and was also apparently deeply in love with her, yet he was not above feeling insecure in their relationship.

When Ellis won her first Harper Avery, she and Richard were just planning to finally leave their respective spouses so that they could be together. However, the news of Ellis being awarded the most prestigious award available to doctors and surgeons caused Richard a twinge of jealousy and this was one of the reasons he never fulfilled his promise to her and never left his wife, Adele. Richard confessed that he did not want to feel jealous of his partner’s achievements all his life which is why he didn’t marry Ellis.

Richard Was The Weak Husband In An Alternate Reality

Alternate realities are a favorite with television shows as they allow the actors to step out of their routine characters and do something different.

In the alternate universe episode in Grey’s Anatomy, Ellis Grey was shown to be alive and well. She was also the Chief of Surgery at Seattle Grace, while her husband was a surgeon at the same hospital. True to her real character, Ellis was a domineering, albeit brilliant woman, and Richard found himself pretty much cast to the background, as something of a peacemaker between his wife and his stepdaughter. He is still a respected senior surgeon but the limelight is clearly on Ellis.

It Was Ellis Who Got Richard Drinking

In the episode, ‘The Time Warp’, which takes the audience back to the younger days of Ellis Grey and Richard Webber, the latter is shown ordering soda pop at the bar opposite the hospital which fans would remember as Joe’s bar, although of course during Richard and Ellis’ internship, Joe was not in the picture.

It was Ellis who was shown to have introduced Richard to drinking vodka like a grown-up. Unfortunately, as their relationship took a sour turn and Richard decided not to leave his wife, he took to drinking and had soon become an addict, but it was because of Ellis that he had switched from club soda to vodka in the first place.

Richard Might Have Pulled Some Strings For Meredith

In season 16’s episode 8, the show gave the audience a heartwarming courtroom drama where Meredith fought to keep her medical license after having committed insurance fraud to save a patient.

The proceedings revealed that Meredith had not been matched to Seattle Grace’s internship program when she had applied. It was Richard Webber who had written her a recommendation after she did not make it to the first list, following which she joined the hospital as a surgical intern. It’s possible that Richard did not want Ellis’s daughter to be around him all the time at first but then realized that she deserved to be there after all.

Richard Lost A Baby

During the early years of the series, Richard had a rather rocky relationship with his wife Adele. The latter, of course, knew of his relationship with Ellis, but she also refused to put up with Richard when he never came home on time and spent more time in the hospital than he did with her. The two decided on separation at the time.

However, as fate would have it, Adele got pregnant while they were separated, but soon suffered a miscarriage, in all likelihood because it was a rather late pregnancy. The episode ‘Testing 1-2-3’ created some drama around her pregnancy letting the audience believe that the father of the baby was some other man, but later Adele herself revealed to Richard that the baby had been his all along.

Richard Had Brain Surgery

Towards the end of season 1, it was discovered that Richard had developed a brain tumor that was pressing against his optic nerves thus compromising his vision.

Richard agreed to have Derek operate on him although he didn’t even inform his wife about the surgery. McDreamy’s magic hands got him through the surgery and he recovered in time to regain his strength and faculties.

Richard Had Quite The Mischievous Streak

The former Chief of Surgery has a bit of a mischievous streak to him. In season 9, Richard seemingly takes Alex to task when the latter messes with Jo’s then-boyfriend, Jason. However, although he initially pretends to be enraged with Alex for his behavior with a fellow doctor, it turns out he had actually had something else on mind.

What Richard really wanted was to polish Alex’s tricks and the two of them ended up pulling Jason’s leg all over again by passing on to him a fake rumor about all the doctors at the hospital having to provide a urine sample to get a workup. Jason did realize that he was being fooled but that did not keep Alex and Richard from getting a good laugh.

Richard’s Mom Was A Cellist

Richard was the oldest of three children and his mom, Gail, had to struggle to run the family. She was a cellist who would practice for hours every day; she also used to teach the cello to the kids around the neighborhood.

Unfortunately, Gail died from cancer when Richard was only ten years old. It is possible that Richard became a doctor when he grew up because at the time of his mother’s illness, he was too young and unable to help her in any way.

Richard Chose Meredith As Medical Power Of Attorney

From having brain surgery to getting electrocuted to getting cobalt poisoning, Richard has been through a lot on the show.

When Dr. Webber got electrocuted after a major storm, he ended up in the hospital bed for quite some time. Unlike poor Heather, the surgical intern who died from her electrocution, Richard at least survived the ordeal. But he needed serious medical attention and at this time Meredith found out that she had been given Richard’s medical power of attorney. It was Meredith who had to make informed decisions about what was best for Richard while he was struggling to survive. He considered her strong enough to be able to make decisions without getting too attached.

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