It’s not always polite to not speak ill of the dead, but some things just have to be said. Especially if the person who was now resting six feet under was just a giant turd whose only redeeming quality was that he had some damn good hair. This is the case when it comes to Grey’s Anatomy’s Derek Shepherd, played by the once awkward-as-butt looking school boy from the 1980’s Patrick Dempsey. Oh sure, when he made googly eyes at Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) or sniffed her in an elevator, we all said “awwww!”. But if you take away his good-looks, smooth-talking charisma, and that GQ hair, he was just a tall glass of “shut the F up”. Think about it – if the man was short, bald, and had a George Costanza waistline, we wouldn’t give him even a second glance and Meredith would have probably filed a restraining order against him after he first took a whiff of her. Here are 15 times we found ourselves hating on Dr. McDreamy.
15 First And Foremost, He Failed To Tell Meredith He Was Married
Well, here’s the first domino that tipped and caused the thorny avalanche of heartache for Meredith. Okay, so when it first started, it was just a simple one night stand, but that one night stand turned into a full-fledged romance novel complete with corny lines and mid-day romps in the on-call room. We’re going to ignore the fact that he was her damn boss and she was an intern fresh out of medical school (though that should have been one of the things listed) and focus on the fact THAT HE WAS STILL MARRIED. You think it would have been easier to say “Hey, guess what? I’m separated because my trust-fund wife nailed my best friend in our fancy New York townhouse but I’ll get a divorce because I love you” to Meredith? She would’ve said “Okay, cool”, b!+*hed to Cristina Yang (Sandra Oh) a little about it and WOULDN’T have been shocked when Addison (Kate Walsh) showed up all sultry and red-haired in the lobby of Seattle Grace Hospital and blindsided the balls out of Mer and Der.
14 Why Does He Hate His Entire Family So Much?
Shepherd was raised with a plethora of women: a handful of sisters and his single former Navy nurse mother. After his father was killed during a robbery when Derek was very young, he took over as the caregiver father-figure in the lives of his four sisters. But this doesn’t explain why he’s such a pile to them when they come to visit? Or when one wants to mentor under him? I mean seriously, it’s like McDreamy majored in McDouchery 101 in med school. He seemed rather okay when his mother (Tyne Daly) came to visit and took an interest in Meredith in the episode “Sympathy for the Devil” (fifth season), but when his sisters showed up, it was a different story. Given, one of them was cold as hell to Meredith (Nancy, played by Embeth Davidtz) and treated her like dirt, but when the actual nice ones turned up, he was a jackwad. Especially with Amelia (Caterina Scorsone) who he kept reminding that she was a former junkie and that she couldn’t be trusted. All Amelia wanted was to learn from the brother she looked up to since she too was a neurosurgeon. Oh, but no, there was only room for ONE genius Shepherd who inherited the surgical hands of God in that family! And up until his death, he never let Amelia forget it.
13 He Went BACK To Addison Even Though He Said He Hated Her
When Addison showed back up in town, you wanted to hate her guts, but for the life of you, you couldn’t. Unless of course you were married to her. Derek was livid when she showed up (to save a baby's life, nonetheless) and ruined everything with Meredith by, you know, being completely honest about the marriage. Something McDummy should have been doing within a day of chasing after Meredith. He was nasty to his wife every time he turned a corner. He continued to punish her for being unfaithful to him in the worst ways possible and THEN decided that “perhaps we should give our marriage another go” even though he clearly didn’t love her anymore. So he strung her along for another few months before cheating on her with Meredith. In hindsight, he strung both women along because he couldn’t make up his brilliant neurosurgeon mind. Dick move, Derek. Dick. Move.
12 'Member McVet? Derek Made Meredith Dump Him And Then Refused To Get Back With Her When She Did
Ah, McVet. The man who comforted Meredith when she was at her most susceptible (she found out that her beloved dog Doc was dying). Dr. Finn Dandridge (Chris O’Donnell) was quite literally the nicest, HOTTEST, guy who had ever fallen for Meredith and who wasn’t an asshat. She had just started dating him (and, of course, the married Derek wigged out and accused Mer of being promiscuous for trying to move on from him) when she messed up and nailed McDreamy in the hospital. Of course, Addison found out and she and Derek finally parted, which led to Meredith dating BOTH Shepherd and the vet. She ended up choosing Derek and when she did, he basically said “nah, I’m good.” Given, this was because Derek had realized what an upstanding man Finn was and figured that he would be better for Mer in the long run. But did he explain that to her? Hell no, he didn’t.
11 He Made All The Other Surgeons Build His Stupid Deck
Hi, my name’s Derek Shepherd and I live in a trailer on land I literally have no idea what to do with until I conform to society and settle down with someone who is not my wife so I can find a use for the dumb land! So when he finally decided to put that Seattle cliff side view to good use, he got all the other dude surgeons to help him build his freaking deck. He had started to build it because he was all huffy about something (not unusual for him) so he took his hammer and nails and started working on it himself. Because what can go wrong when a man’s whose hands are literally worth $2 million when he tries to build a deck all by himself without a contractor? He then had a “dude’s night” in which he made all the other surgeons help build his damn deck. Surgeons. Using hammers and sharp nails. I think the thing even came out crooked in the end too.
10 That Time He Used Lexie To Make Meredith Jealous
This was definitely one of the bigger “WTF” moments in the series, mainly because everyone just simply glanced over it. Like he did with Meredith, Derek ended up meeting Lexie Grey (Chyler Leigh) at the bar across the street (Joe’s) before she started work as an intern at Seattle Grace. She hit on him. He let her. He didn’t know that she was Meredith’s sister at the time, but it was still creepy when the audience found out. What was even worse was the fact that he literally TOLD Meredith about her in order to make her jealous. Meredith had pushed Derek away because of her own mental issues, but did he understand that? Nope. So he told her about “the girl in the bar” who paid him extra affectionate attention, which forced Meredith to see the little sister she never knew in a less than desirable light. And all poor Lexie wanted was to be loved by her older half-sister. Given, their relationship eventually becomes strong, but thanks to Derek, it was uncomfortable as hell in the beginning.
9 Poor Rose
Speaking of poor women used by Derek, can we talk about surgical scrub nurse Rose (Lauren Stamile) for a second? This was a bright, beautiful, witty woman who fell hard for Derek when he was trying to get over Meredith (because he was fed up with her dark, twisty mental issues). They started dating while Derek and Meredith were in the middle of their complex clinical trial revolving around treating patients with inoperable malignant gliomas (Derek pretty much high-jacked Meredith’s idea and referred to it as “The Shepherd Method”, the ego maniac). When every patient in the trial started dying, Derek turned to Rose for comfort, and she helped him through. But what happened when the trial actually worked and saved a patient’s life? Derek of course ran back to Meredith and proposed to her. Rose was left in the dark. Not only that, but she had to leave her own surgical wing because she was so damaged by Derek (she went to pediatrics).
8 He Was A Really Crappy Chief of Surgery
So Chief Richard Webber (James Pickens Jr.) was a drunk. Big whoop. He was a damn great chief of surgery for a long while before a traumatic event made him start a tab back up at Joe’s. Meredith knew and was keeping the good doctor in check since he was the father figure she never had. But did Derek care? Nope. Of course Richard needed help, but all Derek wanted to do when he found out was run straight to the board and throw Richard under the bus. Meredith managed to hold him off for a bit, but in the end Derek won out and ended up replacing Webber as chief of surgery. And of course, he turned out to be a crapshoot of a chief. Nothing like the steady Webber. Hell, he even made decisions all cold-like which led to the hospital being shot up by a grieving widower. Perhaps if he wasn’t so callous, a bunch of doctors, nurses, and security guards wouldn’t have died, Meredith wouldn’t have miscarried their baby, and he wouldn’t have gotten freaking shot.
7 Every Time He Snapped At Meredith's Friends
He treated Mer’s close friends one way while at her house, then another way while they were at the hospital. For example, while he had gotten used to Cristina invading their lives and even their bed, he still would be noticeably irritated with some of her other friends/roommates like George (T.R. Knight), Izzy (Katherine Heigl), and Alex (Justin Chambers). At one point, when he and Meredith finally got serious (one of 32,974,297,398 times) he told her that they had to move out of Meredith’s house. Um, pardon? He even went behind Mer’s back and asked for Cristina’s opinion on it. He had NO RIGHT to straight up say “Okay, this is how it’s going to work now” and tell Meredith that her three best friends – who had NO WHERE else to move to during this hellish time that was their intern year – had to evacuate HER house. Way to be misogynistic.
6 He Got All PMS-y When Meredith Saved Richard's Wife
First of all, it was MEREDITH’S idea to begin the Alzheimer’s trial in the first place, yet Derek “decided” to include her in it. So when Meredith went above and beyond to get Adele Webber (Loretta Devine), Richard’s wife, into the trial, Derek should have kept his mouth shut. When she was accepted, Meredith finds out that Adele is set to get the placebo instead of the actual medicine that could help her save her life (doctors and patients don’t know ahead of time who gets the placebo and who the actual drug since it’s confidential), she switches it out for the real drug. When Alex throws her under the bus in order to be favored as chief resident, Derek flips out on Mer. While, yes, she did compromise the entire clinical trial itself, he should have understood that she did it for Richard (who, by the way, never asked her to do so), whom she loved and respected like a father. He could have toned the raging dillhole siren down to foghorn level at least for a moment in order to see it from her side. After these events, Derek claimed that he could no longer trust her, putting his own ambitions ahead of Meredith’s heart.
5 Every Single Stinking Time He Lost His Cool, Which Was A Lot
I can’t even count on my fingers, toes, the toes of my friends, family, and pets how many times this mouth breather lost his cool with everyone around him. Given, when he punched out Mark Sloane (Eric Dane) it was for a justified reason (McSteamy slept with Addison back when she and Derek were married). But every single OTHER time he snapped at Mer, Richard, Cristina, and even SCARY DR. BAILEY (Chandra Wilson), you really just wanted your fist to meet his perfect nose. Meredith was usually the victim of his hot temper, and, why yes, a great deal had happened in his life which would result in rage, it still is not okay to scream at the people you supposedly love. So. Damn. Much. However, I am happy that Bailey rarely ever took McDreamy’s sharp tones lying down and was able to dish it right back to him.
4 Wife And Kids? Pffft, Let's Go To D.C.!
After he makes a promise to Meredith to step back and let her focus on her own work, he gets a call from the President of the Untied States, who offered him a job. Okay, yes, I can hear you now “BUT IT’S THE JOB OF A LIFE TIME!”. I get that, but no. It was Meredith’s time to shine and he decided that his ambitions and needs would come first in this scenario (as they had in every other scenario). This was a bullcrap move. He had two children with Meredith at this time and to make the decision (without even consulting her at one point) was the biggest jerk move of his life. Hell, the man is PART OWNER OF A HOSPITAL. At this point, nearly all of Meredith’s close friends were moving on to bigger and better things, which made Meredith think that perhaps it was time to move on too and go across the country with her husband. In the end she decided against it, which resulted in Derek and her moving further apart from each other emotionally.
3 HE KISSED HIS DAMN ASSISTANT
Cherry on top of the mud cake that is Derek Shepherd right here. Now in D.C., while he continued to grow further and further away from his wife, he up and made out with his g**damn assistant. While he was working in D.C., Meredith called him up on his cell phone and a woman answered. When he returned back to Seattle, he told Mer that he left his phone back at his lab while he was on his way to the airport, which is why the woman answered. He and Meredith fight about his weak and oddly convenient, excuse, and Mer storms off to work. Once she’s out the door, Derek has a flashback of him and his resident Renee (Scottie Thompson), who is clearly smitten with the doctor. Turns out that Renee and Derek have some pretty apparent chemistry with one another and they ended up kissing in their lab. He tries to give a heartfelt speech to Meredith. “I thought D.C. was everything, and I was wrong,” he says. “You. You, you’re everything. I love you and I’m not gonna stop loving you. Meredith, I can’t live without you.” Meredith folds and says that while she CAN live without him, she doesn’t want to.
2 He Made Us Sympathize With Him When He Saved All Those People Before He...
While on his way to the airport to head back to D.C. to resign from his post, Derek witnesses a car crash and he immediately jumps out to save all the people involved. He rescues a young girl, who ends up helping aid the other victims involved in the crash . Showrunners kept giving fans panic attacks during the entire episode due to Shepherd and the people he’s attempting to save coming so close to death numerous times. Seeing him with these car crash victims helped us remember WHY we put up with his jerkness for so many years. After returning to his car, Derek makes the mistake of stopping in the middle of the road in order to answer his stupid cell phone (Meredith was desperately trying to reach him for almost the entire day), and is nailed by a semi-truck. He’s transported to a hospital that is NOT Seattle Grace.
1 ... Up and Died
Watching Meredith arrive at the hospital with her two children so she can say goodbye to her husband and pull the plug on his life was the most devastating episode of the entire series. Fans suddenly forget how big of a douche Derek has been for a great deal of the show, and just focused on the heartache Meredith is going through. Regardless of his issues, he still managed to be one of the beating hearts of the show, so naturally I was miffed when he died. Not just that he died, but the WAY he died – a neurosurgeon going brain dead? Damn, that’s rough. Despite everything listed here, the way the romance of Derek Shepherd and Meredith Grey ended was a heartbreaker. Though, I couldn’t help but notice that neither Cristina OR his ex-wife Addison showed up to his funeral. Could it be because they couldn’t forgive his douchey-ness? I like to think so.