9:00pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Grey's Anatomy': Patrick Dempsey's 10 Best McDreamy Moments
From Post-it note marriages to elevator romps, Patrick Dempsey's Derek "McDreamy" Shepherd was an integral part of ABC's Grey's Anatomy — and one fans will never forget.
After an 11-year run as one-half of one of TV's most beloved onscreen pairings, Dempsey's character was shockingly killed off on Thursday's episode of the Shonda Rhimes medical drama. Dempsey's departure — he still had another year left on his contract — has created a gaping hole in the hearts of die-hard 'shippers around the globe.
For viewers who followed Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) and Derek's twisty roller-coaster romance — from their first hook-up in the pilot through two children, a fatal plane crash that ultimately claimed the lives of her half-sister and his best friend and, more recently, questions about his fidelity during his time in D.C. — The Hollywood Reporter takes a look at some of Dempsey's best work on the series.
See more 'Grey's Anatomy's' Famous Departures
1. Love at First One-Night Stand
The one-night stand that started it all, the series kicks off with the awkward morning-after conversation — completely with a shirtless McDreamy and his strikingly smile.
2. "Pick Me, Choose Me, Love Me"
Mer puts her feelings on the line with one of the show's most moving (and frequently quoted) speeches when she professes her love for Derek and encourages him to "pick me, choose me, love me" over his cheating wife, Addison (Kate Walsh). Pompeo has never been better and Dempsey doesn't need to say a word to convey just how Derek feels.
3. The McMansion's Candlelit Origins
Meredith makes a grand romantic gesture, outlining the structure of what would become the so-called McMansion and subsequently freaks when Derek is late. His best way to talk her in off the ledge? The bottle of champagne she was looking for — and again, no words at all, just coming in for an equally grandiose smooch.
4. Love in an Elevator
Complete with scans from their important surgeries together — with many also doubling to mark important milestones in their relationship — Derek decorates Grey's Anatomy's famed elevator in a grand gesture as he proposes to Meredith. "You say you're all dark and twisty, it's not a flaw; it's a strength. It makes you who you are. I'm not going to get down on one knee; I'm not going to ask a question. I love you, Meredith Grey. And I want to spend the rest of my life with you."
5. Who Needs City Hall?!
One of the best parts of Meredith and Derek's relationship was their outright honesty with one another and their ability to compromise. Perhaps the biggest sign of both came with their wedding "ceremony." When their insane schedules got in the way of going to city hall for an official union, the duo found a way to seal the deal and attend to their busy careers with three words that have become synonymous with Grey's Anatomy: Post-it Note Wedding. The framed Post-it hangs over their bed in the McMansion. "I will remind you who I am every day." Swoon.
6. Derek to the Rescue
After Meredith falls into the water and drowns trying to help a little girl following a ferryboat accident, Derek rescues her from the water — and a near certain death.
7. Derek Gets Shot
With Meredith and Cristina looking on, Grey's Anatomy's most pissed-off patient looks for revenge on the doc whom he blames for his wife's death. It brings up Derek's memories of watching his father be shot and killed as he pleads for his life with reason and compassion — and fear — in his eyes.
8. Derek Becomes a McDaddy
After trying unsuccessfully to start a family, Derek surprises Meredith when he pitches adopting baby Zola — and later, learns that Meredith is pregnant with baby Bailey.
9. The Prom — and an Exam to Remember
At the prom for Webber's sick niece, a jealous Derek has it out with Meredith, who is trying to move on with vet Finn (Chris O'Donnell). "Stop looking at me!" Meredith demands of the married man who just moments before was making eyes at her while dancing with Addison. "I can't breathe with you looking at me like that so just stop!" Then moments later a frustrated Derek gives in to his feelings and plants one of the show's most passionate kisses on Meredith in an exam room scene for the ages. Sorry, Finn!
10. Meredith and Derek's Last Romp
Derek expresses his love for Meredith with a nod to their past — and a look toward their future — "I want more. Let's have more," he tells her before what would be his last time leaving the McMansion. Our biggest burning question from this now-heartbreaking scene: Is Meredith pregnant?
What were your favorite Derek scenes? Sound off in the comments below. Will you miss Dempsey on Grey's? Grey's Anatomy airs Thursdays at 8 p.m. on ABC.