The docs on Grey's Anatomy are no strangers to true love. But they're also no strangers to adultery, betrayal, heartbreak, divorce and the occasional unwanted pregnancy. All of this is what makes Grey's such a great drama, but it’s also what makes Seattle Grace a scary place to fall in love … and an even scarier place to get married! That being said, not all Grey’s weddings have been bad. Believe it or not, romance does still exist in a town where bombs explode and planes crash.

And that very fact will (hopefully) be proven again later this season when Bailey (Chandra Wilson) and Ben tie the knot. So in honor of the upcoming wedding, we thought we’d look back at some of the best and worst Grey’s weddings (weddings, not marriages) and see what each of the memorable ceremonies (or lack thereof) has taught us.

The Best

Meredith and Derek: We’re kicking things off with the obvious. The moment that the show’s core couple tied the knot was just as adorable as it was unique. Actually, both moments. Unlike some people, we loved Derek (Patrick Dempsey) and Meredith’s (Ellen Pompeo) post-it wedding. It just proved that they loved each other so much that they didn’t need a big ceremony for it to be real. And then when the couple finally went to City Hall to make things official for Zola’s adoption, the looks on their ridiculously attractive faces said it all. At the end of the day, it was about being together. And who doesn’t love that?

What we learned: The wedding doesn’t have to be fancy … or even legally binding.

Alex and Izzie: Switching gears completely, here’s an example of a bride who planned an elaborate wedding, even if she didn’t do it intentionally. When Izzie (Katherine Heigl) organized her dream wedding, she did it for Meredith and Derek. But when they all realized just how little time Izzie had left (or so they thought), Bailey (Chandra Wilson) saw an opportunity. And so, in the spur of the moment, Alex (Justin Chambers) semi-proposed by standing in a doorway in a tux, and minutes later, George helped Izzie down the aisle in the dress of her dreams. And no one can forget Alex’s vows … even if he stole them from a valedictorian. Hey, the guy was never good with words. Why do you think his proposal didn’t include any?

What we learned: Nothing’s more romantic than spontaneity.

Cristina and Owen: Yes, it was a small gathering in Meredith’s house. And yes, it was in the aftershock of the hospital shooting. But Cristina (Sandra Oh) and Owen’s (Kevin McKidd) wedding was also intimate, romantic and original. How many brides could have pulled off wearing a red dress? Exactly.

What we learned: Traditional doesn’t necessarily mean romantic.

Callie and Arizona: Ironically, the most “nontraditional” couple of the show had the most traditional wedding ceremony. Callie (Sara Ramirez) and Arizona’s (Jessica Capshaw) trip down the aisle was beautiful and enchanting and sheer perfection. We loved the dresses, the dancing, all of it. It was about time someone at Seattle Grace-Mercy West had a reception!

What we learned: Nontraditional doesn’t necessarily mean non-romantic. And also, the afterparty is not to missed!

The Worst

Teddy and Henry: Don’t get us wrong: We loved Teddy (Kim Raver) and Henry's (Scott Foley) relationship. Loved. But despite how handsome the groom was and how adorable his speech was, we can’t really consider this a wedding. Henry was right. There was no ring, no vows, no photographer and no wedding cake. And like Henry, we were a little disappointed by that. These two got married via a toast … at a bar. And we’re not saying that it didn’t work for their situation, but wouldn’t Henry have looked good in a suit?

What we learned: Steer clear of bars on the big day. 

George and Callie: Two words: Las. Vegas.

What we learned: Stay away from Las. Vegas.

Cristina and Burke: Cristina’s first wedding attempt was so wrong for so many reasons: Her dress was white, her bridesmaids dresses weren’t flattering, her eyebrows were shaved, and her groom (Burke [Isaiah Washington]) was trying to make her into something she wasn’t. Oh, and she was in a church. Luckily, Burke realized all of this just before Cristina walked down the aisle … if she were ever going to. And so despite the beauty of the entire wedding party, this show simply did not go on.

What we learned: It’s never too late to change your mind.

So whether it was the happiest day of these character’s lives, the saddest or just another day at Joe’s Bar, each wedding taught us a little something. Hopefully the next one won’t involve peanut shells, Elvis, or a dress so tight that scissors are needed to cut it off. 

Catch the next new episode of Grey’s Anatomy on Thursday, November 15 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.

Samantha Highfill is a contributing writer to Wetpaint Entertainment. Follow her on Twitter at @samhighfill.

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