Grey's Anatomy may have lost one of its most popular (and handsome!) faces last year, but the series has not lost many viewers as a result.
Ratings for Grey's Anatomy Season 12 are nice and strong, with ABC having recently renewed the drama for the 2016-2017 season.
This may come as a surprise to some folks after the series killed off Patrick Dempsey's beloved character of Derek Shepherd last in Season 11, but Ellen Pompeo isn't floored by the show's ongoing popularity.
"It’s amazing how much you get done without a penis," the actress tells Ellen DeGeneres in the following clip.
Pompeo made similar comments shortly after Dempsey left the series.
She seemed to think it was sexist that critics didn't think the drama could really go on without Derek, although (in our estimation) it was really more a question of viewers feeling cheated.
They had invested so much time in the Derek and Meredith relationship and then Shonda Rhimes simply killed off one half of that couple, due to a real-life beef with the actor who played him.
Is Pompeo dissing Dempsey with the above quote?
Is she saying he got in the way of progress while he was a series regular?
"We miss him dearly, but yeah, the show is doing very well," she says here with a laugh, prior to addressing rumors of Grey's possibly ending:
"No, it’s not the last season.
"I think a lot of people were really upset about his departure, which is super understandable, but I think the change is part of the reason why the show goes on so long. I think people tune in to see what is the show look like now? What is Meredith going to do without Derek?
"I think they get so upset about the change, but change is precisely what everyone always needs to sort of get to the next place."
It's true: people continue to watch Grey's Anatomy online and on television each week.
It airs on Thursday nights at 8/7c, prior to Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder.
Shonda Rhimes has a hand in all of those programs and, at this point, it seems as if ABC will gladly allow them all to air until she no longer wants them to.
In other words: hold on to your gurneys, Grey's Anatomy fans.
This show is not going anywhere any time soon.
Check out snippets from Pompeo's interview with DeGeneres below: