Why The Good Doctor's Bria Samoné Henderson Loves Grey's Anatomy - Exclusive

Sometimes, there's nothing more satisfying than flopping down on the couch with a cozy blanket and a big, juicy medical drama to get lost in. While it feels wrong to call them fun, the best of them are enormously satisfying, with large casts of interesting, complex characters in literal life-or-death situations. And part of what makes watching them so satisfying is we know it's not happening to us — no matter how badly your day at work may have gone, it's unlikely you spent it agonizing over whether to pull the plug on someone's beloved grandparent while watching your marriage crash and burn. It's comforting to see people — even fictional ones — triumph over (or at least survive) daunting challenges.


Bria Samoné Henderson understood the appeal of medical dramas long before landing her role on "The Good Doctor." In this exclusive interview, she shares how she became hooked on "Grey's Anatomy" — and how it helped her power through one of the loneliest and most difficult periods of her life.

Graduate school was stressful — and Grey's Anatomy was her therapy

When Bria Henderson began her graduate studies in drama at the University of Washington, she found it to be a disorienting and alienating experience — the culture and vibe of Seattle was nothing like her hometown of Atlanta, and navigating this new world was a challenge. "I just remember being depressed because I was just lonely. I just didn't feel like I knew anyone or no one really understood me," she recalled.


So like many of us, she turned to television for therapy. "And so I took to Netflix to move through my depression because when you're in grad school for acting, you do not have time to have a therapist," she recalled. Since she had limited time for TV, she chose her binges strategically. "I chose the shows that had the longest amount of seasons, so I could just get lost in them," she said. "And I ended up really enjoying "Grey's Anatomy" because of how they also just give so much space for the characters and who they are outside of the medicine."

This Grey's Anatomy character inspired her role on The Good Doctor

Once Bria Henderson got hooked on "Grey's Anatomy," one character in particular jumped out at her — Dr. Miranda Bailey, played by Chandra Wilson. For Henderson, watching Wilson portray Bailey was its own master class in acting. "Chandra Wilson is someone I've watched for years," she said. "It's kind of like a thesis moment of watching this Black woman who was just always just so fierce on camera and still is. Miranda Bailey is still a force on 'Grey's Anatomy,' and that's someone you will always remember in that show," she said.


At the time, "Grey's Anatomy" was Henderson's escape from the pressures of school. But little did she know how relevant the memory of Dr. Miranda Bailey and her forceful personality would become in her future professional life. "And then to come into another medical role and play another fierce Black doctor is an honor. It's an honor," she said. "And also aligned with who I am."