ER Fightmaster is part of Grey’s Anatomy as the first non-binary doctor

ABC’s famous medical drama Grey’s Anatomy officially brings in its first non-binary doctor. Exclusively with Variety, ABC announced that Emergency Combat Master would join the cast as a recurring character named Dr Kai Bartley. Fightmaster and their character identify as non-binary. They have already appeared in the second and third episodes of season 18, which premiered on September 30, 2021.

Dr Bartley arrived on the series as part of a Minnesota-based research team seeking to join lead character Meredith Gray, played by Ellen pompeo, on the road to recovery from Parkinson’s disease. Meredith brings her colleague Doctor Amelia Shepard (Catherine scorsone) on the team, who quickly develop an attachment to Kai. ABC’s character description for Kai says:


They are dedicated to their craft and extremely talented at what they do. Confident as hell and able to make the most detailed and mundane science look both exciting and cool at the same time, Kai and Amelia bond around their mutual love for medicine and the brain.

Whether the attachment turns out to be romantic or platonic remains to be seen, although fans are hoping for it. A commentator wrote “I’m pretty sure Amelia is going to leave Link and be with them by the end of Season 18. Dr. Kai Bartley is so cool!” Fightmaster’s next appearance as Kai will be on November 11, after Grey’s Anatomy is coming back from his two week break. The character will be featured in a few episodes leading up to the midseason finale in December. Fightmaster’s most recent work includes a recurring role in Hulu Seasons 2 and 3 Acute as Em, a non-binary love interest in the main character Fran.

Image via ABC

RELATED: Kate Walsh Returns to ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ For Season 18Although Kai Bartley is the first non-binary character in the series, Grey’s Anatomy hasn’t shied away from featuring LGBTQ + actors and characters before. Sara ramirez, a non-binary performer, played Dr. Callie Torres, a bisexual surgeon, for eleven seasons, becoming the longest-serving LGBTQ + character in television history. In addition, the trans actor Alex Blue Davis played Surgical Resident Casey Parker in Seasons 14-16.

Although Fightmaster is only a recurring player, fans have already expressed their love and admiration for the character and the performer. Only time will tell what relationships form between the doctors at Gray Sloan Memorial Hospital. Grey’s Anatomy returns Thursday, November 11 at 9 p.m. ET / PT on ABC.

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