It Puts The Lesbian In The Basket

So much for that lesbian love affair on Grey’s Anatomy.

Callie and Erica’s burgeoning romance on “Grey’s Anatomy” is coming to an abrupt end, and so is Brooke Smith’s role as Dr. Erica Hahn. Smith’s final appearance as Dr. Callie Torres’ flame comes in this Thursday’s episode of ABC’s medical drama, the network said Monday.

The move was a creative decision and unrelated to the sexual orientation of Smith’s character, said series creator and executive producer Shonda Rhimes. “Brooke Smith was obviously not fired for playing a lesbian. Clearly it’s not an issue, as we have a lesbian character on the show – Calliope Torres,” Rhimes said in a statement Monday.

Sara Ramirez, who plays Callie, is an “incredible” actress and the goal is “to play up her magic,” Rhimes said. “Unfortunately, we did not find that the magic and chemistry with Brooke’s character would sustain in the long run.” The breakup’s effect on Callie will be reflected in upcoming episodes, Rhimes said. “I believe it belittles the relationship to simply replace Erica with `another lesbian,'” Rhimes said, noting that Dr. Cristina Yang (Sandra Oh) mourned the departure of Dr. Preston Burke (former cast member Isaiah Washington) for a full season.

Despite what the show’s PR flacks are saying, word is that the network WAS uncomfortable with a steamy primetime lesbian romance.