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'Chicago Fire' recap: Dealing with demons

Season 3 | Episode 12 | “Ambush Predator” | Aired Jan 13, 2015

If there’s one lesson to glean from Chicago Fire, it’s probably that really good-looking people can have some pretty dark and complicated demons. I guess the lesson could also be that firefighters and paramedics are real heroes and they put their lives on the line for us every day and maybe we should be more appreciative because all we really give them in return is more trouble. I guess. I mean, there’s lots to glean. Gleaning is hard.

But it’s that first lesson that “Ambush Predator” explores. Several members of Firehouse 51 are battling some pretty dark demons, each with varying degrees of success.

Severide, Dawson, and their pesky old friend, grief: At one point in the hour, Dawson tells a superior that she and Severide would “walk through hell” to find out the truth about Shay’s death. To be honest, it’s what they’ve been doing since the moment they lost her, walking through hell. It seemed as though they both were finally, maybe, moving forward (baby steps!)—and then they found that storage unit.

Last week’s discovery of a storage unit full of a master arsonist’s tools and pictures of Shay forces Severide and Dawson to reopen old wounds as they attempt to get to the bottom of what happened to their friend. Was Shay murdered? And if so, by whom?

While Chicago P.D.‘s Atwater (LaRoyce Hawkins) and his biceps look into the owner of the unit (it’s a dead end), the two firefighters return to the warehouse where Shay died (a slow clap for the brilliance of Kinney and Raymund in this scene, please) to find something, anything, that will confirm their hunch that Shay’s death wasn’t an accident. Their first clue? The burn patterns on the wall don’t match up with where Severide believed the point of origin was.

The two use this to persuade the higher-ups to look into the case. Thankfully, they’re dealing with a very empathetic superior who, knowing what it’s like to lose someone on the job, does all she can to get them the case files. These files note that the investigators found bits of shredded newspaper. Severide believes these could be trailers (used to spread the fire without it looking suspicious), and we’re all learning a LOT of fire lingo this season.

Dawson and Severide need proof, so they head back to the warehouse. There they find the remnants of a makeshift fuse, and finally they’re sure: This was a case of arson: Shay was murdered.

Matt Casey (Jesse Spencer) responds to a call on NBC

Matt’s case of the guilties: Casey takes the lead on a car accident call, only to discover that one of the victims is Chaplain Orlovsky (Gordon Clapp), and he’ll bleed out if they don’t move quickly. There’s one snag: If they don’t get the other driver out of her car first, she could be paralyzed. Casey is forced to make a tough call and has the team get the woman safely out of her car before working on the chaplain—a decision that could ultimately cost Orlovsky his life.

Back at the firehouse, Casey is wracked with guilt even as multiple people assure him they would have made the same decision. But ol’ sad eyes can’t be consoled and heads over to the chaplain’s house to see if he can track down a next of kin. Here Casey learns that the chaplain is very, very alone, has an extremely tactless landlord, and that his walls could use a fresh coat of paint

When the chaplain regains consciousness, because, well, duh, Casey and Herrmann hatch a plan to have Herrmann’s peewee hockey team (see below) paint the chaplain’s house. At the hospital, Chaplain Orlovsky basically tells Matt he’s a miracle and it’s all very heartwarming. Sad eyes is sad eyes no more!

Peter Mills faces down PTSD: Everyone is rightly concerned that the paramedics might have some lingering emotional effects after their recent kidnapping, but Mills blows it off. Ambo 61 responds to a domestic call, but the victim, who obviously has been slapped around by her husband, refuses treatment. Mills and Brett know there is something else going on, but they aren’t able to get the woman to talk.

Later at the hospital, the same woman is rushed past Mills, looking much worse than before. Mills tells Brett that he left an oxygen tank at the domestic call and knocks on the door, looking for the husband. When he sees an opening, Mills busts in and clocks the husband repeatedly, threatening to kill him if the guy ever touches his wife again. So, yeah, I’d say Mills is dealing with some lingering effects from his kidnapping.

Luckily, Brett doesn’t find this aggressively rugged, albeit violent, version of Peter Mills as appealing as I do (sorry, not sorry), and isn’t going to let him off the hook so easily.

From the Firehouse 51 bulletin board:

  • As if this episode wasn’t dark enough, they had to go and give Grandpa Boden stage-four cancer. Watching our fearless leader Boden so vulnerable tugs at my heartstrings, and this is only the beginning!
  • Is Christopher Herrmann the next Gordon Bombay? After his two-year suspension is lifted, Herrmann (along with Otis and Cruz) is coaching peewee hockey again. He gives his team a rousing pep talk in which he reminds them that ducks fly together and that they should take the fall, act hurt, and get indignant. I’m paraphrasing.
  • We learn that Cruz is enthusiastic in, um, all aspects of his relationship with Brett. I’m with Dawson on this one: Get after it, girl.
  • One Chicago is back, baby! The arsonist will bring our favorite Chicago squads back together in a Chicago Fire/Chicago P.D. two-night event that should finally give us some closure on Shay’s death. I am into it.

Well my firebugs, who else has a heavy heart after that hour? Anyone else as excited as I am for the upcoming crossover event with Chicago P.D.? And how about some scenes that show us just how enthusiastic Joe Cruz is?

Chicago Fire airs Tuesdays at 10/9C on NBC.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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