One Chicago

One Chicago: Chicago Fire, Chicago PD and Chicago Med highlights for Oct. 13, 2021

Chicago Fire
CHICAGO FIRE — “The Right Thing” Episode 1004 — Pictured: (l-r) Jimmy Nicholas as Chief Hawkins and Kara Killmer as Sylvie Brett — (Photo by: Adrian S. Burrows Sr./NBC)

Chicago Fire: Everyone outside of Firehouse 51 is a little weird

The latest Chicago Fire played around with something that the series has done a couple of times over the years: introducing a temporary character who’s particularly quirky or over the top, ostensibly illustrating how well our team works together.

“The Right Thing” featured a fill-in lieutenant for Casey, who thought every company was “the best company in the CFD” until our heroes (and the One Chicago audience) couldn’t take it anymore. Elsewhere, viewers got a lot more of paramedic chief Hawkins (Jimmy Nicholas) as he decided to ride along with Ambulance 61 in an attempt to get to know Sylvie Brett (Kara Killmer) better. Both storylines saw the guest character looking like a square peg in a round hole. At least in Hawkins’ case that got him to approve Brett’s paramedicine program and he even donated an old ambulance to help her get started!

But viewers could expect that Casey’s replacement was going to be an underwhelming dude that would make the team miss Casey, thus providing the episode’s comic relief. And most of the “white shirts” who have come to 51 have been difficult for various reasons (unless being played by the wonderful Steve Chikerotis). It would have been a little more entertaining to see these plotlines break from those molds, even if just a little bit. What if the new lieutenant had been more of an equal to Casey and taught the Truck team something new, making it extra compelling when Casey inevitably tells them next week that he’s considering a move? That possibility becomes more poignant if he knows—and they know—that they’d be in capable hands.

As for Hawkins, he shows more depth now that he seems to be more of an ally to Brett, but he’s kind of like most of the bureaucrats Hank Voight has had to deal with on Chicago PD. They don’t really know what it’s like to do the job on the ground (even though they presumably did it to get promoted) and show up periodically to remind the hero what to do. A fun direction for him would be if he pops up now and again to actually check in on or assist with the paramedicine initiative, since it really helps the whole department. And not like Commissioner Hill where she tended to turn up to save Stella—but like when Grissom showed up to get his hands dirty.

These two characters served their purpose in “The Right Thing” but they also continued the idea that most people outside of 51 just don’t fit in with the firehouse. Then again, those outsiders would probably say everyone inside of Firehouse 51 is weird, so it evens out.

%d bloggers like this: