Chicago Fire Review: With Friends Like These

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"Hanging On" continued a recent hot streak of Chicago Fire episodes.

I still have no idea how they should market this show, but it fits in no genre that I can think of and therefore suffers from a lack of viewers. It's a drama in the traditional sense, with a tinge of procedural and a family feel. What made its star shine this week?

The Firehouse Reacts

It's so refreshing that people don't dance around their issues on Chicago Fire. Hermann taking on the homeless man's brother when he died alone in a warehouse instead of under his brother's roof and Casey charging into Detective Voight's office are just two examples. Casey didn't stop there, either. When everyone at the police station looked quizzically at him, he shouted, "Why is everybody so afraid of him?"

How often does that happen on television these days? Not enough.

I really dislike the storyline of a corrupt cop trying to bribe and hurt a fireman to keep his drunk driving son out of jail. It's nauseating. It's comforting that Chief Boden and the crew have Casey's back and the Chicago Police Department have decided to look into the situation, but Voight is so smarmy I'd rather they just jump him in the street. I realize that's counter productive to everything I believe is wrong with the situation in the first place, but sometimes vigilantism has its draw.

What I didn't get was why they were trying to hard to find whatever gang banger supposedly slashed Casey's tires and then Hallie's. How do they know Voight didn't do it himself? He's a nut. Nobody was even following him, so he had no problem pulling over Hallie and scaring the heck out of her with yet another threat to Casey. It would have been a career killer to pummel Voight with whatever that tool was he had in his hands - but I'd like to know if Boden found Casey just before he made his move. Is he Batman?

I don't know how long Kelly thought he was going to be able to keep up pretenses of doing his job with his shoulder, but when he was on the roof hanging onto a man with only that shoulder between one of them and death, something has to give. No amount of painkillers in the world can give you the strength you need with a bum shoulder to keep up with that kind of physical activity. At some point he's going to end up ripping his arm right out of the socket. Prostituting himself for drugs, no matter how attractive the woman, was really scraping the bottom of the barrel.

Gaby and Shay grow on me more every week. Kudos to Shay for not falling for Kelly's play at getting her to supply him with more drugs. She gave him a real option to get treatment and he chose against it. She's a paramedic, not a pusher. Gaby shoving her foot into a victim's friend's chest as he tried to force his way onto the ambulance was classic. She gets in trouble for things all the time, but everything she does if for the best of the victims she treats. Someone should shadow them to get a better picture of just how good they are.

It's too bad Mouch was unable to keep her case from going forward. She has absolutely no luck. Well, her luck might get better if Hallie can't take any more strain from all of this Voight stuff and she has a chance at Casey, but rebounds are never a good idea, even when the seeds have already been planted for something to come up later.

On the fun side? Hermann getting caught up in a pyramid scheme and Otis playing lawyer to get him out of it. I really need some friends like the guys at Station 51 because they seem capable of almost anything. They cook, save lives, get your thousands refunded and then take your out for a night on the town, all after cleaning up your mess with a dirty cop. 

Another Chicago Fire, another enjoyable hour of television. I don't have any complaints about the show, the acting, the stories or the direction. Last year I complained that Wednesdays were barren of good entertainment, and this year I'm practically overwhelmed. I hope this one makes the long-term cut.


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.1 / 5.0 (61 Votes)

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.


the cruz charactor just put a bad mark for other latinos. the actor should have not done the episode. yes a tv show but that hurt the fire dept. they help not kill. the 12/19/12 episode.


I watched this show for the first (and last) time last night. The music is so loud when the actors are speaking, it was impossible to hear the dialogue. What's the point?


Who the fuck is allowing this shit to be broadcast ?
If you are promoting your product on this crap series I am not buying it.
Everything about this series is utter nonsense and has no authenticity whatsoever .
It's so bad it's almost like a comedy.


This is the worst program I have ever seen about Firefighters. It's only worth watching to laugh at its amateurism.
The actors,plot,storyline, costumes, lighting, music is the worst I have ever seen. Why is it still being broadcast ?
Rescue Me is the gold standard.
Ex Firefighter


Carissa i couldnt agree more. Last year Wednesday night was terrible and this year we have an abundance of great shows. Unfortunately that means we will most probably lose some of them after the season is over. I am hoping Chicago Fire isnt one of them. I just started watching this show earlier today and just finished the 5th episode. But i have one question if anyone can answer. In the first episode Casey told Mouch that he couldnt keep covering for him. What was he covering him for? It might be something obvious i missed but this episode showed him at home and I just thought maybe it was something to do with his home life as the place and character looked a mess.


RENEWED!!! Happy dance. Picture the little dudes beside Schroeder and the piano in a Peanuts special. I'm one of them!!!


Like many others who post here, I hope CHICAGO FIRE finds an audience. The writers are doing well developing realistic characters. Sadly, it is true to life that someone would be abusing painkillers, someone has lost hteir home, someone has been suckered by a pyramid scheme, someone would get unfairly accused by a deadbeat, etc. I think the acting is fine, too.


I just saw the ratings were up this week for that show, up now to 7 millions. At 5-6 millions, I was worried but now I think we'll be good for a full season pick-up.


i didn't get to see this weeks show yet.....but, even still i LOVE this show....and i look forward to seeing this weeks eppy......i agree with another poster: networks NEED to give shows MORE time then they have been.....i really LIKED "Made In Jersey"....and that was only given acouple of weeks and got PULLED.....i too HOPE, they KEEP chicago fire. alisa


I really love this show! You really get to know the characters. I just hope they will renew this show.

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Chicago Fire Season 1 Episode 5 Quotes

On behalf of the Paramedics Association of America, I offer my sincerest apologies for the forceful actions I exhibited here today.


Just hanging on for dear life.