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+.


I really like this show and great job of reviewing. It does indeed grow on you every week. I had a couple of different shows DVR'd and this one was the first I watched. Usually a sign that I really like a show. I'm with everyone else who wants Dawson and Mills together, definite potential. I hope it doesn't get cancelled. Is that a possibility. Networks need to leave a show for longer so that they can gain a fan base.

Sarah silva

For 3 weeks now I have liked the chemistry between Dawson and Mills and she needs to stop pining over Casey and move on and I think Mills the perfect guy to do so!
I am looking forward to next week.

Sarah silva

I say it every week, I love this show!
It is so good!
I like that it seems based on reality, this episode Squad, Casey's engine and the girls went to a call,then the next it was squad, another engine and the girls and then it was just the girls. Some shows would have had them all go to the same call every time and I like that they are not doing that.
I really want Voight to get what is coming to him. I know that Casey should do it right and make sure when Voight gets caught it sticks but it is becoming harder to not want to beat the crap put of Voight! I think Boden wants to but I do not think he will. I also like the other guys all wanting to do the same thing.
I like Severide but he is doing some questionable things because of the pain in his arm, the girl he slept with was dumb to give him the pills but she did it thinking he would want her back, but he did not.
I am scard about what will happen to his shoulder down the line.
For 3 weeks now I have liked the chemistry between Dawson and Mills and she needs to stop pining over Casey and move on and I think Mills the perfect guy to do so!
I am lookin forward to next week.


thumbs up for Chicago fire. Knew I'd loved it the first time I watched the preview and has progressed each and every episode the casts are remarkable. People please watch this show it is worth one hour of time, please and thank you.


such a good show, its something different and refreshing from cop/medical drama. firefighters finally in the spot light. hope it stays around.


I am amazed at how this show got me so invested. Every week, I care more and more about the characters. It's a shame that it could get cancelled. Why aren't people watching? Every year I find myself heartbroken that some of my favorite shows get cancelled. like the reviewer said, its tone is different, it's not a procedural and yet not really a serial... Well done, Dick Wolf! Way better than Law and Order.

Ronald simkins

This review was really quite good - as is the show. The summaries are spot on- but save one person and injure yet aother person to actually generate another quite chonically set of troubles.


I like the pairing of Dawson & Mills, they have a good chemistry. the scene with them at the end w/ Mills figuring out the mystery ingredient in Dawson's mac & cheese was fun. it's a unique way of fleshing out the characters, since we know that Mills's family owns the restaurant.

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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.