Hark! Was that actually a fantastic episode of Chicago PD?!
You can never go wrong with a Kevin-centric installment. They always tend to be this series at its finest without fail, but that was only one of many reasons that Chicago PD Season 9 Episode 11 was one of the best hours in a long time.
It felt like the early days of Chicago PD when everything mainly was balanced among the team, everyone got utilized, the case took precedent over personal arcs, and by God, there was continuity!
Seriously, who is responsible for this, and can we please buy them a drink or something?!
By now, it goes without saying that LaRoyce Hawkins is a forever gem of this series, one of their strongest actors, and whenever they give that man a shred of focus, he runs with it, and magic happens.
Kim: When are we going to meet that mystery lady, Kev?
Kevin: Huh? Soon, real soon.
And thank GOD he finally had a centric that wasn't about his plight of being both Black and Blue. I didn't think they knew how to write anything else for the man anymore.
The art of an excellent centric is that they give you enough of a character, delve deeper into their personal life, or just follow that person's perspective throughout a case, but nothing else suffers as a result of that.
The case with Jimmy is a prime example of how you can do that without it detracting from other people.
"Lies" expertly lived up to its title with a theme that carried through from beginning to end. It also pertained to each element the hour presented.
Undercover work is difficult. A person has to keep up with their lies. As Jimmy indicated, the best way to do that is to stay as close to the truth as possible.
But you also have to flip that informant at the right time, press the necessary buttons, and give them enough reason to become an asset while also trusting that their self-interest outweighs their feelings of betrayal.
You have to trust that this deceived person won't start lying to you. Kevin was in that rough position as he formed a close bond with Jimmy and even liked the guy, but Jimmy couldn't get past that betrayal.
We've seen informants of all types over the years, but Jimmy will be a memorable one. As upset as he was at Kevin, he obviously cared enough about Nando that he would at least go along to some degree.
It's what made his decision to make a run for it after striking that agreement with Kevin so puzzling. The one thing you could rely on was that he wouldn't bail on his brother.
The drama was on as they had to get to the bottom of things, and it was shocking when Hailey tracked him down, and Jimmy carjacked a woman and ran her over to flee.
He left his brother none the wiser to what was happening, and he damn sure had Kevin fending for himself and nearly blowing his cover in the underground fight club with Tovar.
Jimmy seemed like a decent guy who put himself in some crappy situations. It's unfathomable how he thought he'd get away with stealing $75K from Tovar, and if he suspected there would be a bounty on his head, then why wouldn't he consider the ramifications of his actions on his brother?
Poor Nando caught two bullets to the gut over his brother's antics! It speaks to how easy it was to become invested in this case when one was upset that an aspiring fighter like Nando almost died in Ruzek's arms and how much a relief it was to hear he survived.
I ain't gonna lie. You going to jail, Jimmy.Kevin
Jimmy sent them on a hell of a wild goose chase as they both had to race against time to snatch up Tovar and put an end to what was becoming the deadliest drug trafficking in a minute but also find Jimmy before all hell broke loose.
Jimmy posed a bit of a threat when it appeared as though he had shown up at Kevin's building in Burnside to out him as a cop.
But somehow, the man got the jump on Tovar and had him at gunpoint over Nando's shooting. I don't know how Jimmy was slick enough to get Tovar alone, let alone hold him hostage.
But nothing was more shocking than when Jimmy pulled that trigger even after Kevin made such a great effort at talking him down. You get so used to those spiels working on television shows that when it doesn't, your jaw drops.
Anna: Hey, Voight? This guy Jimmy, he's your CI, right?
Voight: I can't tell you that.
Anna: Why is he running from you?
Voight: Because most people will give almost anything to not be doing what you're doing. Most people will see it as a death sentence.
Jimmy was an idiot if he thought he'd get Kevin to cover for him after killing a man in cold blood. Kevin's deal beforehand made sense, and it was more than any other cop probably would have given him.
But there's only so much that Kevin could do after Jimmy pulled the trigger, and it's ridiculous that he thought he'd ask for Kevin to lie after the fact.
Kevin lied to him as part of his job, yes that much is true, but that's a big ask even for a compulsive liar.
It's messed up that Jimmy cared that much about his brother but threw his life away without considering the effects on Nando.
All of this drama and twists and turns made things exciting, and you never knew where things were going next. Voight was on a tear, and it's so good when he gets passionate about a case and starts barking orders.
We were long overdue to revisit Carmela Zumbado's character, Anna, and I squealed a little when Voight went to her for help in the middle of the case, and she delivered.
I brought you strawberry. It's disgusting.Anna [to Voight]
Anna is a unique character. Unlike Jimmy, she doesn't mind the informant life, and there's something about that which makes her a wild card. She likes to test Voight and challenge him a bit, but they have this fascinating mutual respect among each other.
Her intel is often solid, and that's a good start. But she has an agenda, and she's biding her time until Voight tackles what she signed up for to suit her interest. The fact that they reintroduced her and brought it up would mean that day is coming sooner rather than later. Bring it on!
Also, that's how you sprinkle breadcrumbs in for buildup.
Anna proved useful when it counted, and they probably wouldn't have gotten to Jimmy in time if not for her. It was also cool to see her interacting with someone outside of Voight. In this case, it was Atwater.
But Kevin had his hands full, and the case taught him a thing or two about lying and the high cost of it. He didn't have any obligation to Jimmy, but he sure as hell did to Celeste.
Finally, we got some follow-up on where things were with the two of them after Chicago PD Season 9 Episode 5, and it turns out Kevin has been juggling a double life this whole time. He seems out of character to pull something like this off for so long.
It's a wonder his conscience didn't catch up to him sooner. We knew nothing good could come from Kevin keeping who he really is and what he does for a living from her for so long. It had to have been exhausting for him.
Soon as I tell you I'm a cop, that's all you see. That's all I be.Kevin
And they've gotten so close that Celeste reaches out to him nonstop and expects to see him frequently. Surprisingly, she didn't start suspecting something was off herself.
Jimmy and the case reminded him of the damage he was doing by lying so much, and Kim was right there to give him so advice. Can we take a moment to celebrate the fact that the show finally remembers that Kim and Kevin are best friends and have been since they worked the beat together?
Ruzwater is and will always be the sh*t, but so is Burgwater. That is the ultimate trio right there, but they've spent a great deal of time only focusing on a portion of that triad.
Of course, Kim was the one to notice that Kevin was off and prod him about the lady in his life and how secretive he was being, and he couldn't help but confess to her.
Not only was he keeping his identity away from Celeste, but he was hiding her from his friends, partly because of his involvement with someone from a case. Poor Kevin.
We've been dying for him to find happiness in love for the entire length of the series, but how can you have that with someone when you can't converge the two most important aspects of your life?
How can Kevin be in love with someone he can't introduce to his best friends or talk about his day with or whatever? And how can he go to work and keep his dating life private or even keep secrets from Ruzek and Kim?
The man was burning himself out at both ends, trying to keep steady with the case and appease Celeste. Yet, it was brutal when he had to 'fess up to her at the end of the hour. She was shocked to discover her boyfriend lied to her so much, and she had reason to be upset about it.
Celeste: I'm not going to pull it out of you. Whatever you got to say, say. What is this?
Kevin: I'm a cop.
Celeste: Is this some kind of joke or--
Kevin: No. I should've told you a long time ago.
But Kevin was terrified of telling her the truth or extending her the benefit of the doubt because he suspected she never would've given him a chance or gotten to know him if she knew what he was.
And in all fairness, the conclusions Kevin drew from Celeste's statements were the same as mine.
Celeste did not sound like someone who could separate the establishment of policing from the people doing it. The way she ranted and raved about cops and implied that it was despicable that there were Black men cops there when her student got shot didn't leave room for interpretation.
They managed to soften her hard edges and opinions this time around, but the woman was set in her strong opinions and incredibly militant about her stance the last time we saw her.
I get why Kevin thought she wouldn't accept him, and while she has every right to be angry and hurt that he lied to her, after the things she said back then, I don't know if she has the right to be mad that he assumed she wouldn't handle the truth well.
All you shiny white folks? No, ma'am.Kevin
Celeste mellowed out now, and she seems to care about Kevin despite his lies. She also appears as though she can handle dating a police officer. And Kevin found freaking love for once, so maybe the two of them can work it out.
And if the continuity aspect of this hour didn't get hit home with revisiting this Kevin/Celeste storyline, Anna's return, and more, we even got a brief acknowledgment of the custody shocker with Mack.
Kim is beside herself, fretting over the reappearance of MaKayla's uncle, and she's gotten carried away trying to contact the lawyer for updates and news. It sounds like Ruzek is the one trying to be the most level-headed and strong for her and their family at the moment, but Kim is all nerves.
I'm so used to the show dropping these bombs during centric and never revisiting or mentioning them again until a millennial later that I was pleasantly surprised and thrilled that they gave us this nugget. Did I say how much I loved this installment?
- Am I the only one wondering if Voight ever drank that strawberry milkshake?
- So what exactly does Kevin intend to do with that property he bought again and did Ruzek ever go in on it with him? Can we have a spot for the group to hang out one day if they aren't going to Molly's anymore?
- That underground fight scene was filmed well, and Nando kicked ass.
- Tovar's execution was unexpectedly graphic.
- The cherry on top of this installment is that they even gave Trudy some screentime, too! Finally! Can we please keep this energy?
- It's still weird that Halstead hasn't told his brother that he got married or mentioned him or anything.
- LaRoyce Hawkins. That's it. That's the sentence. The man deserves all the flowers because he knocks it out of the park every gosh damn time.
- No, seriously, the Burgess and Atwater scenes were so good. I missed their friendship so much.
Over to you, Chicago PD Fanatics. Did you love this installment as much as I did? What are your thoughts on the Kevin and Celeste situation? Hit the comments.
You can watch Chicago PD online here via TV Fanatic.
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.