9-1-1 Season 5 Episode 13 Review: Fear-o-PhobiaWhitney Evans at .
What are you afraid of?
Whether it's something big, small, or somewhere in-between, we're all afraid of something. That's just what it means to be a human with emotions. And while all fear isn't bad, how you deal with your worries can be the biggest struggle of all.
9-1-1 Season 5 Episode 13 was all about the f-word, and we found some of our favorites struggling when confronted with some of their most crippling uncertainties.
If anyone knows what they're trying to do with Buck and Taylor, please let me know in the comments because I'm not following.
Why the show feels the need to cling to this sinking ship is hard to understand, and even during this hour, they totally teed up the breakup and had the perfect out for both of them. But instead, we get these two hanging onto this relationship by the seat of their pants.
Buck is terrified of being alone and being left behind.
It's something we've learned over the five-plus seasons of getting to know Evan Buckley, and while I can appreciate the show driving this point home here and giving reasons as to why Buck is acting this way, do those fundamental fears make up for what he's doing to someone he claims to love?
Sure, he comes clean to Taylor, but it's a half-truth at best. He tells her he kissed someone else but fails to disclose that while the person was indeed random, in the sense that he knew approximately two things about her before sticking his tongue down her throat, she's also his co-worker. Someone he will see day in and day out.
That is a huge admission! So, when the two of them hugged and promised to be honest from here on out, Buck should have told the whole entire truth and nothing but the truth, but he didn't.
This storyline is just sad because it feels like it sets Buck back a hundred years. This is the same Buck who was the voice of reason when Eddie was essentially dating someone for the sake of his son. The same Buck who would have never done anything to disrespect Abby, even when she ghosted him.
And yet here he's willing to trap someone into living with him and lying on top of it all.
Buck: Hey, where are you going?
Taylor: Oh, I have no idea.
Buck: Are you gonna come back?
Taylor: Of course. I don’t have anywhere else to go. You made sure of that.
I understand things aren't black and white within the story, but the whole thing feels slimy and gross. Taylor doesn't have anywhere else to go, thanks to Buck. She rearranged her entire life for a man who refers to his decision to invite her into his home as dumb.
And then there's the whole Lucy element, as we know she'll be sticking around for the foreseeable future.
The fact that we didn't get to see Chimney and Buck interact for the first time since that punch, but we got more than one scene of Buck and Lucy being awkward with one another, is a travesty.
We've all watched enough television shows to see where this could potentially go. Buck and Lucy will probably pair up on a rescue that brings them closer together, causing the awkwardness to evaporate. And once again, Buck is torn between two women and treating the one he's supposed to love with incredible disrespect.
It would be so lovely if things went a different way, but it's hard to think that with the way the story is flowing.
But perhaps Buck's complicated and annoying personal drama will take a breather now that he's front and center for Eddie's struggles.
Much like we didn't get to see Chimney and Buck make amends, they robbed us of seeing Eddie apologize to Bobby, though we find out it happens via Eddie when he meets with Frank.
And it's wonderful to see Eddie take that step to engage in therapy, even if he seems less than enthused to be there. But he listens to Frank and even attempts to complete Frank's assignment, and that in itself shows that Eddie wants to get well.
But therapy, especially trauma therapy, isn't an easy process. Confronting emotions that you've suppressed or never even realized existed is an exhausting process, and Eddie is just getting started here. The key, though, is that he's beginning.
Making that phone call was a step forward, but he was ill-prepared for what the results of that call would yield.
There are a lot of family units on 9-1-1. Hen, Karen, and their family. Maddie, Chimney, and their family. Bobby, Athena, and their family. Then there's Buck, Eddie, and Christopher, who are very much their own family.
Christopher senses distress, and he calls Buck without hesitation. And Buck responds without hesitation.
Eddie is always in such control that those times when he allows himself to feel are always such powerful moments because they seem so rare. But the image of Eddie succumbing to years of pain on his bedroom floor, clutching a baseball bat with bloodied knuckles, is one that will stick with you for a while.
The pain comes out of him in the form of explosive anger, and Eddie seems powerless to stop it. Learning that every single person he saved has now died rips apart Eddie from the inside out because while in that moment in the desert he rescued them from certain death, in the long run, he feels like he was unable to truly save them.
And now he'll have to deal with being the lone survivor.
Eddie: I’m afraid.
Buck: Okay. Okay. What are you afraid of?
Eddie: That I’m never gonna feel normal again.
My heart breaks for Eddie, and while I and many have been lamenting his loss at the 118, it's clear that he's on this journey that will require him to put in the work to get better. And it's probably for the best that he taps into these feelings and this pain away from the emotional highs and lows of active firefighting.
This is also something Eddie needs to do for himself and no one else. He has to learn it's okay to put yourself first sometimes and admit when you need help.
Eddie's 9-1-1 Season 5 storyline has been bumpy at best. Still, multiple seasons of trauma are finally being addressed and explored, and Ryan Guzman has never been better on this series than he is in those final moments.
Hopefully, they devote time to this storyline and don't try to rush through it because it deserves to be thoughtfully explored through Eddie's eyes.
And I know that final scene wasn't about Buck, but I'll never get over the absolute trust those two men have in one another. Their bond is truly at the heart of this series in so many ways because it feels like something we all want in our own lives.
We all want a person who sees the good, the bad, and the ugly and always stays.
Elsewhere in Los Angeles, Chimney and Maddie are officially back. And they are officially broken up.
I can't say I didn't see that coming, and I don't personally expect it to last long, but it sounds like it was the best decision for them at this particular time. Six months apart with no communication is hard to get past, even when you love someone.
And both Chimney and Maddie have grown while they're apart. A break is for the best right now, but it doesn't have to be permanent.
They will forever be a part of one another's lives, and a love like there's isn't something most people are blessed to ever have. They've gone through so much together since, and it'll be interesting to see how they navigate this new chapter as co-parenting exes.
For her part, Maddie continues to spend more time with Jee-Yun, and bathing her is continued forward progress for Maddie. Recovery is a long-term process, and each step ahead Maddie takes is for the betterment of herself and her relationship with her daughter.
Both cases of the week had a purpose, with the decompression sickness one meant to showcase Lucy's abilities as the team's newest member. And it's a pity they couldn't have brought Lucy on as just a new addition and not immediately subjected her to being a love interest.
It's okay for Buck and Lucy to just be friends. I promise you.
Lucy got off on the wrong foot with the audience, and it's not like she does a ton here to endear herself. Somehow, she and Jonah seem to amass more speaking time than Ravi, who we've known for much longer and would love to know better.
And no, I'm sorry, but we don't feel bad for her or Jonah, who feel a little unsure of their positions within the 118. It's nothing personal, but it feels like forever since we've just had the family vibes of the 118, and we don't need all these outside characters.
The original 118 crew is the one we fell in love with, and is it a crime to just want that dynamic back again?
Hopefully, this season is building towards steady growth for everyone, personally and professionally, and our favorite found family reuniting by the season's end.
- Eddie listening into the call while Hen was talking to Pauline, and it essentially spurring him to reach out to his former team member, was an excellent way of incorporating the call into both the theme and Eddie's journey.
- I've definitely said it before, but Hen will be a fabulous doctor one day.
- While Ravi has been criminally underused since his inception into the series, Albert's in a similar boat. He doesn't get much to do here, and we don't know what his life is like now or anything, but his conversation with Maddie was sweet. Finding that balance has to be incredibly challenging but necessary.
- Chris is getting so big! It feels like just yesterday he was just a little kid dressing up as Wolverine for Halloween, and now he's a little man! Where does the time go!
You can see the changes in this half of the season, and it does feel like the show is finding its footing again, but things are still a bit shaky. But they can course-correct if they move in the way I'm hoping they will.
Overall, this hour was solid, and I look forward to hearing what you guys thought in the comment section below! Make sure to watch 9-1-1 online right now, so you can join the conversation!
Whitney Evans is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.