Well...that was an episode of broadcast television.
9-1-1 Season 5 Episode 14 was a bit of a mixed bag. And the bag was mostly rotten.
There is no accounting for why 9-1-1 is so insistent on trying to change a series that didn't need changing.
The 118, Maddie, and Athena are why 9-1-1 is one of the most popular television shows. We've had five seasons of these lovable, flawed individuals worming their way into our hearts and bringing us so much joy over the years.
But for some reason, this season has gotten away from that and has given us way too many outsiders. And look, shows need characters to come in and out and spice things up. No one is saying that they should never have guest actors and create fresh new characters to challenge the status quo.
But you have to use them right. You have to use them in a way that compliments the dynamic you already have and doesn't overshadow them.
Early in 9-1-1 Season 5, we got more than one episode showcasing Buck's girlfriend. And here, we spend an awful lot of time dealing with Lucy's struggles over saving someone's life.
Yes, you read that right.
The biggest issue with Lucy is how we met her. She came in all bravado, with zero tact, and immediately found herself on the wrong side of everything. It doesn't help that they've somehow decided her character is more worthy of stepping in to do everything when Ravi is right there doing nothing.
You know it's weird. I never really thought about it before, but now, I wonder how many other people we inadvertently saved by saving someone else.Hen
The whole basis of this hour revolves around luck, and deep-diving into what it is first responders do, the toll it takes on them, and whether or not it's all worth it in the end.
And to that end, Lucy's story hits the luck part, but beyond that, it's hard to sympathize with her when she makes the save. That's not to say she's not allowed to feel things and want to be a better firefighter.
But it's just another instance of the series completely overestimating the audience's investment in characters we don't have a connection to.
Plus, is Lucy supposed to be a new firefighter? The whole scene with Buck would have worked much better with a newer firefighter (hint, hint Ravi), who could have struggled with the attention and feeling out of place making such a high-profile rescue.
Lucy's face was quite literally just splashed all over the news after the events of 9-1-1 Season 5 Episode 11.
The whole storyline is curious.
And while they finally wised up and decided to let Buck and Lucy just be co-workers and not lean into the middle school love triangle hi-jinks for a minute, it all comes crashing down when Taylor has to remind us that they're never going to let the Buck/Taylor/Lucy foolishness die until the two women inevitably meet.
At least Buck gets more to do during this hour, namely be there for Eddie.
Eddie continues to take steps forward, which is all he can do right now. And I applaud him for continuing to seek help and talking about the things that are bothering him instead of bottling everything up.
He gets a scene with Bobby and a scene with Buck where he actually gets to express his unhappiness, and he doesn't pretend as if everything is okay. Allowing himself to feel his emotions and not run from them will go a long way on his path to a better future.
Off-topic, and not to sound like a broken record here, but again, WHY did we not see Eddie and Bobby's first talk after their disagreement? If you sneezed during the last hour, you would have missed Eddie saying that he apologized to Bobby, making their interactions here feel jarring because it feels like you missed something.
It's a little thing, but they could have cut the entire Lucy and Jonah happy hour hangout, which added absolutely nothing to the story and given us Eddie and Bobby having a very necessary conversation in which they talk about what Eddie said, how it made them both feel, and how they could move forward.
I'll get over it one day.
Anyway, back to Eddie! Every scene with Christopher (minus that dream sequence which started so cute) is a welcome sight. Christopher is truly growing up so fast.
It's heartbreaking to hear him ask his father if he's a part of his sadness, but what else is he supposed to think?
Eddie is very much in a bad headspace, and it's natural to wonder, as the person closest to his father, if that has anything to do with him.
I liked that Eddie was upfront about the toll therapy has taken on him, and I hope he continues to let Christopher into his journey and doesn't downplay what he's going through. It can only help them in the long run, to be honest with one another, because Christopher is still a kid, but he's old enough to grasp the severity of the situation.
He doesn't deserve the kid's gloves treatment.
Eddie's struggling with his place in the world and how that relates to his job. And it makes sense to question if everything they put their minds, bodies, and spirits through is worth it. And while it's easy to say yes because of all the good they do, sometimes you need to be reminded of that good.
And that's exactly what Buck does for Eddie when he takes him and Christopher to the ranch for equine therapy.
Buck and Eddie. Eddie and Buck.
Let’s talk about it.
I think we can all admit that the relationship Buck has with Eddie is the most substantial relationship Buck has in his life. They get each other completely, and they have profound respect and trust between them.
Eddie is never more vulnerable than he is with Buck. And Buck knows just how much to push and pull with Eddie to help him because that is all Buck wants to do. Eddie is so important to Buck, and helping him get better is worth everything to him.
He gets Christopher off to school so he can help Eddie. He stays with Christopher while Eddie is at therapy so he can help Eddie. And he reminds Eddie how much good he's done for others by showing him the young boy whose life he saved on that fateful day in downtown Los Angeles.
Eddie starts the hour with a crippling nightmare, and he ends it with a timid smile on his face, surrounded by his family, remembering the second chance he gave a young boy who desperately needed it.
Here's hoping we'll keep seeing his journey play out because it's been the highlight of this back-half of the season, and perhaps the season overall.
We don't see Maddie until the hour is half over, which is a travesty, but she and Chimney deal with an unexpected illness when Jee-Yun gets sick.
Now that they're no longer together romantically, you can tell that the two don't quite know how to settle into their new normal, but these two are still friends even with the romance on pause. And they still know how to comfort and be upfront with one another.
Of course, Maddie would have doubts once Jee-Yun gets sick, and Chimney doesn't downplay her fears so much as he respects them and tries to get her to see things from a different perspective.
Man, did I miss these two
My money says they find their way back to each other by the finale, but even if they don't, these two will be just fine co-parenting their daughter and working to be the best people and parents they can be for her.
The stop sign caper case took a weird turn when it turned out that the bandits were just a couple of kids completing a scavenger hunt. They appeared old enough to understand the severity of what they were doing, yet it didn't seem to set in until one of them almost died.
We rarely see Athena lose her cool, and she didn't while in the throes of the rescue, but you could see how affected she was by the entire thing because these kids could have been Harry.
Yes, kids do dumb things. We expect them to make mistakes and learn from them. But you hope and pray that your kids are smart enough not to put themselves or others in danger.
There was a lot of luck happening during this hour, but sometimes a little luck is just what we need to get by.
- Jonah genuinely loving Hen? Very relatable.
- We need more Bobby and Athena being adorable people who love each other.
- You should never be out on a balcony trying to get freaky because that's just a recipe for disaster.
- The whole little plot of the guy falling into the donation box made such little sense. People were milling around that parking lot ALL DAY. And not a single person heard him yelling or banging around at all? Make it make sense.
- Okay, but Buck and Eddie drawing hearts together? Swoon. And Christopher being a whole artist while Buck draws a little heart with a smirk is just too cute for words.
This hour felt very clunky and strange. And after a few installments that gave me hope they were changing things around, this felt like a leap backward.
But do let me know in the comments what you thought! Drop all your comments below, and make sure you watch 9-1-1 online so you can join the conversation!
Whitney Evans is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.