The end of the writers and SAG-AFTRA strikes are great news for Chicago Med fanatics.
Our favorite medical drama is no longer on ice; the season will be short, but every episode will be impactful.
We have a definite wishlist for Chicago Med Season 9 and some guesses about the few spoilers that have already been released.
In case you've forgotten, we left off with some powerful cliffhangers.
Will left Med permanently after staging a rebellion. He sabotaged OR 2.0 to make a point about Jack's putting AI technology over patient care. It was a happy ending for him as he reunited with Natalie in Seattle. But it wasn't so great for Jack, who decided to sell the hospital after losing all his investors.
This move left everyone's fate in the air -- and Maggie had just turned down a new job to stay at Med. She'd been considering leaving because she disapproved of the technological advances Jack was embracing, especially when they threatened nurses' jobs.
Meanwhile, Dr. Archer's kidney condition got worse, and Sean was unable to help him because he relapsed, which meant he could no longer donate an organ even though he was a perfect match.
Marcel wondered if Will had thrown the baby out with the bathwater, as OR 2.0 had allowed him to do surgeries that weren't possible before.
These cliffhangers offer Med plenty to work with as the series returns to the airwaves.
Are there any official Chicago Med spoilers yet?
Although production just resumed, one intriguing Chicago Med Season 9 spoiler already exists. Dr. Charles will encounter a troubled person he knew a long time ago.
Dr. Charles has always been a compelling character. He's a far better psychiatrist than he is at dealing with his own life; whether it's a messy personal relationship or trying to rein in his rebellious daughter, he's always surrounded by chaos.
The last thing he needs is some other drama magnet; he has more than enough problems without that. Still, this person could shed some light on Charles' past, which we know little about.
Will the hospital remain short-staffed?
Several characters left during Chicago Med Season 8. Will headed to Seattle, as discussed earlier; Choi also said goodbye to the hospital so that he and April could start a non-profit mobile health service. And sadly, Dylan Scott quit Med near the beginning of the season.
That leaves Med short three doctors and a nurse practitioner. Will and CHoi's shoes will be tough to fill -- these two were a massive part of life at the hospital.
These absences could affect Archer's storyline. Choi's been gone a while, but he was always the one who reined Archer in when he went too far while Will and Archer butted heads over everything. (To be fair, Will butted heads with everyone over everything.)
And now that Archer's seriously ill, he'll probably miss Choi more than ever. He's the worst example of the doctor-turned-patient trope -- he won't listen to medical advice, won't slow down, and won't show his pain in front of other staff.
That's likely to be an even bigger problem during Season 9, considering his weakened state at the end of the previous season, and he doesn't have a best friend like Choi to get him to see reason.
Asher's been trying. The two of them have gotten so close that Sean relapsed because he thought his father "stole" the woman he wanted. Let's hope there's no more nonsense coming up. This isn't Days of Our Lives, where there are often intergenerational fights over the same woman.
But what we would like is more of Asher and Archer butting heads as she struggles to get him to respect his body's needs instead of pushing himself too damn hard.
Archer's storyline should be emotional. Nobody wants to experience illness robbing them of their abilities or face having to retire or slow down because of a health condition. And it's twice as bad for Archer because he's too proud to ask for help or show weakness.
Asher's already violated his boundaries several times to get him to take care of himself, and that'll only get worse as he gets weaker. We fully expect that his kidney disease will get worse before it gets better, and we're here for it!
What About The Hospital Sale?
Of course, it's all a moot point if the hospital closes its doors.
It's already done the tired medical drama trope of having some greedy corporate type take over the hospital when Jack arrived on the scene. So, hopefully, we won't have to sit through another awful owner making decisions that interfere with the hospital's mission.
But will the drama come from not knowing who the hospital will be sold to or if it'll be shut down instead? If Med is in danger of shutting its doors permanently, that could lead to some compelling storylines.
Hopefully, no one will get into a silly spat over the sale like Jane and Terese on Neighbours, but some drama over the sale itself might be fun.
What About Maggie's Job Situation?
Maggie's had a hard time since Vanessa left, and on top of that, Jack started automating arts of her job and putting her and other nurses' livelihoods at risk.
She ultimately decided to stay at Med, but with the hospital's situation in flux, that might not have been the wisest choice. Her job may be even less secure now that the hospital's future is in doubt.
Hopefully, Maggie will remain at Med, but she may again do some soul-searching about what she wants and where her career is going.
She and Ben have had a rough time, too, between losing the foster child they wanted to adopt and Ben's jealousy of Grant. Let's hope for some more reasonable storylines for this couple; they spent a whole season split up for the sake of drama, so now they need some happiness.
What's Next for Dr. Marcel?
Marcel had a love-hate relationship with both Jack and OR 2.0.
He didn't like being the spokesperson for the tech, and he wasn't comfortable using his relationship with Jack to get favors.
But now Jack's likely gone, so Marcel needs something else.
He bounced from trauma surgery to transplant specialist and back again, with an annoying love triangle that didn't leave us torn, defining his time in the transplant department.
He's at his best when making split-second decisions about experimental surgeries, so hopefully, he'll get to do more of that this season.
Your turn, Chicago Med fanatics. Hit the big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and tell us what you hope happens when Chicago Med returns.
If you'd like to refresh your memory before the new season begins, watch Chicago Med online.
Chicago Med will again air on NBC on Wednesdays at 8/7c once it returns. New episodes will begin airing sometime in the spring of 2024.