Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3 Review: See You Next Apocalypse

at .  Updated at .

Look, we’re sympathetic.

Last year’s simultaneous writers’ and actors’ strikes threw everything into disarray and messed up a lot of things for a lot of people.

And if you thought everything would immediately go back to normal once the agreements were made and Hollywood returned to work -- well, Fire Country Season 2 is here to show you how wrong you were!

Bode In the Woods - Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

Now, it’s possible that the show’s writers were always planning on veering into such wildly melodramatic territory in their second season.

But we can't shake the feeling that they’re trying to cram a full season’s worth of story into a strike-shortened episode order.

Vince Leone Image - Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

For example, Fire County Season 2 Episode 1 featured a prison knife fight that was broken up by a freakin’ earthquake.

And Fire Country Season 2 Episode 2 had purple wildfires and newly reunited families using TikTok to locate missing teens lost in cave mazes.

Obviously, a certain degree of suspension of disbelief is required for most nighttime soaps, but Fire Country is at its best when the far-fetched storylines are tempered with a degree of gritty realism.

And while wildly unbelievable storylines can be fun, when they become the norm instead of the exception, a show runs the risk of alienating its fan base to the point that it loses them forever.

And folks, that brings us to Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3.

Manny at the Fire - Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

We open on a sight we're familiar with -- a Leone behind bars.

But there's a twist! This time, it's Vince Leone who's in the clink, his knuckles bloodied from a barroom brawl.

We cut to an erratically edited flashback in which Vince is once again given cause to be concerned about Sharon's fidelity -- a well that the show has arguably returned to one too many times.

Vince does a shot (was the weird editing meant to make the viewer feel like they're also hammered?) and then punches out his wife's new Irish friend, Liam.

Sharon reassures Vince that nothing happened with Liam, but the family drama is only just beginning for the Leone clan.

Eve In the Woods - Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

The episode's thematic interests are underscored by a shot of Bode Leone watching a fellow inmate play basketball with his young son on visiting day.

The touching scene is a potent reminder that this show has more on its mind than fires and the act of putting them out, and when it wants to slow down and offer a relatable take on complicated family dynamics, it can do so quite effectively.

Understandably, Bode gets upset when he learns that his dad spent the night in jail. Less understandable is the fact that he blames himself for Vince's indiscretion.

It's like the show keeps telling us that Vince and Sharon are this perfect, enviable couple, but what it shows us is a whole lot of dysfunction.

Hey, with one kid in the cemetery and another in jail, these two have been through an awful lot -- but their tendency to mistreat one another makes it hard to root for their marriage.

Vince Leone Communicates - Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

What's most frustrating about this episode's shortcomings is the fact that we know this show is capable of depicting relationships in such an honest way.

Take the scene in which Gabriela and Manny are sampling wedding cake. Sure, the exchange about unloading "Bode baggage" is a little heavy-handed, but the Yoda/Cookie Monster bit at the end is so very warm and human.

It feels improvised in the best way, and it's the sort of vibe the series should lean into more heavily.

All this Bode baggage that you're carrying around, mija? It's heavy. And the sooner you let it go, the better you're gonna feel.


We get more of the good stuff in a perfectly plausible exchange between Vince and Sharon that reminds us of the profound mutual affection that keeps this relationship going despite all the setbacks.

Eve and Jake exchange views on the challenges that come with authority, and Sharon's friend Liam reveals himself to be the operator of Cal Fire's "schmancy" new drone.

Eve Looks Concerned - Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

And that's all before the opening title card! Did we mention this show has been packing in a lot of plot lately?

But back to the strengths. Following a very cool drone shot, we get a tense exchange between Vince and Sharon in which the events of the day's emergency closely tie into what's going on in their marriage.

And that's the sort of objective correlative that keeps us coming back and keeps us rooting for this show despite its struggles.

Hey, it's just like Vince and Sharon's marriage! Fire Country pushes us away sometimes, but we still love it!

Speaking of conflict, Manny and Eve's clash over their reversed circumstances is the kind that rings true, and Omar's tumble from a cliff is a believable escalation.

Liam on Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

Meanwhile, Gabriela and Manny's conflicts with the stubborn forest-dweller present us with the sort of conflict that first responders likely encounter with some regularity, but that is seldom portrayed on television.

Following a moment of welcome comic relief (who didn't chuckle a bit at the hippie lady saying, "Our wheels, maaaan"?), Jane and Gabriela are forced to enter baked potato mode on the roof so that all of the evacuees can fit inside the engine.

As she hops behind the wheel, Sharon delivers what might turn out to be the badass line of the season, and once again, the events of the episode's main emergency correlate nicely with this week's interpersonal conflicts.

You better! Or my husband's gonna kill you!


Look, we don't want to focus too much on believability in our discussions about a Jerry Bruckheimer-produced nighttime soap about firefighters.

It's just that the "eff yeah" moments pack more of a punch when they're surrounded on either side by plausibility.

Bode Prepares - Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

Fire continues to mend relationships when Liam's attempt at humor falls flat (although "Snake Shelton and Hissy Elliott" was actually a pretty decent line), and Vince takes over the task of talking Sharon through a crisis.

It can't be easy to come up with new scenarios involving forest fires week after week, so we tip our helmets to the writers of this week's episode for cooking up a humdinger of an emergency.

The tendency toward melodrama that we complained about earlier? It can be a little eye-roll-inducing during run-of-the-mill marital spats.

But it's hardcore, white-knuckle stuff when one half of that married couple is flooring it through a raging inferno with a full cargo of terrified passengers!

Jake Crawford Looks On - Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

Sure, the water main solution was a little convenient, and everyone was a little too mean to Liam for no real reason (it's not his fault that Vince and Sharon's marriage is a mess).

But what started out as a pretty lackluster episode wound up delivering some crowd-pleasing moments in the third act.

There's even a moment of renewed focus on the show's core premise, as the expected reconciliation scene between Manny and Eve yields an unexpectedly poignant conversation about the lifestyle difference between captains and convicts.

At the end of your shift, you get to go home. They don't. You see your friends; you see your family. You come back here. You suit up; you boss 'em around. But that's the gig.


The depth of emotion continues in the next scene as Sharon gives Liam the brush-off and speaks the sort of hard truths about the difficulties of marriage that one seldom hears on TV.

It's another reminder of what this show does so well when it's at its best.

Liam In the Woods - Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

When Vince stepped in and guided Sharon to safety by saying all the right words, he was rescuing his marriage as much as he was helping to rescue his wife.

And Sharon knew that she needed to trust him and ignore her instinct to run if she wanted to save the day.

Eve and Jake's conversation about Bode's hero's journey might be a little heavy-handed, but we'll forgive it, as it helps us reach the point of Eve finding out about Genevieve's paternity.

The same can be said of the ease with which Bodi and Gabriela buried the hatchet.

Did we totally buy it? No, but we'll let it slide because -- like that prison knife fight -- it was a useful scene that nudged the plot in the direction in which most viewers already knew it was headed.

Gabriels Suits Up - Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3

See? We don't expect perfection from this show.

We just want it to pump the brakes on the melodrama now and then.

There's no shame in slowing things down on occasion. Hey, it's not like we're driving a packed fire engine through a burning forest here!

What did you think, TV fanatics? Are you liking this season's direction so far?

Hit the comments section below to share your thoughts!

See You Next Apocalypse Review

Editor Rating: 3.5 / 5.0
  • 3.5 / 5.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
User Rating:

Rating: 3.9 / 5.0 (10 Votes)

Tyler Johnson is an Associate Editor for TV Fanatic and the other Mediavine O&O sites. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, cooking, and, of course, watching TV. You can Follow him on X and email him here at TV Fanatic.

Show Comments
Tags: ,

Fire Country Season 2 Episode 3 Quotes

Everywhere I go, every move I make, it's like I leave this trail of disaster in my wake.

Bode Leone

All this Bode baggage that you're carrying around, mija? It's heavy. And the sooner you let it go, the better you're gonna feel.