After a three week hiatus Chicago Fire returned with “Shoved in My Face,” an episode which proved to be more of a plot mover which will set up things for the second half of the season. There weren’t any emotional feels reminiscent of the best episodes to date. Instead “Shoved in My Face” shoved the story along to set up several plot points that will no doubt be explored in the weeks to come.
The episode begins with Matthew Casey (Jesse Spencer) in bed with Dawson (Monica Raymund) What? Is this a flashback? A scene from the last episode that I forgot? Nope. He’s back and better than ever. Well, maybe not better than ever, more on that later.
He tells us that the doctor has given him a clean bill of health. Dawson’s all nervous because she’s apparently going through with this whole ‘I wanna be a badass firefighter’ dream she’s had her entire life, or at least for a few weeks. She’s reporting to the academy and decides that organizing Casey’s t-shirt drawer is the first step in her training.
She also decides that they need to tell everyone at 51 that they are officially a couple. (The guys may want to Lysol the whole station the way they were going at it before Casey’s accident.) She makes a point of saying that she’ll be the one to tell former boyfriend Peter Mills (Charlie Barnett).
Jeff Clarke (Jeff Hephner) is under heavy suspicion for the murder of his wife’s boyfriend. Stay with me people. I know, this is getting more complicated than the latest episode of Housewives. Hunky Chicago P.D. Detective Jay Halstead (Jesse Lee Soffer) shows up to strap a friendship ankle bracelet on Clarke but says they’re just friends. I do like the way Fire and P.D. intertwine characters. It seems authentic and not forced. Clarke’s not cooperating and refuses to answer any questions. Great strategy, big guy.
Casey and Dawson tell everyone at 51 about their shenanigans and all are thrilled. Mills shows up a few minutes later and Dawson breaks the news to him. Nothing better than hearing from the woman you love that she’s going at it with your boss. Being the class act that he is, Mills tells her he’s happy for her, saying “that’s all I’ve ever wanted.” He also tells her to kick some ass at the academy. Okay, girl, are ya sure you made the right choice?
In the not so subtle foreshadowing moment of the night, Casey can’t remember the combination to his locker. Uh oh. You mean he may not be right as rain after major brain surgery? The writing’s on the wall or in the spinning of the lock. Casey’s not all better.
Leslie Shay (Lauren German) is left alone and cold with the departure of her girl, Dawson, and to think they just made up! Her new partner leaves her with hypothermia. Talk about a cold reception. Allison Rafferty (guest star Christine Evangelista) is nice to everyone but our favorite paramedic. I hate her already. We find out that ice queen is freezing out Shay because she had a gay partner who told her a little too much about her lifestyle. Rafferty says she doesn’t object to the lesbian thing, she just doesn’t want it shoved in her face. Homophobic much?
Gross moment of the night is a guy in his car with a huge bar going through his neck almost severing his carotid artery. Casey is tasked with keeping the guy calm. He says, “I was in your exact same spot six weeks ago.” Hold up. I thought he pancaked, I mean saved, a baby and had a huge beam fall on his head. Same but different. Casey bets him a six pack that he’ll be okay. I’m confused. Is the guy betting on his own death?
Meanwhile, Kelly Severide (Taylor Kinney) is teaching a class at the academy. You know, the one that Dawson is going to. He turns all serious instructor on them and immediately catches the attention of one of the candidates, Rebecca Jones (guest star Daisy Betts). She’s been teased as Kelly’s new love interest, but there was no love lost tonight on his part. She’s interested in way more than the latest firefighting techniques from the lieutenant. Can we blame her? She confides to Kelly that she doesn’t trust one of the recruits who froze up on a ladder earlier. She just doesn’t think he has her back. Shoulda kept your mouth shut eager beaver.
Mills finds out from Det. Jay that Clarke’s wife was texting her boyfriend before his death. Can you say Black Widow? Clarke refuses to listen and tells Peter to back off. Later, Clarke finally goes to the police with a receipt from a diner where he was eating at the time of dead guy’s death. We knew you didn’t do it, Clarke. Well, we hoped you didn’t do it. You’re too cute and too good of an actor to leave us so soon.
In yet another plot line, Chief Boden (Eamonn Walker) calls in Shay to let her know a lawyer has been asking for her. A lawyer who represents the family of Daryl, the guy who killed himself in front of Shay and Dawson. Shay looks like she’s going to lose it again. Chief brings her on back by saying they’re all behind her.
Shay decides to go full throttle, or Monty, or whatever with her new partner. In the funniest moments of the night she asks Rafferty if she saw Ellen yesterday. It made her at least five percent gayer. Go Shay. Shove it in her face. Rafferty loosens up, so to speak, and the two are getting along by episode’s end with Allison even helping Shay avoid the lawyer. 911, Dawson! You better high tail it back to 51, pronto. Your girl is moving on.
In the last call of the night, 51 heads to a jewellery store on fire. Turns out the place is being robbed with the thieves taking our heroes hostage. Casey ends up knocking the gun out of a robber’s hand and beating the crap out of him just to drive home the point that this isn’t our usual kid-loving, baby-saving, super ethical Casey. Point taken.
Shocking moment of the night came when Kelly tells Rebecca thanks for the sharing of feelings. You’re right, If you can’t trust the men around you there is a problem. Hit the road gorgeous girl because apparently I’ve sworn off all the ladies after the Renee baby drama. Did not see that one coming. Later, one of the big fire bosses says that Kelly can’t kick her out. She’s the daughter of the deputy district chief. Whoa, that sounds kind of important. Rebecca’s here to stay.
Happy moment of the night comes when Chief Boden announces that a new position on squad has been approved and Mills gets it. The guys celebrate at Molly’s with Clarke showing up, but Casey missing in action.
In the final scene, we see truck’s lieutenant at the hospital visiting bar neck guy and paying up on that debt. He’s got a six pack and a mighty thirst. Cut to black.
Let me try to get it all straight t… Kelly’s a teacher with a hot recruit in hot pursuit, Dawson is becoming a firefighter, Clarke is innocent because wifey killed boyfriend, a lawyer is looking for Shay who broke up with Dawson and has a new homophobic partner, and Casey is not okay in the head. Whew! That doesn’t even mention the Katie/Otis burgeoning romance (nerdfest), Molly’s in more trouble than ever, and Casey wanting to shack up with Dawson – check out the random notes below.
The set up for the rest of the season is complete. It will be interesting to see where the writers go with all this. Will Dawson really make it and become one of the guys? I can’t imagine a firehouse without the paring of Dawson with Shay. More pressing, what’s going to happen with Casey? This feels like a slight rehash of the Kelly broken neck storyline from last season. He was in total denial struggling for weeks before finally being forced to seek help. I’m guessing this will go the same route with Casey in denial for weeks before seeking help, maybe due to some tragedy. I’m hoping I’m wrong because it’s a little too early in Chicago Fire’s life to already be recycling storylines.
It WAS good to have the guys back on a Tuesday night, and I have high hopes for next week. Maybe we will need some Kleenex soon with those emotional moments we’ve grown to love from this show making an appearance. Maybe they’ll take the Casey storyline in an unexpected direction. Maybe Severide will have a little happiness in the romance department and have a good excuse to shed that shirt. Fingers crossed.
Katie and Otis make a nerd connection over board games. Otis, you are one brave fella. With the death stares from big brother Severide, I’d be outta there. Good luck, cute 6th grade couple.
Hermann, Otis, and Dawson find out they don’t really own Molly’s. The bank does. I love having the backdrop of Molly’s for some of the scenes. Let’s hope Molly’s will stay.
Casey decides to shack up with Dawson. She says his place is a little too Hallie haunted. Casey says he’ll find a new place tomorrow, Hallie who?
Was it just me, or did Kelly and Dawson seem a little handsy with each other? They have become better friends, but I wonder if certain benefits will come with it by season’s end. Interesting.
Funny lines of the night – Hermann comments that Mouch has a screw loose “lately.” I think “always” may be the more appropriate word. Jay says that Clarke is “in full jarhead mode.” But leave it to Shay to really crack us up. She asks Rafferty to help her avoid creepy lawyer dude, but remembers that would mean “helping out a lesbian and that’s just one step below French kissing.” Shay and her new partner also argue over who’s the bigger breaker of balls. Hilarious. Yes, they’re going to get along fine.