Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15 Review: A White-Knuckle Panic

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Perfection, absolute perfection.

Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15 had all the hallmarks of a series finale and knowing there's still one episode left of the season equally fills me with excitement and dread.

The season finale could either continue the trend of making everyone, the characters and audience included, extremely happy, or throw a wrench in our hopes and dreams at the last minute and make us miserable as we await the premiere of season 10. Either way, it'll be one heck of a ride.

51 celebration long - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

All of our panic -- or at least mine -- over Stellaride imploding based on the promo seemed to be premature, as our favorite firefighters are officially engaged.

Severide changed his tune over proposing rather quickly, but it was just the fear talking.

Severide: You didn’t have to come find me. You should have gotten out with your company.
Kidd: I am never gonna leave you. Don’t you get that by now?
Severide: I don’t ever want you to leave me. Stella Kidd, will you marry me?
Kidd: Hell yeah. I will, Kelly Severide. I will.

Once he realized that Kidd was never going anywhere, he decided to throw caution to the wind and get down on bended knee in the middle of a raging fire.

Maybe not the ideal situation to propose, but hey, Kidd said 'yes,' so it's all that matters.

Stellaride kiss - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

The couple is riding the high of their engagement, and it's almost unthinkable about what could drive a wedge between the pair.

They've been through so much, and something as working different shifts at different houses seems small in comparison to everything they've overcome.

Should Kidd move firehouses -- which may not happen, but I'll swing back to that -- it shouldn't get in the way of the life they're building together.

However, what possibly could is the ominous-sounding synopsis for the season finale: "A shocking call takes Severide's breath away."

Kidd fit - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

How literally should we be reading into this? Like, is Severide's breath actually taken away, and he dies, or is this just a figure of speech?

And what does "shocking" mean? Shocking good? Shocking bad? 

Kidd: Today was so perfect. I don’t want it to end. Can we make it never end?
Severide: I promise it’s only going to get better, and there will be a ring soon to make it official.
Kidd: You know I don’t get caught up in that stuff. All I need is you. Actually, I take it back. I’ll take the ring.

There's so much that can go wrong or right based on that cryptic teaser, and we'll make ourselves insane trying to parse the meaning.

It's best to wait the week until we find out exactly what happens.

Casey help - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

As for Casey and Brett, the ball's squarely in the paramedic's court after the captain professed his love for her in a swoon-worthy romcom moment outside of Molly's.

Of course, we all wanted Brett to reciprocate Casey's declaration of love right then and there, but she's allowed to take some time to let Casey's words sink in.

She still has to figure out if she can reconcile what Casey's telling her -- that Dawson's his past -- against her fears of Dawson always being between them.

Brett desperately wants it to be true, and Casey certainly believes it, but she has to decide whether or not she believes him.

Brett treat - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

At this point, Casey's done all he can to try to convince Brett that he's moved on, so it ends up being a question of whether or not she can take Casey at his word.

She's clearly in love with him; that much is obvious. It's just unknown whether or not she'll act on those feelings and take a leap of faith.

Casey: I need you to know after the ceremony, Gabby and I had a great conversation.
Brett: I’m happy for you, Matt. I really am.
Casey: No, that’s not what I meant. The conversation was great because it just made clear what I already knew. Gabby and I will always care about each other. There’s too much history not to, but I’m not in love with her. I haven’t been for a long time. Gabby is my past, and you… you’re my now. I can’t tell you how to feel, but I think there’s a reason why no matter how hard you and I have tried to make it work with other people we can’t. I’m in love with you, Sylvie, nobody else. And even if that doesn’t change anything for you, I needed you to know it.

Casey wasn't wrong when he said there's a reason why they can't make it work with other people, no matter how hard they want it to or try.

And they can't seem to get over the other either, so they're somewhat in a stalemate if they don't start a romantic relationship of some kind.

Casey on a call  - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 14

The writers have been drawing out the possibility of Brettsey romance for over two seasons, and the whole"'will they or won't they" trope has run its course.

It's either time for Casey and Brett to give it a shot or move on for good.

Should the pair give it a try, that doesn't mean it will be smooth sailing from here on out.

Dawson's name was dropped one too many times this installment for me not to wonder if she'll be swinging by Chicago for another surprise visit.

Dawson - Chicago Fire Season 8 Episode 9

It would be the sort of cruel cliffhanger the writers would end the season on.

Just as Casey and Brett kiss or agree to give this thing between them a try, Dawson emerges from the shadows, halting their new relationship before it even starts.

Violet: I’ve been meaning to ask, how are things with Grainger. I haven’t seen him at Molly’s in a while.
Brett: Uh, yeah, we broke up.
Violet: Oh, I’m sorry to hear that.
Brett: Greg is a great guy. It had nothing to do with him. I’m the problem, looking for something I can never have.
Violet: What makes you so sure you can’t? From what I’ve seen you already do. I picked up on it the day I got to 51. You and Casey, the way you are with each other, it’s kind of undeniable.

If that were to happen, there's no telling where that would leave Brettsey, even if Dawson is only around temporarily.

If she's back on a regular or recurring basis, then shit just hit the fan.

So, let's hope I have an overactive imagination and put some good vibes into the universe.

Cruz stern - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

Elsewhere, forget angry mama bear, as we just witnessed angry papa bear by none other than Cruz.

The father-to-be was finally given a storyline of substance and showed he's pretty badass when he needs to be.

The slamigan is Cruz's invention and company, and Mark miscalculated when he threatened Cruz.

Cruz may not be business savvy, but there was no way he would let someone like Mark steamroll him like that.

Cruz respond - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

No, he stood his ground and made it crystal clear to Mark that if the venture capitalist ever came by his firehouse or family, there would be hell to pay.

Some may think Cruz was an idiot for turning down that kind of money, but all the money in the world couldn't convince Cruz to walk away from firefighting.

I need you to understand something. You think you’ve got me figured out, that I’m some rube firefighter who doesn’t know his way around a balance sheet. Buddy, you have no idea who I am, and you can’t imagine what I’m capable of, but if you come near my firehouse or my family again, you will find out.


It's more than a profession; it's his life, and Cruz wouldn't have been true to himself if he accepted Mark's offer.

Also, who would want to work with a guy like Mark? The venture capitalist showed his true colors when Cruz rebuffed his offer and made us even more certain Cruz made the right call.

Mouch and Platt - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

Meanwhile, Mouch's medal ceremony was everything we could have hoped for.

It was about time the big guy was recognized for the outstanding firefighter he is, and it was nice that everyone came together to celebrate this moment.

It may not have been on the 50-yard line at Soldier Field like Platt wanted, but it was still a touching ceremony.

Speaking of, it was hilarious how Platt tasked Gallo, Ritter, and Violet with doing the impossible and didn't even bat an eye.

Sgt. Trudy Platt is formidable in her own right and wasn't going to let anyone stand in the way of Mouch being celebrated for his heroics.

Boden speaks - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

Lastly, circling back to Kidd's possible transfer, something tells me that may not be the case.

Boden's cryptic comment to Casey about possible changes happening over at 51 leads me to believe Boden may be up for a promotion.

Director: Guys, your friend sounds terrific, he really does. And of course we support our first responders, but we’re hosting a big Pee Wee football fundraiser. It’s been on the books for months. Wish I could help.
Violet: Couldn’t we just borrow a little piece of the field for like 20 minutes?
Ritter: If you met Randall, you’d understand how much he deserves this. He’s devoted his life to helping others.
Gallo: His best years in fact, and he really doesn’t have that many left.
Violet: Yeah, he’s basically… he’s dying.
Gallo: And he’s blind in both eyes.
Director: A blind firefighter?

Right now, Boden is a battalion chief who oversees all of 51.

If he were promoted to deputy or assistant fire chief, then it's possible that Casey, as a captain, could oversee the firehouse.

Gallo and Mouch help - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

And with Casey moving into that role, there would be an open lieutenant slot at 51 on truck, which Kidd would naturally fill.

There's probably more logistical hoopla to this than that, but this scenario would allow Kidd to become a lieutenant and stay at 51.

Stellaride could have its cake and eat it too.

If this is the case, then it's a win-win-win for everyone around.

Ritter plans - Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15

Some stray thoughts:

  • Violet kissed Gallo to mess with him, right? There may still be feelings there, but she wanted to remind him that she always had the upper hand. Gallo might as well say goodbye to their friendship and all the progress they've made because that kiss just set him back to the beginning.

  • When Cruz mentioned Mark had no idea what he was capable of, did anyone else suddenly remember that Cruz left Flaco to die in a burning apartment building near the show's start? That's what flashed before my eyes when Cruz made that threat.

  • As romantic as the proposal was, what were Severide and Kidd thinking when they took their full face masks off? Couldn't Severide have still proposed while wearing his mask? There was no reason for them to take them off, especially since they didn't even kiss at that moment.

So what did you think, Chicago Fire Fanatics?

Is Severide's life in danger?

Will Dawson make a surprise appearance?

Will Boden be promoted?

Don't forget to hit the comments below to let me know your thoughts. If you missed the latest episode, remember you can watch Chicago Fire online at TV Fanatic.

A White-Knuckle Panic Review

Editor Rating: 4.9 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.9 / 5.0 (11 Votes)

Jessica Lerner was a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She retired in October 2021.

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Chicago Fire Season 9 Episode 15 Quotes

Violet: I’ve been meaning to ask, how are things with Grainger. I haven’t seen him at Molly’s in a while.
Brett: Uh, yeah, we broke up.
Violet: Oh, I’m sorry to hear that.
Brett: Greg is a great guy. It had nothing to do with him. I’m the problem, looking for something I can never have.
Violet: What makes you so sure you can’t? From what I’ve seen you already do. I picked up on it the day I got to 51. You and Casey, the way you are with each other, it’s kind of undeniable.

Severide: I’ve been rethinking things.
Casey: How do you mean?
Severide: This marriage idea, maybe it’s not the best move.
Casey: That’s just the nerves talking.
Severide: No, I’m talking about something she said when we first got together. She wanted to lay it all out there, so she brought up her marriage. She said, ‘I’ll never do it again because I don’t want to be in a situation where I can’t just leave.’
Casey: That was a long time ago. I’m not gonna fight you. I get where you’re coming from.