Chicago Fire 10×06 “Dead Zone” is, in some ways, about missing and moving on. Not forgetting, no, and never getting over, just …taking the next step forward. And then the next one. And like with any kind of grief, the first step is the hardest. The first day. The first moment of emptiness. That’s what this episode was for us, and in some ways, for the people in Firehouse 51. Except, you know, they can’t have a quiet day to reflect on what’s changed, and neither can we because this is TV.
Moving on from Casey might seem impossible – it has been 200 episodes. But the truth is, the next step, and the one after that is easier for Firehouse 51 than it’s ever been. Because Casey isn’t actually gone, not really. And not even in a “his spirit is right here with us,” kinda way. He’s just a phone call away. He’s still Brett’s boyfriend, he’s still Severide’s friend. He’s still Matt, he’s just locationally challenged at the moment.
This show has lost other people, and it’s been heartbreaking in a way this just …isn’t. As sad as it is, this episode cements that Casey’s goodbye is anything but permanent. He’ll be back in our screens, or at least, he’ll be back in the lives of the people he loves, the people he hasn’t truly left, just cannot be there for in the same way he was before.
What the Firehouse does without him, though, is a testament to what they’ve built, what Casey has been a part of for so long. And yes, the foundation seems to not just be strong enough to hold, but strong enough to help others, too.
The two storylines in this episode don’t hold the same weight in what makes this episode work, however. As much as I appreciate Severide in general, particularly considering the man he started out as, the arson part of this episode lacks the urgency, and of course, the teamwork that the other storyline has. Plus, taking Severide away from the Firehouse just as the show probably needs him to step up and be a leader seems like the wrong choice.
Or maybe I just miss Stella, who knows? No, I probably do miss Stella. But the arson case is still kinda boring, and Severide should have had a moment or two to miss his best friend, to talk to Brett or Boden about it. To just …be Kelly, not just Lt. Severide, the fearless investigator. We haven’t even seen much of him missing Stella, and all of those things are important. Fans care about them. They want to see them. Like, that’s literally what fanfiction is for.
The other storyline in Chicago Fire 10×06 “Dead Zone,” however, allows every one in this Firehouse to shine, and does a great job at showcasing the heart and the spirit that has made Chicago Fire work – with Casey, and that will hopefully continue without him. Because yes, we will miss Matt Casey. They will miss Matt Casey. But these people, his people, they will hold on for him.
And if this episode is to be believed, so will Brettsey. This isn’t a promise, of course. Things can change. But let’s be sure of one thing, right now the show is full on betting on Brettsey. It’s not being unequivocal, and it’s not pivoting away to some other possibility. Sylvie Brett is in a committed relationship with a man she loves, a man who loves her. And yes, he cannot be with her right now. And yes, that will be hard. There will be challenges. But that’s a good thing if you’re a fan of the couple.
You know what the easiest way to end Brettsey right now would be? Stop talking about it. Stop bringing up Casey. Out of mind, out of sight the thing until it feels okay for Sylvie to move on, for Matt to stay away. Until fans start hoping that’s what happens. Chicago Fire is definitely not choosing that way. They’re not choosing the path of least resistance. Instead, they’re choosing to move forward with what might be the harder path.
They’re choosing to stick it out. And as much as it sucks, right now, we all have to, once again, trust that what they built is strong enough to hold. They certainly seem to believe it is.
Things I think I think:
- Best sign for Brettsey is that the show isn’t just pretending things are normal. They’re not trying to jedi mind trick us into forgetting the relationship was a thing or trying to get us to forget how much they – and so many people – invested in it. That means they’re still committed to telling that story, in whatever way they can.
- I might be laughing at Mouch and the phone forever. But Mouch had the last laugh in the end, so I guess I shouldn’t.
- “Or her.” Yes, OR HER. Women can be arsonists too!
- What a moment to lose your phone, Brett.
- So, the Father knows? Now, that’s a twist.
- Define sort of, Severide. SORT OF CATHOLIC?
- Herrmann taking charge is my aesthetic. Herrmann and Mouch? Perfection.
- That I’m surprised at how ingenious the plan with the coins is probably ages me, right?
- Oh, the pictures. The voicemails. I’d cry. But also, backup your phone. Always have backups.
- “You’ll take more pictures when you go visit. And he will leave more voicemails.” Violet is the best friend.
- Has it been two episodes without Stella or 8643?
- THE VOICEMAIL.
- “I love you.”
Agree? Disagree? What did you think of Chicago Fire 10×06 “Dead Zone”? Share with us in the comments below!
Chicago Fire airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on NBC.