You know what? Maybe I’ll just turn this recap into a weekly Kenneth Choi/ Chimney Han love-in, because dang it all — he’s just the best. Take last night’s episode, for example. Chimney’s at home, KonMari-ing his apartment because he’s still recovering from those stab wounds, and he STILL managed to be the MVP of the whole thing. Because when your hi-tech call center is hit with a power outage, it pays to have a bored first responder on your staff with nothing better to do than keep his TV tuned to a cable news channel all day.
That’s right — this week the crazy emergencies take a backseat to the craziness that ensues when the 9-1-1 system crashes. Digital calls can’t get through, the operators are working off of paper maps, and the responders go into tactical emergency mode (meaning they drive around proactively rather than waiting to be dispatched). The scramble to go old-school is sort of fascinating, presenting unique challenges while underscoring that those issues used to be the norm. When there wasn’t GPS helping ping an exact location, you needed to know that a given address could be referring to any one of the three different San Vicente Boulevards in LA, and without a master database collating responses you need to have someone tasked to make sure multiple calls aren’t arriving and being dispatched for the same emergency. And despite the FBI counterterrorism unit arriving to investigate, the source of the outage is determined to be… an electrical fire. Budget cuts, amirite?
The main emergency of the night is a fire in a gas main that causes a series of explosions in a residential cul-de-sac (likely inspired by the Merrimack Valley gas explosions), and it’s this event that Chim watches on TV, courtesy of footage from a news helicopter. They report that no first responders have arrived on the scene, so Chim grabs his cell phone and calls Buck directly to tell him to get his butt over there. But when Bobby’s team arrives, they discover that they are the only truck available — and their truck doesn’t have enough water to put out all the fires. Worse yet, a child is trapped in one of the flaming homes, and when Eddie goes in to get him, he gets trapped as well. Luckily, Chim’s still watching from home, and makes another call… to a freaking AERIAL RESPONSE TEAM, which flies over to dump a load of water on the street, saving the day. Now, most of the time we hear about aerial water drops being deployed to combat wildfires, but I did find one case where it was used to douse an apartment building that was on fire in Los Angeles in 2017.
The other emergency of the night was a “geriatric” pregnancy… because the mother was 38 years old (don’t worry, my soul only died a little bit inside, hearing that). She goes into labor in the lobby of a high rise, and by the time Bobby’s team arrives it’s too late to get her to the hospital à la the wife of Seth Meyers. Hen assists in what seems to be a straight-forward and successful birth — and then the woman goes into cardiac arrest. Hen does chest compressions the whole way to the hospital, but by the time they arrive she’s been unresponsive so long that the doctors call her time of death. The father, following along with the baby, says goodbye to his wife as she lays on the gurney just outside of the ER. He even lays the baby on her chest, to take one look at its mother. And when the baby touches her face… HER FREAKIN’ HEART STARTS BEATING AGAIN. It’s a miracle! And you know, I always try to Google these emergencies to see where the writers came up with the ideas, but this time I genuinely thought it was too hacky and obvious to be real. So of course I immediately found two different cases of “miracle” births — one in which the mother technically gave birth WHILE SHE WAS DEAD, and then revived afterward, and another story in which a stillborn baby was delivered via C-section from an unresponsive mother, and then both mother AND child came back to life. So, you know, happy early Easter, y’all!
On the personal front, Athena’s son Harry seems to have a bit of a hero-worship issue when it comes to his new daddy Bobby. Michael overhears him bragging about Bobby saving lives during the earthquake, and then catches his son setting fire to the neighbor’s lawn in order to practice putting it out. Which… sucks. But then Michael takes it out on Bobby, blaming him for being a bad (too good?) influence. And I think this is the first real ding to Michael’s reputation as the World’s Best Ex-Husband, but don’t worry. Turns out Michael has been extra on-edge lately because his boyfriend dumped him — a fact he hasn’t even confessed to Athena yet, but does reveal to Bobby. And then they bond over pie and ice cream and decide to be a united front when it comes to the kids, and Michael returns to his former glory.
Chim and Maddie spend the whole episode preparing for their “second first date” — only to realize they aren’t really ready for it. Maddie can’t even stand returning to her apartment and seeing the spot in the courtyard where Chim nearly died. They are both still healing from the horrible events of the attack, and pretending to be alright isn’t the same as BEING alright — and Maddie worries that they’ll never be able to get back to the relationship that was just beginning to bud. So they decide to take a break. But when Chim says, “We’re not saying goodbye, we just need a minute” — I mean, am I the only one who thought to themselves, “That’s exactly what you say when it really IS goodbye?”
What do you think? Is this the end for Chim and Maddie, or will SOMEONE ON THE WRITING TEAM finally stop hurting my poor unicorn baby and let Chim have a bit of good luck for a change?
Header Image Source: Fox