Recap of Chicago Fire Season 6 Episode 4, ‘A Breaking Point’:
In what was probably the best episode in well over a season, last night’s Chicago Fire took my breath away. I’d heard we were going to have a Dawson episode, in which she was going to be in a dangerous situation while off duty, but that was the extent of my advance knowledge about this episode.
“A Breaking Point” already started out differently. Unlike the usual Chicago Fire formula, last night’s episode had a different feel from the get go, and didn’t really focus on several subplots at once like it usually does. Everything starts out as an ordinary day.
Casey would be appointed Captain that afternoon, and Dawson wanted to surprise him with a gift. So she took the morning off and told him a little white lie, saying she was picking up party supplies at the supermarket, when she was really picking up his present at an antique store.
And that was the catalyst for everything that happened. When she was on her way back to her car, she noticed that the construction site on a business building wasn’t exactly doing their job right, because pieces of concrete were falling off the building. So Gabby, being Gabby, puts her stuff in her car — including her phone — and goes back to the construction site, looking to speak with someone in charge.
The guy there obviously doesn’t take criticism on his job well, and tells Dawson to get the hell out, because this is his job and he knows what he’s doing. But of course Gabby doesn’t leave. Instead, she runs into the building and starts warning people that the building is not safe and that it could collapse at any minute.
When she goes down to a sub level — the construction guy running after her, yelling through his radio that someone needed to get security, as there was a crazy woman telling people the building wasn’t safe — the whole thing comes crashing down.
Gabby Dawson to the rescue
Thankfully, Dawson doesn’t get hurt at all when part of the parking structure collapses. Construction guy, however, is not so lucky, and his injury is probably one of the most gruesome shots I have ever seen on this show. When the ceiling came down, something hit him and basically split his head open — literally.
That image nearly made me sick — and just solidified my certainty that I could never, ever do this kind of job — and I have no idea how Dawson even managed to keep it together when she saw him.
Instinct seems to kick in, because she tries to hold the guy’s head together — again, literally. Have I mentioned how horribly gruesome that was, even if they didn’t show the whole thing? — and immediately recruits some help from an army sargeant that was also on the same level as they were. However, construction guy’s head injury is too severe, and he dies soon after that.
So with the first death, and a first perimeter check, Dawson realizes that they are pretty much screwed. All exits are caved in and the elevator was bust, so there was no way out. Of course, the fire department is called immediately, but it’s another house, and the moment they start digging, things start moving down there, risking yet another collapse.
There are six survivors, including Gabby. One of them is a bank teller that has panic attacks; a woman that is basically a horrible racist person; a black guy that does his best to help, but ends up being the horrible lady’s favorite target; the army sargeant; and an asian guy who doesn’t speak English at all.
It takes them a while to understand what the asian guy is so desperate about, but they soon find out that someone he cares about is stuck in the elevator. It turns out it’s his daughter — who thankfully speaks English — and, because of her, they find out that her dad is an electrician, so he manages to fix the phone in the elevator, which finally allows them to talk to the outside world.
Before that, however, Gabby realizes that they are slowly being poisoned by carbon monoxide, so Army guy goes on his own to try and find the source, while she stays behind with everyone else to try and contact someone.
Meanwhile, no one even realizes that Gabby is missing at Firehouse 51, and it’s just so frustrating to watch, because it’s not their call, and they’re just going about their day as usual. It is a rare calm day at the Firehouse, as they get ready for Casey’s ceremony later that day, and it takes Cindy, Herrmann’s wife, arriving at 51 for the Ceremony, and Matt finally starting to get desperate cause no one had heard from his wife all day, for them all to realize that there’s something wrong.
When Cindy confesses that she was in on Dawson’s surprise and that she had actually gone to an antique shop to pick up something for Casey, for them to finally realize that Gabby just might be trapped inside that collapsed building. They immediately jump to action, and arrive just when Gabby finally manages to call someone from the elevator phone.
She talks to Matt, and it’s just so heartbreaking, because she knows she will most likely die, as the building is threatening to give in at any second. He tells her to get everyone to the north wall, just as everything starts crumbling down. She yells at everyone to run in the direction Matt instructed, but obviously, Dawson being Dawson, stays behind and runs in the opposite direction to try and find the Army sargeant.
When the 51 team digs through the rubble enough to find the rest of the survivors, Matt is desperate when he finds out that Gabby stayed behind, so he goes in after her. He finds her performing CPR on Army guy, but she is thankfully unharmed. Together, they managed to get him out, and their reunion outside, and their desperate hug is every bit as emotional and beautiful as you can imagine.
Meanwhile, Casey is already regretting his promotion. It looks like being Captain comes with a lot of paperwork and hassle, and Severide spends the entire morning on his case about it, making fun of him the entire time.
But the ceremony is incredible, and Gabby’s gift — the one that got her in this mess in the first place — is beautiful and so, so thoughtful. She managed to find the badge of the very first Captain of Firehouse 51, a man who had saved countless lives, and she is the one who presents it to Casey. I admit I cried through the whole thing.
– Sylvie confronts Hope about the whole $10k theft, but she comes up with a story that she had an affair with her boss, and now he is trying to pin everything on her. Sylvie buys into her innocent act, but Kidd and I do not buy it, lady.
– I loved how they handled the woman’s racism and prejudice, even if it wasn’t in a good light. It just showed reality, especially when the guy returned her rosary after everything, she still wouldn’t even look at him. She was just a really, really horrible person.
Chicago Fire returns with an all new episode next Thursday, October 26, at 10/9C on NBC.