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Chicago Fire Season 6 Episode 2 recap: You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover

Taylor Kinney and Jesse Spencer in Chicago Fire
Severide (Taylor Kinney) and Casey (Jesse Spencer) talk to one of the students about the fire

Last night’s Chicago Fire was everything that I had been hoping the premiere could have been. Even though “Ignite on Contact” felt like a continuation of the Season 6 premiere, the pacing of the episode was so much better, and it had that classic Chicago Fire vibe — cool case, drama and some funny moments, which are the things that make this show so good.

That said, last night’s episode picked up after the events of the premiere, so we were dealing with the fallout from the school fire; Kidd has just moved in with Severide (temporarily); Brett’s friend Hope is still in town, and I still don’t like her; and last, but definitely not least, Mouch is still milking the “I-almost-died” card for all its worth. But let’s break this down, shall we?

Kidd

As you all remember, she was evicted from her apartment last week, and had nowhere else to go, and no time to actually find another place. So Severide, being the good friend that he is, offered to let her stay with him until she can find a place of her own. The thing is, they have a history together and — even though they’re just friends now — things can get complicated when you’re working side by side all day, and living under the same roof.

Kelly is used to living by himself by now, so he’s walking around in his underwear, being super comfortable around her. I don’t think he’s doing this on purpose, but when she sees him in his underwear, Kidd promptly takes off her shirt and starts prancing around with just a bra on.

Call me crazy, but I think she’s just baiting him — however involuntary that might be. She keeps denying that she still has any feelings for him, but Dawson (and all of us) sees it for what it really is: Kidd is definitely still into him, even if she keeps playing the friend card. She respected it when he was with Anna, but now there is nothing standing in her way. So I can only see this new living situation of theirs going one of two ways.

They are either going to fight and it’s going to be nothing but trouble; or this is TPTB’s way of paving the road for them to get back together. I love their friendship, and I love the chemistry between Miranda Rae Mayo and Taylor Kinney, so I am definitely hoping for the latter. Or just let them be friends, for all I care — just don’t split them up. Please.

Hope

Now, Sylvie’s friend is a little viper, isn’t she? I really don’t trust that girl, and she is definitely up to no good. Poor Brett loves having her around, because they’re childhood friends, but you can tell Hope is hiding something. That, and she is also so incredibly jealous of the life Sylvie has with her 51 family. I don’t know what happened to her, that made her come running to Chicago, but something definitely happened, and I’m willing to bet that it was something bad.

And to make matters worse, Hope is set on having Severide. Kelly, being the ladies man that he is, doesn’t mind the attention at all, but I am absolutely sure this is not going to end well. I just hope this Hope chick doesn’t screw things up for Brett — our sweet, innocent Brett — because if she does, we will riot.

Mouch

Our dear old Mouchie is milking the near death experience thing for all its worth. Last week, he enrolled Firehouse 51 in the Annual Firefighter Muster, which no one had any interest in participating in. But he played the Oh-I-almost-died-and-you-should-do-what-I-want card, and the guys had no choice but to accept that they were all going to be part of the competition.

So things only got worse after 51 responded to a call to assist Firehouse 87, and apparently the two houses don’t really get along. So Mouch decided to bet a thousand dollars with 87 that they would beat them at the Firefighters muster, and then proceeded to drive everyone crazy with training. It was super fun, but I was feeling so bad for Brett by the end of it, that I was glad to see Joe finally getting fed up with Mouch during the muster and telling him he’s not going to be his pushover anymore, just because he almost died.

In the end, 51 wins and, overall, it was a great experience. These kinds of events always show the characters bonding a bit more outside of work, and this time was no different. I especially loved seeing Dawson and Kidd training together and just hanging out — it had been way too long since we last saw them being friends, instead of just coworkers.

Case of the week

Following up on last week’s Season 6 premiere, “Ignite on Contact” wrapped up the school fire storyline. Donna thought the fire at the school had been intentional, and kept insisting on it. In turn, Chief Boden reacted by trying to validate her theory at all costs, which didn’t sit well with Casey and Severide. He asked his lieutenants to go back to the school and oversee the investigation, but Casey and Severide ruled out arson at first, which just pissed Boden off.

This storyline was actually pretty cool, because it ended up being about bullying, revenge, and regret and a really damaged kid. When Chief Boden insisted that they find something to turn the school fire into a criminal investigation, he obviously wasn’t thinking clearly, but it was something that made Severide and Casey dig deeper on this case.

They went back to the school to talk to the students about what happened in the chemistry lab, and immediately identified a kid, Rashidi, that clearly knew something about what happened. But there was this other kid named Matteo, who seemed to be the rebel and bully of the class, and with just one look from him Rashidi was already avoiding the Lieutenants.

After that, Dawson and Brett responded to a call at the public pool, and it turns out someone had broken Rashidi’s arm. He still kept his mouth shut, but all signs pointed to Matteo being the culprit. And this is where this case was actually really cool, because this kid was so damaged that, when Severide pushed him, he even confessed to a crime he didn’t commit, just out of spite. Just because that’s what everyone would expect from him, anyway.

But it’s only when the lab analysis about the chemicals that had caused the fire came back, that their investigation took a different turn. Severide was adamant that he really didn’t think Matteo had done it, and it’s only when they find out that one of the chemicals involved was pool chlorine that things point to Rashidi’s direction.

It turns out that Matteo bullied Rashidi a lot, and he just wanted to get back at him. So he thought a small fire at Matteo’s table in the chem lab would be enough to blame him, and have the problematic kid expelled. But things got out of hand, and instead of just a small fire, Rashidi caused an explosion. So instead of solving his problems, he created a whole new, much bigger problem for everyone — especially the teacher who was fighting for her life in the burn unit at Chicago Med.

Overall, I loved “Ignite on Contact”. It had a much better pacing the last week’s premiere and it touched down on everything I love about this show. Can’t wait to see what is in store for us next week.

Chicago Fire returns next Thursday, October 12, at 10/9C on NBC.


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