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Chicago Fire recap: Season 5, Episode 7

Casey takes another gut punch, while Boden takes a stand to protect James

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Matt Dinerstein/NBC

Chicago Fire

TV Show
Current Status:
In Season

Just like last week, One Chicago is down to, well, one this week as Chicago Fire heads toward its midseason finale (and 100th episode) next week with what looks to be a very special occasion for Lieutenant Casey and Gabby Dawson. But before we can get to that, we have to deal with what happens tonight, which is not quite as happy an event as what we expect for the milestone hour.

Chicago Fire Season 5, Episode 7: “Lift Each Other”

This season has been an absolute seesaw for Lieutenant Casey. He’s had a few key rescues on his shifts, but he’s endured some pretty excruciating losses in recent episodes. Remember the woman who was flayed alive while Casey frantically tried to pry open her bathroom window? This is different…but somehow even worse.

This week, the team is sent to a closed warehouse where a pair of kids have snuck in to play Avengers, which for some god-awful reason entails jumping off high shelves. One of the kids — the conscious one — has probably broken his legs or knee caps in the fall — but the other, Wiley, is stuck hanging upside-down with his foot caught in one of the shelves. Casey wastes no time bringing the kid down and getting him to breathe again with CPR, and all seems well and good…until he goes to the hospital and learns from Maggie the kid’s in a coma.

As new foster parents to Louie, this news seems to hit Casey and Dawson like a ton of bricks, but Casey’s especially hard on himself about the boy’s decline and consults with Kelly Severide to see if anything he did (or didn’t do, for that matter) contributed to the amount of time the boy was left stranded and without breath. Making matters worse, his parents are obviously inconsolable, and the devastated dad visits the station to deliver them some “thank you” pastries, remarking that their work is never appreciated by the public until they’re needed.

If that wasn’t gut-wrenching enough, Casey visits the hospital the next day and finds out the boy’s condition worsened and he actually passed away. That…hurts.

But Dawson’s going through her own brand of an emotional crisis, because her dear old dad decided their swanky 40th-anniversary soiree was the perfect place to announce he’s leaving her mother. Antonio (who brought along a very trepidatious Sylvie Brett as his date, by the way) is fit to be tied over the news and wants to exact some fist-to-face vengeance against his father for being such a brute about the whole thing and embarrassing their mom.

We don’t get to see it, but we imagine Casey had a hand in calming and dispensing with the crowd while Antonio and Sylvie tended to the mom. When he finds Dawson beside herself in the staircase, he doesn’t betray his own anguish or dare to compare notes on who’s had the worse day. Instead, he simply offers to be there for her, however she needs. If we weren’t already convinced Casey’s made of solid friggin’ gold, this oughta do it.

Casey finds himself in a second victim-not-breathing situation soon after, as he tries to hoist a man out of a quicksand-like substance in the bed of a semi. He has trouble finding his bearings or getting the guy out with any semblance of speed, even with Stella and Herrmann’s help digging him out. Luckily, this time, the coast seems clear for the man, so this success story will just have to do for now.

When Dawson does find out about what Casey’s withheld for her benefit, she’s completely dumbfounded by his generosity of spirit. She kisses him like she did in the old days and assures us all that occasional baby-sitting conundrums aside, they’ve still got it.

NEXT: Boden takes matters into his own hands