By Natalie Abrams
March 22, 2018 at 11:00 PM EDT
Mitch Haaseth/ABC

Warning: This story contains major spoilers from the series premiere of Station 19. Read at your own risk!

Station 19 brought the heat in its two-hour series premiere on Thursday.

The Grey’s Anatomy spinoff launched with a simple premise: Leading lady Andy Herrera (Jaina Lee Ortiz) was distraught to learn that her father, Station 19 Captain Pruitt Herrera (Miguel Sandoval), has an aggressive form of cancer. But Andy was also ready to fill the void by stepping up to be the new captain. The only problem? So too was her boyfriend, Jack Gibson (Grey Damon).

Their relationship was quick to end, as the two are now pitted against each other in a months-long process to see who will take over the firehouse. How will Andy handle that? What’s next for the firefighters of Station 19? And how much will the show cross over with Grey’s? EW turned to executive producer Stacy McKee to get the scoop:

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Andy has aims to take over the firehouse. What can you tease about the hurdles standing in her way?
STACY MCKEE: Competition with Jack will be a lot of it, because she’ll both have to figure out how to lead the station, which is definitely a little more nuanced and tricky than she probably thinks it might be, but then she’ll also have to allow Jack to lead when it’s time for his shift. Then she’ll have to take a backseat to him, which is also its own tricky situation. But there’s also, in the character of Frankel (Leslie Hope), who we met, she has another person who is her superior, who she still has to report to. Plus you’ve got her dad, who’s around, and though he’s out of commission, he’s not completely out of the world, so she’ll also have a fair amount of him backseat-driving and looking over her shoulder.

Obviously they’re broken up, but how will this affect Andy’s relationship with Jack? Will it get very contentious?
For sure, of course it will, but it will be interesting. It will have ups and downs for sure, and though they’ve broken up, it’s not the end of everything for them.

Will we start to see lines drawn in the firehouse, as maybe the firefighters start to side with either Jack or Andy?
Yes, we definitely will, because people have their own ideas about what makes a great captain and what doesn’t, and we will definitely start to see certain people gravitating toward other people, and then maybe surprising themselves by changing their viewpoints here and now.

What’s next for Andy and Ryan (Alberto Frezza)?
The triangle between Andy and Jack and Ryan will definitely play a big part of this upcoming season. There will be a lot of push-pull, and there will be, I think, a lot of fun to be had there.

How will Andy be dealing with her father’s illness? It seems like she’s putting everything into her work, so at what point does that cause her to break?
I think you’ve definitely nailed it. At some point, she’s gonna have to deal with those feelings, and at some point she and her dad are gonna have to really pause and actually communicate in a real way. So of course we’re building to a really incredible, emotional, hopefully compelling relationship between her and her dad. That’s definitely one of those ongoing stories that we want to continue to explore

Can you talk about how we’ll come to know more about these characters? Will we be getting flashbacks?
We don’t have any flashbacks planned currently, but we definitely start to dig into each character a little bit more every episode, and you start to learn bits and pieces here and there. I think some of the most interesting ways to learn about some of these characters is not only in how they run into a fire or how they don’t, or how they conduct themselves at an incident, and the sorts of decisions they make there, but also in their downtime. We’ll spend a lot of time at the fire station. We get to see how they interact there, and how they interact with the people that cross into their lives from the various incidents.

Can you tease some of the cases we’ll see the firefighters tackle and how they’re unique to Seattle?
Generally, I can say that we have a breadth of different types of calls. They aren’t just fire, although we do have a lot of things that are fire-related, but we certainly also deal with medical emergencies and just strange situations that people find themselves in sometimes. And we have a lot of big adrenaline-rushy type of calls, but we also have really small, sort of personal emotional ones too, so you kind of run the gamut.

What challenges is Ben going to face as he’s really learning how to be part of this firehouse?
He’s gonna face a lot of challenges. And at first, I think he’s really enamored of the adrenaline rush, and the energy that you get with that, and how fun all of this seems, and the attraction of awesomeness of fire. But then, I think it’s really gonna hit home for him when he runs into some incidents where the patients might affect him in a different way.

How much crossover will we see with Grey’s Anatomy?
There will definitely by some, for sure, and like in the most awesome, exciting ways, in small ways and big ways and all sorts of ways.

Will there be any events, like the two finales tying together?
That’s not the plan right now. I mean, I don’t wanna talk about finales, but I could definitely talk about over the course of this season, we certainly have cross-pollination with characters, with situations, with places, with all of it. We definitely have a lot of fan candy.

Station 19 airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.

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