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Recaps

Chicago Fire “Better To Lie” 

Photo Credit:NBC
Photo Credit:NBC

The title of tonight’s episode is “Better To Lie”, and there could not have been a more perfect title, as the good majority of the episode was about lying and its consequences.  One unique storyline demonstrated that lying may have been the better choice, but in all other situations, the end result was that it is actually better not to lie, as it will always come back to haunt you even if it’s years down the road.

Lie #1

In probably one of the more gruesome scenes in the series thus far, the squad is called to an accident where a car wrecked to allegedly avoid hitting a bicycle messenger.  The driver of the car is missing, and upon further investigation, it is discovered that the car didn’t miss the bicyclist, and instead, he was lodged underneath the car, crushed and very dead.

Mills (Charlie Barnett) spots the injured the driver, who is standing on a bridge and threatening to jump because he knows he just killed a person.  This is a tough one, and if I were in the same position, I’m not sure what I would have said.  But, Mills is very quick on his feet and responds to the man with a blatant lie – the bicyclist didn’t die, and simply had a few broken bones.  When Chief Boden (Eamonn Walker) and Lt. Casey (Jesse Spencer) run to the bridge, they even back up Mills’ lie, and the driver is talked down off the bridge.

         I figured it was better to lie to him, to get him down. He can get over it later – Mills to Boden

So, in this case, a life is saved with a little lie, Mills is declared a hero, and everything appears peachy.  Little do we know that Chief Boden would use this example in his speech at the annual Academy dinner as part of a bigger lie that he has been covering up for years.

Lie #2

I think most of the viewers have been racking their brains on what in the hell could be in the box that Herrmann (David Eigenberg), Dawson (Monica Raymund), and Otis (Yuri Sardarov) found in the safe last week.  Since they were already fully prepared for it to be something disgusting like a mobster’s hand or other body part, I figured it couldn’t have been that.  The only thing I could think of that would upset the trio that much is something like an old deed to the bar, which could potentially nullify their ownership.  It looks like I wasn’t too much off target.

Some very old, handwritten documents pertaining to the ownership of the bar were found in the safe, but inside a separate box was a silver medal of honor.  I think most people would have done nothing and just let the entire thing slide.  After all, how legal could be some old handwritten documents that weren’t even dated? But, it’s eating away at Dawson, and so, they decide to locate the owner of the medal of honor and find out, once and for all, if this guy does have a legitimate stake in the bar.

In this particular case, telling the truth and doing the right thing pays off ten times over.  The guy, Clifford Baylor, is in a rest home, has no interest in the bar at all, and is just thrilled to get his medal back.  So, the threesome can finally move forward and make preparations to open the bar.  Oh, and the entire situation finally gives them a name for the bar, “Molly’s”, which they had been arguing incessantly about for weeks.  This storyline was highly clichéd and in some ways cheesy, but it told us volumes about these 3 characters, and provided us with strong indicators of who in the firehouse had honor and integrity and who did not.

Lie #3

This lie pertains to Peter Mills’ father and how he was killed.  From the viewers’ standpoint, we know very little about Henry Mills.  The only details we know for sure is that he was killed in the line of duty many years ago, and Mills’ mother had been very adamant about her son not following his father’s footsteps, fearing that he would be killed too.

We learn tonight that there’s a lot more to the story.  Lt. Severide’s father, Bennie Severide (Treat Williams), as well as Chief Boden, had been in the same burning building the night Henry Mills died, and for some reason, Bennie believes that Boden is to be blame for Mills’ death and should come clean about it.

They finally confront each other at the end of the episode, and the mother of shockers is dropped in our laps (with Dawson just looking on, equally shocked and in awe).  On the day Mills had died, he had been acting erratically and taking unnecessary chances to try and show himself up to the man who was sleeping with his wife, and that man was Boden.

If you think back to some prior episodes, this does actually make sense.  Chief Boden had mentioned getting the scars on his back trying to save a firefigher who was trying to be too big of a hero, and he had reprimanded Cruz (Joe Minoso) numerous times for trying to be Superman.  It now seems obvious that the firefighter Boden had been talking about in these stories was Henry Mills.

However, the biggest impact of this discovery is on the character of Chief Boden.  I don’t know about the rest of the viewers, but I had put Boden up on a pedestal and looked at him as almost flawless.  The man was the authority figure in Firehouse 51, did honorable things like trying to save firebug Ernie’s life, and I don’t think any of us would have guessed that such a strong character had secrets of this magnitude. For me, this paper doll image of the almighty Chief has been shattered, and worst yet, it has been shattered in front of one of his subordinates, Dawson.

For the most part, I thought this episode was very good, and if I had to grade it, I would give it a low “A”.   It had a strong, central message that was carried through multiple storylines, each providing crucial character development, and at the same time, provided enough action so as not to lose the viewers’ interest.  Nice work, Firehouse 51 and Chicago Fire. 

Chicago Fire airs on Wednesday nights at 10 p.m. EST on NBC.

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3 Comments

  1. Robin

    So! … is Chief Peter’s biological father? Oh … the plot thickens!

    1. Mary Powers

      Hey, great minds think alot! 🙂 I thought the same thing…

      1. Robin

        Maybe we’ll find out Henry Mills was a big ole abusive jerk or something and we can put Chief back up on his pedestal. 🙂

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