Fall TV Preview

What Happens Next: Who Survived Chicago Fire's Explosive Finale?

Chicago Fire Season 3 Spoilers Death

TVLine hits rewind on the TV season’s biggest “What Happens Next” finales, then invites you to predict the cliffhanger outcomes


So went Chicago Fire‘s Season 2 finale, which saw a burning building explode with almost the entire cast of characters inside of it.

With an eruption that huge, “someone has to die. [And] someone does,” executive producer Matt Olmstead tells TVLine.

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As a result, the catastrophic event has “a lot of ramifications in terms of not everybody makes it, and those who do make it, their lives take some turns because of it,” teases the EP.

So who does not emerge out of the rubble alive? In previewing the aftermath for Firehouse 51’s bravest, Olmstead ruled out some possible casualties. Severide, for one, will deal with the consequences in a possibly self-destructive manner.

“As we’ve established on the show, he’s prone to going off on his own and having a few cocktails when things don’t go his way,” describes the EP. That in turn, “might cause a problem with him and [Chicago P.D.‘s] Lindsay. The thing we like about him and Lindsay is they’re cut from the same cloth. They don’t judge each other. No one’s ragging on the other person for not being available. They’re really similar.”

But with Severide in a “separate headspace” because of the explosion, “there’s a complication going forward” with the couple. (Another pair, however, looks likely to be getting engaged.)

One of the other characters facing a “big turn” in the wake of the destruction is Mills, so we can put him on the Survivors List. And the presence of Yuri Sardarov, who offered the following teaser at NBC’s TCA Summer Press Tour party, also bodes well for Otis: “The cliffhanger is going to force a few things into perspective, and everything is going to be revealed in the first episode. I just read it, and I was tearing up. It’s beautiful. It’s incredible.”

So now that you have all the evidence, rewatch the explosive moment below, then review our poll options and share your predictions for who will be saying goodbye.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Dean says:

    Shay, who else in the fire house gang can affect him so personally.

    • wordsmith says:

      I would tend to agree. It would be a shocking loss, but one that would push the show forward rather than dragging it down. Too many of the other characters would leave story threads hanging or compromise the dynamics of the group.

      My second guess would be Mouch – the elder statesman and unofficial house mascot. Losing him would hit everybody hard in just the right way.

    • Rook says:

      I don’t know. Everyone is saying Shay but then they would be killing off half of the female presence on the show and would have to hire two new medics because Dawson passed her fire test.
      Plus Kelly would feel guilty not being able to rescue anyone at 51. And the article never said it would affect him personally, they said he would be self-destructive.

    • chelsa says:

      I hope not :(

  2. Bwhit says:

    Okay now I am convinced it’s Shay. The only death that could really make Kelly go off the deep end is her. Maybe Mills was right there and couldn’t get to her? Why do any of them have to die?

    • Dean says:

      Anyone can die in the Chicago shows. Fire lost, andy, Halie, and Jones. PD, lost Willhite and Jin. Smart money in season 3 is Shay, I hope I’m wrong but like it says it Severide takes it personally.

      • Bwhit says:

        I know that but as a fan I love the cast chemistry :) it makes sense from a story standpoint, they had that moment where they said they loved each other and said they would work it out always. The title of the premiere is Always.

    • Lauren says:

      Because it was a backflase almost… Whoever was in the way would have gotten killed even if they were at ground level

  3. Pia says:

    I like how so many voted for Newhouse because no one knows who he is.

    My vote would be Shay (for obvious reasons) or Cruz, mostly because there is not much else to do with his storyline.

  4. Sarah says:

    What about Kapp, who is on Squad??? I thought he went in the building too. He’s very close to Severide, so that would be my guess.

  5. westwingwolf says:

    Newhouse would be the easiest since he’s the newest, but that wouldn’t strike a chord with the audience as much. Plus he’s supposed to be looking into Mills’ father’s family. Of course, Mills could always find another way. But I maintain that it will have to be someone who has been with the crew longer to show the impact. I don’t want any of them to die. I love them all. But everyone on squad besides Severide & Mills is more random than the others, so if I had to pick, I’d want someone from there. Which could send Severide on a spiral if he lost one or most of his men.

    Oh, and can Dawson & Casey please have at least a month of uninterrupted happiness? They need it after everything they’ve been through.

  6. Ant says:

    Please be Shay

  7. Sara says:

    I will be crushed if it’s Shay!

  8. dianesef says:

    For storyline, I’d say it’s Shay – she’ll affect everyone and her story has run it’s course + they are getting a new female paramedic in the new season.. Mouch just started up with Platt at the end of last season – can’t see them just leaving that and he’s beloved and growing – a great character arc – but would probably not affect Severide so personally. Apparently David Eisenberg moved his family back to Chi-town from L.A. recently, so probably not him. Mills, Dawson, Severide, Otis – all doing P.R. saying they can’t wait for this year’s storyline to develop – and recent clues to them living. Casey is safe per the article. That pretty much leaves Cruz and Shay. Cruz is the only Latino member of 51….my money is on Shay – will really affect everyone. We’ll see.

    • Dean says:

      Where did it say there will be a new paramedic?

      • Rook says:

        Dawson passed the firefighter exam, so they will need a new medic anyways.

      • sarah j says:

        Another article said there would be a female paramedic BUT that does not mean that Shay will be the one to die. They need a replacement for Gaby as the vacant firefighter spot will go to her! That way she does not have to go to that god awful fire house, and I think Casey and her will stage a break up so they can work in the same house. Either that or she will jump right to Squad, so maybe the one who dies is on Squad and if that is the case then I say Capp.

        • Dean says:

          This news about a new female paramedic and the fact the death will affect Severide personally only cements that Shay will bite the dust.

    • Mike says:

      And it is not Cruz.

  9. wrstlgirl says:

    Whew!! I was really worried it was going to be Mills. I have no clue who it could be so no guesses here.

  10. Leila says:

    I CAN’T BE SHAY… RIGHT?? I hope is someone from the Squad, and maybe Severide makes some mistake and thinks that it was his fault… because we can’t lose Shay, not now, not ever.

  11. Kristina says:

    I think they put out this tease about the death affecting Severide the most because they want everyone to jump to the conclusion that it’s Shay. That way, when they kill someone else it’ll be more shocking. Besides, she’s one of the core four and a fan favourite. They can’t kill Shay.

  12. Cas says:

    I mean I really like Shay but I wouldn’t be as sad if it was her over others. And I agree there is not much else going on with her story line. They have been kind of slow this past season and I wouldn’t miss it.

  13. kate'shomesick says:

    Honestly. That cast is so perfect and they already killed a couple of characters…I hate when shows start to kill of characters purely to fabricate more drama (too many…it becomes obvious and unrealistic) so I really hope that’s not going to happen since I LOVE that show….

  14. Stacy says:

    I think it’s Capp. He’s worked with Severide the longest so his loss would effect him greatly without disrupting other storylines.

  15. Laurelle says:

    Almost guaranteed it’s Shay. “Always” was the last thing that Severide said to her and is the title of the premiere. Also, Lauren German is billed as “Leslie Elizabeth Shay” for the next episode on imdb while all other character names remain the same. I can’t see them randomly adding her middle name unless it was for a funeral. If you rematch the last 10 minutes of the finale and listen to the things she says to Severide and Dawson it sounds eerily like a goodbye.
    I’m not sure how I feel about this. Shay was my favourite character and I basically only watched the show for all of the cute moments between her and Severide.

  16. S. F says:

    I definitely think it’s Mouch. He’s like the uncle everyone wants, and you never want to lose!

  17. Alison says:

    Even though the actors are doing press for the show and everything, doesn’t mean they are safe. I mean, look at Kate Mara from House of Cards. She posted pics from the set through out the filming of the second season and (SPOILER) she was offed in 1st episode of second season. She did that to throw off suspicion. The Chicago shows just did their table reads and start filming tomorrow. It truly could be Otis.. or Shay…or Mouch..

  18. Carrie says:

    I wish it was Mills. I can’t stand the character. And i am sad to say Shay should go as well, i liked her first season okay enough but she’s ruining stuff for me now. I love everyone else.

  19. sarah says:

    It will not be Severide, Casey, Dawson, Mills, Shay (she just had a near death experience a few episodes before the finale), Otis or Newhouse (he is too new and the fans are not invested in him). I am sure Mouch is safe because they just gave him a love interest.
    So my guess is Cruz or Hermann and sadly the more I think about it I say it will be Hermann, he passed the Lieutenants test and he and Casey can not be Lieutenants at the same fire house.

    • sarah says:

      Please not Hermann! I love that actor/ character. He and Mouch bring a much needed element of humor to the show. I could see the argument for Capp – it makes sense that it would affect Severide who worked closely with him, but wouldn’t cause a massive audience uproar. I don’t want it to be Shay but can anyone see a possibility where they kill off Shay and Gaby agrees to stay on as a paramedic for a while to ease the transition of a new person? That would enable them to push off moving her out of the firehouse….

  20. Terry says:

    I hate to see anybody go its a great show. Although the finale was definitely suspense. I just cant wait until September comes to see where it leads us to another great season.

  21. Kenny says:

    Please don’t take anyone?!?! 😢😢😢

  22. kokoniasta says:

    Don’t you think It also could be Otis? They’ve grown closer especially since whole Katie-Otis thing.

  23. After watching Game of Thrones Shay would not surprise me at all, But I hope I am wrong…

  24. Patricia Loudon says:

    They shouldn’t be Killing off anyone. The show was GREAT just they way it was. Did you ever hear “When it works, DON”T fix it” TV exec’s are just plain stupid. They won’t pull in more viewers and just might LOSE some.

  25. Really hate to see anyone go but I’m saying Shay because the effect on Severide and Newhouse and Capps because I don’t remember who they are.

  26. Jonathan says:

    It’s Shay, no doubt. Everything point towards that, sadly.

    Keep in mind: The name of episode 3.1 is “Always”, the exact last word Severide said to Shay before entering the building.

    I’m upset and if indeed Shay is dead then I’m done with this show

  27. yoni says:

    If it’s Shay, I for one will stop watching…

  28. Newt says:

    Add Tony from squad to the voting list, he was in there too!

  29. Jessica says:

    I think it could be Shay. I really hope I’m wrong because I love her, but it makes sense because of “Always” and how Severide is supposed to be affected. If it’s not Shay then I think it will be Cruz. He hasn’t had a big storyline recently. The actor that plays Otis said he cried when reading the script, and his character and Cruz are really close so that makes sense, too. I love them all so I’m going to be in tears no matter what.

  30. Lauren says:

    It’s either Shay or Capp who dies. But most likely Shay, considering she is more of a main character than Capp, and as others have pointed out, the season premiere is called ‘Always’ and that was the last thing Severide had said to Shay.

    If Shay dies I will be devastated. I was hoping they wouldn’t kill off the only gay character on the show.

  31. savanah says:

    I don’t want anyone to die plz just don’t let it be dawson, Casey, or shay I really don’t want it to end like this but oh well.

    I LOVE CHICAGO FIRE!!!!!!!!!!


  32. Mills because drawing his Mom and paternal father together would cause problems in Chiefs new marriage…

  33. gus says:

    I would say Shay, her character is kind of played out and boring. Her death affect everyone the most.

  34. aurat22 says:

    OK know I am late to party but I have a theory that’s different. I think the Captain goes into the building to aid his team and gets killed in his rescue attempts. It would devastate them all, especially if they try to rescue him and fail. Severide would take that hard. Maybe Mill’s finds out after that his Dad really wasn’t his Dad but the Captain was and now he is gone too. Casey might become Captain and Gabby could go on the truck at 51. Herman fills Casey’s lieutenant spot. Things just seemed to happy for the Captain with new wife, new baby, and security on the job. On a drama usually if a character gets everything he has been wishing for, he/she gets killed. Just a thought!

    • hmm. now that really would be an unexpected turn… Chief Boden. He leaves his own wedding with Donna telling him something to the effect of “husband and hero in one day”… considering he was the only one not geared up and left standing outside – he might be going in after his men, getting them out..and while looking for the last one, he gets burried in the rubble….since the season ended with him OBVIOUSLY alive, that really would be a turn in story line. Also it would have a great impact on all of them. Boden is a great influence to Mills, he looks up to him, even though he did not always trust his decisions. Could be that Severide is to fill his shoes…but those are some big shoes to fill and it might just be a bit too much to handle for him.
      I doubt it will be Newhouse or Capp..they have ben recurring so far, but not major cast members. Shay would be reasonable choice looking at the way Severide will be affected, however “politically” it would be the wrong decision. Killing Dawson would have the greater impact on Casey, and he really has been through enough as it is… not very credible. Hermann is an option, but he is the family man – we had that in 1×1 … okay, he has 5 kids, so that would just make it bigger..not really better. McHolland, I dunno, but would his death really affect so many people for such a long time? Sorry, to say, but I doubt that. Cruz had his story line, so his death would not have such a great impact either.
      Now what just hit me… considering the cross-overs between CF and CPD.. Dawson might be in for it as well.. so far, nobody knows what started it… it was a free-standing building..what if that was a set-up?… then we got Antonio and the CPD in for the hunt as well…. hmm… I am going to spoil it for myself, I just know it.. because here in Germany we will problably have to wait for another 6 months before we get to see Season 3.. so I will have to check the pre- and reviews here for info on how it will develop! Livingn overseas really sucks!

    • Kim White says:

      Talk about late to the party, I just posted this thought below. I didn’t see yours. We only differ in that I’m not sure Gabby could be in the house at all if Casey were Captain? I don’t know how that works. Casey might be too young too. I agree with all the rest of it though. I would hate to see him go, but then I’ll hate to any of them go.

  35. Kendra King says:

    It cant b Shay Dawson and Shay help make the Show.Its going 2 b one really sad night if this is the case.But im Really Praying hard it is’nt.

  36. Debbie Challis says:

    When will the show air?

  37. Laura C says:

    I have loved this show since Day One, and all the characters. I have gotten rather tired of Shay’s behavior over the last season or so though. I’m surprised she has it together well enough to do her job- seems like an emotional flake, so I wouldn’t miss her character. She is close to Severide so it makes sense he would be devastated by losing her. Looking forward to a new season, and I agree with whoever posted about letting Dawson & Casey have some PEACE before messing with them. They deserve some happiness together.

  38. Andrew says:

    the last episode the word “always” was cited by only 3 elements of the team Boden, Dawson and Shay. I would not know who the character is going to die but I think the real candidates are Shay and Dawson because after you have passed the test will divide the couple of paramedics, and in the most fateful there was between Matt and Casey, I suppose one of the girls will not come out alive from that building! All wait with great trepidation and anxiety September 23!

    • Gabsey says:

      Exactly my thought. “Always” was not pronounced only by shay and severide , many characters had a sweet moment right before entering the building. Yes it could be shay, that would pretty much kill severide, but it could be anyone else really.
      I doubt it’s going to be Dawson, I mean, Casey already lost a girlfriend , are they really going to kill off his almost fiancée?
      If they were to kill off someone in that couple I think it would more likely be Casey, ever though I don’t really believe that’s the way they want things to go. I knew from the moment the siren went off that something bad was going to happen..
      I really hope it’s not Casey -Dawson or shay.. Seriously that would hit severide too bad! I think they’re going for someone whose death would would hurt Kelly, but I can see him getting through it with the help of shay . Seeing him saying goodbye to shay would be heart-wrenching. I can’t see him ever getting over her death. That would ruin him for good, cause having him just be sad and self destructive for a while just to have him get back to his former self isn’t believable considering how much he loved her. So I think killing shay off would be too big and it would destabilize the show way too much ! I’m going for Christopher , that would be tough on everyone because of how dearly they all loved him and also because of his family. I think except for The 4 main characters (Kelly, Casey, shay and Dawson) anyone else other than Christopher wouldn’t have that much of an impact on the squad and especially severide.

  39. tammy says:

    I’m going to be selfish I don’t want anybody to pass away I want them all to return

    four season 3

  40. Kim White says:

    I had the thought that it could be Boden. But he’s not listed since he wasn’t in there. As level headed as he is is, he just might go after his men in such a horrific situation. Talk about a tear jerker! Think that’s possible?

  41. kayleigh louise stock says:

    i don’t think be shay cause if dawson leaves firehouse who gona be paramedic. plus my guess its rather capp or Hermann.

  42. linda says:

    don’t you dare kill off anyone of my firefighters I will be sick to my stomach.oh my God I can’t even think about this .I am going to just fall apart no no no…..

  43. Jae says:

    Not Chief Boden…

    In case you missed, one of Chicago Fire’s main characters will say goodbye for good when the third season kicks off this fall.

    But not everyone from the fire department can move on from the hard news just like the rest. Per showrunner Matt Olmstead, Chief Boden will be the most devastated about the loss of a co-worker.

    [He’s] at the pinnacle of being happy in his life — [he] just got married, a baby on the way — and then this tragedy happens. So, he’s trying to stay present in these great moments in his life while also dealing with the grief of other people, and himself in particular.

  44. Chris says:

    It can be easily determined if a character is getting killed off if the actor isn’t coming back to the series. So the question is which of the actors aren’t coming back?

  45. Alice says:


  46. Lauren says:

    Herman would have the highest factor due to his big family it would give it more drama plus him and mouch are the oldest two

  47. Mark says:

    Casey will die leaving it open for Dawson to stay at 51as a firefighter

  48. Kira says:

    Why does everyone want shay to die?

    • martina says:

      I think that nobody wants to die shay … the problem is that all the evidence points to her .. I think by now everyone is resigned .. she is my favorite, and his death would take away a lot of the show .. I do not know why they decided so

  49. Joanie says:

    I can’t imagine it would be Shay, there’s just so much going around her. I just completly deny the idea of killing her off. She and Severide are my favorite characters and I wouldn’t see point in watching the show anymore if one of them died.

  50. gina says:

    Guys I think there are going to be a couple of people who die. The ones marked in black I think are not series regulars on the cast list. While the others are all in blue. The ones in black are Leslie Elizabeth Shay, Brian ‘Otis’ Zvonecek, Randy ‘Mouch’ McHolland, Wallace Boden,