Monday’s 9-1-1 winter finale certainly lived up to its title, with several characters being pushed to a “Breaking Point.”
For Hen, that came when Nia’s social worker showed up to inform her and Karen that Nia’s biological mother is ready to begin the reunification process. It was quite literally the foster moms’ worst fear come to life, as they hoped the social worker was coming to talk about adoption.
“It’s the beginning of a heartbreaking story, let’s put it that way,” showrunner Tim Minear tells TVLine. “It’s definitely something that happens. Not every child that’s put into foster care is put there because their birth parents are some kind of monsters. Sometimes it’s just the situation. And we’re definitely interested in telling that full story.”
Speaking of parental drama, Chimney explained to Maddie that it would break him if something were to go wrong with her delivery, which was part of his plea to have their baby in a hospital vs. attempting an at-home birth. A follow-up chat with Athena — in which she recalled May and Harry’s births being the two best days of her life, despite one pregnancy being more difficult than the other — helped Maddie to understand that “it doesn’t matter if you have your kid in the parking lot or in a hospital or at home.” (As for the future of their relationship, Minear confirms that while they’re “taking it one step at a time,” the topic of marriage will come up in conversation.)
And then there was Buck, who got more than he bargained for when he invited his old flame Taylor over for dinner — which she quickly realized was only to make Albert’s new girlfriend (aka Buck’s one-time date) jealous. “If this is how you treat your friends, maybe the problem isn’t Albert,” she told him. “It’s you.”
“She was 100-percent right,” Minear says of Taylor’s assertion that Buck simply can’t stand not being liked by someone. “Why else would he care that this woman who he didn’t get along with for 90 minutes is now dating his roommate? It’s because she liked him better than she liked Buck. He’s a labrador retriever.”
Moving forward, “what Buck has to realize is that some people aren’t going to like him. What he’s finding in Taylor is someone who will take him seriously. She’s not going to put up with a bunch of nonsense, and she’s going to call him on his crap. She’s someone who can be a real friend to him, and that could be something more.”
But while Buck remains hopelessly single (for now), Eddie attempted to make things official with Ana, only to discover that Christopher still may not be ready for Eddie to “replace” his mother. Still, Minear says, “I think there’s definitely hope for them. They have great chemistry. And I don’t think anything is 100-percent settled for any of these people.”
And while we’re talking about Christopher, let’s all take a moment to appreciate this week’s “aww!”-inducing scene between him and Buck:
Looking ahead to the back half of the season — which kicks off with the spring premiere on April 19 (8/7c) — Minear says there are several big events we can expect, including the birth of Maddie and Chimney’s baby. But be warned, they aren’t all good.
“There’s been an undercurrent since last season where Bobby really wants to be there for Athena, but she’s so fiercely independent,” he teases. “Bobby is going to start to question how much she might actually need him, and it’s definitely going to put a strain on their marriage.”
Your thoughts on the 9-1-1 winter finale? Grade it below, then drop a comment with your hopes for the second half of Season 4.