Hey TV.com, Should I Watch Chicago Fire?

By Nick Campbell

Oct 10, 2012

Are you skeptical about a firefighter procedural? Do you love Dick Wolf but find yourself wary of his adventures outside of New York? Are you here to check out a soccer score? After watching the pilot for NBC's Chicago Fire, we're prepared to help you decide whether you want to dedicate your time to the boys (and few gals) of Firehouse 51. Read on and decide.

What's Chicago Fire about?

When you think of your typical procedurals based on things six-year-olds want to be when they grow up, firefighters are woefully left out of the mix. Enter Chicago Fire, where we follow the men and women of Firehouse 51 in Chicago as they laugh, love, bicker, and walk into burning buildings. Professionally.

Where can I see it?

Chicago Fire premieres Wednesday, October 10 at 10pm on NBC.

Who created the show?

The man, the myth, the legend Dick Wolf has his name all over the show. For those of you who haven't taken a course in lupine urology, Wolf is also responsible for Law & Order and all of its incarnations. The credited creators of Chicago Fire are Michael Brandt and Derek Haas, better known for writing movies like Wanted and 3:10 to Yuma. And 2 Fast 2 Furious.

Who's in it?

Jesse Spencer trades in his lab coat, accent, and House Duckling status for something more fireproof as the head of the Truck Squad. Beyond him there are some people who have popped up for stints in other programs, like Taylor Kinney (Trauma—a similar-feeling NBC series about paramedics from a while back), Monica Raymund (The Good Wife), Eamonn Walker (Oz), and David Eigenberg (Sex and the City). Steve! I know!

Who's the target audience?

This is a really broad show, so probably NBC is angling it for that 18-49 demo. But who will like it? Men who don't want to watch Nashville, women who are bored with CSI, anyone who likes pretty people. Also people who like fire, people who miss Dr. Chase, people who are curious about what firefighters do in the truck before going to risk their lives in a burning building (sometimes it's reading the paper), people who get tricked into thinking NBC picked up The Chicago Code (poor bastards).

So what's good about it?

There are a lot of pretty people. So, it has that going for it. Fire is interesting.

What's not?

There are a few more of these. The cast is pretty much a sausage party except for the two paramedics, Shay and Gabriela. If you're looking for a firefighter procedural, you'll quickly discover that fire emergencies don't lend themselves very well to a "case of the week" formula (which isn't so much a bad thing about the series as it is something different than what you might be expecting). There are a few more storylines than the show actually needs. The action feels really slow (there's a lot more walking around than you'd think). And, probably the worst part, it doesn't get any better (at least in the first three episodes).

So... should I watch it?

Only if you're bored and/or looking for eye candy. Otherwise, watch Nashville instead.

Do you have a clip or a trailer I can look at?

You can watch the entire pilot on NBC.com or Hulu right now. But if you're not willing to surrender an hour until you can see the show in HD, here's a trailer:

What should I drink while watching this program?

Something on fire. A Flaming Moe?

Chicago Fire premieres Wednesday, October 10 at 10pm on NBC.

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  • jasten Oct 11, 2012

    Watched it with a friend.... not only could I tell things were off about how that place operated, but the constant insider jibes from my friend made it even more clear that this show has some deep problems. Guess they are more interested in the melodrama rather than the real, often quirky reality of the situation.

    Can't even imagine what I'll hear if my uncle has seen this. He is a retired firefighter within a couple of hours of where this takes place. Can't say I'm impressed though.

  • IndianaMom Oct 11, 2012

    I really enjoyed the pilot. There was a lot of action. I just hope they don't get too involved in the relationship stuff. Nashville sounds too soapy for me.

  • MelodyParis Oct 11, 2012

    I'm willing to give it a try, but I'll also be DVRing Nashville. Who knows what will win out in the end.

  • Shreela Oct 11, 2012

    If it lasts more than 2 seasons, I'll do a marathon catch-up. Until then, it's not on my watch-list. Especially since it's an NBC show (who IMO are a money-laundering front pretending to be a network).

  • smorbie Oct 11, 2012

    I really like Jesse Spencer, but I have hated everything Dick Wolfe has ever done. (Ouch! Don't hit me L&O; fans, please!) So I guess I'll give this one a pass.

  • ben45tpy Oct 11, 2012

    I've promised myself I have to at least try this because I'm a huge L&O; fan.

  • Ujpesti Oct 11, 2012

    I'm a huuuge fan of Rescue Me. Any chance I could like this one?

  • katikool Oct 11, 2012

    Even though I think I might fall under the 'people who miss Dr Chase' category, I probs won't tune in.

    Sorry Chicago Fire, but a firefighter drama has already been done, and its been done much better. If you watch, pour one out for our fallen homie, Rescue Me.

  • hakone1 Oct 11, 2012

    I'll watch it! The pilot was great.

  • itslo Oct 11, 2012

    I actually enjoyed the pilot so i will be watching, especially for jesse spencer. Nashville...not so much as I don't like country music.

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