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9-1-1 – Rock the Boat & Capsized

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Spoilers ahead!

After a much “calmer” premiere, the seventh season of 9-1-1 unrolled its disaster of the year in two episodes filled with madness and chaos.

If you need a quick recap on what happened in episode two, Rock the Boat, let’s do this right away: the pirates invaded the ship! Athena, Bobby, the crew, and many passengers watched as the criminals went searching for an electronic device that held the money they were searching for.

The drive turns out to be with Julian (Rick Cosnett), who was the international smuggler they were looking for. He was also having an affair with Lola (Romy Rosemont), which her husband Norman (Daniel Roebuck) discovers right after he gets shot in his abdomen. Athena was the one to connect the dots, feeling that Julian would be the smuggler based on a brief interaction he had with Lola previously; so she forces Julian to give up the USB to the pirates.

The criminals leave the ship after getting what they want, which means everything is fine, right? Nope, this is 9-1-1 after all, so they left a bomb behind. While Bobby deals with an injured Norman, Captain Ochoa (Mercedes Colon) tries to reboot the communication system, which has been down since the pirate’s invasion — but the attempt to reboot activates the bomb. And the cruise starts to capsize.

“Capsized” — 9-1-1, Pictured: AISHA HINDS as Hen, THOMAS HOBSON as Melton. Photo: ABC ©. All Rights Reserved

Meanwhile, Hen (Aisha Hinds) and the 118 deal with a car crash potentially caused by a drunk driver. Turns out the driver refuses medical assistance, as he doesn’t let Chimney check up on him. Because of this (and because the man was acting weird and disrespectful), Hen hands him to the cops without checking him up, which comes back to haunt her later, as the man dies on the scene due to a brain bleed.

What now? The entitled drunk driver was the son of a respected Councilwoman, and there’s a great commotion over his death. An investigation is open, and Hen is to one to blame. Then Chief Simpson (Richard Brooks) asks Hen to take leave until the tox reports are out. When she tells her team about what happened, Hen feels like Chimney (Kenneth Choi), Buck (Oliver Stark), and Eddie (Ryan Guzman) are not on her side, and they have a discussion that ends with Hen leaving with her feelings hurt.

Back at home and comforted by her wife (loved seeing Tracie Thoms’ Karen back, yayyyy), Hen realizes that the cruise ship’s location cannot be found anywhere online. This added to reports of a hurricane coming to the coast of Mexico causing Hen to look for Maddie’s (Jennifer Love Hewitt) help. Hen feels that something’s wrong and Athena & Bobby might be in danger. But when Chief is confronted with this possibility, he doesn’t take it seriously and sends Hen back to work (after all, the tox results came in and the driver was indeed drunk), making it clear that this possible cruise accident is none of their business.

Words that Hen, of course, is forced to ignore — her friends are in possible danger, and she won’t let them go that easily, even if it puts her career in jeopardy. So when the third and final part Capsized starts, we get to see Hen breaking some rules and taking a helicopter with the help of Lou Ferrigno Jr’s Tommy, returning to the show as a guest after a few season 2 appearances, and her three 118 friends — Chim, Buck, and Eddie. 

“Capsized” — 9-1-1, Pictured: OLIVER STARK, KENNETH CHOI, RYAN GUZMAN. BTS Photo: ABC ©. All Rights Reserved

It was interesting watching Captain Hen as the focus here, especially with the moral questions she faced. Having the 118 go full-on saving the people they love without having the permission to do so was a nice approach as well, it made things much more compelling.

Meanwhile, Capsized also deals with the cruise turned upside down after a huge wave made it tilt. After most of the passengers left on the lifeboats, Athena, Bobby, Norman, Lola, Julian, the Captain, and a few other characters fight for their lives — first trying to set Norman free, then trying to reach a safe spot inside the sinking ship, then saving a child that missed the lifeboat calls and his mother that was looking for him… 

After 40 minutes of people almost dying and people dying and impressive stunts and gorgeous sets, the 118 saves the day and rescues all the remaining survivors. Bobby and Athena get the chance to come home and share some heartwarming moments — they are laughing, feeling relieved, and loving each other, and that’s a wrap.

This show is so unserious. I mean, it’s corny (in the best way that corny things can be, it’s a compliment), exaggerated, and one of the most impressive procedurals out there right now, because of what the cast and crew pulled off here after seven seasons, phew, it’s pure insanity. While the first episode was calm for this show’s pattern, the second one is action-packed and filled with tension. But the third one has such a huge scale — the visual aspects of the upside-down cruise, the stunts to get Norman out of the floor (now the roof) as everyone stands on the roof (now the floor), and the general construction of what’s inside the corridors and the destroyed rooms of this sinking ship — I loved these set pieces wholeheartedly.

“Capsized” — 9-1-1, Pictured: ANGELA BASSETT as Athena, PETER KRAUSE as Bobby, DANIEL ROEBUCK as Norman. Photo: ABC ©. All Rights Reserved

And maybe there’s a shift in tone, but things this season have been funnier, and lighter, with some comedic bits here and there. 9-1-1 has been from day one a mix of drama, action, adventure, comedy, romance, and horror, but usually, the disasters have a more serious approach. However, this brighter tone works here — I had such a good time having fun with these characters going through the most absurd situations over the years, so it’s nice to see them facing danger with this lightness (kinda). 

By the way, my initial reaction to Athena & Bobby at odds with each other was to not like it, but after watching the 3 parts back to back, my opinions changed. They still haven’t enjoyed a moment without problems and chaos and life-threatening situations, but they love each other, and the insecurities they both had are gone for now.

One thing, though: the 118 rescue moments happened so close to the end of episode 3, I was thinking they would happen earlier so we’d get the whole team working together. But it didn’t bother me that much, as I enjoyed the final result. Another thing: Norman is such a witty character, would love to see him again later this season. Finally, I don’t remember Tommy this much. I have the feeling he was terrible to Hen (based on her reactions here), but I watched season 2 a long time ago, so I’m not sure about the details. A “previously on 9-1-1” bit at the beginning would have helped.

Anyway, overall it was a hell of a way to start a season, a refreshing beginning that left me excited for whatever comes next.

Now let me know your thoughts on everything. Have you watched the new episodes of 9-1-1 already? If so, what do you think about them? Feel free to leave a comment with your favorite moments, and thanks for reading! See you next week for the 100th episode review!


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