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Chicago Med

Chicago Med Season 8 Premiere Review – [SPOILER] Dies After the Fire

CHICAGO MED -- "How Do You Begin to Count the Losses" Episode 801 -- Pictured: (l-r) Guy Lockard as Dylan Scott, Nick Gehlfuss as Will Halstead -- (Photo by: George Burns Jr./NBC)

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The Chicago Med Season 8 premiere didn’t skip a beat, picking up right in the thick of the fire at Halstead’s apartment complex.

While everyone managed to get out safely, with a little help from the Chicago Fire department, the aftermath of the incident played a huge role in the episode as everyone involved was somehow affected in the long run, particularly Dylan, who lost Milena when she bled out from her gunshot wound.

The promising couple never got their chance to stand in the sun, which was unfortunate, but in her last moments, Milena assured Dylan that it wasn’t his fault. That, of course, didn’t make her death any less painful or tragic, nor did it stop Dylan from blaming himself as the guilt consumed him because he was the one that shot the gun.

At the end of the day, Dylan is a protector. He wants to help everyone and do good, so he felt as though he failed Milena. 

It’s unfortunate that there wasn’t a happy ending for this couple or that they didn’t get a little more time together. Their romance was short-lived when it could’ve been the source of a stellar PD/Med crossover throughout the season. 

Milena’s death wasn’t entirely surprising considering Riley Voelkel likely has other projects to attend to. And it is a changing point in the series as it underscores the dangers that come with undercover work while also pushing Dylan to finally make a choice about his future. 

Dylan has been a breath of fresh air for Med, but he was consistently torn between being a doctor and a cop. He may wear the white coat now, but he still bled blue, and Milena’s death showed him that there was no path forward in Chicago as he would always find himself walking the line between both duties. He couldn’t shake the past no matter how badly he wanted to, so, he decided to leave Med and find a fresh start. I can’t blame him either as everything here would have reminded him of the future he envisioned and lost with a woman he didn’t even realize he was falling in love with. 

Dylan’s exit is a loss, and I selfishly would have preferred if he went over to Chicago PD instead and played around with the Intelligence unit a bit. They could use a man that’s passionate about doing the right thing and helping clean up Chicago. 

Hannah Asher also experienced some side effects from the fire. Halstead didn’t know she was even home, so it’s a miracle she got out. But despite being cleared for smoke inhalation, she began having trouble breathing and a scan later revealed that the smoke triggered some heroin residue in her lungs. Much like Dylan, Hannah also can’t seem to shake the past.

Chicago Med ow Do You Begin to Count the Losses Season 8 Episode 1

CHICAGO MED — “How Do You Begin to Count the Losses” Episode 801 — Pictured: (l-r) Brian Tee as Ethan Choi, Jessy Schram as Hannah Asher, Nick Gehlfuss as Will Halstead — (Photo by: George Burns Jr./NBC)

Halstead remained by Hannah’s side throughout, but he continues to be the same problematic character. How has he experienced no character growth over the years? In some moments, he’s fine, but mostly, he butts heads with everyone and claims to know better. It’s exhausting.

Choi was right when he told Halstead that he was too close to Hannah. They may not be together as a couple, but he obviously still cares for her in some capacity. This is the core reason why a doctor is never allowed to treat a loved one. His judgment was skewed when it came to Hannah, especially as he was feeling particularly guilty that she was in this situation because of him.

As for who was responsible for the fire, well, all fingers seemed to point to Goran as the likeliest suspect as he figured out that Milena was an undercover cop when he saw her getting cozy to Dylan. However, since that was the obvious choice, it actually ended up being Jesse from Vasik, which wasn’t entirely surprising either as the fire was perfectly timed to the start of the trial where her reputation was going to be dragged through the mud. 

Jesse didn’t want to face the punishment, so she attempted to kill Halstead so that he couldn’t testify, in turn, making things much worse for herself. Did she seriously think they wouldn’t catch her? When Halstead’s brother is part of PD’s Intelligence? She deserves everything coming her way. 

With Jesse arrested, let’s hope that this whole VasCom drama is put behind us once and for all because it’s been dragging out way too long. 

Elsewhere, Crockett was dealing with the fallout of his choice to save Pamela Blake’s life, which, unfortunately, came at the cost of her surgical skills.

It’s a bummer to see everyone bash Crockett— Sam even suggested that his decision was opportunistic to sideline the Chief of Transplant—when, in reality, Crockett was a man terrified of the possibility of losing the woman he loved. 

Blake’s anger is understandable as she’s only ever seen herself as a top-tier surgeon, so this setback forces her to question and reframe everything, but I do think she’ll come around when she puts herself in Crockett’s shoes. While he seemed to regret his decision initially, when Sharon Goodwin forbid him from departing the transplant team, he realized that he needed to continue doing the job. And he stood by his decision with Blake, informing her that if the roles were reversed, she would’ve done the same thing. I’m truly living for Crockett’s vulnerability. 

He was also essential in saving Goran’s life during the transplant, once again proving that Med will be in fine hands until Blake returns because she taught him well. 

There were some stellar moments between Neil and Dr. Charles, along with the new psych student, Nellie Cuavas (Lilah Richcreek Estrada), and it goes to show that Chicago Med is committed to keeping mental health stories at the forefront. Cuavas got an unfiltered look at what it’s like to diagnose an underage patient whose parents weren’t interested in seeking the help that their child needs due to stigma. It’s unfortunate the storyline didn’t really find a resolution once the parents were informed that their son was diagnosed with schizophrenia, but it just shows that sometimes, as a doctor, your hands are tied no matter how hard you try. 

Neil previously attempted to dismiss mental health and Charles’ work in the ED, but it’s nice to see him coming around and acknowledging that it is necessary. He even opened up about his estranged son, who he lost to addiction. He clarifies that his son isn’t dead, he just doesn’t have any kind of relationship with him, though, that’s about to change because towards the end of the episode, Neil accepted a call from his son from the Cook County Jail. while it’s heartbreaking to find out your kid is in jail, at least he now knows his whereabouts and they can start mending the fractures. It’ll be fun to explore this storyline further and get to know a different side of Neil. 

Maggie is struggling with finding a place for her ex, Grant, in her life. It’s clear that there are plenty of feelings bubbling back up to the surface after she reunited Vanessa with her birth father. When Grant approached Maggie asking if she ever wonders what would have happened if their parents didn’t force them to put Vanessa up for adoption, she shot him down immediately, but her need to inform him that she’s happy with her husband, Ben, was telling about her state of mind. Since it’s evident her relationship with Grant didn’t end on her own terms, Maggie has a lot to work through. Hopefully, she doesn’t jeopardize the good thing she has with Ben, to give things with Grant another shot, but honestly, Maggie has always wanted a big happy family, so I can see why her heart is being pulled in this direction that guarantees her that outcome.

And finally, April is back in town! It’s unclear if Yaya Dacosta is going to return to Gaffney after finishing her NP program and returning to Chicago, but it does put into perspective Choi’s comment to Halstead that “feelings” don’t “disappear.” His feelings for April never disappeared, and when they accidentally meet at his father’s grave, there’s definitely plenty of love and chemistry between them. Will they give their relationship another try? After all, they made sure that neither one got married or moved on.

What did you think of the season premiere? Do you like how the Chicago franchise is staging mini crossovers with a little appearance from Fire’s Herman and PD’s Kim Burgess?

Sound off in the comments below!

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Lizzy Buczak is the founder of CraveYouTV. What started off as a silly blog in her sophomore year at Columbia College Chicago turned her passion for watching TV into an opportunity! She has been in charge of CraveYou since 2011, writing reviews and news content for a wide variety of shows. Lizzy is a Music Business and Journalism major who has written for RADIO.COM, TV Fanatic, Time Out Chicago, Innerview, Pop’stache and Family Time.

Chicago Med

Chicago Med Review – Get by with a Little Help From My Friends (912)

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Chicago Med Season 9 Episode saw a lot of people overwhelmed by work and life in general. 

It all started with Sharon Goodwin, who is coming to the realization that her life is going to be a lot different now that Bert is experiencing memory loss. 

The incident that kickstarts everything involves him forgetting to turn the stove off, but as Cruz informs her, it had a good outcome but may be the first of many. As Goodwin’s ex-husband is treated for smoke inhalation, she struggles to figure out how to manage it all. Eventually, when Bert has another meltdown, she realizes that she’s the only person that can calm him down. Even when he’s disoriented, he recognizes her and feels comfort when she’s around, which again, puts an immense burden on her. 

As he pleads for Sharon to take him home, she agrees to be his caregiver, a situation that Dr. Charles informs her cannot be permanent. But it’s easy to see why she feels responsible—this is the man she’s loved her whole life who still needs her. It’s almost like he’s regressed to an infant mentality, not really understanding the what and why behind what’s going on. Bert is doing a fantastic job portraying all of those emotions and vulnerabilities on screen, providing audiences with a heartbreaking look at the disease.  There’s no reasoning with him, all she can do is provide care, though hopefully, not at the expense of her own mental health and sanity. 

Newcomer Jackie, played by La Brea’s Natalie Zea, arrives in the ED for her second shift in a row, when Maggie immediately notices something is off. Jackie isn’t her usual self, and paired with the stress at home and the blood dripping from her arm—a cut she claims to have sustained earlier in the day while leaving the house—there’s definitely room for worry. 

A quick diagnosis from Dr. Charles reveals that the cut may have been self-harm, as he suggests Jackie is distracting herself from the daily pain she witnesses in the burn unit. This is proven to be true after Jackie loses a patient, runs off to the bathroom to cut herself, and then collapses in Maggie’s arms, revealing scars from previous cuts. Intervention becomes necessary at that point, even though to Jackie, it feels like the ultimate betrayal, but eventually, she comes around to see that Maggie was simply acting in her best interest. It’ll be interesting to see if Med finds a permanent place for Zea on the team as I think she’d make a great addition—plus we all know Maggie needs a new friend around. 

Dr. Marcel also wasn’t spared from the harsh realities when his celebration over his young patient Colin’s new liver quickly soured when he realized the child had an infection. While he tried his best to advocate or Colin, knowing that the boy might not live to see another donor match, he ultimately had to make the hard, yet right, call and give up the organ to someone who could survive the surgery. It’s not the outcome anyone wanted, including Colin’s disappointed father (this is why as a doctor, you never make any promises), but due to the illness, he wasn’t strong enough to move forward. The final gut punch was Colin asking if he was going to die, making Crockett question every decision he’s ever made. 

Hannah teamed up with Ripley—while also sealing their romantic fate—to help his childhood friends, Lynne and Sully, welcome their new baby, born prematurely at 30 weeks and not breathing. Thankfully, they were able to save the child, which was comforting considering everything Sully is already going through. They need a shred of happiness. 

Archer also got a little scolding from Sharon, who didn’t take kindly toward his harsh attitude toward the new intern, reminding him that this is a teaching hospital after all. Turns out, when Archer wants to, he can be a great mentor—and that’s something some students need when they are letting their fears and doubts cloud their judgment and get the best of them. None of us are born with the knowledge and skills—it takes patience and practice.

Thankfully, in every situation, the good outweighed the bad as everyone was supported by loved ones—friends, family, and staff who truly cared about their wellbeing. 

What did you think of the episode?

If you are having a mental health, substance use, or suicidal crisis, call 988. 

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Chicago Med

Did Dr. Zola Ahmad Leave ‘Chicago Med’ Already?

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Did Dr. Zola Ahmad Leave 'Chicago Med' Already?

Chicago Med introduced a new third-year resident to the fold in season 9—Zola Ahmad played by The Wilds’ Sophia Ali.

Ahmad’s character was initially described as “impulsive” and a troublemaker who tends to cause “headaches” for her Gaffney Medical fellows, which we saw play out in real-time when her unconventional approaches rubbed Crockett Marcel (Dominic Rains) the wrong way.

Marcel tried to give Ahmad the benefit of the doubt on numerous occasions, and Sharon Goodwin (S. Epatha Merkerson) even acknowledged that she was taking a big chance by hiring her on a prohibitionary basis given her track record with previous hospitals—but ultimately, Ahmad’s behavior and decisions to overstep and not follow protocol got the best of her.

When Ahmad decided to declare a patient—letting the fact that he wasn’t a good man dictate her reasoning—dead prematurely (and then attempted to justify it), nearly killing him, Dr. Archer (Steven Weber) chose to suspend her. It was very obviously a fireable offense, so it’s a good thing that the series writers held her accountable. Plus, it seemed like the perfect chance for a teachable moment and a redemption arc, not to mention, there was definitely some chemistry with Ahmad and Crockett that could’ve been explored down the line. She had potential as a character at Med, if she just reeled it in a little bit—and that would’ve been interesting to explore on a more granular level.

However, by Chicago PD Season 9 Episode 9, it was over for Ahmad. 

Did Dr. Zola Ahmad Leave 'Chicago Med' Already?

CHICAGO MED — “A Penny for your Thoughts, Dollar for your Dreams” Episode 9008 — Pictured: (l-r) Sophia Ali as Dr. Zola Ahmad, Dominic Rains as Dr. Crockett Marcel — (Photo by: George Burns Jr/NBC)

The series seemingly listened to the Chi-Hards fanbase as Ahmad paid the ultimate price for her reckless decision; Goodwin very briefly (and in passing) informed Crockett that Ahmad was let go, something he called a “shame.”

And that was that. There was no further mention of it, nor is there any indication that she’ll return anytime in the future. Her final episode of the season was listed as Chicago Med Season 9 Episode 8—and it seems like she’ll just be a blip on the radar of the show’s long-running tenure. 

It’s a drastic decision for the series, especially after hyping up Ali’s character at the beginning of the season. Why wouldn’t they give her arc a proper conclusion? Many of the complaints from the fan base were that her character was written inconsistently—her intentions were good most of the time, it was the execution that suffered—and crammed into an already shortened season due to COVID, so they weren’t able to build her character up in a way that would’ve given her the necessary nuance; her portrayal was overly negative and it was hard to defend her actions or keep her around when each week, she was pushing buttons and creating unnecessary issues without having the tenure to excuse them or back her up, like her predecessors Will Will (Nick Gehlfuss) and Natalie (Torrey Devitto). When those two acted irrationally back in the day, they had a history with Med and Goodwin that allowed them to stir the pot. 

It seems that the writing was on the wall for Ahmad from the get-go—the lack of good character development in the writing sealed her fate prematurely and gave fans whiplash with her quick arrival and departure. 

Would you like to see her return to the series?

Vanessa Morgan Is Finally Getting the Recognition She Deserves With ‘Wild Cards’

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Chicago Med

Chicago Med Review – I Think There’s Something You’re Not Telling Me (911)

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CHICAGO MED -- "I Think There is Something You're Not Telling Me" Episode 90011

Chicago Med Season 9 Episode 11 was Ripley-heavy, but I doubt most fans minded all that much, especially as he was sidelined last week due to the flu. 

The episode not only saw Ripley catching up with his childhood friend Sully, who previously refused cancer treatment, but we also met Sully’s pregnant girlfriend, Lynne, who also clued in Hannah on Ripley’s difficult childhood—helpful, since he wasn’t forthcoming with any information when she asked. 

His past was also brought up during the deposition with Pavel’s lawyer, who tried to get him to crack while bringing up the personal matter of institutionalization to discredit him. While it certainly struck a chord, Ripley proved that he’s done the work to get through it, though Charles, who feels partially responsible for the situation in Ripley’s past and the lawsuit, took it upon himself to encourage Sharon Goodwin to convince Ripley to settle. 

He figured out that Charles must’ve said something, but it was nice to see him not get upset by the fact either. These two have come quite a long way in their relationship this season, as Charles suggested that his past is his story to tell on his own terms. 

As for Sully, his coughing symptoms only worsened, landing him in the hospital, as Rip nudged his buddy to come clean to the mom of his future child. Sully’s hesitation to seek out treatment also stemmed from his past, noting that when his father was sent to prison, it was the best day of his life and that maybe Lynne and the baby were better off without him. Naturally, Ripley pointed out that it was just the fear talking and that he needed treatment in order to be a present dad to his kid and to break the cycle of abandonment and trauma. All in all, these two have made a lot of progress. 

Lynne, thankfully, wasn’t in early labor either, so the storyline had somewhat of a positive ending, though I’m sure we’ll see more from them soon. 

Loren’s helicopter incident in the woods the episode prior was also at the forefront as he essentially told Maggie he didn’t remember what they talked about (so he has no clue he professed his feelings for her!) and tried to minimize his injuries to prove himself to Archer for the trauma fellowship. However, Archer can’t be fooled as he’s also one of the people who tried to downplay his symptoms, so he was able to detect what Loren was doing right away. And he gave him some key advice—know when to pull back and prioritize your own health first. As they say, the job will always be there, but you can’t help your patients if you aren’t helping yourself.

As for Maggie, I think she owes it to the both of them to address what was said in such a dire state head-on, but I understand wanting to give Loren space for healing and recovery. She should’ve learned from that life-or-death situation that you should never leave anything unsaid.

Dr. Charles teamed up with a new intern, Naomi Howard, who experienced a bit of a rough start due to nerves. She was assigned to a patient named Jay, who ended up being misdiagnosed with depression when he should’ve been on mood stabilizers to treat what Charles assumed was bipolar disorder. It was a pretty intense case for Naomi to witness, even if she was sitting on the sidelines for much of it, as Charles had to get to the bottom of Jay’s motivations—proving his dad wrong about his career in the arts. Thankfully, by the end of the hour, he managed to persuade him to make the necessary change to his treatment by suggesting that you don’t have to suffer for your art.

What did you think of the episode? Are you digging the flirtation between Asher and Ripley?

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