Chicago PD Season 10 Episode 18 delivered momentum on Ruzek’s undercover case, and I’ve got to say, this is the first time we’ve ever seen that man this terrified and questioning if he should stick it out.
When the episode kicks off, he tells Burgess that he’s been undercover a month, and as we see the days passing as he lives a double life, taking care of Mack and playing father figure to Callum, it’s likely been way longer.
And the truth is, he’s tired. It’s taxing enough to live one life, but living two is a whole other ball game, especially when they are so intertwined. And then you add in some very toxic people on top of that and well, the burnout is real.
Any happiness that Ruzek may have felt from his revitalized romance with Burgess was fleeting because he can’t even be the kind of partner or father he wants to be, though it’s clear that he tries his best. And this time, their relationship does feel real, different, and permanent, I’m glad we’re all in agreement there.
Ruzek thought they finally made a breakthrough with Dale (guest starring Ryan Dorsey), but they weren’t able to flip him, unfortunately.
Dale may have been dumb, but he was loyal to a fault. Richard was the only family he had, and at the end of the day, he was too dedicated to the “cause,” whatever it may be, to flip. He chose to die instead, which proved to Ruzek and the rest of the team that they truly underestimated the situation at hand.
As Ruzek faced yet another defeat, the road forward was simple yet extremely complicated—he had to get close to Richard and use the fact that he “killed” a man for him to get in his good graces.
Richard was definitely impressed with Ruzek’s dedication, so he informed him of the upcoming agenda—and though he kept out plenty of key facts, essentially, the white supremacist and his followers are planning to stage attacks at multiple targets with many casualties.
As Richard spoke about his plan, I literally got chills, and it’s clear that Ruzek did as well as he was staring pure evil right in the face. The way he said “your time is coming, Adam,” was also beyond eerie.
This man truly believes that he’s making the world a better place, which is concerning and frightening on so many levels, especially when you consider the reach, resources, and pull that he has.
He mentioned that he thinks Sam is losing faith in the plan and wants Ruzek to keep her on track, so I feel like they’ll try to use her to help diffuse the situation because, at this point, they are going in blind.
If Ruzek finds out the plan at the very last minute, there’s a chance he might not be able to get that information over to Intelligence in time. And that’s not something they can risk.
There’s also the issue of Callum, who Ruzek has developed a close bond with, but who is very much influenced by his grandfather. If there’s anything that scares me, it’s not knowing how this kid will factor in.
Ruzek also has a lot to lose as he’s living in the same neighborhood where he’s moonlighting as a white supremacist. He was mere moments away from getting his cover blown when he went to pick up Mack from dinner and realized that Sam followed him there. She also revealed that she’s followed him before, which is concerning because it means Ruzek wasn’t even aware. If she was able to get that on him, what else is she/her father capable of?
Ruzek is also a father to a young black girl, which makes this case so sensitive. If Sam arrived a smidge later or somehow pieced it together, Ruzek would’ve put a target on his daughter’s back. He’d never let himself live it down if Mack got caught in the crosshairs. There are so many elements that make this case unsettling that I watched with bated breath and on the edge of my seat.
Amid all the darkness, I’ll hold onto the fact that Mack called him “dad,” marking a huge stride for their relationship. It seems like everything is on the up and up at the Burgess-Ruzek household—and it’s so refreshing.
Richard set the date for his planned attack as May 28, and given that the next episode of Chicago PD won’t air until May 3, my guess is that the planned “showtime” is going to be the drama’s season finale episode as well.
Hopefully, by that point, Ruzek and Intelligence will have a lot more to go off of, though I can see Ruzek having a hard time coming to the light again after this case. The fact that he has his family is something tangible that he can hold onto and that can help him get through it, but there’s a heaviness that comes with that kind of darkness that’s so suffocating and debilitating.
And it’s because it attacks the very people who make up the fabric of our community. For Ruzek it’s his daughter and his co-workers, including Atwater and Torres, who saw firsthand how much hatred someone like Dale had for them.
There’s also the issue of Sam, who I firmly believe is also a victim. She’s not innocent, but she’s gone along with this her whole life because she was groomed and not given much of a choice. It’s clear that she’s not comfortable with what’s being asked as she had a hard time coming to terms with the order that her dad put out on Dale, but she went through with it anyway because she knew they didn’t have a choice. And she also made it clear that if they didn’t do what was asked of them, her father would kill them both. That’s the definition of a toxic family member.
I think having Ruzek in her life has helped changed her perspective. He’s a positive influence, even undercover, and has shown her what it’s like to be taken care of and that something different is possible, so I hope that, in the end, she’s able to get out and start over.
When it comes to Chicago PD seasons, this one has honestly been one of the strongest, but in terms of episodes, “You Only Die Twice” was one of the most nerve-wracking as at any point, Ruzek’s cover could’ve been blown and his life in danger. Not to mention Patrick Flueger has been acting his butt off this season to bring this storyline to life.
I’m glad it didn’t come to that and that he has the full backing of his team, who are always looking out, but I hope for Ruzek’s sake that once this is over, he can get a break and focus on the finer things in life—the things that truly matter and bring him joy.
What did you think of the episode?
Chicago PD Season 11 Episode 6 Review – Survival
Chicago PD came through again, this time with a rare gem that focused on Voight.
I say rare because while Voight plays an integral part of the series, he’s rarely ever the sole focus of the case in such a way that we actually see him dominating the screen for most of the 45-minute episode.
And, on top of that, the episode ended without Voight and the team finding the suspect, which also allows for another multi-episode angle to play out and keep viewers invested.
Voight’s carefree night took a turn when he overheard a beeping sound in an alleyway and found traces of blood belonging to a young man named Noah, who he saw getting violently kidnapped by an offender in nearby surveillance footage.
Without much to go off of, Intelligence worked together to try to build a case and save Noah before it was too late. Since they found a baggie of party drugs near the scene of the abduction, they linked it to a dealer in the area whom Chapman, coincidentally, has tried to nab a handful of times.
The dealer’s MO is to abduct those who stiff him, break their legs, and then dump them back at the place where he sells as part of his warning.
However, after locating the car that kidnapped Noah, they found the young man in dire conditions after he was abused—stabbed six times and had his eyes stapled open (one of the most horrifying sights I’ve ever seen on television, might I add)—which indicated that this was the work of someone else entirely.
Even when Noah identified his dealer in a lineup, Voight wasn’t convinced as he knew he simply did it to get them off of his back. Chapman, who offered to help Voight on the case, wasn’t pleased with the idea of letting a violent criminal that they’ve been pursuing walk away based on a hunch, so she went above Voight to get him arrested.
Still, Voight knew that they were going after the wrong man, so he milked him for any information about Noah.
Noah’s situation was a heartbreaking one as he was a lone wolf in the city on his own after his family turned on him when he came out as gay. When Voight made contact with them, Noah’s mother essentially said Noah deserved what happened to him and that she didn’t want updates because he was no longer their son. I can’t even imagine a mother saying something so cruel, especially when her son was missing and brutally tortured. How could you not want to know if he survived? It broke my heart—and it broke Voight’s heart, which is why he dedicated himself to the case so strongly.
He knew that whatever Noah went through was personal, which was confirmed further when he realized that the suspect they were looking for had been stalking the boy for months, ever since he arrived in Chicago. This was a planned and calculated attack, but they had no suspects to work off of, which didn’t make it easy.
It’s likely one of the main reasons why Voight took Noah in after he was discharged from the hospital. He needed Noah to feel safe and comfortable enough to open up so that they could finally catch this monster and put him behind bars. However, Voight also felt a personal connection to Noah, who reminded him a lot of his late son, Justin, and he felt for the kid since he had nowhere to go and no one to lean on. It’s not exactly all that shocking that an Intelligence member connected with someone on the case as we previously saw Burgess and Ruzek adopt Makayla after her parents were brutally murdered, however, it does sort of cross the line into getting too personally connected. Chapman seemed concerned with Voight’s decision, but only time will tell if he made the right one.
If I had to wager a guess, I’d say Noah knows who his abuser is, but he’s not saying anything because he’s scared and traumatized since it’s someone that he cares about. Since we know the attack wasn’t random—and everyone who did come in contact with him explained that he didn’t have friends or make many connections with anyone—it has to be someone from home. Maybe someone like his brother or a friend whom he confided in.
This is one of those lingering cases that we will revisit in future episodes, but it has so much promise. Voight’s seen a lot during his tenure in Chicago, but even he seemed completely shaken by what Noah endured.
And will the series ever make any positive moves with Voight and Chapman? It’s clear that there’s something between them that goes beyond their workplace friendship.
What did you think of the episode? Who do you think Noah’s attacker is?
Chicago PD Season 11 Episode 5 Review – Split-Second
Atwater does it again, but that’s really no surprise. Kevin Atwater episodes of Chicago PD are consistently the strongest—delivering complex issues, a riveting performance, and making us all question why LaRoyce Hawkins isn’t allowed to take the wheel more often.
And would it kill them to give him a love interest so he doesn’t have to carry this burden all on his own?
On Chicago PD Season 11 Episode 5, Atwater responded to a robbery in progress on Jeweler’s Row, but the situation quickly escalated as the robbers proved to be dangerous and careless, firing shots that killed the store owner and hit an innocent bystander, who ended up bleeding out to death.
The moment was one that haunted Atwater for much of the episode, as the wife of Corey, who was trapped between the safety door, blamed Atwater for making a conscious choice to try to save the owner over her husband.
And she’s not wrong—Atwater went to check on the other man, allowing the impenetrable doors to close, preventing him from rendering life-saving aid to Corey.
He was filled with instant regret knowing that his choices could’ve made a difference, and while we know that it’s simply Atwater’s personality to want to take accountability, the case showed that sometimes, despite our best efforts, we can’t change the outcome. And we can’t save everyone.
It wasn’t stated in the episode—and Atwater said time and time again that he didn’t know why he chose to check on the owner instead of Corey—but my guess is that he didn’t imagine that the doors would be impossible to break through. He likely also felt that the injuries of the owner may have been more extensive than Corey’s, and felt the need to prioritize helping him.
At the end of the day, he followed his gut in a split-second, trying to make the best decisions for everyone, and there’s not much more you can ask for when it comes to the person responding to a critical situation.
He went back to the scene of the crime, retracing his steps an replaying the situation over and over in his brain, making himself feel guiltier, particularly when he found the keys under the shattered glass, which could have bought Corey the necessary time until the paramedics arrived, but that’s all hindsight and doesn’t change what happened. Atwater can learn from it, but he needs to let himself move on for his mental health, especially as Voight pointed out that there is no handbook on who you should save first.
Atwater’s regret aside, the episode was action-packed as they tried to identify the two robbers, who were leaving behind a trail of victims during their heists. The key person to helping them make a break in the case was Teresa. They knew she saw one of the suspects as there was video footage of her looking him in the face before he put his mask on, but when confronted, Teresa insisted that there was a “glare” and she saw nothing.
Considering the suspects took off with every victim’s driver’s license, I’m not surprised Teresa chose to stay quiet as she feared retaliation against her family. She already lost her husband, and she didn’t want to put her husband in harm’s way.
While Voight’s tactics of pushing her to talk or charging her with obstruction of justice may have seemed harsh, it was necessary to motivate her to help them make a break in the case. (I’ll be honest, I first thought that Teresa was keeping the suspect’s identity a secret because it was someone she knew/someone connected to her son, so I was glad that wasn’t the case.)
But the sad reality is that even if she hadn’t identified the suspect, they could’ve still come for her to silence her since they knew that she saw one of their faces, which is exactly what happened. They didn’t care if she sold them out—if she could, she needed to be taken care of. Working with the police and giving them what they needed sooner may have ensured her safety as they could’ve caught the bad guys, but I’m also not surprised that there’s a distrust of police, in general, but also specifically for Teresa.
Teresa felt betrayed by Atwater since he didn’t save her husband—it’s all she could focus on. Not to mention that even though Atwater told her that they would have units watching her house until the bad guys were caught, he couldn’t guarantee her safety as the moment one of the suspects broke into her home, no one was stationed outside of her home because they were switching shifts. They dropped the ball, and if it wasn’t for Atwater’s quick thinking, it could’ve cost her and her son their lives.
Atwater went above and beyond on the case, as he felt a sense of responsibility to the family, but he also found himself with conflicting emotions after he shot Aiden and asked Teresa for assistance with putting pressure on the wound, which she refused to do because “he didn’t deserve to live while her husband died.”
And, quite honestly, as a victim who is grieving a major loss and feels betrayed, I totally get where she’s coming from. This is a man who killed her husband and who broke into her home to kill her and her child without a second thought. If Atwater wasn’t there, he wouldn’t have shown her any mercy, so why did she have to take the high road in this case?
On the other hand, Atwater is not in a position to pick and choose who he saves. He has sworn to serve and protect—so while he stopped the suspect from hurting someone else, he also has to render aid and do everything to prevent the suspect from dying. Atwater did his job, even if the outcome wasn’t fair. And honestly, when is life ever fair?
As we’ve seen time and time again on Chicago PD, there are many inner struggles that come with being a cop, and no one feels guilter, harbors more regret, or is harder on themselves than the cops that find themselves in those tricky situations, toeing the line between right, wrong, and necessary.
Thankfully for all of us, Atwater has always excelled in those storylines, rising to the occasion every single time.
What did you think of the episode?
Is ‘Chicago PD’ New Tonight? Everything We Know About Season 11 Episode 5
Chicago PD fans, you’re going to have to wait an additional week until new episodes return to NBC.
The police drama will not air a brand new episode tonight (February 14, 2024) as the show is skipping a week before airing a new episode, likely due to Valentine’s Day and Ash Wednesday cutting into potential live audiences. In its place, the network will be airing a rerun of the season 11 premiere episode.
Chicago PD Season 11 Episode 5 will return to your TV on Wednesday, February 21, 2024.
Thankfully, a synopsis for the next episode has already been revealed, along with a teaser, so fans can know what to expect. The wait will be worth it as the episode, titled “Split Second,” will be the first of the season to focus on Det. Kevin Atwater (played by LaRoyce Hawkins), who always delivers an outstanding performance!
Here’s the official episode tease: “Atwater turns to an unlikely source of support when a string of jewellery store robberies shakes his confidence.”
For now, check out the trailer for the next episode below:
Chicago P.D. airs Wednesdays at 10/9c on NBC.
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