By Michelle Gonzaba
911 picks up right where we left off, with Eddie bleeding out on the streets of Los Angeles. Buck and his fellow firefighters are able to drag Eddie to safety and get him to the hospital. After contacting the rest of Station 118, Buck heads to Eddie’s house to break the news to Christopher. Buck has a hard time telling Chris about his dad’s injury; he’s so torn up about it, Chris has to comfort Buck instead of the other way around. It might be a good idea for Buck to schedule some more therapy sessions.
While Eddie is undergoing surgery, we learn that the sniper has shot another firefighter at a different scene. It’s now clear the unknown assailant is targeting members of the LAFD. Bobby informs his crew (which weirdly includes a bunch of unnamed and non-speaking firefighters) that they must wear bulletproof vests. They continue to answer calls while Athena works to track down the shooter.
One of those calls involves a construction worker stuck on a crane and pinned down by a cable. While Bobby and the crew try to figure out the safest way to help, Buck goes rogue and starts to climb the crane himself. Luckily, he’s able to save the worker and bring him down safely.
Back at the firehouse, Bobby isn’t very happy with Buck’s spontaneity. He knows Buck won’t ever stop being “full Buck” but he’s tired of his constant disregard for his own life. Buck defends his actions; still reeling from Eddie’s injury, he would rather make himself a target than watch another friend get injured. His explanation doesn’t convince Bobby, who simply tells him to never do anything like that again.
While the LAFD is busy trying not to get shot, Maddie has reached her wits’ end. She can’t sleep, can’t focus, and feels like her brain is in a fog. She believes she can’t do her job while in this state, so she decides to quit. Although it’s a good idea for her to take care of herself, she hasn’t told Chim about her big decision.
After discovering the bullets used in the shooting are also used by the LAPD, Athena makes a break in the case of the sniper. She arrests a former SWAT member who had accidentally shot a hostage. After questioning him, she doubts he is the sniper. Unfortunately, she isn’t able to get much further in her investigation before the shooter strikes again.
Because they think the sniper has been caught, Station 118 responds to a major fire without any protection. They believe a man named Ethan is trapped somewhere in the building and begin their search. While Chim, Hen, and Bobby walk through the fire, they are alerted that the sniper is still on the loose. Chim and Hen are able to escape the building but Bobby isn’t so lucky; he runs into Ethan, who shoots Bobby in the stomach.
Athena shows up on the scene and informs them of who Ethan really is. He was the partner of the man they arrested earlier in the episode. Ethan fills in some holes while holding Bobby at gunpoint. He blames the LAFD for saving the criminal who held the hostage his partner accidentally shot. Yes, it’s a little convoluted but he needs to be mad for some reason. Unfortunately for Ethan, he doesn’t know Athena will do anything to save her husband. Wearing a firefighter’s uniform, she gets inside the building and takes Ethan down. Sorry, Ethan, your totally well-thought-out plan never stood a chance against Athena.
After a few stressful days, mostly everyone gets a happy ending. Bobby survives his gunshot wound and makes up with Athena. Buck and anchorwoman Taylor kiss. Hen and Karen run into Nia and her mother at the park, where both parties have lunch together. Eddie is released from the hospital, but not before telling Buck some big news. Eddie has changed his will so, in the event of his death, Buck would be Christopher’s legal guardian. He wants Buck to understand that he isn’t expendable. It’s a nice gesture, but I don’t know if Buck is emotionally ready for something like that.
Maddie and Chim don’t exactly end the season in a great place. She finally admits she needs help to deal with her post-partum depression. Chim knows he alone can’t give her the support she needs and is determined to find her the assistance she requires.
It’s not all tough times for Chim; his brother Albert is on his way to becoming a firefighter. Will he join Station 118 next year? While he would be a good addition to the show, it isn’t the most pressing question left for next season. Will Maddie get the help she needs? Will Buck step back from his dangerous ways? Will we ever learn the names of those random firefighters that walk around in the background? No matter what the answers are, season five is sure to bring on the drama.