There was a time when Rescue Me was my favorite show on television; this of course was early on before Denis Leary’s ego went out of control. So it is hard to watch Chicago Fire and not compare it to that previous firemen show. There are similarities, like how a fireman goes down on duty in the first episode, and differences, instead of Probie, the new guy is call the clunkier Candidate. The most notable difference is that the characters on Chicago Fire are significantly less interesting. There are no hot heads like Tommy, idiots like White Shaun, really, most of the characters are just pretty boys like Franco. If the show had not cast one brunette and one blonde I probably would not be able to tell the two leads apart.
Another big difference is that firehouse on Chicago Fire has an in-house Rescue Squad and EMS team, just do not ask me the difference between the Rescue Squad and the normal firefighters because I have not figured it out myself other than the Rescue Squad members seem to be slightly more egotistical. The EMS team seems to be included only to up the female quotient. But the problem is whenever I see them on screen I cannot help but thinking the previous one and done Trauma a couple seasons ago was much better. And it was odd that they made one of the lone females on the show a lesbian (the usually absurdly hot, but needs to go back to being a brunette Lauren German) which eliminates any chance of any inter-department hanky-panky.
On the bright side the always awesome Eamonn Walker (Oz) plays the chief and is his usually epic self. I really wish they would spend more time on him than the bland pretty boys. The show was also able to wrangle a local celebrity to make a cameo in the premiere. But do not get excited sports fan, it is not Mike Ditka, Michael Jordan, or even the big head of Sammy Sosa, but a local politician. If there is a reason to watch future episodes of Chicago Fire it would be my sources tell me that at some point Shiri Appleby will be showing up as German’s ex-girlfriend. Okay, maybe making German a lesbian was not the worst idea in the world.
Chicago Fire airs Wednesdays at 10:00 on NBC. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Chicago Fire on iTunes where you can currently download the Pilot for free.