In an unexpected turn of events, “Chicago Fire” did not stretch out the budding tension between Jimmy Borelli (Steven R. McQueen) and Chief Boden (Eammon Walker) as an unfortunate incident led to the former having no choice but to leave the fire department.
With Jimmy still having a hard time coming to terms with the death of his brother, it was actually difficult for the others to work with him. While they understood that it might just be a phase, the fact that the young firefighter continued to go on missions when he should have been taking a breather led to tension within the department.
The situation reached its climax when Jimmy, after losing all faith in Boden’s leadership as he blamed the chief for the death of his brother, took matters into his own hands during a fire call. In the end, it backfired on him as he suffered a career-ending injury.
Executive producer Michael Brandt broke down the shocking exit of the character and explained how the development of the story was actually very organic to the overall plot of “Chicago Fire.”
“We’ve wrestled with this over the last four years, in terms of threats and real dangers to people in the firehouse. There are times when people get injured, or really bad things happen to them, and we don’t follow through on that, and sometimes we feel like we have to pull the trigger on certain things,” the series’ co-creator explained in a postmortem conversation with TV Line. “With Jimmy’s character, it just felt like he needed to stand up for what he believed in, but Boden needed to stand up for what he believed in, and those two things couldn’t live together. It was driven by the story and who the characters have evolved into.”
Jimmy’s mishap does not necessarily close the door on McQueen’s “Chicago Fire” comeback or even appearances in other Dick Wolf-created series. But as of now, Brandt reveals that there is no concrete plan for it.
In the next episode titled “Scorched Earth,” it is business as usual at Firehouse 51 with Severide (Taylor Kinney) receiving an offer of a luxurious getaway with Travis Brenner (guest star Scott Elrod). Casey (Jesse Spencer), on the other hand, taps Susan Weller (guest star Lauren Stamile) to help with a personal crisis. Elsewhere, Stella (Miranda Rae Mayo) invests all her resources to help a street kid that she saved during a tunnel fire.
“Chicago Fire” season 5 airs every Tuesday, 10 p.m. ET on NBC.