Case Summary: When kids are overdosing and Bunny’s lover is murdered, the cases tie together in an unsurprising way. Erin makes the decision to accept a job with the FBI.
Review | Analysis: Chicago P.D. is a show about good deeds, but at its core, it is a show about family. A family the Intelligence unit has formed through innate dedication to protecting one another. Whether it’s past, present, or future members, the unit has always been a family. And “Fork in the Road” was an episode about family, it was far from perfect, undoubtedly predictable, but nevertheless, it featured some beautiful moments reminding viewers of why this show’s special.
Anytime someone makes the argument that a couple needs to continuously be pushed and pulled apart to make a show intriguing, I laugh. A lot. And then I roll my eyes to the point where it hurts my head. Let’s look at The Americans for instance, while the show’s premise deals with spies, its heart has always been Philip and Elizabeth’s marriage. Let’s look at Madam Secretary, a show about the Secretary of State and her incredibly stable family. Why do comedies last significantly longer than dramas if romance ruins the thrill? The truth is, and I hate to say this so blatantly, but shows in this genre, in the Chicago franchise, may go on forever because there are a number of casual viewers that tend to leave TV streaming, but if it carries on its streak of repetitive storytelling, it’ll never be critically acclaimed. It’s a shame because it’s a show with great talent and potential.
“Fork in the Road” may not have been original in storytelling, or even a little surprising, but it brought up remarkable reminders of what an incredible unit Intelligence is. And it starts off with Upton — a new kid with heart and resilience to protect in spite of the fact that her job may have been on the line. I know she’s not going to be staying, and it’s a little saddening because she’s the first guest start that’s actually showcased a promised future along with an adorable persona. And it was not only gorgeous to see her fervent dedication to protecting Lindsay, but I appreciated Platt calling her detective followed by her being welcomed into Molly’s as a member of their family. (If it isn’t obvious by now, it really doesn’t take a lot to impress me.)
On the other side of the spectrum, we have Bunny. It’s always the same story with her, and it’s sad to say that there was not a single moment where I felt any ounce of empathy. Emotions that by the end I realized were merited because nothing had changed. She was still the same, problematic woman who was out for her own selfish reasons. How many times are we going to pull Erin down the same road? Every single finale for the next 12 years? I can’t be the only person who is a little over it.
Now for as much as I dislike Bunny, any time she’s in an episode, it serves as a perfect reminder of the fact that Voight will do anything to protect Lindsay. And while it wasn’t stated in the episode, I’d like to accept that since Sophia Bush has said he isn’t her biological father, it’s canon. That said, the fact that he’s never been her biological father, but rather loved her through everything has always made their relationship incredibly special. And it was no surprise that their bond would be the saving grace “Fork in the Road” needed.
Jason Beghe and Sophia Bush have never been better as scene partners than in the moment where he handed her the dog tags with his fingerprint. To deliver their goodbyes with resolute poignancy and vulnerability almost broke me thinking that this may actually be the end. At that moment, you felt the steadfast love for one another. The love that doesn’t need blood to be deemed forever. They are a family. In every sense of the word, Voight and Lindsay have always been home to one another, and near or far, that’ll never change. Their relationship is the first one I truly found myself attached to and moved by, thereby having it front and center in crucial episodes is something I’ll always appreciate. As much as there are flaws in the execution of stories, their scenes will never lose depth.
Every finale leaves a can of worms open, and while we can be certain Lindsay will be back, it’s where she and Halstead will stand that’s on all our minds. I wasn’t surprised by Jay’s decision to ask for the ring. Could the timing have been a lot better? 100%. But it’s key to remember that Jay Halstead has had their future planned since day one. He was planning their retirement in Wisconsin shortly after they began dating. It’s no surprise that she’d be all he thinks about it. And that’s perfectly in line with his character’s journey because he’s someone who’s often had his life mapped out.
But that doesn’t mean that any of this is happening in the way that it should, and as a viewer, I’m ridiculously tired of Halstead being treated like nothing more than a pretty boy. And that may be a little extreme but oftentimes, people forget that he’s not only a war veteran but clearly still suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Thereby, choosing to neglect his storyline in an attempt to put a band-aid on it and call it a day was undignified. It’s insulting, really. What was the purpose of introducing a wife and then only having one deleted scene where he states he’s getting help? As an English major, we’re pretty good with reading between the lines, but this much work shouldn’t be left to a viewer’s imagination.
As much as Voight and Erin’s relationship has been special, next in line has always been her relationship with Jay. And while Jay’s decision may have been rash, it was a decision made to show her he’s there, he’s sorry for the lies, and she’s the only person he wants to promise forever, too. It deserved to have been explored a little further and I’m intrigued by what’s to come.
But that said, I appreciated the fact that she turned to him knowing that with everything they’ve been through, they’ll always have each other’s back — reiterating the promise that’s always anchored them. And Jesse Lee Soffer broke me in the heartache he wore when he took out the ring, the anxiety he projected when she wouldn’t pick up his phone. From the moment she didn’t show, Jay knew something wasn’t right, and for her to leave without saying goodbye to her partner? It’s going to open unnecessary wounds and drama the show didn’t need.
Although the can of worms is messy, bleak, and distressing, we can be certain of one thing, and it’s the fact that the two of them are going to be alright. The love they share surpasses anything they’ve ever faced, they’re partners through everything, and they’ll always be the best thing in each other’s lives. Nothing that’s worthwhile is ever easy, and we don’t give up on those we care for. And something tells me that the reason Erin didn’t answer the phone was due to the fact that if she did, she wouldn’t be able to leave.
“Fork in the Road” may not have been the best finale, but it was a great reminder of the fact that this group will always love one another. I care about this show. I care about these characters, and I really just wish that it would focus on more character-driven episodes. I wish it’d maintain its continuity and finish the chapters it starts. It’d make it something truly spectacular. And I don’t even watch Chicago Fire, but can we all agree that Gabby Dawson doesn’t deserve to lose her husband after her best friend? Let’s be real now, show. Also, can we agree that Will Halstead should never give love advice? Please and thank you.
Thank you all for yet another incredible season. I’m always humbled by the kindness this fandom shows in my reviews and it’s a huge reason why we’re still going. I hope you all have a beautiful summer/winter and we’ll see you again soon.
What are your thoughts on the finale? If there’s anything you’d like me to discuss further, let us know in the comments below.