‘9-1-1’ Recap: Season 3, Episode 5 “Rage”

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When 9-1-1 ended last week, Buck had told Bobby and Athena he was suing the city and department. This week, the 118 is testifying, and Athena’s family gets pulled over for more than just a routine traffic stop. Although Buck wants his job back, it might not be easy if everyone is against him.

Keep reading to find out what happened on this week’s 9-1-1, “Rage.”

Two women, Denise and Emily, are in a rage room. Denise is starting to break things, but Emily doesn’t think it’s working. She just went through a horrible breakup. Denise tries to get her to remember how horrible her ex, Eric, is. Denise brings up something about him barking like a seal when they’re having sex, and Emily tells her that she never told her he did that. Emily realizes that the “someone else” she thought Eric was seeing was her best friend. Emily is finally getting her rage out as she starts smashing everything in the room. Denise, fearing for her life, calls 9-1-1.

The 118 show up, Hen saying that the rage room is the dumbest thing people in LA pay money for. Athena tells them their victim is in the rage room but is nowhere to be found. Athena points out she climbed in the barrel after her BFF started chasing her with a sledgehammer. Lena and Eddie saw the barrel open to get Denise out. Denise tells the police not to take Emily to jail, that it’s all her fault. Emily said she’d rather rot in jail than have her do another thing for her.

At the arbitration hearing, the arbitrator says this is not a trial, and he’s not a judge. The arbitration is just addressing Buck’s claim against the LAFD for wrongful termination. Bobby corrects him by saying that Buck was never terminated. Chase barges in, saying that while Buck wasn’t technically fired, he’s been constructively terminated from all components of firefighting, a de facto firing, a direct result of discriminatory and unequal treatment on the part of Bobby. Bobby states he doesn’t treat Buck any differently than any firefighter on his watch. Chim says he was hit from behind with a construction truck, the rebar entering the back of the skull, right through the brain. It only took close to a month to return to work. After being stabbed repeatedly for defending Maddie, it took about a month.

Chase says that Bobby has a pattern of allowing firefighters with serious injuries back after less than a month. Hen says it’s not fair to say; that every patient is different, and every injury is different. The blood thinners Buck has to take make it dangerous for him to be on the field. Chase slides Hen a brochure for anticoagulant blood thinner medication. Blood thinners that Hen once sold when she was a sales rep. Chase tries to get it out of her that she sold them, telling patients they could still resume their normal lives. Eddie says that although he was a field medic, it doesn’t qualify him to comment on Buck’s medical status. If Cap says he’s not ready, he’s not ready.

Chase brings up the fact that Eddie returned to work immediately after his wife’s death. Eddie says it’s his business, but Chase also says it’s his Captain’s business. Eddie said that Bobby wasn’t there at the time to tell him to take time off. Chase says it was because he was suspended. He brings up the fact that no matter the injury or infraction, everyone was able to return to their jobs except for Buck. Buck has a chronic medical condition. Chase brings up Bobby’s alcoholism and how he had a relapse a year and a half ago, and that Hen and Buck found Bobby passed out in his apartment. Buck helped Bobby sober up and returned to his duties as Captain of the 118. After the hearing, Bobby, Chim, Eddie, and Hen are getting onto the elevator while Chase tells Buck he thinks it went great. Buck is walking toward the elevator, and Chim closes it.

Michael is driving May and Harry home from their grandmother’s house. Harry is asleep in the back seat while May is talking to Michael. They get pulled over. Two white cops step out of the car, and one has his hand over his gun, walking towards Michael’s car. The cop asks for Michael to step out of the car. Michael asks the cop why he was pulled over, and the cop says it’s because of expired tags. The cop tells him to put his hands on the car, and when Michael turns around, the cop grabs him and pins him to the car.

May starts recording the incident on her phone. She steps out of the car, wondering what they’re doing to her dad, saying they can’t be treated like that. Harry wakes up, and the other cop immediately points his gun at him. Michael pleads over and over, “Do not shoot my son. Please.” He tells the cops that his wife is a sergeant, Athena Grant, LAPD. Cop two sees that Harry is just a kid when he opens the doors to the back seat, and Harry has his hands up. The cops walk away, and May runs up to Michael, hugging him. Cop one comes back and gives Michael his license and registration, telling them to have a nice night. Harry steps out of the car and hugs Michael and May. They get back in the car, watching the cops drive away.

Michael is talking to Athena about what happened. Athena says it was just a bad stop, but Michael says they pulled out their guns; it was more than just a bad stop. Athena tells him they’ll file a complaint and that there will be an investigation. Michael says they’ll be lucky if they get a slap on the wrist. Harry asks if he will go to jail, and Michael assures him that he’s not going anywhere, saying it’ll be okay. May says no, it’s not okay. Harry almost got killed, and her dad almost got killed. It’s the truth. Harry wants to know why they did that, and Athena says it’s because they were afraid. Michael says they’re afraid because they saw him as a big, scary black man. Michael says that when they saw a man and his two kids, that should’ve given them the idea to stand down. Athena agrees and says the idea of what could’ve happened terrifies her. May says she got it all on her phone, and she’s posting the video. Athena tells her no. She does not want hers and Harry’s faces all over the internet. Athena tells Michael the police are not the enemy. She doesn’t want to teach her kids that.

Buck meets up with Chase, who has big news. He hands Buck a paper with the city’s offer; they want to settle. Buck says he doesn’t want money; he wants his job. Chase tells him he’ll be a millionaire, and there’s no need for a job. Buck tells him that he didn’t do this for the money. He did this to go back to doing what he loves and to be back with his team. Chase asks him if they’ll really welcome him back. He tells him that they won; not how he wanted, but still. Buck says he doesn’t feel like he won.

At the police station, Athena is watching a video of when the cops pulled Michael over, courtesy of a body cam one of the cops was wearing. Athena said she had to see it for herself. The police captain comes in, saying she’s going to recommend suspension without pay while the department conducts its investigation. She’s going to push the disciplinary action. Athena points out that one of the cops, Reynolds, has a long list of complaints and that almost every incident on that list involves a black or brown suspect. The captain tells her that the incident will probably go away, too, and Athena tells her that it will for them, but not for her family or her.

Bobby sits down with Michael and asks him how he’s doing. Both are furious. Bobby thought the world had changed. He wanted to believe it had. Michael says he got too comfortable: nice house, formerly married to an LAPD sergeant. He thought he was exempt. And then he was reminded he’s not, and neither is his son. That’s the part he’s really struggling with. Harry is 10; he shouldn’t be worried about anything, except for just being a kid. Now, he has to sit down and talk to him. The Talk. He has to prepare his son for something that shouldn’t even be his responsibility. Michael says that if something worse had happened, he’s so happy the kids have Bobby because he knows he loves them like they’re his own. Bobby tells him he can’t let himself think like that.

Michael sits down with Harry to give him The Talk. Michael tells him he has to talk about what he could’ve done differently, but Harry tells him he didn’t do anything wrong. But it’s not about being right. It’s about being safe. Harry asks, aren’t police supposed to keep them safe? Michael says yes, but not all officers are like his mom. There are some bad ones and some that aren’t so bad. Some will still treat you like he’s different than other kids because he’s black. Michael tells him to be respectful, do what they say, and never feel nervous or panic. He will probably be more scared than the police, but he can’t argue with them. Always keep your hands where they can see them and no sudden moves. Ask for permission if they ask for something, and tell them what you’re doing as you’re doing it. Some people will see him differently, but those people will never know who he is. He’s an amazing black boy who will grow up to be an amazing black man.

Athena pulls over Reynolds on account of suspicion of drunk driving. After asking him to step out of the car, Athena conducts a field sobriety test, to which Reynolds said he can legally refuse. But Athena tells him she can legally throw him in jail. Reynolds tells Athena he didn’t know it was her family when they made the stop. Athena said lucky her. If it was somebody else’s family, they could be making funeral arrangements. Reynolds says it was all a big misunderstanding. After a few more words, Athena tells him to have a nice night and drives off.

At the police station, the other cop that pulled Michael and the kids over, Andrew Martin, tells Athena how sorry he was. He didn’t see Harry in the backseat. It was just an instinct. Athena tells him she remembers being a rookie, the nerves, not knowing what you’re walking up on, not sure what to do when you get there. It’s natural to follow your partner’s lead. Just don’t follow it off a cliff. Do better.

Bobby takes Michael to the rage room from the beginning of the episode, with the 118 following suit. Buck shows up and thanks Bobby for inviting him. Bobby tells Buck that he’s going to get a call from the chief. He’s being reinstated for active duty the next day. He tells Buck that they gave him the option to transfer him to a different station. But Bobby said no. He’s keeping him at the 118, so he can keep an eye on him.

This episode included important scenes and gave us something we’ve been waiting for. We also got a first look at the new 9-1-1: Lone Star series, so look out for that in January! 9-1-1 airs Mondays at 8 p.m ET on Fox.

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By Megan
Megan has been passionate about writing since she was little and has been passionate about all things pop culture and nerdy since almost as long. Joining Nerds and Beyond in 2019, she also graduated from the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh in 2020 with a Bachelor of Arts in Multimedia Journalism. Megan is constantly binge-watching shows and finding new things to obsess over. 9-1-1 and Marvel currently reign as the top obsessions. You can find her on Twitter @marvels911s if you ever want to discuss some certain firefighters.
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