Recap: Intertwined Mysteries Are Solved in ‘9-1-1’ Season 4, Episode 11 “First Responders”


In last week’s episode of 9-1-1, we were given a glimpse into Maddie and Chimney’s busy new lives as working parents. Meanwhile, Karen and Hen said their goodbyes to Nia, and Athena and May dealt with some past trauma. Keep reading to find out what happened in this week’s episode, “First Responders.”

The episode opens with what appears to be a sweet moment — Sue’s husband goes out of his way to buy flowers for her at the supermarket — but it quickly turns to disaster when she’s hit by a car (and the driver flees without a second thought). The 118 respond to the call and they recognize Sue as Maddie’s boss as they assess her current state; she’s alive but she has a severe head injury, amongst other things.

At the Nash-Grant household, May drops some big news on Athena and Michael: she wants to move out. And Athena is shockingly okay with it. Meanwhile, at the call center, Josh, Maddie, and Buck speculate if there’s more of a story behind Sue’s hit-and-run. Josh then mentions how important Sue is to the cell center and that he owes her his life. We flashback to 2006. Josh, who’s working as a freelance stenographer at the time, shows up at an office building for his latest gig. He works late into the evening and at one point the fire alarm begins going off, so he calls 9-1-1 — it’s Sue on the other end of the line.

Buck and Taylor Kelly are out for lunch, and Buck shares his concerns about the mystery around Sue’s hit-and-run in hopes that Taylor will help spin a news story out of it. At the call center, Josh updates the staff on Sue’s status, and it’s clear that the situation is really affecting him.

Athena responds to a 9-1-1 call, which leads her to begin looking into a curious case about a missing girl. Back at the cell center, the staff tune in to Taylor’s news report, which she’s running with the headline “Local hero struck down” in order to garner public interest. Josh and Sue’s husband Don panic at the hospital as she’s rushed to emergency surgery. Back to 2006, Sue stays on the line with Josh as he attempts to escape the smoke and flames of the burning office building with an injured woman on his back. The LAFD eventually arrives (Chimney included!) and rescues them both.

Athena shares her frustrations with Hen about the missing girl case, floored that the officer assigned to the case decided to utilize a “wait and see” approach. Hen, like Bobby and Michael, is equally surprised to learn that Athena didn’t push back when May asked to move out. Later, Athena and her fellow officer begin their own investigation into finding out what happened to Tracie, starting off by questioning her employer. Ever observant, Athena manages to pull some new details out of Tracie’s co-worker: she went to the casino to play poker the night she went missing. After reviewing the security footage, they find that a man at the table slipped something into Tracie’s drink, and then they left together. As they observe the car that the two left the parking garage in, Athena suddenly realizes that it matches the description of the car that hit Sue.

Jack Zeman/FOX

Elsewhere, Taylor and Buck meet up at the scene of the hit-and-run, and she shows him the security camera footage that she obtained of Sue getting hit. They attempt to figure out why Sue was running toward the car before it hit her. Just before they can go check the dumpsters nearby, Athena shows up on the scene and squashes their dreams of becoming amateur detectives. They find Tracie’s purse and ID in the dumpster. Later, Buck thinks back to the words Sue was trying to say after the accident, and they manage to figure out the license plate number of the car that hit her.

Taylor puts out another news report with the latest update on the now interlinked stories of Sue’s hit-and-run and Tracie’s kidnapping, which includes the identity of the man who committed both crimes. Reports of sightings of the car flood in at the call center. They eventually trace it to a container yard, where they find Tracie drugged inside of a shipping container. At the call center, Josh is on the line as they search for the kidnapper (Patrick), and he expertly helps the police set up a perimeter around the container yard’s maze. He warns the 118 to hide inside of the container just as Patrick circles back and begins shooting at them, and then the police are eventually able to catch their suspect.

Jack Zeman/FOX

Back in 2006, Josh arrives at the call center to thank Sue for saving his life, immediately enveloping her in a hug. We finally learn how Josh came to be in his current occupation, as Sue explains some of the finer details of the job to him. At the hospital in the current day, Sue is awake and alert, and Josh is relieved as he returns to visit her. We then see exactly what happened the night of the accident: Sue was sitting in her car on the phone with Josh when she noticed Tracie (looking far from okay) inside of Patrick’s car as he got out to throw her things in the dumpster. Tracie’s mom arrives at the hospital to see her daughter.

After doing some thinking, Athena sits back down with May to discuss her plans to move out. She provides her with a list of acceptable neighborhoods, what to avoid, and a list of conditions. The episode ties up with Taylor showing up at Buck’s apartment to celebrate, and Sue returning to work to enthusiastic support from both her staff and a host of first responders over the radio.

Catch new episodes of 9-1-1 on FOX Mondays at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT, followed by new episodes of 9-1-1: Lone Star at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Lindsey joined the Nerds and Beyond team in 2018. If she's not writing or out and about with her camera, she's probably watching anime, nerding out over Star Wars, reading manga, and definitely forgetting to water her plants. And waiting for the Genshin loading screen to pop up. Contact:

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