Chicago Fire season 7, episode 4 recap: This Isn’t Charity

CHICAGO FIRE -- "This Isn't Charity" Episode 704 -- Pictured: Yuri Sardarov as Otis -- (Photo by: Adrian Burrows/NBC)
CHICAGO FIRE -- "This Isn't Charity" Episode 704 -- Pictured: Yuri Sardarov as Otis -- (Photo by: Adrian Burrows/NBC) /

Chicago Fire sets up a literally explosive situation in this week’s episode. Here’s what happened in Chicago Fire season 7, episode 4.

This week’s Chicago Fire wasn’t only about flames; it was literally blowing up parts of the city of Chicago.

But first, “This Isn’t Charity” starts as Christopher Herrmann (David Eigenberg) is still shocked by his unexpected promotion to Lieutenant. He’s great at ordering people around, though.

Plus, Stella Kidd (Miranda Rae Mayo) wants Kelly Severide (Taylor Kinney) to meet one of her high school friends. But as usual, Chicago Fire just teases these personal stories before getting to their first fire call.

What seems to be an ordinary house fire turns out to be more serious, with the team discovering a man who’s unconscious and badly burned inside. But things are never that simple at the top of any episode, or this would be a very short show!

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And hey, check out the Trulicity commercial which follows, that just happens to take place inside of a firehouse. That’s one heck of a coincidence.

Back on Chicago Fire, the team puts the fire out and begins investigating why their victim is missing his hands. It’s clear to Matthew Casey (Jesse Spencer) that something exploded in the house to start the fire.

And that something was an active grenade. Has anyone seen Stewie Griffin recently?

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Back at Firehouse 51, Mouch (Christian Stolte) finds out that Ritter, the young man he helped during the crossover, has quit the fire department. While Mouch is stunned that Ritter gives him one of his most prized possessions as a parting gift, Herrmann is still not getting much respect from his new subordinates.

Then Tyler (guest star Tye White) walks into the firehouse. He’s already heard about Severide from Stella, who introduces him to the team as her best friend from high school. It’s not a shocker when he’s got photos of her and talks about how different she used to be—love that purple hair!

Why is Severide looking like he’s jealous, though? Considering that Stella has already had to meet two of his actual love interests? This is a good time to cut over to our paramedics, who are called to help an injured young gymnast with a hovering mom.

They bring her to Chicago Med, where we have Emily Foster (Annie Ilonzeh) running into that doctor who knew her before. He still doesn’t like her, and declines her suggestion to test the 12-year-old for performance-enhancing drugs. When pressed, Foster says the doc has a personal grudge against her.

Back at 51, there’s a classic Herrmann line:

"Herrmann: I don’t need you to like me, but I need you to do what I say."

While we’re still giggling, Stella and Tyler are still talking about both the past and present. Tyler is impressed by what his friend has accomplished in her career, and says he’s in town to scout a new prospect for Baylor University, but will be there for the weekend. Stella wants him to spend time with Severide; neither man seems thrilled at the idea.

Chicago Fire then announces there’s been another explosion. Yes, there’s more grenades, and it’s teenagers throwing them in a local park. This does totally sound like something that misbehaving teens would do.

They call in Kevin Atwater (LaRoyce Hawkins) and Kim Burgess (Marina Squerciati) from Chicago PD to help out, before Foster decides to check in on the gymnast herself. And by check in on, what we mean is accuse her mother of giving her PED’s. Needless to say, Mom does not take kindly to this suggestion, and neither does the doctor.

Herrmann finds out that his rank pins have been stolen and placed in one of the urinals, which is a whole new level of indignity. Of course, he’s immediately out for revenge. It looks like he’s one step away from bursting a blood vessel. He goes to Chief Boden (Eamonn Walker) for advice. Another classic Herrmann quote follows:

"Herrmann: Emotional stability is an important trait for an effective leader. But to be honest, Chief, I’m about to lose it on this guy."

Stella is disappointed that Severide missed Tyler, and Severide tells her that he believes Tyler is in love with her. Uh, how would you know, considering you’re the guy who seems to have a new love interest every half-season in Chicago Fire history? Anyway, this whole scene is awkward. So is an elderly woman showing up with the rest of those grenades. It just makes us think of this:

Jokes aside, Chicago Fire has a stunned Casey take them from her. He learns that they belonged to her late husband, and she accidentally sold several of them at a garage sale. While you try to wrap your brains around that, Firehouse 51 realizes there’s one more grenade out there in the hands of a boy no older than 12.

The whole staff mobilizes to try and find the kid, while Herrmann swings his banhammer and has the guy who’s been pranking him all week transferred. Effective immediately.

With just one act left in “This Isn’t Charity,” Casey gets a quick break in the psuedo-investigation. A neighborhood kid identifies the kid, and tells him where to find Kyle. He runs over and finds him, as well as several of his friends, making a movie with their not-so-fake grenade.

The kid throws the grenade to Casey, who promptly tosses it safely aside and causes a minor but harmless explosion. With that wrapped up, Chicago Fire brings us back to Foster’s story. She’s had a call from the gymnast’s mom, which sends them back to the gym to confront her coach.

She tested positive for drugs, which the mom obviously suspected she was getting from the coach, who is promptly arrested. While Foster comforts the daughter, Sylvie Brett (Kara Killmer) is there to tell Mom it was Foster who saved the day. Score another one for the new arrival.

“This Isn’t Charity” wraps back around to the Firehouse 51 locker room. Herrmann has a spot open on his team now, and Mouch suggests hiring Ritter. Meanwhile, Severide walks out and into Tyler; Tyler tells Severide that he’ll “never” be out of Stella’s life. Well, that feels like a rivalry that has no reason to exist.

Severide meets up with Stella at Molly’s, where both seem subdued. And hey, that’s Nina Shore (Patti Murin) sitting with Cruz! How cool is that?! As she imparts some wisdom about germs, we see Mouch and Herrmann offering Ritter a job. Hopefully he’ll get more of a chance than Jason Kannell did last season, but at least he gets a free beer.

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