Chicago Fire season 8, episode 17 recap: Protect A Child

CHICAGO FIRE -- "Protect a Child" Episode 817 -- Pictured: Jesse Spencer as Matthew Casey -- (Photo by: Adrian S. Burrows Sr./NBC)
CHICAGO FIRE -- "Protect a Child" Episode 817 -- Pictured: Jesse Spencer as Matthew Casey -- (Photo by: Adrian S. Burrows Sr./NBC) /
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Parenting and mentoring

Everyone returns to the firehouse to see Herrmann creating his own officers’ quarters, which is more amusing than impressive. Elsewhere, Stella has an epiphany and approaches Boden about recruiting young women as junior firefighters. Boden gives Stella his “full support” and tells her who to contact to put her plan into motion. It’s no surprise that he’s beaming about the idea, since he’d previously been trying to mold Stella into management material.

Julie (recurring guest star Kelly Deadmon) wants Brett to help her with hunting for a new house in Chicago. While gushing about their mutual love of House Hunters, Brett lets slip that she was previously engaged. Julie wants to hear all about it, but which ex-fiancee is Brett referring to?

And why is somebody else from DCFS quizzing Casey about the house fire from earlier? Because Karen went and complained, darn it! Well, as somebody who’s already been through the DCFS wringer with the Louie situation, Casey isn’t going to take that. “She was a real piece of work,” he tells the rep, who is almost as smarmy as Karen. It’s clear that she has already made her mind up, and Casey calls her out on it. “She wanted a few choice quotes so she could take a boy away from his disabled mother,” he grouses to Boden.

Chicago Fire needs some levity STAT, so Darren Ritter (recurring guest star Daniel Kyri) is summoned to Herrmann’s new “office.” Ritter asks how he’s supposed to knock on the door when there is no door, and how they’re supposed to have private conversations when there’s an echo. Hey, Herrmann means well.

Plus, Stella gets a visit from the Community Outreach rep that Boden had her call. She pitches her idea of showing girls possible careers in the fire service and empowering them; he tells her to write up a proposal and get a female officer to co-sponsor the project. Since Stella isn’t an officer, she can’t actually run the thing.

And then we have a naked guy. Because why not?

Brett and Emily Foster (Annie Ilonzeh) are annoyed that the patrol cops won’t do anything about it. And that one of them thinks it’s okay to call Brett “honey.” But before the guy can get into a fight with them, the naked dude goes on the run and leaves the cops to chase after him. Which gives Brett time to chat up an amused bystander, who just happens to be a realtor. Small world.

Elsewhere, Casey tells Boden that he wants to go talk to the annoying neighbor and Gallo agrees to go with him. The two of them approach Karen, erm, Arlene, who complains about her garden and tells them “You don’t know half of anything.” But Casey makes a reference to having Louie taken away, which surprises Gallo, who didn’t know Casey ever had a son. “Long story,” Casey comments before saying they should inspect Jenni’s house again.