Did Chicago Fire need Gabby Dawson for its big Brettsey moment?

"Double Red" Episode 909 -- Pictured: Jesse Spencer as Matthew Casey -- (Photo by: Adrian S. Burrows Sr./NBC)
"Double Red" Episode 909 -- Pictured: Jesse Spencer as Matthew Casey -- (Photo by: Adrian S. Burrows Sr./NBC) /

Chicago Fire had its long-awaited Brettsey moment in Wednesday’s episode, but should it have had one more Dawsey scene first?

SPOILER ALERT: This article contains major spoilers for the latest Chicago Fire episode, “A White-Knuckle Panic.” You can catch up on the episode with our recap.

This week Matthew Casey (Jesse Spencer) declared to Sylvie Brett (Kara Killmer) that he was in love with her, leaving a stunned Brett staring after him as he left her outside Molly’s Bar.

But Casey came to that realization after a conversation with his ex-wife Gabriela Dawson. Brett’s former partner/best friend had called Firehouse 51 to congratulate Mouch (Christian Stolte) on his medal, and phoned Casey again after the award ceremony.

There was just one hang-up: Monica Raymund didn’t actually appear in the episode.

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Both Casey and Dawson conversations took place entirely off-screen, so all that One Chicago fans know about the critical talk that promoted Casey to move on is what Casey told Brett. And in some ways that works, while in others it doesn’t feel like enough.

Monica Raymund’s already made two guest appearances since exiting Chicago Fire after season 6, so we don’t know if she was too busy to return for “A White-Knuckle Panic” or if she was even asked. If she had a scheduling conflict—she’s been directing TV episodes, including a recent installment of FBI, and has her own TV series Hightown—then that makes perfect sense as to why Dawson didn’t appear (or at least be heard) saying goodbye to her ex-husband.

But if Chicago Fire had the chance, a final Dawsey moment could have made the Brettsey moment even more impactful.

The Brettsey ship has divided some Chicago Fire fans, and the biggest reason for that is Dawson. The idea of Casey moving on with his ex-wife’s best friend and former partner doesn’t sit well with some viewers due to the “girl code” of it all.

That’s been compounded by the fact that we’ve never had a scene between Dawson and Brett. In Gabby’s last appearance in “Best Friend Magic” she came by the firehouse but almost all her screen time was with Casey; it seemed very weird that there wasn’t a moment between her and Brett, about Casey or otherwise, if they’re supposed to be such good friends.

We’ve never gotten Dawson’s point of view on the Brettsey relationship, although we’ve heard Brett’s point of view on the Dawsey relationship.

If Brett and Dawson had been able to talk about Casey back then, or if Casey and Dawson had been heard talking about Brett last night, that would have really helped legitimize the story arc and address some of fans’ concerns. It would have felt a lot more complete, especially if it had involved Dawson giving her blessing for Casey to pursue Brett.

Casey saying that he spoke to Dawson and coming to an epiphany in his own mind just isn’t the same as viewers hearing or seeing it for themselves.

Playing devil’s advocate, one could argue that Dawson coming back again might have made the subplot about Casey and Dawson rather than Casey and Brett, because everyone would’ve been talking about Monica Raymund reappearing on the show, even if it was just over the phone. And with a Stellaride proposal in the same episode, maybe Fire just wanted to focus on current ships rather than draw attention to the past.

But those risks would’ve been outweighed by how much Dawson could have helped both Casey and Brett move on. Especially given how much Gabby still stayed part of Matt’s storyline after she had left the show, it would have been so worth it to have her be part of wrapping that chapter up, as well.

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For the latest Chicago Fire season 9 spoilers and news, plus more on the entire series, follow the Chicago Fire category at One Chicago Center.