What happened on Chicago Fire season 10 episode 2?

"Headcount" Episode 1002 -- Pictured: (l-r) Miranda Rae Mayo as Stella Kidd, Christian Stolte as Randall “Mouch” McHolland -- (Photo by: Adrian S. Burrows Sr./NBC)
"Headcount" Episode 1002 -- Pictured: (l-r) Miranda Rae Mayo as Stella Kidd, Christian Stolte as Randall “Mouch” McHolland -- (Photo by: Adrian S. Burrows Sr./NBC) /

Chicago Fire had plenty of drama to sift through in its latest episode. The events of the season 10 premiere are still being felt, with characters being forced to step back at look at the consequences of their actions.

There’s also a newfound emphasis on real world issues, like the shortage of ambulances in the greater Chicago area. Brett (Kara Killmer) opens the episode as she tries to draft a plan that would see non-urgent matters get handled by a private ambulance service, so medics can focus on those who need aid the most. Naturally, this dilemma factors into the main narrative of the episode.

The episode, titled “Head Count”, also brings about some interesting dynamic shifts between the veterans of Firehouse 51. Be warned that the rest of the post contains detailed spoilers!

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The episode really gets going when the 51 team are called out to dislodge a car from underneath a semitruck. It all seems like a standard job for Herrmann (David Eigenberg) and Ritter (Daniel Kyri), until the former hears a muffled sound. He frantically sifts through the debris and finds a little boy trapped under the backseat. He’s able to get the boy out, but is told the nearest ambulance is 15 minutes away.

Torn as to whether he should follow protocol or break the rules and reach out to a nearby Brett, Herrmann picks the latter and saves the boy’s life. The rescue happens early on, but the emotional strain it puts on Herrmann weighs throughout the rest of the episode. Exasperated after his return to the lockers, he asks Brett if he’s ever going to be able to get past the fear of losing a child on the job.

The mortality theme carries over to Cruz (Joe Minoso), who’s still reeling from his near death experience in the season premiere. It’s obvious the incident has left him feeling insecure on the job, and Stella (Miranda Rae Mayo) periodically checks on him throughout the episode. Not much is done here, but one gets the sense that this is going to be Cruz’s arc for the duration of season 10.

Chicago Fire season 10 episode 2 recap

On a lighter note, Casey has become a local celebrity after a video of him performing heroic acts went viral. He’s bombarded with teenage admirers throughout the episode, in what amounts to a running joke, but Chief Boden (Eamonn Walker) sees a PR opportunity and encourages Casey to embrace his fifteen minutes of fame for the good of the Firehouse.

Casey tries to breach serious topics during an interview with a local news station, but it doesn’t even make it on the air. Elsewhere, Brett’s radical thinking lands her in hot water with the higher ups. She and Herrmann are brought in and reprimanded for breaking ambulance protocol, but rather than let Brett take the fall, the veteran firefighter claims the punishment alone.

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Boden warns Herrmann that a punishment of this size is going to affect his chances for promotion, but the latter assures him that it’s a small price to pay for saving a little boy’s life. The two men share a tender moment, and make plans to get coffee even after Boden leaves 51.

The episode ends with Casey begrudgingly going into the hallway to greet a teenage fan, but it turns out to be Griffin Darden, the son of the late firefighter Andy Darden (Corey Sorenson). Griffin says that he needs Casey’s help, and the episode ends on an ominous, uncertain note.

Chicago Fire showrunners had been teasing the return of an old character in the lead up to “Head Count”, so it’ll be interesting to see how big a role Griffin plays in the rest of the season.

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For the latest Chicago Fire season 10 spoilers and news, plus more on the entire series, follow the Chicago Fire category at One Chicago Center.