Chicago PD season 10 was not what we would deem a “happy” season. There were some major events that happened to the characters, and very few of them were positive. There were traumas, near death experiences, and crumbling marriages, but we’d be lying if we didn’t say it was a wildly entertaining batch of episodes.
PD is often the darkest of the One Chicago titles, and given that it’s the one that most directly deals with criminals and debauched behavior, it makes perfect sense. That being said, there were lots of moments in season 10 that were memorable, whether they be for upbeat or bleak reasons. We decided to pick the five that we feel best define the season.
5. Voight pays a visit to Alvin Olinsky’s grave (Deadlocked)
A small detail but a significant one. The episode “Deadlocked” is mostly about a case from the past, and how Hank Voight (Jason Beghe) and company have to make sure that a deadly crime boss isn’t let back on the streets, but the best moment comes with Voight finds himself at the cemetery in which his old friend, Alvin Olinksy (Elias Koteas), is buried.
He takes time out from the case to look over Olinsky’s grave, and the unspoken moment, which gets shared with Adam Ruzek (Patrick John Flueger), is a reminder of how much the characters have lost over the years, and how much they sacrifice in order to do their job well. It’s a classic Voight scene.
4. Upton finally takes off her wedding ring (Fight)
Hear us out. We don’t think this is a happy or pleasant moment to watch, but after the way the show mishandled the Jay Halstead (Jesse Lee Soffer) exit, this was a step in the right direction for Hailey Upton (Tracy Spiridakos). The character had been so caught up in saving her marriage she didn’t bother to acknowledge the fact that she wasn’t getting the same effort in return.
Until the episode “Fight”. Upton was kidnapped and nearly killed before fighting her way out, and upon getting back to safety, she realized that Halstead still wouldn’t pick up the phone. The last scene shows her removing her wedding ring, which suggested some painful but positive growth for the character. We don’t know where the Halstead and Upton story will end, but this was a powerful moment.
3. Ruzek and Burgess finally get together (Out of the Depths)
Adam Ruzek and Kim Burgess (Marina Squerciati) have been through a lot over the years, and season 10 was no different. The couple are still dealing with the trauma of the incident in which their daughter Makayla (Ramona Edith Williams) was kidnapped, and in the case of Burgess, the PTSD of being shot and nearly killed on the job.
It’s for all these reasons that Ruzek and Burgess’ renewed romance in the episode “Out of the Depths” felt so deserved. They have always done their best to support one other, even when one of them is struggling, and we hope their romance continues to rebuild and get stronger in season 11.
At this point, they comprise the only romance on the show.
2. Torres waterboards a suspect for information (New Life)
Once again, we don’t think waterboarding is rewatchable. What we do think is rewatchable, though, is the characterization that’s given to Dante Torres (Benjamin Levy Aguilar) in the episode “New Life.” The character didn’t have a ton to do for most of season 10, but this storyline, about his past mixing with his law enforcement present, lent him a lot of depth.
It’s a shame he wasn’t present for the season finale, but “New Life” takes the kind of bold swings we’d like to see in the writing of new characters, especially as the older characters continue to exit.
1. Atwater shoots and kills the season’s villain (A Better Place)
Bleak? Sure. But Richard Beck (Lee Tergesen) was a bad dude, and fans spent most of the season’s second half getting an insight into the horrible things he was planning. He was the one who nearly blew Voight sky high during the finale, and it was his influence that led to Ruzek getting shot in the stomach.
Beck had to go, and Kevin Atwater (LaRoyce Hawkins) taking him out in the penultimate scene of the season was immensely satisfying. Atwater didn’t have a ton to do in season 10, but his bond with Ruzek has always been one of the underrated dynamics of the show, so it was nice to see him get payback for his friend in thrilling fashion.
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