Things aren't easy in the world of Chicago PD, and the season 11 premiere will prove this to be true. The characters were last seen navigating some tricky emotional waters, whether it be Adam Ruzek (Patrick John Flueger) getting shot or Hailey Upton (Tracy Spiridakos) contending with the fact that her marriage is on the fritz.
The season 11 premiere will jump forward in time six months, which is roughly the same amount of time the show has been off the air. This will not only keep things feeling fresh, but it will drop fans into the world of the characters without making it immediately clear what happened after Ruzek was taken to the hospital.
Chicago PD season 11 episode 1 synopsis
The synopsis for the premiere, titled "Unpacking", reads as follows:
"Tasked with shadowing a crisis prevention team, Upton finds her approach to policing at odds with the team's mental health clinician; Voight stands by Upton as she continues to struggle in her personal life."
As expected, Upton will drive most of the season premiere. This makes sense, given her current predicament with the offscreen Jay Halstead (Jesse Lee Soffer), and it also makes sense given that the character will be written off the show at some point during the season.
There's a lot to address with the character, and Chicago PD showrunner Gwen Sigan revealed that Tracy Spiridakos agreed to stay on for the bulk of season 11 so that her exit wouldn't feel rushed or half-hearted. Sigan told TV Line:
"“[Tracy] gave us a lot of leeway, which is a very kind thing to do, so we have a full season with her. We’ll have plenty of time to come up with a very satisfying ending for her character.""
Chicago PD season 11 episode 1 predictions
The chances of Jay Halstead making an appearance in the season premiere are slim to none. Soffer has made it clear that he wants to take time away from the character, and if he does eventually return, it would be more impactful to have him appear when Upton is getting ready to leave Chicago.
That being said, given the amount of time that's passed between the season 10 finale and the season 11 premiere, we anticipate getting some kind of update regarding the Upton and Halstead marriage. It remains to be seen whether the update will come in the form of a phone call, or a chat between Hank Voight (Jason Beghe) and Upton, but we're confident that there will be one.
We also expect a definitive answer regarding Ruzek's fate. The character was in pretty bad shape in the final moments of season 10, and based on the fact that the show is already losing Upton (a year after losing Halstead, mind you), we feel pretty good about the chances of Ruzek pulling through.
The fact that the premiere will be set six months after the events of season 10 make the notion of a healthier Ruzek even more realistic.