Jay Halstead (Jesse Lee Soffer) may be gone, but we're still learning new things about him on Chicago PD. The character was nowhere to be seen in the season 11 premiere, and yet, we saw his name on divorce papers that served as the episode's single biggest bombshell.
Halstead and Hailey Upton (Tracy Spiridakos) are officially divorced, and it was finalized in the six months that passed between seasons 10 and 11. There were lots of interesting tidbits to be gleaned from the divorce papers, which are only briefly shown in the beginning of the episode, but one of the most unexpected has to be the reveal of Halstead's real name.
Halstead's real name was revealed in divorce papers
Jay Halstead, as we've known him for a decade, was actually born "Jason" Halstead. It turns out that fans and characters alike have been calling him by his nickname. It's odd that we've never heard this real name before, not even in conversation between Jay and his brother, Med's Will Halstead (Nick Gehlfuss), but it is a fun little addition on the part of the show's writers.
The specter of Jay Halstead hung over the entire season premiere, as a frustrated Upton looks at a picture of the two of them together, and even references him by name (well, nickname) when venting about her frustrations to Hank Voight (Jason Beghe).
There was even a moment where it seemed as though Halstead would appear at Upton's door, as she gets a knock right after looking at the photo of him, but it turned out to be Voight, attempting to help however he could.
Upstead's divorce came as a shock to fans
Chicago PD showrunner Gwen Sigan talked about the decision to split Halstead and Upton up in the season premiere, which was a decision that proved pretty unpopular with fans on social media. She told NBC Insider that it was important for both characters to progress:
""I think logistically, it took them a while. I mean, obviously, he has been overseas, and I think, even when she took off that ring, to me, it still was all of this pain of now you have to talk to Halstead about it. You gotta figure out if you're really doing this and sort of go through all of those steps that it takes.""
While an Upstead reunion is not out of the question, the fact that the characters seem to have cut off contact with one another suggests that time has run its course, and that whatever Upton decides to do, she will likely do it alone.