Chicago P.D. Boss And Stars Talk The Importance Of Family And Home For The Characters In Season 9
Chicago P.D. showrunner Gwen Sigan and stars Jason Beghe and Marina Squerciati opened up about characters finding family in Season 9.
Chicago P.D. has spent the better part of a decade digging into some of the most complex crimes that the Windy City has to offer, and most of the cast has been around from the very beginning. In Season 9, the show has started to spend more time with the characters at home and in their personal lives rather than almost entirely in the precinct. According to showrunner Gwen Sigan, embracing the theme of “home” was a goal for Season 9, and she along with stars Jason Beghe and Marina Squerciati opened up about the increased importance of family for the show.
As of the second half of Season 9, Upton and Halstead are married, Burgess and Ruzek are co-parenting Makayla successfully (or at least they were before “dire consequences” were on the way), and even Atwater got a love interest after seasons without much romance. Tracy Spiridakos previously weighed in on her character finding a family within the Intelligence Unit. In honor of the upcoming One Chicago Day, Jason Beghe, Marina Squerciati, and showrunner Gwen Sigan spoke with CinemaBlend and other outlets, and Beghe – who plays Voight – shared:
Voight may not have much of a home life compared to some of the others, but P.D. has shown some ways that cases have affected him personally, such as with the C.I. Anna. He was also in a sort of triangle with Upton and Halstead in the first half of Season 9, although it certainly (and thankfully) wasn’t a love triangle with the aftermath of Roy’s death! The ratings have held up for Season 9, so it seems safe to say that viewers are also finding this approach with more home and family interesting as well. Marina Squerciati, who plays Burgess, shared her thoughts:
Honestly, it’s probably a good thing for the actors that their family dynamic on set is “not exactly the way it is on screen,” considering everything that their characters go through. Burgess alone has faced enough troubles and tragedies that it’s impressive that she can even keep going in the job, and the rest of the characters haven’t had easy rides either. Ruzek didn’t handle Makayla’s kidnapping well, and it wasn’t that long ago that Upton had to jump into the Chicago River in freezing temperatures. Throw in Atwater trying to live a double life and Halstead having to cross a line to blackmail an FBI agent, and the cops of Intelligence don’t exactly live uneventful lives at work or at home.
Gwen Sigan, who was promoted to showrunner after Rick Eid (who is now showrunner on the Law & Order revival and CBS’ FBI) stepped down in late 2021, explained why P.D. is exploring home and family more in Season 9:
Since this is Chicago P.D., it’s not always the best news for the characters if their home lives are linked to the cases that they’re working on, but it certainly makes for some thrilling TV! Besides, good can come out of even some of the darker personal stories. Upstead’s marriage might not have happened when it did if not for Upton’s panicked initial proposal, and Makayla’s kidnapping doesn’t take away from Burgess coming to love her after taking her in as her own. I just hope that Atwater catches a break in his personal life – or is promoted to detective, as LaRoyce Hawkins has suggested – at some point.
New episodes of Chicago P.D. air on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET on NBC, closing out a full night of action with Chicago Fire (which will soon deliver a big episode for Joe Minoso’s Cruz) at 9 p.m. and Chicago Med (which hasn’t held back with the Maggie storylines for Marlyne Barrett) at 8 p.m. April 6 is also One Chicago Day, and fans can look forward to some fun releases starting at 3 p.m. ET on the One Chicago YouTube page. If you want to revisit some earlier days of Chicago P.D., you can find the series streaming with a Peacock subscription.
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Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.
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