Why Chicago P.D.'s Intelligence Unit Is Facing 'Extremely High' Stakes Before The Season 9 Finale, According To One Star

Chicago P.D. is quickly approaching its season finale, which can often mean one thing: danger for the cops of the Intelligence Unit. In fact, One Chicago’s crime drama generally doesn’t wait until the finale to start ramping up the intensity, as Season 8 proved with Burgess’ kidnapping in the penultimate episode. Ahead of the penultimate episode of Season 9, actor LaRoyce Hawkins shared with CinemaBlend how the stakes are “extremely high” for the team

The focus is shifting back to the effort to take down Javier Escano and the Los Temidos, with the help of C.I. Anna, who has had a major influence on Voight in Season 9. Based on the preview for the episode – called “House of Cards” – however, Anna isn’t doing so well under all the pressure, and the Intelligence Unit might need all hands on deck. When I spoke with LaRoyce Hawkins about the second-to-last episode of Season 9, he previewed how high the stakes are:

They're extremely high. They're extremely high right now. We're watching Voight be extremely invested in a case and in a C.I. More invested than we've seen him in a while. So naturally for us, the stakes are raised because we're watching our sergeant dig deeper. We're watching him kind of behave in a way that feels peculiar, based on our sergeant. He's usually very level-headed. Very cool, very calm. He knows exactly how to handle the situations every time that we walk into a crisis. And now we watch him be a little bit more flustered and probably not as sure of himself as we're used to.

Showrunner Gwen Sigan previously described Anna as somebody who has “gotten under Voight’s skin a little bit,” and that’s not the case for every C.I. recruited to work with Intelligence. If anything, Voight is usually the one to have to try and pull the others back if they start to get too invested in a case of the week, and he was even pretty cool and level-headed about Upton shooting Roy at the end of Season 8. 

If Anna is unraveling and Voight is getting flustered in the same episode that happens to be right before the finale, it’s no wonder that LaRoyce Hawkins says that the stakes are “extremely” high! Of course, the cops of Intelligence can all handle themselves on the job, so it's possible that the team won’t necessarily fall apart just because Voight isn’t on as solid of ground as he usually is. The actor went on to explain how Voight’s state of mind will affect the others: 

Which I think forces most of us, especially Halstead, to step up and lead and then all of us really have to be on our square in order to handle our business. Everybody has a different role as far as taking down Escano and Los Temidos. So if everybody stays on point, then we should be in the pocket.

Halstead and Voight have had a different dynamic in the second half of Season 9, after Halstead laid down some new ground rules in the wake of blackmailing the FBI agent to save Voight (as well as Upton and himself). Everybody having a different part to play suggests that fans are in for an exciting episode for all the characters, but the big question is: will everybody be able to stay on point? 

The promo doesn’t look like everything goes according to plan, unless somebody seemingly getting caught in an explosion is part of it! Take a look:

The stakes are already high for the characters in their personal lives as well. Ruzek and Burgess are looking ahead to Makayla’s future (which just made me nervous for them in the finale), Upton and Halstead’s marriage seems to be going well, and Atwater even got some closure on his relationship with Celeste. Whether or not all of their lives will remain the same by the end of Season 9 remains to be seen. 

The penultimate episode of Chicago P.D.’s ninth season airs on Wednesday, May 18 at 10 p.m. ET on NBC, following Chicago Fire (which will soon bring back Jesse Spencer for what the showrunners describe as a "nonstop" finale) at 9 p.m. and Chicago Med (which just delivered a big change for Ethan) at 8 p.m. If you want to look back at one of the bright spots of P.D. over the past year, check out what actors Patrick John Flueger and LaRoyce Hawkins had to say about working with the young actress who plays Makayla!

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

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 and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).