Chicago Fire has gone through a lot of changes and character shakeups over the years, but one of the most consistent players of the series has been Kelly Severide as leader of Squad in Firehouse 51. Despite some serious hardships at 51, Severide has stuck around, and normally it would be difficult to imagine him leaving. Now, considering some comments from Fire showrunner Derek Haas, Severide departing Firehouse 51 is beginning to feel pretty likely.
As fans will likely remember, arson investigations was looking into Severide to potentially join the team, and Severide has always shown a knack for looking into potential arson. Derek Haas weighed in on what's in store for Severide as Season 8 continues, and while he was characteristically cryptic about any details, his comments may suggest that the arson head honcho will come looking to grab Severide from Firehouse 51:
I would watch towards the end of last [season] for clues as to where this year is going. Those last three episodes, for sure.
Admittedly, a lot happened toward the end of Chicago Fire Season 8, and it's possible Derek Haas could be referring to one of the other developments. Between Stella and Severide getting back together, Casey and Brett turning up the heat surprisingly soon after Dawson's departure, and the sequence of events leading to Otis' death, there was no shortage of twists in the last few episodes of Season 7.
So, if that comment from Derek Haas to TVLine was all we had to go on about potentially losing Severide from Firehouse 51, I wouldn't think fans need to start worrying about him as leader of Squad in earnest. A tweet from Derek Haas ahead of the Season 8 premiere is cause for a little bit more alarm.
Prior to Season 8 kicking off to reveal Otis' death, Brett's decision after accepting Chaplain Kyle's proposal, and more, Derek Haas shared this intriguing and somewhat troubling tease:
At the time, Derek Haas only confirmed that either Casey or Severide would be gone from Firehouse 51 by the end of the midseason finale, and it's still possible that Casey could make an exit rather than Severide. After all, Gabby Dawson is shockingly returning in that episode; could she talk Casey into returning to Puerto Rico with her? Besides, Squad firefighters are hard to find, and the newcomer to Firehouse 51 can't just step into Severide's shoes if Severide does depart.
Still, I'd put my money on Severide as the one not at Firehouse 51 before the winter break. Taylor Kinney, who plays Severide, has said that Severide's "heart lies in the firehouse," however, then said this:
Squad, I think, was a dream of his when he was young and growing up with a firefighter as a father. And that’s where I like to be. I’m not opposed to advancements in a career, but I hope it doesn’t take me out of the firehouse.
Notably, Taylor Kinney didn't say that Chicago Fire isn't going to take Severide out of the firehouse, but rather he hopes it doesn't happen. If Severide does turn to investigating arson full time, I'm guessing it would only be temporary. It's hard to imagine a Chicago Fire where Severide isn't racing into danger at the head of the pack!
Besides, who would really take his place? The only other lead Squad character on Fire is Cruz, and Cruz isn't ready to lead that team. He is in for some growth after Otis' death, though, according to the actor.
Find out what's in store for Severide next with new episodes of Chicago Fire airing Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET on NBC, between episodes of Chicago Med at 8 p.m. ET and Chicago P.D. at 10 p.m. ET, for a big three-hour One Chicago block that has been killing in the ratings.