The One Chicago shows return to NBC with their 2020 winter premieres on January 8, and there are already big reasons to get excited about what's coming down the line for Chicago Fire and Chicago P.D. in particular. As in years past, Fire and P.D. will cross over for a two-part television event that, while smaller than the three-show events that also involve Chicago Med, should be must-see TV for One Chicago viewers. On top of the case that pulls the two teams together, the crossover will bring back a character from P.D.'s past.
Chicago Fire showrunner Derek Haas spoke with CinemaBlend about what's to come with the Fire/P.D. crossover this TV season, saying this:
So we've done the giant 'Infection' episode that encompassed all three shows and was one big story over three shows in the first half of the season. And then in the second half of the season we try to do a smaller crime-specific two-parter between Fire and P.D., and what's going to happen is bells are going to go off and our paramedics are gonna be called out, and there's a pretty bad overdose going on that's gonna bring in an old character from Chicago P.D.'s history who's gonna come back, and that's going to be the jumping off point for what's going to end up being a major crossover event.
Well, the Fire/P.D. crossover may not involve the flesh-eating bacteria of the "Infection" crossover that needed to involve Chicago Med, but there should be plenty going on to keep the heroes of Firehouse 51 and cops of the Intelligent Unit busy! (Whether or not Halstead will be one of those cops remains to be seen, not to mention Severide after that fall Fire cliffhanger!) Brett and Foster sound like they'll be a big part of the case early on, which will bring in somebody from Chicago P.D. history.
Derek Haas, who is an executive producer and original developer on Chicago P.D. as well as showrunner on Chicago Fire, of course didn't reveal everything to expect from the crossover. Still, there is plenty of room for speculation to keep fans busy during the wait for the two-part event. Chicago P.D. has said goodbye to no shortage of characters over the years, and not all of them were killed off a la poor Olinsky.
So, who could this character be? The odds are pretty good that it won't be Sophia Bush's Erin Lindsay. Jon Seda's Antonio Dawson would be engaging to see again, although the most recent update on Antonio revealed he's doing well working for his sister's organization far from Chicago, and I don't know that we should qualify him as "an old character from Chicago P.D.'s history," to quote Derek Haas.
There's always Brian Geraghty's Sean Roman, who appeared in Seasons 2 and 3 as partner and love interest to Burgess. He also left the CPD without dying, and his return could add an interesting twist to the already-complicated Burgess/Ruzek situation. Or maybe Mouse, Halstead's army buddy? Then again, Fire and P.D. could simply bring back somebody from the past who wasn't a major recurring or regular character, and fans are in for a big surprise. The Fire paramedics may be in for one as well!
Whoever comes back, the case must be something truly unique to require the joint efforts of the Fire and P.D. teams. Given that P.D. airs in the last primetime slot on Wednesday nights and gets considerably darker than Chicago Fire, Derek Haas said this when asked if the P.D. crossovers let Fire go farther than in its usual 9 p.m. ET slot:
When we do these episodes with P.D., we definitely subsume their tone more than they subsume ours. Because Fire for the most part is pretty optimistic, I would say, as a show, and P.D. has its own sort of gritty tone. I think we tend to err on their side rather than the other way.
I think most people would probably agree that Chicago Fire is more optimistic in general than Chicago P.D., and it's a little less jarring to see Fire delve a little into the dark side than it would be to see the P.D. crew getting into any kind of shenanigans. Fortunately, Derek Haas revealed via Twitter when the Chicago Fire/P.D. crossover will happen in Fire's eighth season: Episode 15.
The January 8 winter premiere of Chicago Fire is Episode 10, so if One Chicago continues airing new episodes without significant breaks in early 2020, then the crossover will likely hit the airwaves on NBC in mid-February. For now, you can catch new episodes of Chicago Fire on Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET. The winter premiere will resolve the fall finale cliffhanger that left Severide's life in very real jeopardy, so be sure to tune in. You can also find new episodes of Chicago Med at 8 p.m. ET and Chicago P.D. at 10 p.m. ET.