Spoilers ahead for the January 22 episode of Chicago P.D. Season 7, called "The Devil You Know."
Chicago P.D. took Hailey Upton to some very dark places in its latest episode, and fans may want to start worrying that the cop who used to be the most by-the-book person in Intelligence is becoming the next Voight. "The Devil You Know" finally delivered what one star described as "shocking stuff" by wrapping up the Darius Walker arc in a pretty gruesome way. After Walker scored a big win over on Intelligence, Upton manipulated events so that Darius Walker would be killed.
Why should fans be concerned about Upton going dark and following in Voight's footsteps? Because Voight is concerned that she's following in his footsteps!
Let's break it down.
On the one hand, Walker was a very bad guy and really not all that great of a C.I., even though his connections meant that his moments of genuine help could be invaluable. He made an enemy of Upton earlier in Season 7 when a longtime C.I. of hers was shot after seeing Darius Walker's face, and it didn't take much to connect the dots that Darius was behind the murder. Since Upton liked that C.I. and quite literally had his blood splattered on her face when he was shot in the head in front of her, she hasn't been a Darius fan. So, is it really so bad by P.D. standards that Hailey kinda sorta got him killed?
On the other hand, Darius technically did satisfy his obligations as a C.I. and was released as a free man after he participated in a sting to catch three dirty cops in the act. Of course, in doing so, Darius arranged for these three cops to be murdered by his people so he wouldn't have to testify in open court and risk it getting out that he was a snitch, so pretty much everybody in Intelligence probably had it out for Darius, especially when the dirty cops were going to be praised as heroes. Still, Darius was legally free, and Crawford ordered that the cops leave him be.
Personally, I was expecting Upton to disappear for a while and then the episode to end with the ambiguous reveal that Darius had been killed, which would have been dark but understandable by P.D. standards. Instead, Hailey went to Darius' men and planted the seed that the person who had gotten several of their people killed had been working with CPD, leading them to interpret her words as Darius having done the deed. So, they brutally killed him, left him on a pool table with a pool ball shoved in his mouth, and hung a dead rat over his body. Way to take advantage of that 10 p.m. time slot, Chicago P.D.!
The only person who knew Upton was reaching out to the people who eventually killed Darius was Halstead, and only because he followed her rather than because she told him what she was up to. He tried to talk her out of what she was doing, arguing that she had stopped (or tried to stop) him from getting too involved in cases. She told him that she was okay and to go home, and that was the end of it. And Darius died.
Did Upton kill Darius or explicitly tell anybody to kill Darius? No. Would he still be alive if she'd just stayed home and followed Crawford's orders, though? Almost certainly.
The kicker came at the end of the episode when Voight met Upton at a bar. When she calmly stated that she "learned from the best" when it came to doing what she felt needed to be done in this episode, Voight revealed what keeps him awake at night: "Nothing." He does what he does because he turned something inside of him off a long time ago, and according to him, doing this will eat Upton alive if she doesn't turn that part of her off. Upton just told him to "have a little faith" because she'll get there, prompting Voight to say "That's what I'm afraid of."
Come on, Upton! You know you're doing something bad when you're scaring Voight! When Upton first joined Intelligence, she was the least likely member of the team to cross lines, which made for an interesting early partnership with Halstead when he was having his meltdown in Season 5 and a semi-dysfunctional relationship with Ruzek in Season 6. I'm not sure many other members of Intelligence would have done this, at least not over a dead C.I. Is it too late for Upton?
Well, hopefully she won't be in such a ruthless emotional place again any time soon, and there's always the chance that her relationship with Halstead could start pulling her back to the straight and narrow, although she's had to do that for him far more often over their years together. Considering what he'll go through in the upcoming Chicago Fire/Chicago P.D. crossover, it would be interesting to see his conflict compared to his partner's.
The next episode seemingly won't focus on Upton (or Halstead, for that matter). Episode 13 of Season 7 will be called "I Was Here" and the description indicates that it will be Burgess-centric. She'll have to move to light duty due to her pregnancy, which means working as a 911 dispatcher. She'll recruit Intelligence to find a girl who has been caught in a sex-trafficking ring, but the trailer reveals that Burgess won't be satisfied to just sit behind a desk and hope her Intelligence pals crack the case without her in the field.
Unfortunately for fans, Chicago P.D. (as well as Chicago Fire and Chicago Med) will take a week off and won't return to NBC until Wednesday, February 5. Whether or not Upton continues on what seems to be a path to become the next Voight won't be determined until next month. Once P.D. does return, you can catch new episodes on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET on NBC, following Chicago Fire (which went in a much lighter direction this week) at 9 p.m. ET and Chicago Med (which featured the other Halstead brother getting himself into trouble) at 8 p.m. ET.
For more viewing options now and in the not-too-distant future, be sure to swing by our 2020 winter and spring premiere schedule.