Why 9-1-1's Buck Can Move Forward With A Relationship After Abby In Season 4

9-1-1 buck fire fox
(Image credit: Fox)

Spoilers ahead for the April 27 episode of 9-1-1 Season 3 on Fox, called "The One That Got Away.

9-1-1 gave Buck a big save in "The One That Got Away," but the majority of his arc was emotional rather than action-packed like Eddie's was in the previous episode. He formed a connection with a former firefighter by the name of Red, whose regrets and ultimate death seemed to teach Buck a depressing lesson. Still, his bond with Red and then a speech from Maddie that she'd never let him be alone sets him up for a big development that's on the way thanks to the return of Connie Britton as Abby.

Yes, Connie Britton will make her long-awaited return to 9-1-1 in the two-part finale that kicks off in the next episode, and there's some unfinished business between Abby and Buck that will need to be addressed. Buck hasn't been able to move on to a solid romantic relationship since the abrupt end to his romance with Abby. According to actor Oliver Stark, Buck will need something from Abby to move on in Season 4. Stark said this to TV Guide:

When it comes to Abby, more than anything, Buck just needs closure on the situation. Because I think you can see a lot of unrest and sadness in Red. It's not that Buck needs to get back together with Abby, he just needs answers. There are a lot of doors that were opened when she left, and he was left idling. It's hard to move on and start the next chapter before the previous one is fully closed. So, I think it's just a case of learning a few things before he can ultimately try to move forward.

For any fans who were hoping that Connie Britton's guest star return as Abby would result in Buck and Abby getting back together, Oliver Stark's comments are probably bad news. For any who are hoping to see Buck move past how the relationship with Abby ended and open himself up to deeper relationships, he may finally be ready in Season 4. Stark didn't exactly guarantee that Buck will be downloading dating apps by the end of the 9-1-1 Season 3 finale, but he can try to move forward once he sees Abby again and has that much-needed conversation.

That said, the two-part Season 3 finale isn't going to be two hours of Buck/Abby heart-to-hearts. The trailer for what happens next reveals a man trapped in a walk-in freezer, a girl flying away all alone in a hot-air balloon, Athena seemingly injured, and the little matter of a train derailment with Abby on board. Oliver Stark teased what's coming in the finale, and 9-1-1 viewers are clearly in for something epic. Here's how he put it:

Absolutely. Our finale, just in terms of scale, is going to be bigger than anything we've done in the past — we're doing a train derailment that causes all kinds of destruction and chaos and brings some really interesting challenges with gravity, which will be really fun to watch on-screen — the way we fight some really challenging angles. So, there's that kind of physically [demanding aspect], but also we throw out some real big emotional questions. So, yeah, something to look forward to!

Considering 9-1-1 spent the first arc of Season 3 dealing with a tsunami of Titanic proportions that left Buck and Christopher in very real danger, Oliver Stark's tease of something "bigger than anything" 9-1-1 has done before is a pretty big deal. Hopefully this doesn't mean one of the major characters will die before the end of the two-parter, but it's hard to be confident about anybody's safety when it comes to a season finale.

See the first half of the 9-1-1 Season 3 finale two-parter on Monday, May 4 at 8 p.m. ET on Fox. For what's coming to Fox and other networks following the end of 9-1-1's current season, be sure to check out our 2020 spring premiere schedule and our 2020 summer premiere guide.

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).