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chicago fire season 9 premiere stella kidd nbc

The long wait for the return of NBC's One Chicago is almost at an end, and Chicago Fire Season 9 promises to get off to an exciting start with the premiere on November 11. Between the new member of the team replacing Foster, Brett stepping up as a leader, and some potential big changes for Stella Kidd on top of the crises that could be more complicated than ever due to COVID-19, and it won't be an episode to miss. Showrunner Derek Haas has teased even more details about Season 9, including on the Stellaride front and One Chicago crossovers.

Although Chicago Fire ended Season 8 earlier than intended and therefore without any of the deadly cliffhangers that fans have come to expect from the original One Chicago series, there were still plenty of stories leftover for Season 9, and showrunner Derek Haas weighed in to CinemaBlend on what to expect. When asked about the kind of ambitions Severide has for his career and/or relationship in Season 9, Haas revealed:

I think Severide will be thinking about next steps with Stella Kidd. That will be a major storyline for Season 9. This is Chicago Fire, so I can’t make any promises.

A "major storyline" sounds like good news for Stellaride fans! That said, Chicago Fire viewers have also seen all manner of relationship complications over the eight seasons and counting so far, including some for Stella and Severide, so those next steps might not happen without some bumps in the road. Still, who could have guessed back in the early days of Chicago Fire that Severide would have come so far in a romantic relationship?

Stella did move in with Severide (and Casey) back in Season 8, so that was at least one major step forward. Will another step involve Severide taking Casey up on his offer to move out and give him and Stella some space as a couple? Chicago Fire has been teasing a potential new romance for Casey that could see him spending less time there, although the Brett/Casey sparks haven't been fanned into a flame just yet.

When asked where Brett and Casey stand on their will they/won't they relationship, Derek Haas shared only this:

You’ll find out very soon.

Hopefully "very soon" means very early in Season 9! They became much closer as friends and possibly more throughout Season 8, as Casey helped her through the situation with her birth mom, and the issue of Casey reuniting with Dawson hasn't come between them. Whether you're pro-Brettsey or anti-Brettsey, answers are on the way.

What isn't on the way is the mega three-show One Chicago crossover that usually airs on NBC in the fall. COVID-19 protocols mean that the epic crossovers aren't possible the way that they were in years past, but that doesn't mean the three shows won't find ways to connect with each other. In fact, Derek Haas revealed that Chicago Fire will feature characters from Chicago Med and Chicago P.D. in the Season 9 premiere:

You will see characters from all three shows on the first episode of Chicago Fire. We’ll probably hold off on a bigger crossover until we’re out of the pandemic, though you never know.

My money is on Chicago Med and Chicago P.D. characters appearing via Zoom or phone calls in the Chicago Fire premiere, which could give One Chicago fans a fix of the crossover action that makes One Chicago so distinctive in primetime without putting anybody at risk. NBC also usually airs a two-part crossover in the spring between Chicago Fire and Chicago P.D., but that may not be in the cards either.

Chicago Fire is adding a new character who will be sticking around Firehouse 51 rather than jumping between shows. The departure of Annie Ilonzeh's Foster at the end of Season 8 means that Brett is in for yet another new partner in Ambulance 61. Considering Brett's close friendships with Dawson and then Foster, Derek Haas shared what viewers can expect from her dynamic with Adriyan Rae's Gianna as the newest Fire paramedic:

This is going to be more of a professional relationship… with Brett really in a supervisor, mentoring role than as a fast friendship like she has had in the past. She has other things going on in her life.

Brett has grown more and more comfortable in a position of authority over the seasons, so Brett as more of a supervisor should be an interesting development. Of course, there is the question of the "other things" that Brett will have going on in her life. Are they related to her newborn baby sister? Or the relationship (or lack thereof) with Casey? Or a story that Fire hasn't full introduced just yet?

Find out when Chicago Fire returns with the Season 9 premiere on Wednesday, November 11 at 9 p.m. ET, between the Chicago Med Season 6 premiere at 8 p.m. ET and the Chicago P.D. Season 8 premiere at 10 p.m. ET. If you're still in the market for more viewing options before the end of the year, check out our 2020 fall TV premiere schedule!

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