Chicago P.D. didn't hold back from showing the very real danger surrounding Atwater following his decision to expose the not-so-dearly departed Doyle at the end of Season 7, and a new clip (seen above) from the next episode proves that the racist officers of CPD aren't out of ways to ruin his life just yet. Still sporting the bruises from being attacked at the end of the Season 8 premiere, Atwater discovers that the hits keep coming in the aftermath of the physical attack, and Voight is more than a little concerned.
As if the physical attack and attempt at framing him by planting drugs in the previous episode weren't enough, the November 18 episode -- called "White Knuckle" -- proves that enemies within CPD will be locking him out of the system as well, denying him access and even stopping his radio from working. Atwater evidently wants to handle the issue his own way, which doesn't include Voight's old-school Chicago methods. Will Atwater be able to outlast all the cops working against him?
The good news is that Atwater has the formidable force of Intelligence behind him; the bad news is that Intelligence is just one relatively small band of cops, and even smaller in Season 8 than in most of Season 7. "White Knuckle" will see the stakes raised higher than ever when patrol officers stop responding to Intelligence's calls, but Atwater and Voight will clearly struggle to agree on how to handle it.
On top of Atwater's situation, the pressure will be on Voight to bring in the son of a former officer when he's implicated in a murder, with the clock ticking to avoid accusations of CPD preferential treatment. The danger facing Atwater from within CPD has a different edge in Season 8 than it would have earlier in Chicago P.D. thanks to the arrival of Deputy Superintendent Samantha Miller and her push for police reform.
Voight was playing dirty in One Chicago back before Chicago P.D. was even an official Chicago Fire spinoff, and the cops working under him aren't exactly known for following the rules to the letter. Sure, they didn't all make a habit of all but breaking bad like Upton before she got herself temporarily sent to FBI for the groundbreaking cross-network crossover, but Miller's push for reform could force some big changes in Intelligence.
Atwater was the one who was most on board with reform in the first episode of Season 8, with Voight as the most reluctant to give up his old ways. Voight's drive to protect his unit combined with Atwater's desire to do things differently create a unique dynamic for a show coming off of its longest hiatus in show history. Throw in the pandemic (although COVID is understandably impacting Chicago Med much more seriously than either Chicago P.D. or Chicago Fire), and it's hard to say what will happen next.