Warning: major spoilers ahead for the Season 2 finale of 9-1-1: Lone Star on Fox, appropriately called "Dust to Dust."
The second season of 9-1-1: Lone Star has come to an end on Fox, and "Dust to Dust" has officially switched my loyalty from 9-1-1 to its Texas-set spinoff. The original 9-1-1 became a TV favorite of mine all the way back when the Santa Monica Pier was hit with a tsunami, and the Season 4 finale of 9-1-1 actually delivered one of my favorite minor things that has come out of the franchise to date. But the Season 2 finale of Lone Star is enough to knock 9-1-1 off the top spot to make space for the spinoff.
And honestly, just like how it was the tsunami that hit the Santa Monica Pier (and swept Buck and Christopher up in the torrent in the process) that made me a big fan of 9-1-1, it was 9-1-1: Lone Star's massive dust storm that won me over to the spinoff. It was the kind of crisis that doesn't appear on television on a regular basis, and by sticking some characters in the path of the storm, the stakes were sky-high. The scale of the storm was as impressive to me as the Titanic effort that went into 9-1-1's tsunami, and my only regret at the end of the episode was that the dust storm came and went in the span of one episode, rather than running for a multi-episode arc.
Plus, the dust storm gave Mateo the chance to prove himself as a hero, not just as the probie of 126 or the "grunt" of his temporary firehouse while the 126 was shut down. Sure, he didn't have all the knowledge or experience to pull off everything perfectly, and he needed an assist from Owen to avert further disaster, but he saved lives and organized a disaster site all by his lonesome, without even having any of his gear. He turned going on a lunch run into an exercise in heroics, and he definitely earned the promotion to full firefighter status that Owen intended for him by the end of the episode.
Of course, the episode didn't just go right ahead and end on the happy news that Mateo would be promoted as soon as Owen could get the 126 reopened. Billy turned up to spoil the mood when the 126 crowd was working on the firehouse to try and get it ready to reopen ASAP, revealing that he had accepted the deputy fire chief job that Owen had refused, and his first move would be to close the 126 for good.
Owen didn't exactly conceal his feelings about that. Once he was clear that Billy technically wasn't deputy fire chief just yet, Owen went ahead and decked him. Whether or not that backfires against him remains to be seen, and unfortunately, we won't be seeing it for quite some time. Unlike 9-1-1, 9-1-1: Lone Star isn't returning to Fox in the fall, but sticking with its midseason premiere date. Lone Star will premiere Season 3 at some point in 2022.
If it follows the pattern of the first two seasons, then that at least means a premiere probably within the first few weeks of the new year. It may also mean that there won't be another big crossover with 9-1-1, as the parent series is returning in the fall. For some viewing options sooner than either 9-1-1 or 9-1-1: Lone Star will be back, be sure to take a look at our 2021 summer TV premiere schedule, and be sure to vote in our poll below about which 9-1-1 show is your favorite!