Merry Christmas, everyone is bleeding. Or, at least, everyone on 9-1-1 is bleeding. That’s the thing about this show. Yes, there are long extended bits about Peter Krause and Angela Bassett falling in love and getting engaged. Sure, Jennifer Love Hewitt hates Christmas because the abusive ex she’s running from made it miserable for her and, surprise, he’s back and stalking her new beau, the firefighter who had a piece of rebar jammed through his forehead in the first season. All of that happened, and more, but also a lady got her nose lopped off by a mistletoe-carrying drone and that is way more fun to write about so I’m going to do that.
The nose-lopping wasn’t the only holiday catastrophe in the episode. There were four total, ranging from hilarious to heartwarming, from salacious to sweet, and not a one of them had a single thing to do with any of the actual plot. This was 9-1-1 at its best, long stretches of melodrama punctuated with frantic unrelated chaos, like running in a marathon where the organizers periodically release a tiger. I’m just here for the tigers.
EMERGENCY NUMBER ONE
We open on a bickering couple. That’s how you know it’s going to be a good emergency. It happens a lot on this show. The best was the time a doofus dad was pushed into spending time with his son and 90 seconds later they were both floating into the sky in an untethered bounce house. This time, a guy is pissed about his neighbor’s light display getting more attention than his. He’s so pissed, just standing there gawking at the crowd and seething about it. His wife tries to put things in perspective by telling him to just be thankful for all they have.
His response: “No. I have a better idea.”
He then climbs onto his roof to inflate a giant snowman and gets heaved down the shingles in the process. Lots of emergencies on this show are preposterous but this one feels almost too real. I personally know at least three people this could happen to. The most wonderful time of the year.
EMERGENCY NUMBER TWO
A busy warehouse. Employees packing toys and other such festive bric-a-brac into boxes. A robotic crane swings about to carry the boxes and whoooops it brains a guy and he ends up unconscious in a sealed and shrink-wrapped box headed for an airplane. His oxygen is running low. He dials 9-1-1 and gets Jennifer Love Hewitt.
That’s about all there is to this one. The first responders board the plane before it takes off and remove him from the box in the nick of time. The most upsetting part of the whole thing is that the action was set to “Wonderful Christmastime” and that song should be burned in the fireplace while a better Christmas song plays. Paul McCartney seems like a nice man but if I ever meet him we will have words about this song.
EMERGENCY NUMBER THREE
And now we get to the nose-lopping. Do I need to tell you that this started with a bickering couple, too? Because it did. A waiter and waitress at a generic flair-covered chain-type restaurant are arguing about their relationship, which she thinks is moving to fast and he thinks is being held up by her fear of commitment. Throughout all of this, a mistletoe-carrying drone — MISTLEDRONE — hovers around the restaurant, bopping from table to table and instigating a handful of holiday smooches.
The waitress gets fed up and spins around to march off in a huff and blammo goes face-first into the mistledrone’s propellers and loses about 50 percent of her nose in the process. The first responders eventually find her nose and do some relationship counseling and everyone lives happily ever after, probably.
A Christmas miracle.
EMERGENCY NUMBER FOUR
A member of the military is on a city bus, on what appears to be part 29 of a 30-part journey home to catch his young daughter’s Christmas concert. He sees a young punk steal someone’s wallet. He confronts the punk. You think this is where the emergency will come from but, nope, just as they start arguing a truck t-bones the bus and glass and metal go flying.
Good news: Military guy is unharmed.
Bad News: The punk pickpocket (punkpocket?) took some glass to an artery in his neck and the military guy stays there to slow the bleeding. He stays longer when the first responders show up. He’s going to miss the concert.
Good news: A lady on the bus tells the firefighters about the concert and they load him into the truck and flick on the sirens and get him there just in time to hear his adorable young daughter’s rendition of “I’ll Be Home for Christmas.”
Bad news: I now have to come to terms with crying a little at the end of an episode that also featured a surprise rhinoplasty via mistledrone. This could take a few weeks.