I am going to tell you the secret to watching 9-1-1, Fox’s new show about Los Angeles first responders. The secret is to fast-forward through all the talking parts and just watch the emergencies. I started doing that about halfway through the first season. It’s made my life so much better. The show isn’t bad or anything. It’s fine, mostly. But there’s just a lot of talking about infidelity and caring for an aging parent and, man, I’m busy and just want to see the wild stuff happen. Show me pregnant ladies flying into labor during yoga. Show me firemen kicking in windows to save people in skyscrapers. Show me narcoleptic dudes almost getting cut open by a coroner but then waking up on the table and scaring the coroner so much that he passes out and slices himself open with his own saw. Show me all of it, with no filler. So that’s what I did. I stand by it.
The first season is now over. In the interest of providing you with an even more streamlined version of the show than I gave myself, I will now give you the top ten craziest things that happened during this historically crazy opening season. It says a lot about this show that these things did not make the cut:
- The time a burglar tried to flee a crime scene on a motorcycle and a fireman blasted him with the hose and he flew off the bike with so much force that it looked like he drove over a land mine
- The time a fireman pulled a 10-foot tapeworm out of a man’s rectum after the man ate a big sushi dinner
- The time they saved a little girl in an electrified pool and everyone all celebrated and stuff while the girl’s dead nanny — I’m sorry, “manny” — floated around next to them
It’s a lot. Let’s dive in.
10. The Face-Eater Thing
Angela Bassett has had a freaking wild year on this show. We’ve covered this extensively in the past and will get to it more here as well, just because it’s all very unavoidable. In this particular case, she was called out to a public park where an intoxicated man was eating another man’s face. The face-eater then charged at Bassett and Bassett put him down. The best part, however, came afterward when she explained it to Connie Britton.
Yeah, that’ll do it.
9. The Roller Coaster Thing
An overweight man got on a rollercoaster with his skinny friend. The bar that was supposed to secure them got stuck on the heavy guy’s belly and left the skinny guy in there all loose. The coaster hit a hill mid-ride and the skinny guy went flying out of the car and fell to his death in front of hundreds of children. This happened in the second episode.
It took them less than two full episodes to get to “man killed on rollercoaster.” What a show.
8. The Mean Teen Thing
So Angela Bassett’s daughter tried to kill herself. She had a lot going on. Her parents’ marriage was falling apart because her father just came out of the closet and cartoonishly mean rich girls are picking on her at school. So Bassett, who also has a lot going on, showed up at the rich girl’s house during a drug-fueled daytime house party and arrested her for…
I was not aware “being a skanky ho” was a crime.
7. The Snake Thing
In the season premiere, the team got called to the house of a woman whose giant snake was strangling her. One of the firemen, a sex addict named Firehose who later renounced his lothario ways when he fell in love with Connie Britton (as one does), solved the situation by chopping the snake’s head off with an axe.
Which is actually pretty tame for this show. The only reason I even mention it is because, later in the day, after he decapitated her pet snake, Firehose returned and used the fire truck’s ladder to climb up on the roof and have sex with the snake lady on top of her building. I’ve seen in a million times.
6. The Connie Britton Tracheotomy Thing
On their first date, at a fancy restaurant, on Valentine’s Day, Firehose, whose real name is Buck, choked on a piece of bread and Connie Britton had to perform as emergency tracheotomy on the floor using a steak knife and a straw. This was not the weirdest thing that happened on the Valentine’s Day episode of the show.
5. The Bounce House Thing
I feel like this one explains itself.
4. The Baby in the Pipe Thing
The very first thing that happened on this show, before the opening credits in the premiere, involved a newborn baby stuck in a toilet pipe in the wall of an apartment building. They saved it. Here, look.
3. The Valentine’s Murderer Thing
Right. So on Valentine’s Day, while Connie Britton was performing minor surgery on a 26-year-old sex addict in a Southern California fine dining establishment (and it’s also worth noting that Buck went to one therapy session for his sex addiction, during which he had sex with his therapist, who was played by Autumn Reeser, who also played Taylor Townsend on The O.C.), Angela Bassett was taken hostage by a crazy woman who had killed and dismembered her boyfriend and wanted to replace his cheating heart with Bassett’s good one. Literally. She wanted to cut out Angela Bassett’s heart and put it in her boyfriend’s body.
I told you Angela Bassett had a lot going on.
2. The Tree Bullet Thing
A horrible man abused his wife. She pulled a gun on him and fired a bullet that missed and got stuck in a tree. She later hung herself on the same tree. It was very sad.
Later, the tree died and the man decided to get rid of it by blowing it up with dynamite. Which led to this.
1. The Whole Rebar Thing
There’s a guy on the team named Chimney. Chimney lied to women about his exploits to get them to hook up with him. It was a whole thing. One of the women found out and left him and he was depressed and speeding down the highway and-
Whoooaaa rebar in the head.
But here’s the best part: After spending about 10 minutes in a coma with everyone around his hospital bed talking about him like he was gonna die, he recovered completely and barely even has a scar now. The team got him a cake with a realistic edible mock-up of his entire head sticking up out of it, complete with a piece of edible rebar jammed into its forehead. (The cake must have cost many hundreds of dollars, which is a crazy expense on a firefighter’s salary. No, I don’t know why this, of all places, is where I’m drawing the realism line with this show.) And then last night, in the season finale, he and Buck showed up at the trailer of a man who had been using Buck’s face to catfish women online, discovered he was dead and bloated out like a water balloon, then drained the gas and gurgling pus out of his body with knives and hoses. It was maybe the single grossest thing I’ve ever seen on television.
9-1-1. Pretty good show.