Home Entertainment Chicago Fire Season 12 Episode 8 Review: All the Dark

Chicago Fire Season 12 Episode 8 Review: All the Dark


Well, I’m just going to say it.

This season? Not the best.

Chicago Fire Season 12 Episode 8 was not an improvement over the previous, only making the longer-term story more aggravating and uncertain.

There is good news, of course, and it does make you want to pop the champagne.

Lennox is gone. Ding dong, the dingdong is gone.

The guy was, sorry to say, an idiot. He got swept up with a powerful character in the CFD who offered him who knows what without paying any regard to his own future.

And if the guy wasn’t already 100% annoying, he spent the episode contradicting himself.

I’m hoping that we can both be professional about this. Despite what you might think, Robinson is an amazing woman and an inspiring leader. She believes in following protocol, and so do I. Might not always win you a popularity contest, but doing the right thing is more important to me than being liked.


Lennox never believed in protocol. If he did, his first move on Chicago Fire Season 12 Episode 7 wouldn’t have been to question the authority and competence of his PIC.

It seems Robinson thought that bringing in a bumpkin from the suburbs would work well for her. She could manipulate him and get him to do her bidding.

As she’s actively proving not to be the brightest bulb in any room, it’s no surprise she chose so unwisely.

Lennox: You’re pretty quiet. Everything OK?
Violet: Yeah. Why wouldn’t everything be OK?
Lennox: I’m guessing you heard about my complaint then.
Violet: Yep, I did.
Lennox: I just want to clear the air. Robinson asked me to give an honest and objective evaluation of 52, so that’s what I did.
Violet: That’s interesting. I didn’t know that words like “aggressive” and “disrespectful” could be objective.

She played it under the guise of wanting an objective opinion, but Lennox was never going to be objective under those circumstances.

And if anyone doubted that he was snowed under by her actions, the way he lauded Robinson’s leadership like a fanboy closed the door on that.

Lennox was nothing but a prop used by Robinson and Chicago Fire to set up an annoying arc about another attempt to end Firehouse 52.


Thankfully, we didn’t waste too much time on the guy. It’s too bad the same can’t be said for Gibson, who seemed like a really good addition to 51.

Yet I can’t think of a single reason he was brought onto the show now that he’s gone.

Nobody learned anything from his short stint. We got to know a lot about his backstory only for him to exit before we had the benefit of that knowledge for long-term storytelling.

If you worked really hard to stretch the reasoning, it could be said that Gibson fleshed out Carver more fully, but Violet Mikami had already been doing a great job of that.

Most of what we learned about Sam Carver came during his interactions with Stella upon his arrival.

He was pretty firmly cemented as one of the good guys by the end of Chicago Fire Season 11.

Now, Firehouse 51 is down a paramedic and a member of truck, and they’re actively being targeted by another ranking member of the CFD.

We’re eight episodes into a very truncated season in Chicago Universe terms, and we’re actually no further along than we were during Chicago Fire Season 12 Episode 1.

I guess we should count our blessings, though.

Had Gibson stuck around, we would have had to sit through another drug storyline, as if there haven’t been enough of them smattered across TV, especially with a first responder at the center.

Severide went through it during Chicago Fire Season 1, but that was some time ago. His experience lends weight to Gibson’s story and Stella’s part in it, so it was a decent callback that didn’t require a new storyline going too far down the same path.

But we’re still short a firefighter who was beginning to prove valuable.

Of course, Robinson aims to make life hell for Firehouse 51 and Wallace Boden because is there anything we want to see more than that?

To her credit, Laura Allen chews up the scenery with her portrayal of Robinson, who does not have a single redeeming quality.

How often do you get the opportunity to play an actual mustache-twirling villain? She might as well make the best of it.

That snarl on her face after she promised Boden he’d be sorry, and the way she nearly danced out of the room was almost funny.

There is more to the story, but it’s hard to care about it. The odds of anything happening to Boden or 51 are nil.

Sure, IA is involved for some reason, but we’ve got bigger fish to fry without bodies warming ambo and truck seats.

It gets old building new relationships every few episodes, but with so many departures this season, the stream is steady with no end in sight.

And if the past is indicative of the future, there will be more bad apples dropping by, including those who have a chip on their shoulder for not being part of the special 52 team.

Did I say yawn?

Bringing in new people means more pranks. Guess who isn’t a fan of pranks? This girl!

Their bright idea for glitter in the air vents of a car could be incredibly dangerous. Herrmann is already battling hearing loss. How the hell would he explain to his wife and to 51 that he was also partially blind thanks to sharp glitter grazing his retinas?

Do these guys ever think before putting a cockamamie plan into action?

Overall, this episode is a real bummer.

There were a few bright points.

Violet and Carver are getting involved for real, even if she’s obsessed with keeping it casual. Words mean nothing, but actions speak volumes.

Stella and Kelly are in a great place. But what did Severide mean when he said the marshal from OFI is all in? On what? It doesn’t really matter as long as they are in it together.

Things take an unpleasant turn when they’re at odds, and we’ve got plenty of unpleasant turns in this season already.

If you could write a way to salvage this season, how would you start?

Maybe you don’t even mind the many things that I find annoying, and I’d love to know your reasoning.

Can you help me find light where all I see is darkness? Help me fight my way out of this smokey room!

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer and critic for TV Fanatic. She’s a member of the Critic’s Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, conversing with cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film with anyone who will listen. Follow her on X and email her here at TV Fanatic.

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