'Chicago Fire': Can 51's Newest Firefighter Blake Gallo Honor Otis? (POLL)
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Season 8, Episode 2 of Chicago Fire, "A Real Shot in the Arm."]
Welcome to 51, Blake Gallo (Alberto Rosende).
Captain Casey sees the man he wants on his truck when they respond to a call of a person trapped; the engine already on scene doesn't have a tall enough ladder. As a man hangs by the rope he was using to move a piano on the fifth floor, Casey and Severide (Taylor Kinney) begin to plan a rescue. But the engine's candidate, Gallo, leaps into action, climbing up onto the fire escape and heading up to the victim. "Guy is gonna get himself killed," Casey remarks as everyone watches.
The executive producer explains why the heart-wrenching decision was made, and what's next.
Gallo slips at one point and laughs when he catches himself. He makes it up to the fifth floor, jumps across fire escapes, and wraps his legs around the man to hold him in place until Casey and Severide reach him on the aerial. "Just another dull day in the CFD, am I right?" Blake asks with a laugh. He's impressed everyone — except for Boden.
When Casey tells the chief he wants Gallo for Truck, Boden refuses. "You can't have him," he says. "He's a daredevil. He's not coming into my firehouse." He refuses to bury another firefighter so soon after Otis.
Casey still scouts Gallo, bringing Severide into their conversation at Molly's. Gallo calls the save "fun," disagreeing it was "stupid." "I had a clean route, good holds, no different than on sighting a rock wall," he explains. As for the five-story drop onto concrete, Gallo considered the possible scenarios and knew if he stood there and the guy fell, he wouldn't have been able to live with himself. "I feel like I could learn a lot from you guys," he tells them before leaving.
They could also use him, his energy, his "talent and heart in spades" in the firehouse right now, Casey points out to Severide. "What that kid's got, you can't teach," he says. "He could be a real shot in the arm for the whole house."
The actor previews how his character deals with losing Otis and reacts to the newest firefighter.
Boden still refuses to bring Gallo in, even though he agrees he's "quite the rock star." "You saw him on that call," he tells Severide. "He's missing that little voice in his head, the one that lets you know when something's a bad idea. That'll get him killed. We've suffered too much loss here." But Severide remembers being a rookie pulling stunts and Boden keeping him around. "You made me a better firefighter," he says. "You can do the same for him."
And so, Boden agrees to bring him in. "I realize that this opportunity comes to me at a very high cost to 51," Gallo tells the chief, captain, and lieutenant. "I don't take that lightly. I know I'll be walking in the shadow of a beloved member of this family. I intend to honor Otis' memory in everything I do here."
But he's already gotten off to a shaky start with his stunt in Episode 2's rescue — and it looks like he's going to attempt to pull off something similar in Episode 3, "Badlands." But at least this time, we can assume Boden and Casey are on board with his plan.
Will he be able to honor Otis? We'll have to wait and see. It's a "tall order," as Severide puts it early in "A Real Shot in the Arm." But he may be able to become a firefighter who can make those at 51 proud, especially if he is willing to learn from his superiors like Severide clearly did from Boden.
"You'll get to see real fast exactly what kind of guy he really is and what kind of firefighter he's going to prove to be," Joe Minoso told TV Insider about Gallo. "America's going to love [Rosende] as a firefighter."
But will Boden love who Gallo is as a firefighter? If Gallo keeps pulling off crazy moves, he won't win any favors with his new chief.
He's struggling without his badge in 'Assets.'
What do you think of Gallo so far? Vote in the poll below.
Chicago Fire, Wednesdays, 9/8c, NBC