TV ReviewsStation 19 Season 1 Episode 9: Hot Box Review

If you would like to read my review of last’s week episode, click here.

Synopsis: In the final days before the Station 19 captaincy is announced, Pruitt warns Andy not to be disappointed with the outcome of the race. Meanwhile, Ben gets upset with Pruitt for having told Bailey the dangers of firefighting; and the team gets trapped inside the garage of a burning house, putting several lives at risk. (TVGuide)

Writer: Phillip Iscove

Director: Nicole Rubio

Rating: TV-14

Running Time: 43mins

Airs: Thursdays at 9pm on CTV (Canada)/ABC (United States)

“Hot Box” starts off with a woman burning her wedding photos in the fireplace during an impending divorce. As they leave the room, the fire pops and a lit ash falls onto the carpet. Miller returns to JJ’s house after a late night concert and complains about his lack of sleep, but she suggests they use his remaining time another way. Andy and Ryan go for a jog discussing Pruitt’s health and Montgomery finally has his breakfast with Grant.

At the station, Ben walks in on Miller napping upright on one of the couches. Andy talks with the girls about the looming captaincy decision while Maya figures this is the time to bring up that Ripley suggested she apply for Lieutenant. Ben confronts Pruitt about telling Bailey about how dangerous their job is and what that meant for his relationship. He asks Ben about how Bailey dealt with him changing professions and he explains it was hard, but she saw it was the right thing for him. Pruitt finds Andy and tries to keep her levelheaded by not getting her hopes up and she says she can handle it.

The team respond to a call at the divorcing couple’s home. They use the ‘Stuff the Turkey’ play by entering through the garage. The wife tries to let them with her fingerprint lock, but she burnt it off when throwing her belongings into the fireplace. Luckily there’s an override in the foyer of the house, but when Miller arrives he can’t remember the code. Their walkies stop working and Miller puts the system into lockdown mode shutting the garage door on the team.

They try to break the door down with their equipment, but it’s reinforced steel and they cannot override the system because the woman is a bit paranoid so she designed it herself. While Montgomery, Miller and Victoria use chainsaws to try to break the door down, the team try to figure out an alternate source of oxygen. Andy pulls Maya aside and tells her she wants to tell Gibson about her and Ryan, but doesn’t want it to sound like she’s rubbing it in his face. The other officer confronts Andy about thinking that Gibson is into her, but she’s interrupted when the owner finds her small toolkit. She’s about to get the carjack out of the car and use it to try to push the garage door open, but it doesn’t work. Things go from bad to worse when the fire approaches the garage and Ben and the team on the outside are unable to contain it or break the back windows.

Miller rushes to the back with a sledge hammer and repeatedly pummels the unbreakable glass in an attempt to fix the mess he feels he started. They need to ventilate the fire when Miller comes up with an idea to smash to wall below the window making a hole for the smoke to escape. With the team able to access the fire, they swing their hoses around to the back of the house. Victoria calls Pruitt asking for tips on helping people out of a garage, but when she lets slip that Andy is one of the ones trapped he gets concerned. The team inside the garage start to use up their oxygen tanks as temperatures start to get to uncomfortable levels. Andy instructs the team to sit on the floor when Ryan has a bright idea. He decides to hotwire the car to ram the garage door, despite both Gibson and Andy disagreeing, but Andy is able to talk him out of it. Pruitt tells VIctoria to think outside of the box or they will lose their team just like he lost his.

Victoria brings this to Montgomery and the team on the outside, but talking bout them cooking inside scares the husband and freaks out Miller. Montgomery decides to divert all hoses to the garage to hopefully cool down the room so the people inside don’t cook alive. Inside the garage, Maya interrupts an arguing Gibson and Andy to say if she were captain they wouldn’t be in this mess. That’s when Gibson has an idea; they are going to try to get into the house and break out of it that way, but the fingerprint scanner short-circuits. The wife talks about how she feels at fault for their relationship ending as Ben calms down the husband outside. Montgomery calls in for a batting ram when Pruitt arrives to try to talk some sense into Andy and Gibson. He gives her a rousing, captain-like speech to give Andy the strength to fight.

Maya crawls over to Andy and reminds her of her rule: embrace the pain. They decide they need an explosive to blow open the door. They use their ingenuity to create a bomb out of the water heater and gasoline in the car and blow the door open. Maya sees the release valve is loose on the heater and wants to get it so it doesn’t fly off and impale someone, but as she runs over the explosion occurs and she is blasted back into the wall. The team breach the garage and they rescue the rest of their crew as Andy and Pruitt embrace.

Outside the couple sit down together and discuss their life bursting into flames when she takes out their wedding photo and they share a smile. Ben sits down at a bar with Maya and Ryan talking about the couple and their marital problems when he decides to leave and surprise Bailey. Gibson asks Victoria and Miller about the code not working and she covers for Miller’s mistake. He wants to be better and ignores a call from JJ putting the job before a personal life. Gibson confronts Andy about her secret relationship with Ryan and she lets slip that she cheated on him prompting him to storm out.

Pruitt arrives at the bar and announces the next round is on him when Victoria asks where Montgomery is. He’s missing the festivities to see Grant and take their fling to the next level as he kisses him. The episode ends as Pruitt tells Andy to embrace whatever happens with the captaincy and that he wants her to be happy. He reveals he talked to Ripley and did not support either her or Gibson for the position which enrages Andy and she leaves the bar leaving her dad to ponder his decision.

Captain’s Log

  • Who will end up becoming Captain of Station 19?
  • Will Pruitt Herrera’s cancer take a turn for the worst?
  • Will Miller break up with JJ seeing a relationship as a distraction?
  • Will Gibson stay made at Andy or join forces against a common foe?
  • How will Victoria beat her fear of fire?
  • Will Ben decide firefighting is not for him and change careers yet again? He did not seem good during this week’s call.
  • What will Pruitt’s role at the station be going forward?
  • Will Maya apply to be a Lieutenant?

Overall, this was a phenomenal episode. The story allowed the characters to be put in harsh conditions and speak frankly with one another about their feelings while showing their ingenuity and problem solving skills in the tensest call yet. The job starts to take its toll in some of the character’s personal lives as others realize there is more to life than just the job. As everyone deals with the aftermath of the call and the strained relationships that came out of it, it will be interesting to see where loyalties lie when the captain’s position is finally filled.

Score: 9/10

What did you think of “Hot Box”? Are you excited for the finale? Let me know in the comments below!

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  • Fred Mock

    May 11, 2018 at 8:04 AM

    The most ridiculous situation, incredible in every way. Clearly there was no effort made to make the scenario remotely believable. The writer who drummed up the water heater Molotov cocktail solution has no understanding of anything that was portrayed. A Molotov in a garage would have killed them all. Whole episode was a drawn out farce. It insulted firemen, & could only be appreciated by those completely ignorant. Anyone who’s been around a firehouse knows fireman would have driven the truck through the door, it happens often by accident, it would be the first thing they thought of.

  • Tony LaPerna

    May 11, 2018 at 8:34 PM

    9/10? Are you kidding me? They have a 20 ton fire truck and no one thought to push it through the garage door?! This was quite possibly the most illogical, asanine episode in television history.

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