Episode 4: DNA
By: Carlos Uribe
Rescue Me is about firefighters in New York City. It aired from 2004 until 2011 on FX.
It should be noted that my memory of some scenes aren't as clear as they usually are. This is because I watch this series on Netflix and yesterday, near the end of the episode, the internet and television both gave out thanks to a thunderstorm. I finished watching the episode today.
This is an episode that had a lot of surprises for both the viewer and the characters. One of the characters to be surprised is Franco. When his crazy, drug-addicted ex-girlfriend comes to visit him at the firehouse, he doesn't want anything to do with her. He ignores her when she reveals that he has a five-year old daughter. This is a big twist for the character, although we don't really know him that well. I had a hard time remembering his name, as he still blends together with some of the other firemen. The DNA results come back in and they claim that he is indeed the baby's father. He doesn't seem to accept the results as he continues to block out of his ex-girlfriend. This is a plot that could help establish Franco beyond just another one of the guys but it would have been nice if the series had found way to do that before this episode. Being friends with Tommy isn't enough, since Tommy could be friends with most of the firemen in the station. This plot could be something bigger but it lost some of it's initial impact since Franco hasn't been that well defined.
A firefighter who is more defined is Mike. Mike is the probie who gets awkward really easy. He's been getting stalked by his first save for a couple episodes now. This guy game across as someone who was desperate for a date with Mike and his desperation and general creepiness had me be wary of him. It comes as a big surprise to both Mike and me that the guy turned out to not only be straight, but to have a fiance. There is still a sexual component to what he wants, since he and his fiance want a three-some before they tie the know. Mike is awkward so he runs away from the situation (as would I) but this was a big twist on both the viewer and the character. If this plot hadn't existed for the last episode or so, then it wouldn't have worked so well. The series took time to establish the guy's seeming desperation and in doing so managed to fool the viewer into this twist. If the series had the entire plotline in one episode, it wouldn't have worked so well. It would have felt rushed and it could have even become predictable.
While Mike and Franco are dealing with their problems, Tommy continues his love...square? He's currently in love with his wife, is sleeping with a blonde whose name he doesn't know, and he's also started to date the widowed wife of his cousin. Did I mention that he's seeing the ghost of his cousin, who is still very much in love with his wife? This situation becomes even more complicated when the blonde reveals that she loves Tommy and he makes the mistake of saying it back to her. His wife is back with Roger, but it appears that their relationship isn't back on the solid ground that it was in the premiere. The show is juggling Tommy's complicated love life rather well and it'll be interesting to see how it plays out. Let's just hope the show doesn't chose to complicate this plot even further, since that might be too many pieces for this show to handle.
The episode had a pretty good third act due to Colleen. The plot starts harmlessly enough, with Colleen asking for permission to go to a concert with her boyfriend, Sean. To absolutely no-one's surprise, she fails to get permission and then decides to sneak out and go anyways. The plot becomes a lot more serious and even life-threatening when Sean gets the two of them in a serious car accident. Tommy, Roger, and Janet rush to the hospital and there's some fighting going on. The episode doesn't end with Colleen's recovery, which is obviously going to happen, but with Tommy going to church and doing some catholic rituals.
To be honest, this was going to be a mini-review before I saw the episode. I saw it and too many important plot points happened and it was too good to not give it a full review. This was a pretty good episode and that song that closed the episode fit everything perfectly. Even the ghosts in the Church worked exceptionally well. This was an episode that had a surprise car accident, but it used it to go deeper into Tommy's beliefs. He might not be happy with God, but he's still willing to light candles at the altar.