9-1-1: Season 2/ Episode 9 “Hen Begins” – Recap/ Review (with Spoilers)

Hen looking proudly at her badge.
You are now a Los Angeles Firefighter Paramedic.
0.00% (0)

The show decides to hand the reigns to Aisha Hinds and gives us something which almost makes you wonder, “Why wasn’t this the show’s pilot?”


Network
FOX
Director(s) Jennifer Lynch
Writer(s) Aristotle Kousakis
Air Date 11/19/2018
Introduced This Episode
Gerrard Brian Thompson

Images and text in this post may contain affiliate links which, if a purchase is made from those sites, I may earn money or products from the company. Most affiliate links contain an upward facing, superscript, arrow.

What Triggered the Change: Hen, Eva

While Hen, in episode 6 of this season, revealed getting shot and medics saving her was why she became a first responder, that was the short version. The long version was that she was in pharmaceutical sales, wearing a wig, trying to code switch and pass the best she could – and she hated it. She hated the boys club, hated schmoozing with clients, nearly every aspect. Yet, with a little bit of a push from Eva, though not much in the way of support, at first, she decided to become a first responder. Something which was tough, because Hen is a big girl and makes it seem she was out of shape, but when she puts her mind to something – no stopping her.

Commentary

I would save this for the end but why wait? This episode is so messed up because it seems like an alternate pilot. I get it is really supposed to make up for how neglected Aisha Hinds has been since this show began but, I don’t think they know what they did. What I mean by that is, what they gave us makes it so sending her back behind Buck’s dating issues, Eddie being pushed more in his first few episodes than Hen formerly was all of season 1, and etc., just seem cruel.

As usual, Hinds shows herself to not be some two-bit player. I’d argue she is in the league of Viola Davis, with the main difference being Hinds actually plays characters who can tell a joke and be witty. Not just miserable people surviving the best way they know how – often through destructive means. Comparisons aside, I don’t think this show knows what it did. For after the hype from her monologue in Underground and truly commanding this episode like she was in a Shonda Rhimes program, they better up her contract commitment and get her a lot of money. Surely someone has the sense to snatch her up for the lead role. Not “A” lead role, but “THE” lead role.

The Bastard & Saint: Athena, Hen, Gerrard, Chimney

Hen was a bit of a trailblazer when she joined 118 and like most trailblazers, she went through hell being one of the first. Especially since her captain, Captain Gerrard, was a bigot in so many ways. But you know what really makes him an ass****, Hen proving she was smart and had compelling ideas to help save people and her getting punished for it. Which Chimney tries to commiserate but so comes the issue of them both being people of color, but her being a woman. So while the sentiment is appreciated, it isn’t like they are in the same boat.

Something which comes off a bit standoffish but, luckily for Hen, Chimney rolls with the punches and understands she is talking out of frustration. Athena, who helps during the advertised mudslide in the episode trailer, also sees the frustration. Hence her asking Hen out for drinks and their friendship blooming. For while Athena doesn’t go deep into her own backstory, you can tell she sees herself in Hen and wants to be the person she didn’t have. Heck, maybe for the gay fireman and another female cop, she provided that sense of community too?

Commentary

I think there is a strong need to shout out Black women, don’t you? Just take note of Athena. She saw a sister in need, probably ready to cry, and rather than treat it as someone else’s problem, she reached out – gave her phone number. Also, she made what Hen thought was a support group to find others who may be needed to be seen and heard, especially by someone who gets it.

But, in general, whether we are talking about Michelle Obama or if I’m speaking on a personal level, you have to appreciate the emotional, sometimes physical, strength of Black women. For no matter how daunting the task or situation, they persevere. Despite how others may not take a chance on you, may pass you up, they will give you the opportunity to prove all those people wrong. Also, while they will keep it sometimes real with you to the point of you feeling like they are coming for you, they tell you what you need to hear to be better.

Which makes us getting to see Hen and Athena become friends, part of the foundation of this show, so important. For all the praise noted above, unfortunately, is often paired with no one checking on Black women. There not being someone to give them a chance, relieve their pain or struggle. So those two meeting, sticking together, and Hen returning the extended hand and sometimes pulling Athena in for a hug, it helps you further realize why they are so close. Almost to the point of getting a little teary-eyed – though it might just be me being sappy.

Paving The Road Might Be Hard, But It Is Always Worth It: Hen

Have you ever taken note what it takes to pave a road? Usually, you got to strip down the old one, usually with heavy equipment, then you got to deal with this hot liquid which you have to place down just right and then smooth everything out for the future. Then, even with a smooth road, you have to paint lines and directions to prevent accidents and other hazards. Now, think about a person doing all that for themselves and those who will come after them.

Though Hen isn’t the first, she was paving what some could consider an unfinished road. Why was it unfinished? That isn’t the point. What matters is that she did the work, sometimes by herself, and made it so future generations wouldn’t have to go through what she did. Now, how did she do that specifically? Well, she called out the entire 118 team. She called out the hazing, the attitude of Captain Gerrard, and proved that while affirmative action got her a chance, what led to her being hired and one of the best was her initiative, skills, and creative thinking. Being a woman, a lesbian, and Black are just things which help form her opinion. It doesn’t mean, what to ever, that hers should be treated as inferior.

Commentary

Can you believe, at least going by Wikipedia, Hinds has only been on stage maybe in one play? Seriously? Has no one seen this woman’s monologues? Has no one seen how she commands a scene? You’d think she’d always have an invite to perform in something. Then again, unfortunately, musicals have a certain level of dominance and maybe singing isn’t her forte? Either way, believe me when I say this episode makes it so whether you have Apple, Google, what have you, you need to put an alert on your device for when Aisha Hinds has something new coming out. For, seriously, she has brought a high to this series that is going to make next week’s fall finale seem so bust – I can just feel it.

Highlights

  1. 9-1-1 giving us the pilot we deserved.
  2. The strength of Black women and the importance of comradery between women, people of color, those who feel like outsiders, and so on.
  3. Seeing Eva as a good and healthy girlfriend to Hen rather than a gangly scar in Hen’s life.

Low Point

  1. You knowing the next episode won’t hold a candle to this one.


Follow Wherever I Look on Twitter, Like us on Facebook and Subscribe to the YouTube Channel.


Check Out Other TV Recaps


Title card for 9-1-1

Buy a Season Pass from Amazon

Get Season 1, on DVD from Amazon

Season/ EpisodeSynopsis
Season 2, Episode 17 “Careful What You Wish For”In the penultimate episode of the season, Eddie returns to prominence as he reevaluates his relationship with Shannon.
Director(s) Bradley Buecker
Writer(s) Matthew Hodgson
Air Date 5/6/2019
Season 2, Episode 18 “This Life We Choose” [Season Finale]In the finale, after a bombing spree, many characters find their lives changed forever. One for the worse, many for the better.
Director(s) Bradley Buecker
Writer(s) Tim Minear
Air Date 5/13/2019
Introduced This Episode
Freddie Anthony Turpel
Season 2, Episode 14 “Broken”Of course, with 9-1-1 taking some time off it means they have to come back with you on the verge of crying to the point being unable to watch.
Director(s) Bradley Buecker
Writer(s) Juan Carlos Coto
Air Date 4/15/2019
Introduced This Episode
Sonia Skye P. Marshall
Season 2, Episode 16 “Bobby Begins Again”In order to move forward, you have to the past, and in this episode, we learn what happened between the fire Bobby started and Buck being hired.
Director(s) Jennifer Lynch
Writer(s) Christopher Monfette
Air Date 4/29/2019
Season 2/ Episode 8 “Buck, Actually”Love is in the air in such a way this episode that it almost makes you forget that it isn’t February in real life or in the show.
Season 2, Episode 15 “Ocean’s 9-1-1”The team gets framed for a robbery and it leads to not only some of the best writing in a while, but one person’s job on the line.
Season 2, Episode 13 “Fight or Flight”We journey a bit into Doug and Maddie’s history and are left with an ending which ends a chapter in both of their lives.
Season 2, Episode 12 “Chimney Begins”As Hen did earlier this season, Howard Han aka Chimney, gets his due by having an episode dedicated to his backstory.
Season 2, Episode 11 “New Beginnings”9-1-1 returns, and it is like we never left as the drama picks up and kicks things into the next gear.

Season 2/ Episode 10 “Merry Ex-Mas”

While this is a Christmas episode, love is in the air like it is Valentine’s day. Though, unfortunately, one person with unreciprocated love comes around to ruin things.

Director(s) Bradley Buecker
Writer(s) Christopher Monfette
Air Date 11/26/2018
Introduced This Episode
Doug Matthew Clark

Season 2/ Episode 9 “Hen Begins”

The show decides to hand the reigns to Aisha Hinds and gives us something which almost makes you wonder, “Why wasn’t this the show’s pilot?”

Director(s) Jennifer Lynch
Writer(s) Aristotle Kousakis
Air Date 11/19/2018
Introduced This Episode
Gerrard Brian Thompson

Season 2/ Episode 7 “Haunted”

In this episode, we’re reminded that ghost aren’t always entities of another world but also could be the living.


Director(s) Loni Peristere
Writer(s) Erica L. Anderson
Air Date 10.29.2018
Introduced This Episode
Shannon Devin Kelley
Alana Vanessa Martinez
Bryan Myles Cranford

Featuring: Carla, Buck, Shannon, Eddie, Athen, Hen, Bryan

Season 2/ Episode 6 “Dosed”

A few characters find themselves pushed to reminisce about the past and take note of how it led them to the current path they're on.

Season 2/ Episode 5 “Awful People"

Some familiar faces return, as does the possibility of 911 making it so each episode has a theme to it.

Season 2/ Episode 4 “Stuck”

The show doubles down on newcomer Eddie as it has two characters question what do they want for their future. One personally, the other professionally.

Season 2/ Episode 3 “Help Is Not Coming”

We come to the conclusion of the earthquake arc and are left wondering will everyone make it alive and in one piece?

Season 2/ Episode 2 “7.1”

With a 7.1 earthquake, everyone is put into a position of danger. However, for Bobby’s team, it is a building on the verge of collapse.

Season 1

9-1-1 starts off strong but loses its luster as you get used to the sometimes outlandish 911 calls and the drama of the cast seems to lose its importance.

Season 1/ Episode 10 “A Whole New You”

The season finale of 9-1-1 ends with a bit of a shocker, but not the kind the show is known for.

Season 1/ Episode 9 “Trapped”

Patricia returns and it is questioned if Buck can handle her place in Abby’s life alongside if Athena is ready for a new relationship yet.

Season 1/ Episode 8 “Karma’s a Bitch”

9-1-1 shows full commitment to doing themed episodes for awhile and for this one, it is all about karma being a bitch. Meaning, it is time for many characters to deal with their demons.

Season 1/ Episode 7 “Full Moon (Creepy AF)”

As it seems 9-1-1 digs into the idea of doing themed episodes, we witness the strange calls which happen the night of a full moon.

Season 1/ Episode 6 “Heartbreaker”

It’s Valentine’s Day! That means the 911 calls are laced with the themes of love or a woman scorned.

Season 1/ Episode 5 “Point of Origin”

Hen’s personal life is finally revealed to us, alongside what happened to Bobby’s family.

Season 1/ Episode 4 “Worst Day Ever”

Bobby’s truth gets revealed, Athena crosses the line, and we get another episode with increasingly better guest performances.

Season 1/ Episode 3 “Next of Kin”

With a season 2 renewal, it seems 9-1-1 isn’t going to just skate through the rest of season 1 but prove itself to naysayers.

Season 1/ Episode 2 “Let Go”

9-1-1 keeps the drama high but can it find some heart amongst the sensationalism?

Season 1/ Episode 1 “Pilot”

9-1-1 starts off strong, in terms of the 911 calls, but as for the characters? Well… lets just hope they develop over time.

Season 2/ Episode 1 "Under Pressure"

9-1-1 returns with a new member of Bobby’s team, Buck’s sister, and Athena struggling to accept love in her life.

How Would You Rate This?

Negative Mixed Positive

Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter

* indicates required
Email Format

1 COMMENT

  1. Season 2 episode 9 “Hen Begins” is one of The Best episodes I have ever seen! Great great show. Hope for many more future episodes as great as this one

Questions, Comments, or Opposing Opinion?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.