(Warning: This post contains spoilers for Monday’s Season 2 premiere of “9-1-1: Lone Star.”)
T.K. Strand (Ronen Rubinstein) has a lot to be thankful for at the end of the second season premiere of “9-1-1” spinoff series, “Lone Star,” which revealed his father, Owen (Rob Lowe), is almost fully cancer-free and that T.K. is finally in an official, committed relationship with his Season 1 love interest, Carlos (Rafael L. Silva).
But even though “Tarlos” shippers might be happy for now, trouble is ahead for T.K. and the gang, as the closing moments of the Season 2 opener showed lava is coming into Austin, Texas and the promo’s for Episode 2 tease that not everyone at Station 126 will make it out of this next emergency alive.
But while we wait to see what trauma next week brings, TheWrap spoke with Rubinstein to get some details about what to expect in Episode 3, the long-awaited “9-1-1”/”Lone Star” crossover episode, which TheWrap exclusively reported will air Feb. 1.
“I’m very much a fan of the show, so for me, it’s just as exciting to have the cast from the original come to us,” Rubinstein said. “But especially, I think that was sort of always the dream was for Buck (Oliver Stark) and T.K. to meet up at some point. And it happened. And I don’t know if it was always the plan or the influence of the fans — but, the writers definitely listened and there is an epic storyline coming with Buck and T.K.”
In general, Rubinstein says the episode is “bananas.”
“I keep saying it’s probably going to be the biggest episode we will ever have — so far. I hope I’m not over-exaggerating, but I really think it will be,” he added. “First of all, you’ve seen in some of the promos, it looks different, the crossover. It looks like a war film. It’s crazy. It looks like we’re shooting ‘Platoon’ or something. So I think overall this episode is going to be unbelievable. And I think it’s definitely going to be a fan favorite. I know it’s my favorite already, so, we’ll see.”
The “9-1-1”/”Lone Star” crossover will begin with that week’s episode of “9-1-1” at 8 p.m., but primarily take place during “Lone Star” in the 9 o’clock hour. In that episode of the spinoff, “9-1-1” characters Henrietta “Hen” Wilson (Aisha Hinds), Evan “Buck” Buckley (Stark) and Eddie Diaz (Ryan Guzman) will be traveling from their Los Angeles-based Station 118 to help out the members of “Lone Star’s” Station 126 in Austin, Texas as they fight a massive wildfire.
If you’re a fan of both series, you’re probably wondering how “9-1-1” and “Lone Star” showrunner Tim Minear selected which characters would be involved in the crossover. Here is the answer he gave TheWrap:
“There are sort of a couple of different stories that are happening in that episode and it’s an episode of ‘Lone Star,’ so I’m servicing all those ‘Lone Star’ characters. And I always knew that I wanted to see what it was like to have T.K. and Buck have a story together. I thought there was something really interesting about seeing Eddie and Marjan (Natacha Karam) and Judd (Jim Parrack) together. And I had a whole Owen story that I wanted to do, which I did, that I was very excited about and it’s sort of coming off of events that happen in the first couple of episodes. And the question was sort of, who is the most interesting character for Owen to share this story with? And it didn’t initially occur to me that it should be Hen, but once I realized it should be Hen — it all just kind of made perfect sense. It’s the pairing that you sort of don’t expect. And Aisha Hinds and Rob Lowe together, it’s just such an interesting dynamic. And Hen really has something that she can give to Owen, in terms of her own experience. So it just ended up making perfect sense. Owen’s been through 9/11, and he’s going to go through another shocking trauma in Episode 2. And Hen has got her own trauma from last year, when she had her accident with the ambulance. So it just made sense.”
Minear says the first cut of the episode came in 10 minutes over, “which is why you can’t bring in five other characters to interact with the six other characters, because then you wouldn’t be able to give any quality time to anybody.”
He added: “And I have to go in there and painfully find the 10 minutes that I need to lose in order for it to get down to time. But that’s actually a very high-class problem because it means it’s full of so much great stuff and I’m just excited.”
Minear told TheWrap that his two shows being paired up on Monday nights for the first time (during the 2019-20 TV season, “Lone Star” premiered in “9-1-1’s” time slot while it was on winter hiatus, and ended its first season in time for “9-1-1” to come back and take over) means there “absolutely” is the chance for more crossovers.
Rubinstein is very much on board with that idea.
“It’s really crazy, it’s sort of like on Mondays you’re watching a 2-hour film,” the actor said. “But what’s cool is our shows are very different, they sort of have the same mechanisms at work, but it’s very much different with the stories and the characters. So I think it will be a really nice chance for people to see two different shows, but very much in the same world on Mondays. And it is, I sort of do look at it as a 2-hour film. And I would hope that there is more room for crossover. I would love to show up on ‘9-1-1’ and travel to Los Angeles — even though I live in Los Angeles, it would be really convenient. I definitely think that they have that in their back pocket, especially when the crossover comes out, you would think it’s going to be a very successful episode. So I can only imagine what they have in their plans.”
“9-1-1” airs Mondays at 8/7c on Fox, followed by “9-1-1: Lone Star” at 9/8c.