‘9-1-1’ Star Peter Krause Teases ‘Conflict and Skullduggery’ After Season 7 Finale Cliffhanger

The actor behind Bobby Nash tells TheWrap why main characters always survive on the ABC first responder drama, and teases Season 8

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Peter Krause in "9-1-1." (Disney/Chris Willard)

Note: This story contains spoilers from the “9-1-1” Season 7 finale.

“9-1-1” fan-favorite Bobby Nash might have survived the tense Season 7 finale, but star Peter Krause teased plenty of drama ahead after that big power dynamic shift at firehouse 118.

The episode, titled “All Fall Down,” followed the immediate aftermath of the devastating fire at Bobby and Athena’s (Angela Bassett) home. After rescuing Athena from the blaze, Bobby collapsed at the end of Episode 9. The finale picked up with him at the hospital, having suffered a cardiac arrest. After a twisty investigation by Athena brought the responsible arsonist to justice, Bobby woke up and the couple seemed ready to rebuild their lives from there.

But before the fire, Bobby had handed in his resignation from the 118 to the fire chief. So when he attempted to return to his post at the end of the episode, he and the rest of the crew were shocked to learn that former captain Vincent Gerrard (Brian Thompson) was already back — having come out of retirement to fix things at the firehouse and fill the void left by Bobby.

“Gerrard holds a grudge against Bobby because he, of course, took over the firehouse after Gerrard. So I’m wondering if there isn’t some sort of conflict and some skullduggery behind the scenes that Gerrard is up to,” Krause teased to TheWrap of the drama to come when the show returns for Season 8 this fall.

With a long summer break for fans of “9-1-1” to get through before answers come in, Krause spoke with TheWrap about surviving yet another life-threatening moment, where he hopes Bobby’s story goes next and why the show is “stronger than ever” after Season 7.

TheWrap: Congrats on making it through Season 7 of “9-1-1.” That Episode 9 cliffhanger had us all scared for Bobby for a second. Was there ever a point where Bobby might not survive this fire at his home?

Krause: Well, the characters in the show have survived so many horrible and life-threatening accidents, like characters from Looney Tunes cartoons — none of which ever died. So in keeping with the language of the show, we are incredibly resilient characters. We go through things and we come back … We want to speak to people’s resilience and, in Bobby’s case, redemption. So, I don’t know if killing off characters is necessarily a part of the language of the show — at least not the main characters.

Bobby quit the 118 right before the fire and in the chaos, he seemingly forgot to undo it, which brings back the station’s former Captain Gerrard to wreak havoc and keep us guessing about what comes next all summer. What did you think about that cliffhanger?

It was an interesting scene to play. I wasn’t quite sure why Bobby just showed up, I had to go along with it. But when Bobby showed up after resigning, I thought maybe he had a minor bit of amnesia. But obviously after the scene that he has with Amir (Malcolm-Jamal Warner), Bobby has a renewed sense of commitment to his place in the world and his job. So he shows up and, of course, it leads to that odd moment.

I did resign, but I didn’t think necessarily that the paperwork went through. We don’t get to say all that in the scene. But now (showrunner Tim Minear) set up this situation where Bobby has to now somehow regain the captainship of the 118, I’m not sure exactly how that’s going to play out in Season 8, but I’m confident Bobby will prevail.

We’ve seen in flashbacks how the old fire captain lead the 118 in the past and how bad morale was at the station in those days. What can you tease about where the team goes from here in Season 8?

I hope that eventually Bobby, sooner than later, regains captainship of the 118 and that we can fold back into our usual action and comedy. I think that’s what’s really fun for the viewers, as well as our departures into deeper territory, like we did with Bobby towards the end of this season. It was really interesting to get to travel from the romantic comedy of the very first episode to the deep emotional work episodes. This was a wonderful season for the Athena-Bobby relationship, and for other characters as well, for Buck and I loved that episode that centered around Chimney.

I just think we came back stronger than ever after the strike. It was a fantastic 10 episodes.

Bobby also had a lot of internal struggle he was going through before the fire at his home, and now he has to rebuild his work life and his personal life from zero in a lot of ways. Where do you hope Season 8 takes Bobby next?

Gerrard holds a grudge against Bobby because he, of course, took over the firehouse after Gerrard. So I’m wondering if there isn’t some sort of conflict and some skullduggery behind the scenes that Gerrard is up to.

But like I said, I want to get back into the show’s action-comedy. And I’d also love to see Bobby help some people in the AA world, while also still being there for his firehouse family and for Athena, and to continue to be a supportive figure who is in service to others. I think that’s a lot of what we’re going to see coming from Bobby in the future.

I’d love to work with Malcolm-Jamal Warner again too, we got along famously and I think he’s such a terrific actor. I’d love to do more with him … Maybe there’s some sort of dream sequence where Bobby and Amir can be friends.

One of the big things with Bobby’s characters is that even though he’s cultivated this amazing life for himself and has all these people that love him, he still carries a lot of guilt and pain from the mistakes of his past. Do you think that there’s ever a point where he gets to give himself a little bit more credit or find more peace?

I think that Bobby will always be oriented towards doing good works, and (the guilt) will never completely leave him. But I think with the deepening and the strengthening of his relationship with Athena and also with his “9-1-1” 118 family, I think that is going to have power over him moving forward.

I think that he will have less of a dark cloud hanging over him moving forward, which I think will be good.

“9-1-1” will return for Season 8 this fall on ABC. Past episodes are available to stream on Hulu.

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