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The 9-1-1 Season 3 Storyline Fans Hated

Fox's high-action drama "9-1-1" keeps its viewers on the edge of their seats. The show, which traces the lives of first responders in the Los Angeles area, keeps the viewers engaged as firefighters, paramedics, and 911 operators work on rescuing residents from life-threatening situations — from the smallest mishaps to the biggest natural calamities.

With the likes of Angela Bassett, who plays Athena Grant, and Peter Krause, who plays Bobby Nash, leading the ensemble in their respective roles as LAPD field sergeant and the captain of Station 118, the show boasts a stellar cast of characters. The personal stories, intertwined with the thrill and risks that make the lives of the characters so fragile, add more layers to the drama, and viewers have definitely taken notice. How else would you explain the 81% Tomatometer average rating for the show's five seasons so far?

The third season is, however, a bit behind that average, with a 75% Tomatometer rating. Several factors could have contributed to this dip in the ratings, and we just might know one of them — a storyline that the fans definitely hated in Season 3.

Fans didn't enjoy the Buck vs. Bobby subplot

Season 3 begins with Evan "Buck" Buckley (Oliver Stark) quitting the LAFD after he's deemed unfit to return to active duty and is offered a desk job. But a life-threatening tsunami changes him. He returns as a fire marshal, only to find out that it's Bobby who doesn't let him come back to active duty. Enraged after finding out the truth, Buck decides to file a lawsuit against the LAFD. Things get worse when the team's secrets are used against them by Buck's lawyer during the case's arbitration. 

In a Reddit thread discussing the storyline, many fans expressed their disappointment with the conflict. U/dishonor_on_your_cap chimed in on the storyline, writing, "I always felt like the lawsuit as a storyline was frustrating because it created unnecessary tension and it felt like lazy writing on a lot of levels." Adding to a growing consensus on the thread, they agreed that Buck was right in suing the LAFD and Bobby, writing, "Bobby didn't communicate with Buck when he should have, so Buck's expectations were different."

Meanwhile, some fans, like u/BlueMango12, found the lawsuit episodes unwatchable. "I've re-watched the show and specific episodes multiple times but any episode directly involving this plot I skip," they complained. "I hate how they handled it and I really think that Buck was treated unfairly." Though things go back to normal pretty quickly at the 118th, fans weren't pleased with the unpleasantness they had to endure to get there.