‘9-1-1: Lone Star’ Creator Talks Season 3 Proposal and All the Major Moments

by Taylor Cunningham

The 9-1-1: Lone Star season 3 finale packed some heavy emotions and several major events into one episode. And it all played out perfectly. After the show, creator Tim Minear sat down to explain just how he pulled off the episode so effortlessly. Read on to see what he had to say.

Warning. Spoilers ahead.

In the episode titled A Bright and Cloudless Morning, the weekly TV disaster surrounded a past and present building collapse that nearly killed a few of our favorite characters. Luckily, everyone made it out alive. But the near-loses left first responders a bit shaken.

To add to that fear of mortality, Owen had a brief cancer return scare, which fully made T.K. understand just how precious and short life is. After having that revelation in the middle of the night, he woke up Carlos to propose, and he said yes.

As creator Tim Minear explained to Entertainment Weekly, he had been thinking of the perfect wrap-up for months. Firstly, he wanted to revisit 9/11 since it was such an important day for the characters. But he also didn’t want to completely focus on the past. So he shifted time periods to tell a story about everyone’s personal growth.

In the end, Minear come up with something that wasn’t “really an episode of the show” but also didn’t “break the bank” with crazy special effects and makeup “de-aging” that would make everyone look “like they did 20 years ago.”

“So after I saw that horrible tragedy in Florida where the condominium just collapsed, it felt like there could be a story that could be told with a building collapse that could then shift into something that may have happened after one of the towers collapsed on 9/11,” he said. “We were able to backdoor the audience into a reveal of an impressionistic version of what happened 20 years ago. That allowed us to sort of have our cake and eat it too.”

‘9-1-1: Lone Star’ Taught the Characters the Importance of ‘Carpe Diem’

Minear weaved in all the events to highlight how everyone has moved forward and realized that they can only guarantee life as far as the moment they’re living in. And that, of course, led to Judd’s and Carlos’s brush with death in the current day and Owen’s possible cancer diagnosis.

But unlike many 9-1-1: Lone Star episodes, Tim Minear didn’t leave fans fearing the fate of their favorite stars for the season 3 finale. Nor did he end the episode on a dramatic cliffhanger. Instead, he gave up a happy ending that will continue into the now-secured season 4—with a Tarlos wedding.

Interestingly, Minear didn’t plan on sending the couple to the alter when he began the season. But he admitted that as the year played out, their upcoming nuptials just happened organically.

Both of the characters spend their lives running “toward danger” and they have each other’s backs and hearts on the hardest days. So the time came that they realized they should finalize their romance with an “I do.”

“I think [T.K.] learns by the end of the episode that the end is going to come no matter what, and you can’t govern your day based on that,” he admitted. “You have to live, you have to grab the moment while you can. Carpe diem.”