‘9-1-1’: How Many of Show’s Cases are Based on Real Life?

by Anna Dunn
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9-1-1 has some seriously realistic moments, so how many of the show’s cases are based on real-life events?

In a 2019 interview with AssignmentX, showrunner Tim Minear discussed whether or not the show takes inspiration from real-life events.

“A lot of our cases are real. In fact, the ones that probably you think, ‘Well, that never happened,’ are probably the ones that did happen. Even all the way back to the pilot, a [live] baby being flushed down some plumbing, that was a real thing,” he said.

9-1-1 hit the scene in 2018 as a re-imagining of the classic procedural drama. Instead of simply following cops solving a case, 9-1-1 takes a gripping look at the lives of multiple different types of first responders. From the lives of firefighters to dispatchers, the drama on 9-1-1 couldn’t be more high stakes. And it really does take from a lot of real-life events.

“A bouncy house flying a hundred feet into the air, that was a real thing. So we look to stories from real life. We originally started looking to YouTube a lot, because the whole feeling, our sort of aesthetic for the show is, it’s not a plotty procedural,” he said.

9-1-1 typically follows a bunch of different incidents instead of a single case, giving it a raw and gripping feel. The producers wanted it to almost feel like watching a compilation over a single plot.

“There are incidents, and we want it to feel like the experience of getting onto YouTube and watching a compilation of ultimate fails. You keep clicking and going down that rabbit hole, because you want to see the next cool thing. So that’s the experience that we’re creating for network television on a scaffolding of amazing, emotional character stories,” Minear explained.

‘9-1-1’ Comes Back This Month

9-1-1 left fans stunned in the action-packed season 4 finale. And now, the first episodes are putting fans right back into the action. The first responders will have to scramble when the entire city loses power. They’ve already encountered a Tsunami, but this is a whole new mass crisis.

With the power out, multiple chaotic events start to unfold, including the escape of a bunch of animals from the zoo, causing chaos on Hollywood Boulevard. Photos from the premiere show the characters struggle in the darkened city.

Meanwhile, the characters will continue to have to fight their personal battles. For instance, Maddie is still struggling with her post-partum depression.

If you’re excited to finally see season five of 9-1-1, there isn’t much longer to wait. The show premieres on Monday, September 20th on Fox. Meanwhile, it’s spinoff, 9-1-1: Lone Star, will premiere sometime later in the year during the midseason. If you’d like a recap of either of the shows before they begin again, you can stream them on Hulu.

Outsider.com