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'Rescue Me' season finale sets up the end of the series

August 31, 2010 |  6:00 am

20100104_setup_RM20091215-129 "Rescue Me" ended its penultimate episode of the season last week with an emotional bomb.

A table saw fell on top of and apparently crushed Damien as he rushed in to warn all his colleagues to get out of a burning building. The guys had stopped to help Lou, who collapsed after ignoring his doctor's orders to retire from the New York Fire Department because of a dangerous heart condition.

Get ready for more. What happened to Damien, played by Michael Zegen, is the focus of Tuesday's series finale, which we won't spoil. But "Rescue Me" fans, who were heart-broken about the unexpected turn of events for Tommy Gavin's godson, prepare for some heartache.

As "Rescue Me" marches toward its series finale next year, a lot is at stake for Tommy (Denis Leary) who is finally sober and trying to mend his broken family.

"The primary idea is that this season, finally, Tommy’s figured out that the drinking is not going to work," said co-creator and executive producer Peter Tolan in a phone interview Monday.  "And mid-season, after the blackout episode, he’s made a strong choice to stay sober. And also listening to his wife, who is saying, you’re gonna be 100% to your family. And that’s the choice he’s made. So, in terms of the writing and planning for the show, you then want to put as much of an obstacle as you can to fulfilling that goal. So you need to put in a situation where he cannot be 100% to his family."

But Tommy's family at home isn't the only one that it's in trouble. Lou's selfish decision to stay at work has tragic results on their firehouse family.

"Lou’s clearly got a death sentence going that he doesn’t necessarily care about," Tolan said. "And as fun as Lou has been, because he’s a fun character to write and [John Scurti] makes him a great character, I realize that there’s a lot of self-loathing in Lou. It’s almost like blatant denial on his part. He’s in effect saying I will die if I leave the fire service. I’ll just die without a sense of purpose. I think he’s hoping that he dies in a situation where nobody was put at risk, which is insane.

On Wednesday, Show Tracker will post more about the season finale and interviews with Tolan and Zegen. So, check back here after you've watched the episode.


--Maria Elena Fernandez
twitter.com/writerchica

Photo: Michael Zegen as Damien in "Rescue Me." Credit: Craig Blankenhorn/FX

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