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rescuemeRescue Me

OK, I’m finally ready to proclaim what a lot of you already have: the FX network’s Tuesday night show Rescue Me is stunningly brilliant. It’s a good thing, too, because the setting for the show—a New York firehouse post-9/11 attacks—deserves the kind of great writing it has.

Blame my late public announcement on coming late to the Denis Leary/Peter Tolan-anchored firefighter drama, but thanks to the miracle of Hulu.com—a friend second only to a DVR box for any tragically over-scheduled house like mine—I’m finally caught up.

I honestly don’t think there’s a better drama on television right now, but that in itself is a miracle of sorts: the last couple of years of this five-season show were less than stellar. But after the writers’ strike and a reduced number of episodes in a season, Rescue Me is streamlined and sharp enough to reapply for that “Best Drama on TV” status.

Viewers need look no further than the last episode, where 9/11 firefighter widow Sheila Keefe (played by Callie Thorne) nailed a mouthful of inspired monologue in one freaking take. Yeah, five minutes in one take. It was, in a word, incredible.

The personal trials and tribulations within the show’s plot continue to thicken: Tommy Gavin (Leary) returns to Ground Zero and the back pain that Sean Garrity (Steven Pasquale) is experiencing turns out to be more than he bargained for/expected and Genevieve’s perspectives on the terrorist attacks push Gavin over the edge. Rescue Me airs tomorrow night and if you’re not watching it, you’re due to miss a five-alarm fire.