From its title, LA Fire & Rescue seems similar to NBC’s Chicago Fire, but its docuseries format reveals that it is more grounded in reality – here’s an explanation of how much of it is scripted. Produced by Dick Wolf, who also created the Chicago franchise, LA Fire & Rescue focuses on the lives of real emergency responders, including lifeguards, paramedics, and firefighters working at the Los Angeles County Fire Department. With each episode, the NBC series highlights how the first responders take up a whole new rescue mission and use their expertise to protect the people of Los Angeles.
In its first episode, LA Fire & Rescue opens by introducing the stations and rescue teams of the LA County Fire Department. With what follows, the show walks viewers through all the meticulous protocols the emergency personnel implement to ensure they effectively perform their rescue operations at Sunset Boulevard. LA Fire & Rescue‘s opening episode also features other rescue missions in which the emergency service team promptly responds to a collision at a gas station and even tries to prevent a bush fire from spreading. In all of these moments, LA Fire & Rescue feels raw and incredibly real, making it hard not to wonder if it is scripted at all.
LA Fire & Rescue Is Real & Not Scripted
One of the executive producers from the show, Rasha Drachkovitch, confirmed (via CinemaBlend) that unlike Chicago Fire, LA Fire & Rescue is “100% real.” It involves no second takes or scripted scenes and only follows the real-world action of “real-life characters” who face real stakes at the front lines of emergencies each day. Explaining why LA Fire & Rescue‘s emphasis on realism would appeal to audiences, the executive producer added that a first-hand experience of firefighters running into burning buildings and paramedics bringing patients back to life through CPR would really inspire viewers.
Rasha Drachkovitch’s revelations surrounding LA Fire & Rescue‘s documentary approach confirm that the series has little to no filters when it comes to its depiction of the realities of rescue services and the people involved in them. This makes LA Fire & Rescue more similar to reality TV series such as Live PD than television shows like NBC’s Chicago Fire, although it is not live. In all of its realistic action, LA Fire & Rescue does include a few prearranged elements. For instance, the show features first-hand interviews with rescue teams and emergency care providers and also elevates its drama by adding musical scores to the backdrop of some of its pivotal moments.
Does LA Fire & Rescue Represent NBC’s Future For Chicago & Other Series?
LA Fire & Rescue‘s focus on realism could be NBC’s way of taking one step closer to experimenting more with non-fictional television shows. While it cannot alone determine the future of Chicago and other series, its audience reception and market trends can impact the direction in which NBC will head with franchises like Chicago. Even if LA Fire & Fire is not impactful enough to redefine the trajectory of real-life dramas focusing on frontline workers, it adds more diversity to the sub-genre, which will ultimately bring more eyes to it.