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I hadn’t tuned in much to “Rescue Me” last season. When Patrick saw that the DVD had rolled in with flyers for season four, he sort of wondered aloud about what was going to happen considering the finale of season three. I was in for a shocker. Leading up to that, however, were some of the best episodes (and the best writing) that the show has seen since it first premiered on FX. In the first episode, the guys learn that they have to quit smoking in the firehouse, which makes them all pretty ornery, and they have to start forking over $20 bills every time they have a ciggy. The rest of the season dives into a darker place, as each of the men have to tackle their own demons about friends and lovers lost, and decide how long they really want to keep putting out the flames. This season finds Susan Sarandon coming in for a few episodes to date Daniel Sunjata’s Franco and be a replacement mother to his young girl. This scenario, like so many throughout the season, does not end well. Leary’s Tommy Gavin still anchors the show with more ghosts than ever before, which he silences by unknowingly leading on many of the women in his life. There’s more than one domestic abuse scenario in these episodes, including one with a guy-guy couple that includes Mike Lobardi’s Mike character. Like so much of the series, what begins as dark comedy ultimately leads us down a road of trouble. And because it is so well crafted, we’ll keep going back there again and again.