Season 3 begins with Evan “Buck” Buckley (Oliver Stark) quitting the LAFD after he’s deemed unfit to return to active duty and is offered a desk job. But a life-threatening tsunami changes him. He returns as a fire marshal, only to find out that it’s Bobby who doesn’t let him come back to active duty. Enraged after finding out the truth, Buck decides to file a lawsuit against the LAFD. Things get worse when the team’s secrets are used against them by Buck’s lawyer during the case’s arbitration.
In a Reddit thread discussing the storyline, many fans expressed their disappointment with the conflict. U/dishonor_on_your_cap chimed in on the storyline, writing, “I always felt like the lawsuit as a storyline was frustrating because it created unnecessary tension and it felt like lazy writing on a lot of levels.” Adding to a growing consensus on the thread, they agreed that Buck was right in suing the LAFD and Bobby, writing, “Bobby didn’t communicate with Buck when he should have, so Buck’s expectations were different.”
Meanwhile, some fans, like u/BlueMango12, found the lawsuit episodes unwatchable. “I’ve re-watched the show and specific episodes multiple times but any episode directly involving this plot I skip,” they complained. “I hate how they handled it and I really think that Buck was treated unfairly.” Though things go back to normal pretty quickly at the 118th, fans weren’t pleased with the unpleasantness they had to endure to get there.