9-1-1 will never find another actress with an operator voice quite as soothing as Connie Britton's Abby Clark, but it looks like the Ryan Murphy-created series is going to have to try.
As the season 1 finale of 9-1-1 suggests, Britton will no longer star on the Fox procedural when the show returns for a promised season 2.
This news is almost as unsettling as the horrific accidents 9-1-1 depicted over its freshman season. But don't declare it a state of emergency just yet: There is hope that we'll see call center operator Abby, whose romance with Buck (Oliver Stark) was one of the focal points of the series, for at least a few episodes when the show returns.
According to creator Murphy's new interview with TVLine, while Britton won't come back as a series regular, she may join the cast in a different capacity.
"We’re in the process of renegotiating her deal so she can come in and do a couple of episodes to keep her character alive. She really loves the cast and crew and she’s very hopeful that that can happen," Murphy told the outlet.
A spokesperson for Britton confirmed the negotiations to TVLine. However, Abby's absence, even temporary, means someone new will have to fill her headset.
"In the interim, we will be casting other parts in that call center," the Scream Queens creator told TVLine. "We're going after big names."
If Britton does say goodbye to her role, it would follow a distinct pattern of only appearing in one season of a continuing Murphy series. The actress starred in season 1 of American Horror Story, subtitled Murder House, but did not return to the long-running anthology series. She then re-teamed with Murphy for American Crime Story's first season, where she played the real-life Real Housewife Faye Resnick, but did not appear in its second.
Given the insane amount of shows Murphy has going at any given moment, maybe Britton — who exited Nashville after five seasons in 2017 — is excited about keeping her options open with Murphy rather than spending what could be a multitude of seasons on one drama. There are, after all, endless possibilities for crimes and accidents that could keep Abby busy for years.
While I'm sad that both Abby and Britton won't be a regular part of the emergency crew, my fingers are crossed Britton's next venture is even more thrilling than a rollercoaster rescue. But seriously, 9-1-1 — we better be able to catch up with Abby's adventures in Ireland at some point.
Looking for more theories, recaps, and insider info on all things TV? Join our Facebook group, Binge Club. The community is a space for you to share articles, discuss last night’s episode of your favorite show, or ask questions! Join here.