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Finally! Connie Britton Returns for the Season 3 Finale of '9-1-1'

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Even though Ryan Murphy has a slew of wildly successful shows on the air (and multiple more in production after signing a huge deal with Netflix) he lost one of his biggest stars — and he's finally getting her back. At least, for one episode!

Connie Britton, who is known for her starring roles on Friday Night Lights, Dirty John, and Nashville, appeared in the first season of the hit Fox show, 9-1-1, but it didn't look like she'd be returning to the series again.

Connie's exit had fans and viewers alike confused: Why did the star leave the hit show in the first place? What happened to Connie Britton on 9-1-1? Details on where her character left off (it's a cliffhanger, for sure) and her shocking return to the series.

What happened to Connie Britton on 9-1-1?

When 9-1-1 was first announced, it made a splash because it boasted a star-studded cast, and the creators included Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk, who also created past hits like American Horror Story and Glee. Angela Bassett, Peter Krause, and Connie Britton were among some of the big names attached to the crime procedural drama, and the show took off with a hit first season in January of 2018. 

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Connie played Abby Clark, a 911 phone operator who had a budding romance in the first season with Evan "Buck" Buckley (Oliver Stark). Connie's exit was hinted at during the season finale, and she did not appear in the second season. 

Connie is finally returning for Season 3 of 9-1-1!

In the Season 3 finale, fans finally get to see Abby's return. In the teaser trailer, Abby is on a derailed train and forced to dial 9-1-1 to report a "mass casualty situation." 

So, where did Abby's storyline leave off?

In the beginning of Season 2, we saw Buck house-sitting for Abby as she traveled overseas. Buck claimed that he and Abby were still an item, and that she went to Europe to have an Eat, Pray, Love experience. 

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The void Connie left behind on the show was filled by actress Jennifer Love Hewitt, who came on the show as Abby's job replacement. Jennifer plays Buck's sister, Maddie Buckley, who initially tried to give her brother a reality check with the (demised) state of his relationship with Abby. 

Because Abby and Buck's budding love story never wrapped up, fans are definitely interested in some form of closure.

Showrunner Tim Minear echoed similar sentiments to TVLine, saying: “I do believe [Abby] has unfinished business [with Buck]. She promised she would come back and she never did. So there’s unfinished business for Abby, and definitely also for Buck."

He continued: "He’s kind of lost at sea right now. He’s still trying to figure out who he is, and his relationship with Abby started to redefine him. Once she left, he had to figure out who he was without her.”  

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News of Connie's possible return to the drama series surfaced in 2018 when creator Ryan Murphy told TVLine, “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 can happen."  

Well, with the actor reprising her role in 9-1-1, we're just hoping Abby doesn't fully break Buck's heart...

9-1-1 airs on Mondays at 8 p.m. on Fox. 

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