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Approach The Bench: Law & Order General Discussion Thread

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I loved Life Choice and Stone as well, and I also loved how Stone did his job professional and well despite his personal opposition to abortion, when Schiff questioned whether he should prosecute, he firmly said he could still do his job despite his personal feelings. Unlike Borgia who was basically saying the defendant should get a free pass because she shared his religious views. 

1 hour ago, shapeshifter said:

I haven't seen that episode in a while, but wasn't there an argument that the killer was living a life of service to others—sort of a works are more important than words philosophy? Anyway, I can't recall whether or not I thought that the viewers were supposed to root for the murderer, or if it was supposed to be left in a gray area.

The viewers were NOT supposed to be on the killer’s side IMO, I certainly wasn’t and I don’t think most people were. McCoy was 100% in the right and the killer deserved to be put away for life, he committed a hate crime murder. But I guess people can see it in different ways, although anyone who believes that guy should get off because of his religious views is an idiot with no respect for the way the legal system is run IMO. 

Borgia frequently let her religious beliefs and morals cloud her judgment, it was very irritating. 

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I'm pro-life, but I would still gladly prosecute any murder made in the name of pro-life.  Or bombings.  You can't ever know that someone's not going to get hurt.  I think some pro-life people don't understand the concept of pro-life.  Same with the episode Dignity.  Being pro-life is not a reason to kill an abortion doctor.

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6 hours ago, WendyCR72 said:

But I even recall Robinette questioning going after - was it the Bagman? - because he did good for Paul's community, etc. I guess the moral struggles just became more blatant/obvious as the show aged.

No, the Bagman was the murder victim--He felt conflicted about going after Jefferson--some Commissioner of something or other, because he was the reason that Paul went to law school and then became a prosecutor. But he didn't act with blinders on--that is, a refusal to believe Jefferson could be guilty. He wrestled with it. Again, the early seasons of this show handled stuff like this with layers and nuance.

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7 hours ago, GHScorpiosRule said:

No, the Bagman was the murder victim--He felt conflicted about going after Jefferson--some Commissioner of something or other, because he was the reason that Paul went to law school and then became a prosecutor. But he didn't act with blinders on--that is, a refusal to believe Jefferson could be guilty. He wrestled with it. Again, the early seasons of this show handled stuff like this with layers and nuance.

They really did. There were a lot of good episodes later in the series but so many others lacked layers and nuance. That's what made the episode with the teen that murdered the Chinese delivery man so interesting. Nora had to wrestle with death penalty. Something she doesn't believe in. But in the end she had to realize the murderer deserved it. Had they done that more with Nora it would have made her character more interesting. The could have done that with Borgia wrestling with her faith while working on cases. But that's never what happens. It was great to see Stone ask that question at the end of Life Choice. It was great having Adam after talking with Stone and Robinette make the remark about them being men talking about it. Its more interesting when they present both sides better. Its like the one where Fontana tortures the suspect for information.  Torture is wrong but I liked that they showed a scenario. What if it was to find a location of a child? Is that child's life or anyone's life reason to torture someone for information?  Of course there's also questions on whether the kid is already dead or if the suspect lies.  Is there ever a time where its "okay"? Its really great they found the kid alive. But what if the kid had been dead? What if they hadn't tortured but waited for the lawyer and did everything right but found the child died during that time period? Both sides were presented and in ways that made sense which made it a much better episode. In Life Choice we got to see people's reactions to abortion even those who were cops and lawyers. Plus at the end after hearing all the rhetoric and the murder suspect going on and on what a great thing Mary did, to have Stone ask that question.   

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1 hour ago, andromeda331 said:

 Is there ever a time where its "okay"? Its really great they found the kid alive. But what if the kid had been dead? What if they hadn't tortured but waited for the lawyer and did everything right but found the child died during that time period?

You know what bugged me about that episode?  The DA was trying to get the child's testimony banned because if the torture hadn't occurred she wouldn't have been found. And, I guess I guet that, but that's like admitting that without the torture she would have been killed, or at least never returned.  A kidnap victim isn't in the same league as other "evidence."  

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5 hours ago, Katy M said:

You know what bugged me about that episode?  The DA was trying to get the child's testimony banned because if the torture hadn't occurred she wouldn't have been found. And, I guess I guet that, but that's like admitting that without the torture she would have been killed, or at least never returned.  A kidnap victim isn't in the same league as other "evidence."  

That was Dworkin, not the DA’s, who was trying to get the girl’s testimony excluded as fruit of the poisonous tree. He wasn’t exactly saying they never would’ve found her, he was saying they found her because of Fontana torturing the guy and as a result her testimony should be thrown out because they found her using illegal methods. The prosecution got around it by saying they would’ve traced his movements and found her anyway, resulting in Judge Bradley letting the charges stand. 

Episodes like Teenage Wasteland and Thinking Makes It So are some of my favorites, because I can really understand both sides, the episodes really make you think and have a very interesting debate at the center of them. Overall L&O did a great job of having balanced episodes where you could see both sides, with few exceptions. 

One episode that I loathe for its heavy handed preaching is the aforementioned Dignity, it was nothing more than anti choice propaganda, and Bernard’s comment about rape victims giving birth is arguably the most appalling thing ever said by a main character. The whole episode felt like nothing more than an apology to right wingers who were offended by the season 20 premiere where they prosecuted Bush administration officials for torture, an attempt by the writers to say “look, we can piss off liberals just as much”. The episode was filled with misinformation and one sided narratives, and it was blatantly offensive to have the murdered doctor based on George Tiller and have the doctor in this episode kill a live baby, which Dr Tiller never did. The whole episode was complete bullshit, only good part was Cutter’s closing argument, it’s one of the few L&O episodes that I don’t rewatch when it’s on and it’s hands down L&O’s worst handling of a controversial issue, the other episodes that dealt with abortion in the franchise were much better. 

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6 hours ago, Xeliou66 said:

That was Dworkin, not the DA’s, who was trying to get the girl’s testimony excluded as fruit of the poisonous tree.

I knew that.  I just mistyped.  And, I get the poison tree thing.  It just bugged me.  She's not a piece of evidence.  She's the victim.  And, I know she got to testify anyway.  Because I remember the defense lawyer trying to look good for the jury probably, asking her how she got to be so cute, and she just kind of stares at him and that cracked me up.  LOL.

 

6 hours ago, Xeliou66 said:

One episode that I loathe for its heavy handed preaching is the aforementioned Dignity, it was nothing more than anti choice propaganda,

I didn't.  I actually thought it was fairly balanced.  Most things on TV (or anywhere else) are total pro-abortion propaganda (phrasing it that way as you did).  

 

6 hours ago, Xeliou66 said:

have the doctor in this episode kill a live baby, which Dr Tiller never did.

Speaking of which, that kind of thing annoys me on the show also.  The case will turn out to be one thing and they're debating it in the office and blah blah blah and all of the sudden something more egregious happens and kind of negates the original debate.     But, that baby was just as alive 5 minutes earlier, anyway.

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10 hours ago, Katy M said:

I knew that.  I just mistyped.  And, I get the poison tree thing.  It just bugged me.  She's not a piece of evidence.  She's the victim.  And, I know she got to testify anyway.  Because I remember the defense lawyer trying to look good for the jury probably, asking her how she got to be so cute, and she just kind of stares at him and that cracked me up.  LOL.

 

I didn't.  I actually thought it was fairly balanced.  Most things on TV (or anywhere else) are total pro-abortion propaganda (phrasing it that way as you did).  

 

Speaking of which, that kind of thing annoys me on the show also.  The case will turn out to be one thing and they're debating it in the office and blah blah blah and all of the sudden something more egregious happens and kind of negates the original debate.     But, that baby was just as alive 5 minutes earlier, anyway.

Dignity balanced?! That’s laughable, there wasn’t one good pro choice argument in the whole episode, just a bunch of anti choice talking points and propaganda, with all the pro choice people being demonized into caricatures that you would see in some shitty Christian Right movie and the pro choice main characters either being given half hearted, weak arguments (Lupo and Rubirosa) or getting to say nothing on the issue (McCoy and Van Buren). Cutter did his job well despite his personal views, much like Stone, and his closing argument was the only good part of Dignity, but Bernard’s comments were the most appalling comments ever said by an L&O character. The episode was about as balanced as Fox News, you just happened to agree with its viewpoint. 

Dr Tiller’s family should’ve sued NBC and Dick Wolf for slander and defamation. 

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On ‎7‎/‎14‎/‎2018 at 6:15 PM, Xeliou66 said:

Dignity balanced?! That’s laughable, there wasn’t one good pro choice argument in the whole episode, just a bunch of anti choice talking points and propaganda, with all the pro choice people being demonized into caricatures that you would see in some shitty Christian Right movie and the pro choice main characters either being given half hearted, weak arguments (Lupo and Rubirosa) or getting to say nothing on the issue (McCoy and Van Buren). Cutter did his job well despite his personal views, much like Stone, and his closing argument was the only good part of Dignity, but Bernard’s comments were the most appalling comments ever said by an L&O character. The episode was about as balanced as Fox News, you just happened to agree with its viewpoint. 

Dr Tiller’s family should’ve sued NBC and Dick Wolf for slander and defamation. 

Really?  I was actually trying to be nice by calling it balanced.  As a pro-lifer, I felt villainized.  Like we're a bunch of murderers, which is ridiculous.

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16 hours ago, Katy M said:

Really?  I was actually trying to be nice by calling it balanced.  As a pro-lifer, I felt villainized.  Like we're a bunch of murderers, which is ridiculous.

I know we will just disagree about this episode, and I’ve already made it clear why I think it was a one sided full of propaganda piece of dog shit episode, but I’ll say this : the episode specifically went out of its way to say that not all so called pro lifers are violent, by saying that when the doctor had been shot previously the pro life demonstrators had subdued the shooter and were outraged at what he had done. So it went out of its way not to paint all so called pro lifers as killers and violence supporters. 

But it was a disgraceful episode, filled with anti choice propaganda, with no decent pro choice argument being made and slanderous bullshit being spewed throughout. Second worst episode, and by far the most offensive episode, in L&O history.

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On 7/13/2018 at 4:25 PM, andromeda331 said:

They really did. There were a lot of good episodes later in the series but so many others lacked layers and nuance. That's what made the episode with the teen that murdered the Chinese delivery man so interesting. Nora had to wrestle with death penalty. Something she doesn't believe in. But in the end she had to realize the murderer deserved it. Had they done that more with Nora it would have made her character more interesting. The could have done that with Borgia wrestling with her faith while working on cases. But that's never what happens. It was great to see Stone ask that question at the end of Life Choice. It was great having Adam after talking with Stone and Robinette make the remark about them being men talking about it. Its more interesting when they present both sides better. Its like the one where Fontana tortures the suspect for information.  Torture is wrong but I liked that they showed a scenario. What if it was to find a location of a child? Is that child's life or anyone's life reason to torture someone for information?  Of course there's also questions on whether the kid is already dead or if the suspect lies.  Is there ever a time where its "okay"? Its really great they found the kid alive. But what if the kid had been dead? What if they hadn't tortured but waited for the lawyer and did everything right but found the child died during that time period? Both sides were presented and in ways that made sense which made it a much better episode. In Life Choice we got to see people's reactions to abortion even those who were cops and lawyers. Plus at the end after hearing all the rhetoric and the murder suspect going on and on what a great thing Mary did, to have Stone ask that question.   

In the episode where the two guys rob some store because one of them needs money for his girlfriend's rent, one of the robbers kills his partner after the partner killed the off-duty cop who tried to stop them, and then he hid the guy's body, leaving Lennie and I think Rey leading a search all over the city for the policeman. Jack ends up having to make a deal with the criminal who's still alive while he's in a hospital bed, and Edie Falco played the defense attorney. Of course it turns out that the cop had been dead all along, and both Curtis and Briscoe were pissed that the shooter might get away with killing a police officer due to the deal, and it's one of those times where Jack cuts corners to get the results he wants, a conviction. I didn't always like McCoy, found him often high-handed and self-righteous. but there were also times when I couldn't fault his actions.
 

On 7/13/2018 at 2:24 AM, WendyCR72 said:

Then there was the other end of that pendulum: I liked Abbie Carmichael, but she could often be too inflexible and always be all "fry 'em all" even when a softer approach could work.

Someone a while ago wrote about Van Buren that she always seemed so matter of fact about her job, even when the episode was focused around something really terrible. Something to the effect of, You half expect her to be constantly wringing her hands and telling the detectives to be careful because of the dangers of their work, and instead she's like, "Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't know you were too busy." like in the Logan episode where he's kind of balking at the idea of picking up a suspect on a simple misdemeanor. Character-wise, though, Abbie tells Jack in the episode Bait re the narcotics officer who was using a teenager as his unofficial informant, which got the kid and his girlfriend shot, that being in Narcotics was like trying to empty an ocean of dope with a teaspoon and that she had to get out before the quicksand got past her knees. Jack didn't even want to work with her at first, much like he didn't want to work with Jamie initially, and it always makes me nod and say, "Damn right" in Agony when she snaps at him that she only took a page from the 'Jack McCoy playbook' to keep the torture killer from slipping through the cracks in the system.

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56 minutes ago, Cobalt Stargazer said:

Jack didn't even want to work with her at first, much like he didn't want to work with Jamie initially

Yeah, but the hostility with Jamie just seemed like it was because Jack was still smarting over Claire's death more than it was about Jamie, herself. It doesn't excuse Jack's behavior, and he should have known to be professional and do his job, but the motivation there made sense to me.

At least Adam was more or less, "I like her and you will, too!" as if telling Jack to suck it up without screaming at him, probably because he knew the score where Jack/Claire was concerned, too.

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WE is showing "Prescription for Death" (one of the pilots) now on late night. I think Max was sort of a douche the way he spilled about Cragen being an alcoholic in front of Logan without Cragen's consent. Granted, I liked Cragen's little monologue about the cab and how he then went to his first meeting, and how it tied into the doctor since he also "appeared" normal, but it was still sort of a rotten move on Greevey's part, IMO.

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56 minutes ago, WendyCR72 said:

WE is showing "Prescription for Death" (one of the pilots) now on late night. I think Max was sort of a douche the way he spilled about Cragen being an alcoholic in front of Logan without Cragen's consent. Granted, I liked Cragen's little monologue about the cab and how he then went to his first meeting, and how it tied into the doctor since he also "appeared" normal, but it was still sort of a rotten move on Greevey's part, IMO.

Greevey was a douche period. He acted superior to Logan, was extremely condescending, his moralizing was very irritating, and I wanted to punch him in Life Choice for his obnoxious comments on abortion. It was good that Greevey was killed after 1 season and was replaced by the much better Cerreta, Greevey dragged down the show.

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5 hours ago, Xeliou66 said:

Greevey was a douche period. He acted superior to Logan, was extremely condescending, his moralizing was very irritating, and I wanted to punch him in Life Choice for his obnoxious comments on abortion. It was good that Greevey was killed after 1 season and was replaced by the much better Cerreta, Greevey dragged down the show.

What's your ranking of the senior detectives? 

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7 hours ago, WendyCR72 said:

Yeah, but the hostility with Jamie just seemed like it was because Jack was still smarting over Claire's death more than it was about Jamie, herself. It doesn't excuse Jack's behavior, and he should have known to be professional and do his job, but the motivation there made sense to me.

At least Adam was more or less, "I like her and you will, too!" as if telling Jack to suck it up without screaming at him, probably because he knew the score where Jack/Claire was concerned, too.

I think in both cases there were clear reasons it took a while for Jack to warm up to them beyond it being something the writers loved to do of starting off new characters with friction and distrust with the existing cast and ending up with them as BFFs. With Jamie as you said there were the circumstances of when she started. With Abbie she had an ego of her own and was often disrespectful, bordering on rude, even if she thought she was being honest and straightforward. Unfortunately McCoy seemed to grow and deal with change better so he was much nicer to his new assistants that deserved his scorn like Serena and Borgia, although it probably was good that they didn't have an extended "getting to know you" warming up phase when Rubirosa came in and revitalized the show.

 

5 hours ago, Xeliou66 said:

Greevey was a douche period. He acted superior to Logan, was extremely condescending, his moralizing was very irritating, and I wanted to punch him in Life Choice for his obnoxious comments on abortion. It was good that Greevey was killed after 1 season and was replaced by the much better Cerreta, Greevey dragged down the show.

Agreed. It's one of the the reasons that I've always disagreed with the "earliest seasons are the best, subtlest, and most realistic" fans who seem to be the majority (or at least the most vocal here. I like them and think there is some great writing, but between the strong influence of the Golden Age of Televisison radioplays adapted for television on Dick Wolf's early scripts, Greevey being a douche, and Dzunda's and Florek's rather broad stagy acting I find the police scenes in Season 1 very hit and miss.

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On 7/23/2018 at 1:20 AM, Xeliou66 said:

Greevey was a douche period. He acted superior to Logan, was extremely condescending, his moralizing was very irritating, and I wanted to punch him in Life Choice for his obnoxious comments on abortion. It was good that Greevey was killed after 1 season and was replaced by the much better Cerreta, Greevey dragged down the show.

Well Greevey was a Sergeant to Logan's Detective rank as was Cerreta

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Though I found Max to be an obnoxious jerk in a handful of episodes, I liked him and his partnership with Logan.

And I didn’t consider his remark to Cragen “You know looking and acting drunk don’t mean squat” as Max revealing Cragen’s alcoholism. If Cragen didn’t want to let Logan “in on the ‘joke’,” he wouldn’t have explained. I actually liked Max in “Prescription for Death.”

Like I said, the early years showed the layers and nuance of the characters.

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On 7/29/2018 at 5:50 PM, Raja said:

Well Greevey was a Sergeant to Logan's Detective rank as was Cerreta

Greevey and Logan both still had basically the same job, and Cerreta never acted superior to Logan. Greevey was just a pompous, obnoxious douchebag, he was always condescending to everyone. 

I disagree about the early seasons being the best in terms of storylines and characterizations. I like the early seasons and the characters who were on then, but I like some of the later seasons better. Season 1 had way too much filler, the openings were too long and there were too many scenes of the detectives having discussions that had nothing to do with the case, as a result the cases felt rushed at times, and sometimes the investigations felt disjointed, going from one scene to a completely different scene with no connection and not letting the viewer know what was going on, this was especially noticeable in the first few episodes.

Another thing I noticed in a couple of very early episodes was how the courtroom scenes were out of sync. For example in Prescription For Death, we saw a couple of Stone’s witnesses, then a defense witness, then another witness from Stone, then another defense witness, it was extremely bizarre and out of order. That only happened in a couple of very early episodes, it was quickly rectified. Has anyone else noticed that?

Also, season 1 didn’t have enough of Schiff or Cragen in a lot of episodes.

Season 2 improved on most of the issues from season 1. 

There were a lot of very good storylines in season 1, it had a lot of episodes dealing with controversial issues that were handled very well, but I don’t think the early seasons had better storylines or explored characters better. I prefer some of the later seasons although I do like the early years. 

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See I liked some of the longer expositions in Season 1 (some, not all). You make some valid criticisms from my perspective, however the openings in particular also became so formulaic as the show went on that any deviation from the pattern feels welcomed to me when watching the shows back.

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I noticed the accompanying music in Season 1, as I stated prior, seemed very '80s cop show. Which sort of makes sense since the first pilot was actually filmed in the late '80s, but the music was much more in your face than it became in not just the later seasons but the other shows in the franchise. Which also makes sense since they came much later.

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What I notice the most from Season one to the later seasons is the courtroom changed.   In Season 1 it was smaller, lighter wood and looked USED.    After season 1 it became this majestic, dark wood, beautiful space.   Season 1 looked more like a real courtroom*.

 

Of course then my usual courthouse went and added an addition.   The old part looks like season 1 courtrooms.   The new ones look like the later season courtroom -- although not QUITE as majestic looking.

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Also the first season used a different film and camera and was more of a “docu-drama” if that makes sense. Wolf talked about it in the first season dvd interview.

And I agree with @merylinkid that the offices and courtroom looked more real. I think I talked about that over on TWoP. How “slick” the offices and courtroom looked in later seasons.

And I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree on this one point @Xeliou66! I don’t think we’ll ever convince the other which seasons were better!☺️

The original pilot, “Everyone’s Favorite Bagman” was filmed in 1988-you can tell cuz Dzundza not only has more hair, but is somewhat thinner!

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On 7/23/2018 at 7:12 AM, wknt3 said:

 With Abbie she had an ego of her own and was often disrespectful, bordering on rude, even if she thought she was being honest and straightforward.

I saw an episode last night when Abbie must have been new (she made the ocean of dope and quicksand comment). She also cracked me up when McCoy brought in dinner for them, saying he got her a salad with low calorie dressing. She looked at him and said, "I'm going to burn it, not store it. What did you get?" He got himself ribs, so she grabbed his box and told him to graze on the salad.

I guess that was over the border of rude, but McCoy made some unnecessary assumptions that she would be watching her figure and eating carefully. He wouldn't have brought a dinner like that for a man.

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Indifference is about the only time I remember seeing how much a case upset Stone. Usually Stone was incredibly stoic and never showed his emotions about a case, always very professional and business like, but in this case he showed how disturbed and upset he was by the defendants actions. Great episode. 

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I was watching Brilliant Disguise tonight, and I thought that it was absurd how Cutter did not object during the defense attorneys cross examination of Robbie Vickery, the defendant’s colleague. While suggesting Vickery committed the murder, the defense attorney asked inflammatory questions and insulted the witness, and Cutter sat there and did raise any objections, I thought that was weak on Cutter’s part.

Still a great episode, the storyline of the psychopath targeting escorts and claiming he was doing research on them was interesting, the investigation and trial were both good, the jury tampering plot was especially compelling, L&O didn’t do that type of storyline often and those were very interesting, always nice to get an appearance from Skoda, his insight is always terrific and McCoy’s quip about how many traits on the personality chart that Skoda was talking about did Cutter have after Cutter was hell bent on taking a shaky case to trial was funny. Lupo and Bernard’s discussion about the defandant’s interest in escorts was good as well, Lupo was always very open minded and never judged people’s behavior while Bernard was weirded out by it.

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Watching "Illegitimate", and I have to say, getting Christopher McDonald to portray John F. Kennedy's lost son was a particularly brilliant piece of casting

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3 hours ago, jjj said:

President Jimmy Carter and his wife watch "Law & Order":  "They watch Atlanta Braves games or 'Law & Order'."  The rest of the article is good reading, also! 

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/national/wp/2018/08/17/feature/the-un-celebrity-president-jimmy-carter-shuns-riches-lives-modestly-in-his-georgia-hometown/?utm_term=.54d07f8df794 

Cool, but I wish they had asked the obvious follow up! How did President Carter react when he heard that Adam Schiff spent his retirement traveling to Africa with him?

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Don't know if this affects the other networks that have the series, but I'm watching S2 of the Mothership on WE now, and there was just a new commercial with clips of the show - and, apparently, beginning September 4th, WE will begin showing every season of Law & Order, as they put it, "From Briscoe to Sisto."

ETA: Looking at the listings for September 4th, S13 starts at 10:00 a.m. Pretty sure WE has never shown that season before.

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4 hours ago, WendyCR72 said:

Don't know if this affects the other networks that have the series, but I'm watching S2 of the Mothership on WE now, and there was just a new commercial with clips of the show - and, apparently, beginning September 4th, WE will begin showing every season of Law & Order, as they put it, "From Briscoe to Sisto."

ETA: Looking at the listings for September 4th, S13 starts at 10:00 a.m. Pretty sure WE has never shown that season before.

Awesome!! It will be nice to have a network that shows all 20 seasons, the final seasons are great and don’t get shown enough.

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1 hour ago, Xeliou66 said:

Awesome!! It will be nice to have a network that shows all 20 seasons, the final seasons are great and don’t get shown enough.

Ion has been showing just 13 to 20 for a couple of years.  I really need to see the earlier seasons.

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10 hours ago, WendyCR72 said:

and, apparently, beginning September 4th, WE will begin showing every season of Law & Order, as they put it, "From Briscoe to Sisto."

What an odd slogan to use to emphasize they are showing all seasons. I mean I get they are leaning into the rhyme but it would make me think they weren’t showing the first two seasons.

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10 hours ago, Katy M said:

Ion has been showing just 13 to 20 for a couple of years.  I really need to see the earlier seasons.

I was able to checkout the DVDs from my library, but I only got to season 5 before I got distracted. Maybe when it gets snowy I'll start up again.

Unless you have your geo-location blocked, when you click on the season titles here, the libraries listed below that own that season should be near you: http://www.worldcat.org/search?q=ti%3ALaw+%26+order.&fq=yr%3A1991..2002+>+>+x0%3Avideo+%2B+x4%3Advd&qt=advanced&dblist=638

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On 8/27/2018 at 6:55 AM, Xeliou66 said:

Awesome!! It will be nice to have a network that shows all 20 seasons, the final seasons are great and don’t get shown enough.

There was a network that had the rights to all 20 seasons - TNT (although they seemed to prefer the middle years). It appears that TNT has dropped the mothership as part of it's campaign to cancel everything I watch on the network since I don't see it on my DVR schedule anymore and it's no longer on their website. @WendyCR72 noted on the SVU forum that there have been some changes with the networks carrying that series as well so maybe there is some sort of behind the scenes change of strategy where they are no longer trying to get every series on as many networks as possible even if it means competing with themselves? I hope if WE is going to be the new primary home for the mothership that they will start airing the original broadcast edits without the ridiculous censorship. That would get me much more excited than a badly rhymed promo tagline that doesn't even say what it's supposed to...

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Curious...in S12 E14 Missing    the defendant gets on the stand and refuses to talk about the affair he had with the victim, citing his privacy and the victim's family's privacy. This sounds bogus to me. I'm no lawyer, but it seems to me that at some point he can deny the relationship all he wants, but there is a ton of evidence that it occurred and he'd have to talk about it. Anyway, did this seem weird to anyone else?

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I am watching tonight on WE, and I saw Vendetta and I have to say, I thought Green went really easy on the cop who planted evidence and framed Grimes for the murder he didn’t commit because he had killed someone earlier and the cop had beaten a confession out of him and fucked up the case so they had to let him go, and the cop kept the knife he found and planted it on Grimes after another girl was murdered. I thought it was appalling how easy Green went on him, not only did that piece of shit cop deserve to be kicked off the force, he should’ve been locked up, and something that no one pointed out was that by framing Grimes for the murder of the girl he didn’t kill, the cop let the girl’s REAL murderer get away, denying the victim and her family justice and leaving a murderer on the streets where he could kill again. I was shocked that no one said this to him! McCoy, Serena and Branch were rightfully appalled and disgusted with the cop, but Green didn’t even seem upset with him! I was very disappointed with Green in this one. I thought it was interesting how Briscoe never once interacted with the dirty cop, there is no way he would’ve been so nice to a cop who planted evidence, he would’ve been disgusted with him. 

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Interesting point, what that reminds me of is Amends, where Briscoe eventually forgives his cop friend who acquiesced to his superiors and concealed evidence to let the killer go free for almost 20 years in exchange for a promotion. Initially as I recall, yes, Briscoe was angry when he deduced this is what had happened, so he pressed the cop to come clean, and when he did he forgave him. 

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3 hours ago, db2202000 said:

Interesting point, what that reminds me of is Amends, where Briscoe eventually forgives his cop friend who acquiesced to his superiors and concealed evidence to let the killer go free for almost 20 years in exchange for a promotion. Initially as I recall, yes, Briscoe was angry when he deduced this is what had happened, so he pressed the cop to come clean, and when he did he forgave him. 

I thought of the similarities as well, but the situation was different :

Tommy Branagan, Briscoe’s friend from Amends, didn’t plant evidence on anyone or frame someone for a crime they didn’t commit, he just withheld evidence, he eventually came clean and the killer was put away. Also, Branagan was very remorseful for his actions. What Daniels from Vendetta did was way worse, he framed someone for a murder they didn’t commit because he had fucked up the case against the guy for the murder he did commit, as a result protecting the real murderer and preventing the victim from ever getting justice, and he didn’t have one ounce of remorse for it and seemed proud of what he did. Daniels was the worst kind of cop, he deserved to go to prison for his actions, and I was disgusted that Green was so nice to him, he didn’t deserve any sympathy. 

The bottom line is - With Branagan, what he did was bad, but he was able to rectify the situation somewhat by coming clean and getting the murderer put away, and he was genuinely remorseful. With Daniels, there was no correcting what he had done, he had tampered with evidence, framed someone for a crime they didn’t commit, destroying any chance of catching the real murderer and getting justice for the victim, and he still had no remorse for it, he thought he was above the law and could play god. Briscoe would’ve been disgusted with Daniels for sure, I wish Briscoe had interacted with Daniels, but Green didn’t even seem that bothered by what he had done, which I didn’t like, Daniels deserved nothing but comtempt and scorn, he is the worst kind of cop. I thought Green was way too nice with him.

Edited by Xeliou66
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Vendetta being one of Briscoe's last episodes, Orbach already being sick, I am wondering if they wrote the lack of interaction that way deliberately to reduce his screen time. Daniels was Green's friend as well, and we know Green has done (and will do) some ethically questionable things himself over the course of the show. So yes Green was likely not hard enough on him, but probably a combination of the personal relationship and understanding the instinct as a cop (if not condoning it). I'm trying to remember Amends, I believe the case in Amends was re-opened independent of the detective, Brannigan just happened to get a chance to rectify things. He could have taken the secret to his grave and let the killer go free forever without that intervention. He still denied justice for almost 20 years, 20 years of pain for the victim's family, that can't be ignored. What I think is the stronger mitigating factor is that it was the corruption of his superiors that sparked the subterfuge. He may have even felt fear for his safety from them and/or the Sarno family had he decided to continue to pursue the original case despite their objections (in addition to torpedoing his career). So of course the situations are not identical, but it's the closest parallel I could think of on the show with Briscoe involved.

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I wonder if the reason we only saw Green talk to Daniels was because of Orbach’s illness and as a result they decreased Briscoe’s screen time. I would’ve liked to have seen both Briscoe and Green talk to him, because there is no way Briscoe would’ve been so nice to the piece of shit. 

Like I said, the situation with Branagan was different, because Branagan didn’t frame someone for a crime they didn’t commit, he just sat on evidence that could’ve put a killer away for a long time. What he did was awful, but he was able to correct the situation to a degree, and he was sincere in his remorse. What Daniels did was far worse, he framed an innocent man for a murder, preventing the real killer from ever being caught, and he didn’t feel one ounce of remorse for his actions. I was pissed at how easy Green went on him, and I couldn’t believe that no one ever pointed out to him that by framing Grimes for the murder, the girl’s real killer would never be caught.

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2 hours ago, Xeliou66 said:

he framed an innocent man for a murder

Well, he was innocent of that murder, but he had skated on a similar murder, so I don't see him as an "innocent man," which is me splitting hairs, except for it possibly making Daniels not any worse than Branagan.

But you bring up an important point, @Xeliou66, about the real murderer out there free, likely still murdering. Was that ever brought up in the episode? I skimmed through the script of the closed captioning, but didn't see anything. That seems like a pretty big plot hole for L&O.

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2 hours ago, shapeshifter said:

Well, he was innocent of that murder, but he had skated on a similar murder, so I don't see him as an "innocent man," which is me splitting hairs, except for it possibly making Daniels not any worse than Branagan.

But you bring up an important point, @Xeliou66, about the real murderer out there free, likely still murdering. Was that ever brought up in the episode? I skimmed through the script of the closed captioning, but didn't see anything. That seems like a pretty big plot hole for L&O.

Grimes was a murderer, but he was innocent of the murder that Daniels framed her for. And the main point is that because Daniels framed Grimes for the murder, the real murderer got away and would never be caught, leaving him to possibly kill again and denying the victim justice. What Daniels did is far worse than what Branagan did, Daniels sent someone to prison for a crime he knew they didn’t commit and let the real killer get away, after fucking up the case against Grimes for the murder he did commit by beating a confession out of him, Branagan buried evidence that would’ve put a killer away, but he was eventually able to sort of rectify the situation, and he was genuinely remorseful. What Branagan did was awful, and he didn’t deserve Briscoe’s forgiveness IMO, but Daniels was far worse and Green didn’t even seem upset by what he had done. I thought it was extremely out of character for Green to not be angry at Daniels, and I thought it was absurd how no one pointed out that Daniels’ actions had let the real killer escape. It just left me with a bad taste in my mouth, and I was very disappointed with Green.

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The end of that episode always chokes me up. When Lennie goes to see Branagan at the end and he says "forgive me Lennie?" "All day long Tommy. All day long."

It always reminds me of the end of "Corruption" where they go to arrest the crooked cop. Even though he tried to set up Lennie, Lennie still had compassion for him and reminds him to not talk till he gets with his union rep. Right before he eats his gun he yells "you wanna talk about the ponies Lennie?"

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16 minutes ago, cfinboston said:

The end of that episode always chokes me up. When Lennie goes to see Branagan at the end and he says "forgive me Lennie?" "All day long Tommy. All day long."

It always reminds me of the end of "Corruption" where they go to arrest the crooked cop. Even though he tried to set up Lennie, Lennie still had compassion for him and reminds him to not talk till he gets with his union rep. Right before he eats his gun he yells "you wanna talk about the ponies Lennie?"

That's why Lennie is the best.

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3 hours ago, Katy M said:

That's why Lennie is the best.

That's why, even if he wasn't an original cast member and other teams came later and still did well, Lennie will always be associated as the face/heart of this show. Jerry Orbach played the cynical, world-weary New York cop to perfection.

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