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dttruman

S20.E14: Part 33

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Got this from "All Things Law and Order" SVU. As Stone (Philip Winchester) prosecutes the case of a woman who killed her abusive husband, Benson (Mariska Hargitay) and her squad wrestle with the duty of testifying against her. Also starring Ice T, Kelli Giddish and Peter Scanavino. Guest starring Paula Malcomson (Stella Russell), Nicholas Turturro (Det. Frank Bucci) and Amy Rutberg (Annabeth Pearl).

This is from Googling. The title here is listed as "The Flying Dutchman", but it looks like it's the same episode. Benson, Fin, Carisi and Rollins debate what they should and should not conjecture about a defendant's situation while waiting to testify at her murder trial.

Edited by Drogo · Reason: Removed date from title.
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This looks compelling, some tension between Benson/Stone will be enjoyable, I like hardass Stone. I’m just afraid it will end up with Benson being right all along and Stone bowing to her.

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Will Benson be bringing her attitude from "Remember Me", where she tried to justify a victim's right to murder someone, even though that someone may not have been involved in her kidnapping or rape? Will she objective or subjective?

 

I hope we get to see a significant amount of Dr Abernathy (Sandrine Holt). A lot more of her will or should make the episode more believable.

Edited by dttruman
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8 hours ago, dttruman said:

Will Benson be bringing her attitude from "Remember Me", where she tried to justify a victim's right to murder someone, even though that someone may not have been involved in her kidnapping or rape? Will she objective or subjective?

 

I hope we get to see a significant amount of Dr Abernathy (Sandrine Holt). A lot more of her will or should make the episode more believable.

 

I have a feeling Benson will have the exact same attitude that being victimized gives you the right to break the law, and I’m afraid it will end with her being right as always.

I don’t think we will see Dr Abernathy in this one since she isn’t listed as a guest star, which is too bad because it looks like this will be another episode that could use her expertise. I’m surprised we haven’t seen more of her, she’s only been in 3 episodes. 

Unfortunately I think we will have more super mommy drama with Benson and Rollins based on the promo pics, this show sometimes seems more like a Hallmark channel movie than a police procedural.

Edited by Xeliou66
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Everything about this episode was baffling and infuriating, other than Fin telling Carisi to eat a donut. 

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I know this episode was inspired by 12 angry men so there was going to be some anger, but all I could think during it was that the whole unit needed to chill.  

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The hit you over the head drama filled moment when Benson stood and read the building quote (literally turning her head from left to right, lips parted, in what I can only assume she thinks is a "look at me, I'm acting!"  moment) was ,...well, if jumped the shark is the phrase, then jumped the sperm whale would apply.

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Thank you PreviouslyTV folks for all your hard work!  Things are looking mighty pretty around here!

Okay, I... liked this ep.  It is one I am going to rewatch, and I haven't been saying that much the last few seasons.

Was that giant bag Rollins was carrying to hide this ep might've been filmed when she was still pregnant?  Otherwise, that was one huge bag for some snacks.

I didn't even recognize Nicholas Turturro.  I love how Rollins gets on his case for not warning her the coffee was extra hot, then she promptly forgets to warn Fin.

Funniest line of the episode, hey, funniest line of the season, from Rollins:  "I'm all about empathy."  I hope she was being sarcastic because, otherwise, I don't think that word means what she thinks it means.

Best line of the season, hands down, from Carisi:  "I know the law better than anybody else in this room."  Thank you, Show, for finally remembering he's a lawyer!

The biggest flaw for me is that all these arguments should've been worked out with the lawyers before the case got to court because that's what they normally do.  That aside, I do appreciate, a lot, that they tried something different with this episode.  I give big points to a show when they do that because most don't.  

I know this episode was inspired by Twelve Angry Men, one of my favorite movies, and I can see it.  A group of people, who have power over someone else's life, arguing over what they're gonna do and what they should do, and how their own ish affects it all.  They even did the overheated room thing, to reflect the inner heat, natch.  Yeah, none of it's original, but I think they did a good job of reflecting who these people are.  Fin was Fin, not judging.  Of course, we all judge, but it's what we do with it that counts, and Fin just focusing on his donuts?  That's Fin.  Carisi, of course, is the one all about empathy, and I loved him facing down Stone in the court room. Liv, of course, is all about the victim, and relating her own experiences with William Lewis, etc., and the terror she felt then to Annabeth's, when talking to Rollins, is natural for her, as, unfortunately, is her acting like she has the patent on terror.  We get it, Show.  She's a martyr and a saint, but, Liv, I think Rollins knows a thing or two about that subject, too.

Rollins, good golly, Miss Molly...  I'm not even a Rollins hater, but at this point I gotta ask the writers, are we supposed to like this character?  Because, increasingly, over the last couple seasons, that has been real hard to do.  She was ugly in this episode (and I think KG was overselling), and all that stuff about her family history doesn't explain it, not for someone who's been on SVU as long as she's been.  (Have we even heard of the abusive father before?)  Anybody who sees things with the total lack of empathy she showed towards Annabeth, anyone who sees things in only black and white, should not be an SVU detective.

And, Stone, if you're gonna be an SVU ADA, you need to study up on what rape is.

48 minutes ago, vast wasteland said:

The hit you over the head drama filled moment when Benson stood and read the building quote (literally turning her head from left to right, lips parted, in what I can only assume she thinks is a "look at me, I'm acting!"  moment) was ,...well, if jumped the shark is the phrase, then jumped the sperm whale would apply.

I continue to be mystified how MH's acting skills are degrading these last few years.  Most people get better.  I think there's nobody around anymore to save her from her worst instincts.

Edited by Fellaway
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Really missed this forum, especially when this episode was on.

Finally some courtroom drama and Stone actually doing his job.

Highlights for me, Carisi vs. Stone tho I hope their budding friendship doesn't suffer.

Stone reading Benson for the filth, hope that sinks the BenStone ship for good.

Now about those three words he said.

Soon as Stone let it fly, me and my sister actually said Oh Shit out loud.

Judging   from PW's Twitter page, this character has polarized fans even more.

Also many people still have trouble separating a fictional character from the actor who portrays him.

Edited by MrsRafaelBarba
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A voluntary confession would surely be taped or videoed or taken by more than one person even in Benson land. Is this episode meant for Emmy consideration.  And once more Bensons whispery voice to denote DRAMA!!  And why didn’t Stone ask the shooter why she never tried to escape. Shouldn’t there have been a psychiatric consult from either defence or prosecution. Just proceedurally bad in so many ways. 

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The Good:
They actually followed through with the promised conflict between Stone and Benson and Stone won! I'm going to criticize the writing a bit, but bravo MC for finding a way to make Benson look good in the end without making her right or shying away from the central message that it critical of the direction Mariska has pushed for so hard in the last few years. That is brilliant and he deserves kudos.
Stone - he didn't back down and acted like an actual ADA should throughout the episode. And it was nice seeing extended courtroom scenes.
Fin - he managed to stay likeable throughout, while everyone else was getting wrapped up in histrionics. Plus he brought doughnuts which is always a plus.

The Bad:
You brought in Nicholas Turturro for a glorified cameo? He was great of course, but it just seems like a waste unless they are going to use the character later in the new spinoff or recurring and this was a way of introducing him.
The whole thing was very very stagy in a bad way. I can see what they were going for ( a bottle episode by way of "12 Angry Men") but everyone except Stone, Fin, and some of the guest cast seemed to be overacting. Take the same script and tone things down a bit and you'd have a masterpiece of quiet intensity interspersed with a few blowups instead of a good idea that didn't quite reach it's potential.
Speaking of bad acting - Mariska. She managed to work in all of her worst tendencies and kick it up a notch. Maybe that was the price for letting Benson do her job and let the judge and jury consider mitigation instead of playing God?

Overall this was a decent to pretty good episode if only because it put on screen what so many of us long time fans have been shouting at the screen for a long time about Benson and her agenda and giving us the dressing down she's deserved. Plus it was trying to do something different which is a plus. I'm sure this is Dick Wolf's favorite episode of the season since it was dirt cheap to make and has the Golden Age of Television, radio play script filmed vibe that he did so often in the earliest years of the mothership. But for me as a viewer I liked what it was trying to do, but couldn't get past the way it did it. A+ for the idea, C- for the execution

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This was one of the most bizarre episodes that I’ve seen in a long time. The main thing I could think about was that there was more screaming than I can ever remember in an SVU episode, who pissed in the squad’s cornflakes? 

Benson was beyond irritating once again, acting like that she knew in her gut that the wife was being abused and so she should lie to help her, unbelievable. Benson showed how biased she was in this episode and how she shouldn’t be in command of SVU. Someone who is so emotional and biased shouldn’t be in charge of SVU, her overdramatic reactions to the case were just painful to watch and she sees every woman as a victim and every male as bad because of her own experiences. I miss when we had an awesome leader in Cragen instead of an unprofessional emotional wreck.

Stone was awesome, I loved seeing him in court finally, seeing him rip into Benson, and seeing him as a strong prosecutor, that was the best part of the episode, we haven’t had enough courtroom scenes this season and it was nice to see that again.

It didn’t make sense that Stone wouldn’t just show the jury the tape of the interrogation of Annabeth instead of relying on Benson to say what happened, that was a huge plot hole.

Carisi seemed OOC, he was way too wound up, and Rollins was as unlikable as always. It was nice to see Fin be relaxed and unbiased.

The defense attorney and judge were good, like I said before, it was nice to see a lot of courtroom scenes.

Overall this was a weird episode with mixed results. It was nice to see Stone in court and it was nice to see him stand up to Benson and win, while on the other hand way too much time was spent on Benson and Rollins being emotional over a case once again and there was the plot hole regarding the interrogation’s videotape. It was decent overall but not as good as it could’ve been. 

Edited by Xeliou66
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I know this may sound silly, but Rollins hair drives me nuts!!!  It always looks like she has never seen a brush or comb and I find it so distracting.  Can’t concentrate on the dialog, just want her to get a new hairstyle!!

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13 minutes ago, cloudy71 said:

I know this may sound silly, but Rollins hair drives me nuts!!!  It always looks like she has never seen a brush or comb and I find it so distracting.  Can’t concentrate on the dialog, just want her to get a new hairstyle!!

Her mouth was distracting to me this episode for some reason. 

I don't know- I turned it off and deleted this episode about 20 minutes in. It was weird and really dumb. 

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This was like this season's version of "Something Happened." I am rather kind of over these episodes that are supposed to be super emotional and intense, and always seems to come down to SVU wondering if they should do their actual job or lie on the stand. Carisi has become quite the advocate for perjury/perjury adjacent behavior, and that is not a good look for a wannabe lawyer. 

I agree that the defense should have hired a psychologist to be an expert witness to testify to Annabeth's emotional state and abuse history. This is not on SVU to be her advocate in court. Of course that would have provided less fodder for the main cast to yell at each other. I also agree that any real procedure would have required SVU to record Annabeth's confession, to prevent these sorts of ethical dilemmas. I mean, if SVU can lie/shade the truth to protect someone they believe was justified, what's to stop them from doing that again, only this time, someone who was really and truly innocent? It's not like we have never seen Olivia on a righteous rampage of justice when she is convinced someone is guilty (even when they aren't).

I do like the strong courtroom scenes (something this show too often shortchanges on), and I was delighted to see Peter rip into Olivia. I couldn't quite figure out why Annabeth looked so shocked that Olivia told the truth on the stand. Did she expect Olivia to lie for her? Again, this is why the defense would, you know, actually mount a defense, and bring witnesses to support their case. How could they actually expect the cops to shade the truth on the stand for them? Again, that is a serious flaw in the writing of this episode, because no decent defense attorney would have done that. But of course who needs realism, when we can have emotion, drama and fodder for Mariska's Emmy reel?

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2 hours ago, Xeliou66 said:

Benson was beyond irritating once again, acting like that she knew in her gut that the wife was being abused and so she should lie to help her, unbelievable. Benson showed how biased she was in this episode and how she shouldn’t be in command of SVU. Someone who is so emotional and biased shouldn’t be in charge of SVU, her overdramatic reactions to the case were just painful to watch and she sees every woman as a victim and every male as bad because of her own experiences. I miss when we had an awesome leader in Cragen instead of an unprofessional emotional wreck.

If I could like this 10 times I would! Benson was infuriating to watch, she sees everything through her biased lens. Maybe she was supposed to come across as passionate but I thought she just came across as crazed and out of control. I’m sorry but she also looked old and that hair style is not doing her any favors. 

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9 minutes ago, Welcome5431 said:

Detective Rollin's duffle bag that concealed KG's form contained equipment to pump and store lactation ?

The franchise's set design and props remain relatively realistic, if the premises waiver from reality 

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1 hour ago, cloudy71 said:

I know this may sound silly, but Rollins hair drives me nuts!!!  It always looks like she has never seen a brush or comb and I find it so distracting.  Can’t concentrate on the dialog, just want her to get a new hairstyle!!

Her hair, stiffened upper lip and mouth breathing have always bothered me, but heh, didn't she just have a baby on last week's episode.  I'd hoped she would be on a long maternity leave.

Edited by deirdra
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When Benson was starting her "you don't know what it's like speech," I wanted to shake her. William Lewis was a serial rapist and killer. There wasn't a question about if he was going to go off; it was a matter of when. This is unlike the deceased husband who spent years terrorizing his wife, but there was no evidence that he might have turned physically violent. He seemed to be very much the type of person who got off on his emotional manipulation, coercion, and terrorism.

Secondly, Olivia needs to shut up pontificating about her trauma. No one gets to win the misery Olympics around here. Both she and Rollins had enormously screwed up upbringings. The fact that Rollins continues to engage in a bunch of self-destructive behaviors including gambling and continuously dating dirtbags should tell Olivia that Rollins was really screwed up from her childhood. She's so afraid that the guy she'll come to rely upon is a secretly abusive douche that she only picks unreliable guys so she knows to never rely on a guy. Whereas Olivia mostly dates decent guys.

34 minutes ago, ForeverAlone said:

I agree that the defense should have hired a psychologist to be an expert witness to testify to Annabeth's emotional state and abuse history. This is not on SVU to be her advocate in court. Of course that would have provided less fodder for the main cast to yell at each other. I also agree that any real procedure would have required SVU to record Annabeth's confession, to prevent these sorts of ethical dilemmas. I mean, if SVU can lie/shade the truth to protect someone they believe was justified, what's to stop them from doing that again, only this time, someone who was really and truly innocent? It's not like we have never seen Olivia on a righteous rampage of justice when she is convinced someone is guilty (even when they aren't).

What this episode signified to me is how little respect the show has for psychologists, lawyers, and even cops. This would have been a perfect case to have dueling psychologists with Huang or Skoda and a defense expert. It would have been a perfect episode to have the various members of the SVU, DA, and experts debating all of nuances in the squad room. Furthermore, this episode demonstrated that the show thinks very little of the DA's Office and Stone. Carisi's bullshit attempt to manipulate the outcome of the trial deserved a smackdown by Stone. Carisi claimed that he had a better understanding of the law than anyone there, but it's clear he doesn't as violated a number of nearly sacred tenents of American criminal law.

Stone should have been given a scene to explain that there's no need to shade testimony the way Carisi did because we have various mechanisms to guarantee civil rights protections for defendants. We have the Miranda warning, the right to counsel, the right to a speedy trial, the right to a trial by jury, the right to a jury of our peers, the right to cross-examination of prosecution witnesses, the right to present a defense argument, and the right to appeal. It's ultimately terrible for the show to pretend like defendants have no other recourses than having police perjure or spin their testimony.

Serena Southerlyn was fired for displaying 20% of the obvious bias Olivia displays on a regular basis.

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I forgot to add: we desperately needed a psych expert in this episode, where was Dr Abernathy?! A psych expert would’ve added nice insight into the case, but that would’ve taken away scenes of Benson and Rollins acting emotional and the show will never take away screen time from the Super Mommies. 

I see where die hard Benson fans and SJW’s on Twitter have their panties in a wad over Stone standing up to Benson and standing his ground on the case, saying that it was insensitive to victims or some other bullshit. I’m so sick of the perpetually offended people trying to bully everyone involved with the show. I LOVED seeing Stone stand up to Benson and I’m sick of Benson’s constant sanctimonious preaching, and I was outraged with how Benson was acting like that she should try to destroy Stone’s case because she “knew in her gut that Annabeth was a victim”, I’m so sick of Benson’s emotional bias, how she views all women as victims and how she thinks victims have a right to break the law. Rant over.

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After watching this episode, I am convinced that MC has the real script filed away in his office somewhere. I believe someone looked at the original and pulled out their red marker and scratched out the testimony and existence of the court appointed shrink.  That someone then informs MC to make some changes and dialogue in a couple of characters, no matter how unrealistic so as to make another character sympathetic.

I have never seen Carisi this out of control or this nonobjective. There have been numerous observations of this, so I need not say more on that. Also mentioned many times, were police procedures and the court room proceedings or what was left out of the proceedings. Once again SVU has manipulated another story that lacked realism and was mostly described through the predisposed judgement of Benson.

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I get what they were going for, but yeah, this episode wasn't the greatest. Maybe even the worst of the season so far. I watched this one with my mother, and partway through, she said something like, "Why is Rollins defending the husband/so against the wife?" And all I could say was, "Because someone had to in order for there to be conflict." I almost feel like they flipped a coin between Rollins and Carisi to determine who would take which side. Since we all know where Olivia would be, and Fin just chills.

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7 hours ago, wknt3 said:

They actually followed through with the promised conflict between Stone and Benson and Stone won! I'm going to criticize the writing a bit, but bravo MC for finding a way to make Benson look good in the end without making her right or shying away from the central message that it critical of the direction Mariska has pushed for so hard in the last few years. That is brilliant and he deserves kudos.

I like what he did also, but he had to do it at the expense of proper police procedure. And I think practically everyone knows that.

The way that Hargitay (or Benson) thinks, that if a husband and wife are playing partners in a game or bridge (for example), and she plays the wrong card, the husband is disappointed (or gets upset) and questions her bridge playing ability, she is now allowed to file for divorce because of mental cruelty or at worse "off him".

9 minutes ago, augmentedfourth said:

I almost feel like they flipped a coin between Rollins and Carisi to determine who would take which side.

I don't think you are too far off.

Edited by dttruman
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1 hour ago, HunterHunted said:

Carisi's bullshit attempt to manipulate the outcome of the trial deserved a smackdown by Stone. Carisi claimed that he had a better understanding of the law than anyone there, but it's clear he doesn't as violated a number of nearly sacred tenents of American criminal law.

Can a police officer be sanctioned for doing what he did? Someone mentioned earlier that DAs usually confer with officers concerning their testimonies. Did Stone have any idea this was coming?

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13 hours ago, MrsRafaelBarba said:

Stone reading Benson for the filth, hope that sinks the BenStone ship for good.

Now about those three words he said.

Soon as Stone let it fly, me and my sister actually said Oh Shit out loud.

Judging   from PW's Twitter page, this character has polarized fans even more.

Yeah, I've been completely indifferent to Stone (other than resenting the amount of screentime he's been given), so far, neither liking nor hating him.  For me, he's too bland for either.  But when he said "That's not rape."?  Wow.  What were they trying to show there?  That he's a win at any cost kinda guy?  The ends justify the means?  He truly doesn't know what rape is?  He's just that much of an ass?  I dunno, but they may have just dropped me on the side of the fence that hates him.

5 hours ago, Welcome5431 said:

Detective Rollin's duffle bag that concealed KG's form contained equipment to pump and store lactation ?

Oh, yeah!  That never occurred to me, but is probably exactly right.

Yikes.  Looks like I may be the only one who liked this ep!  Well, I'll just be over here at my table for one.  It's definitely not a perfect ep or up to Emmy consideration.  (Seriously, I hope this show doesn't think it's still on the Emmys' radar, not with the advent of cable and streaming.)  It's not one of the best eps of the series, but, by gum, I think it's one of the best of the last three seasons (Not a high bar, I know.), so, yay!  Improvement the last few eps, I think, so I'm counting that as promising for the rest of the season.

2 hours ago, dttruman said:

Can a police officer be sanctioned for doing what he did? Someone mentioned earlier that DAs usually confer with officers concerning their testimonies. Did Stone have any idea this was coming?

Didn't he have to get Benson declared a hostile witness in a previous episode?  Nothing Carisi did here came close to that.

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2 hours ago, augmentedfourth said:

I almost feel like they flipped a coin between Rollins and Carisi to determine who would take which side.

I can't see Carisi ever defending a man he felt was abusive, even without knowing what he already did about this guy from the Academy.  That would truly be a jumping the shark moment.

Edited by Fellaway
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49 minutes ago, Fellaway said:

Yeah, I've been completely indifferent to Stone (other than resenting the amount of screentime he's been given), so far, neither liking nor hating him.  For me, he's too bland for either.  But when he said "That's not rape."?  Wow.  What were they trying to show there?  That he's a win at any cost kinda guy?  The ends justify the means?  He truly doesn't know what rape is?  He's just that much of an ass?  I dunno, but they may have just dropped me on the side of the fence that hates him.

Oh, yeah!  That never occurred to me, but is probably exactly right.

Yikes.  Looks like I may be the only one who liked this ep!  Well, I'll just be over here at my table for one.  It's definitely not a perfect ep or up to Emmy consideration.  (Seriously, I hope this show doesn't think it's still on the Emmys' radar, not with the advent of cable and streaming.)  It's not one of the best eps of the series, but, by gum, I think it's one of the best of the last three seasons (Not a high bar, I know.), so, yay!  Improvement the last few eps, I think, so I'm counting that as promising for the rest of the season.

Didn't he have to get Benson declared a hostile witness in a previous episode?  Nothing Carisi did here came close to that.

SVU dropped off The Emmys radar long ago.

Yes Stone did declare Benson a hostile witness before, pretty sure it was Undiscovered Country.

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I didn't hate the episode, but the conflict seemed sudden and over the top -- so dropped into it in media res was off-putting.  Plus, Carisi?  That was character assassination.

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8 hours ago, cloudy71 said:

I know this may sound silly, but Rollins hair drives me nuts!!!  It always looks like she has never seen a brush or comb and I find it so distracting.  Can’t concentrate on the dialog, just want her to get a new hairstyle!!

The hairstyle is cute, but not professional enough for a policewoman or detective.  It looks like it belongs on a supermodel on the catwalk, which is where I think they got it.  This style of hers in this ep looked more stringy (or "piecy" as it would be described) than usual.

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I'm glad Benson ended up testifying as she (reluctantly) did.  The truth won.

Any and all of these interviews of suspects and witnesses should be video recorded so the judge and jury can see for themselves what happened, not take someone's word for it after months or even years IRL on the stand.  They can examine and cross-examine the witness testifying, but the video should be made part of the trial.

No matter how bad a man or husband Thomas Pearl was, Mrs. Pearl should have left and filed for divorce a long time ago.  Did anyone notice how they referred to her as Miss (or Ms.) Pearl and "her husband?"  Why not call her Mrs. Pearl?

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3 hours ago, MrsRafaelBarba said:

SVU dropped off The Emmys radar long ago.

Yes Stone did declare Benson a hostile witness before, pretty sure it was Undiscovered Country.

It was in Remember Me Too that Stone had Benson declared a hostile witness, it was when Benson was on her soapbox about how victims should be able to break the law. Benson was basically on her same soapbox in this episode, she is so emotionally biased that she views all women as victims that she needs to save and all men as bad, and she believes that being a victim gives you the right to do anything. She is emotionally unstable and unfit to lead SVU, and it’s beyond time for Dodds to remove Benson from command of SVU, Stone seems fed up with her bullshit frequently and I loved seeing him call her out.

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I was wishing both Benson and Carisi would jump off a bridge. Mariska should win an Emmy for the best impression of Cujo. Benson has been bullying every women to come forward and press charges because it's their only path to sanity, yet she is becoming more stark raving mad with each episode.

Why was Mrs. Pearl still acting like a zombie throughout the trial? Only time she woke up was when Benson didn't lie for her. I didn't care one iota about her. 

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What in the SVU chronicles is going on with this episode? It is the defenses job to convince a jury that a justifiable homicide occurred, not the police.

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1 hour ago, Xeliou66 said:

It was in Remember Me Too that Stone had Benson declared a hostile witness, it was when Benson was on her soapbox about how victims should be able to break the law. Benson was basically on her same soapbox in this episode, she is so emotionally biased that she views all women as victims that she needs to save and all men as bad, and she believes that being a victim gives you the right to do anything. She is emotionally unstable and unfit to lead SVU, and it’s beyond time for Dodds to remove Benson from command of SVU, Stone seems fed up with her bullshit frequently and I loved seeing him call her out.

Okay, thanks for correcting me.  

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1 hour ago, Iguessnot said:

I was wishing both Benson and Carisi would jump off a bridge. Mariska should win an Emmy for the best impression of Cujo. .

Why was Mrs. Pearl still acting like a zombie throughout the trial? Only time she woke up was when Benson didn't lie for her. I didn't care one iota about her. 

The top comments made me cackle out loud.

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Good lord, as much as I can’t stand the one-note, bug eyed, gaping maw expression, and the phone sex whisper voice, it’s 100 times worse when she tries to “act”

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6 hours ago, CrystalBlue said:

No matter how bad a man or husband Thomas Pearl was, Mrs. Pearl should have left and filed for divorce a long time ago

So true! If they would have better showed or given better examples of intimidation, I would have bought it. Was Carisi's over the top and OOC (Xeliou66) description suppose to sway our judgement towards Mrs Pearl side?

Bottom line, another good premise, but even MC told it so poorly. Did he knuckle under to Hargitay's concept that it was more important to have Benson's tortured past reiterated and superficially discuss a woman's fight for justice?

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23 hours ago, Xeliou66 said:

I forgot to add: we desperately needed a psych expert in this episode, where was Dr Abernathy?! A psych expert would’ve added nice insight into the case, but that would’ve taken away scenes of Benson and Rollins acting emotional and the show will never take away screen time from the Super Mommies.

I don't think that was the motivation in this case. I'm pretty sure that this was designed as a bottle episode, and the whole point was to keep the guest cast to the bare minimum. Plus they would have had to have her come down in the middle anyway if they wanted to maintain any conflict or ambiguity.

22 hours ago, augmentedfourth said:

I get what they were going for, but yeah, this episode wasn't the greatest. Maybe even the worst of the season so far. I watched this one with my mother, and partway through, she said something like, "Why is Rollins defending the husband/so against the wife?" And all I could say was, "Because someone had to in order for there to be conflict." I almost feel like they flipped a coin between Rollins and Carisi to determine who would take which side. Since we all know where Olivia would be, and Fin just chills.

I think it was in character for Rollins as much as that description applies at all this season. She has been a mess, and her attitude towards victims, witnesses, and perps  has been all over the map.

20 hours ago, Fellaway said:

Yikes.  Looks like I may be the only one who liked this ep!  Well, I'll just be over here at my table for one. 

Not the only one. As I said I liked it, with serious reservations. I couldn't not like any episode that has Benson getting smacked down! I think with a few tweaks of the script ( I would have loved to have seen them talking about the wife reporting spousal abuse to the NYPD and how much the record could be trusted and some more about the victim's history with Carisi) and better direction (it wasn't just Mariska overacting this week and we've already discussed the extremely questionable way they went with Annabeth in the courtroom) it could have been a real standout although I'm sure it would have been controversial like any departure from the formula is for a procedural.

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Guys, I was literally SCREAMING at the tv during this episode. I could not wait to get on here and complain to you all, AND THEN THE FORUMS WERE DOWN! 😩 UGH!

this was literally the WORST episode of SVU i have ever seen.

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I am kind of on the fence about this episode.  I appreciated the unique approach to presenting the case in this episode.  It was understandable as to why the detectives were conflicted in this case.  There was much missing from the case, such as a psych eval or even 1 family member or friend to support or deny the claims of mental abuse.  I liked that Stone told Benson to keep her "bleeding heart" out of his courtroom; I think that was the highlight for me.  Fin remained calm and unemotional, proving that he is better-equipped to be in charge than Benson.  He revealed his personal opinion with the whole fish metaphor but it didn't color what he needed to do. I was disappointed in Carisi for even considering lying on the stand;  out-of-character for someone who passed the bar.  He was attempting to act like a lawyer on the stand by trying to add on possible scenarios, but that was not his role.  I am glad that he did tell the truth, though.  I didn't think it was possible, but they made Rollins even more unlikeable.  Anyone who blames victims for their situation more than the abuser should not be a detective with SVU; worse yet, she reveals her disdain to them.  Watching Benson on the stand was painful.  It was like watching someone have a nervous breakdown while they were passing a kidney stone at the same time.   I was not shocked that she told the truth.  I found it interesting that the wife who appeared catatonic most of the time came to life when Benson told the truth; it was like she pegged Benson as the "bleeding heart" from the get-go and expected her to come to her rescue. 

Did anyone find it weird that Fin fishes?  Lol, I just don't see it, but then again we know so little about his personal life due to the excessive focus on the "super mommies" (appropriate nickname via Xeliou 66).  Did Benson admit to being raped by Lewis or someone else when she whispered about "hoping he didn't climb on top of her again"?  

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4 hours ago, cloudy71 said:

I don’t mind the “piecey” hairstyle- I would describe Rollins style as an uncombed mess!

Lol...that hairstyle is a crime.   KG is such a beautiful woman but that style has  aged her as well as whatever anti-aging "enhancements" she is doing.  

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Okay here’s what was most annoying to me even on top of all the other annoying stuff.

When Olivia was testifying at the end and Annabeth looked at her all betrayed - Bitch what?! She’s a cop - you didn’t expect her to lie for you did you? And if you did, You could have said something else in the interrogation. Stop trying to guilt us into feeling some type of way, SVU. Manipulative af.

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So, what we get from this episode is that if you go to the cops, what actually happened to you or what you actually did wont really matter because they're all super fucked up by their own experiences and will just lie to make themselves feel better? 

Well, almost lie. Glad that Olivia told the truth, although I do think that the dead husband was abusive and its horribly hard to get out of situations like that, especially if the spouse is someone in authority like a cop. I do hope they keep that in mind and give her some consideration, but...she did totally kill him. Maybe it was able to be seen as a sort of self defense, but its up to lawyers and psychologists to decide that, not the cops. Really, my question throughout the whole episode was "can no one find her a psychiatrist or someone to figure out what her state of mind was/is? She looked like a zombie in the bar, and basically until the end." 

I dont know how I feel about this one. I do like that they decided to do something different with this episode, and that we got to spend a lot of time in the courtroom, and there weren't any real "twists" in the story, not exactly. And I love when Finn is just sitting around being snarky and chill while everyone else is Taking It Personally every other episode. And the sort of four angry people thing was an interesting way of handling this case, and the complicated feelings around it.

On the other hand, I felt like the character work was really off all throughout. Rollins was harsh and unforgiving in ways I dont really think we have seen to this extent, and Carisi was just flapping around freaking out like he has never worked a domestic abuse case before, and while Stone mostly had a good episode (like when he called Olivia out on her bleeding heart) that thing about rape in the courtroom was seriously "wait, what the fuck?" in a way that made me almost drop my jaw. Whoever said that it seemed like they flipped a coin on which detective would be on what side sums it up. I do think Rollins being angry at abuse victims because of what happened with her mother was interesting if they explored it, but it was mostly another excuse for Mariska to ACT. 

And then, Olivia. Rollins was an ass throughout most of the episode, but she wasn't wrong about Olivia seeing victims everywhere. Well, pretty heterosexual middle class white female victims as of late, but I digress. Olivia does seem more like a victims advocate than a cop a lot of times, and is so quick to pass over guilt to anyone she considers to be a victim, that she isnt doing the impartial job a detective should be doing. She seems to want to find women who are being victimized by men so she can be St. Olivia and save them, and it probably is clouding her judgement, and making her take everything personally. Like, did she forget that time, many moons ago, when a pretty young white girl told her that a sex offender had beat and raped her, and she went all out in helping the girl and getting the guy behind bars, even though the evidence was circumstantial, only for her to realize that the guy was innocent and the woman was a con artist? Not saying that this is a common thing, but she did let her emotions and her preconceived notions affect her, and she got conned, and the guy who was set up was killed in prison. She did seem to remember the whole cop thing at the end though, so that was appreciated at least. Man, Annabeth looked so utterly shocked that she told the truth!

The acting in this episode was super over the top. I felt like someone should yell "I LIKE LAMP!!!" with all of the shouting about random stuff. 

Everyone needed to eat more donuts.

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On 2/9/2019 at 6:44 AM, MrsRafaelBarba said:

Really missed this forum, especially when this episode was on.

Finally some courtroom drama and Stone actually doing his job.

Highlights for me, Carisi vs. Stone tho I hope their budding friendship doesn't suffer.

Stone reading Benson for the filth, hope that sinks the BenStone ship for good.

Now about those three words he said.

Soon as Stone let it fly, me and my sister actually said Oh Shit out loud.

Judging   from PW's Twitter page, this character has polarized fans even more.

Also many people still have trouble separating a fictional character from the actor who portrays him.

I think (at least) one of the WRITERS is having a hard time separating the actor from the character. 

Many viewers were angered by the line "That's not rape, " a line that made them despise the character of Stone even more, but they have nothing against the actor portraying him. Allison I., one of the writers and producers, jumped in to defend Peter Winchester when the criticism is of the character.  

I can't understand why AI and Michael C. have such an obsession with the character of Peter Stone. Their infatuation is getting old. I have nothing against Peter Winchester,  for he seems to be a likeable guy, but I absolutely abhor the character of Peter Stone.  Perhaps had Stone been eased into storylines rather than completely thrown in, even being the focus of numerous episodes, I'd feel differently,  but MC and AI so aggressively forced Stone on fans that I was completely turned off. It isn't PW's fault that his character has been written to be somewhat of an overpowering SOB. 

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On 2/9/2019 at 1:41 AM, vast wasteland said:

The hit you over the head drama filled moment when Benson stood and read the building quote (literally turning her head from left to right, lips parted, in what I can only assume she thinks is a "look at me, I'm acting!"  moment) was ,...well, if jumped the shark is the phrase, then jumped the sperm whale would apply.

....Who was arrested for manslaughter, but Olivia had the charges reduced when it was revealed the sperm whale was also a rape victim.

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I think this episode could have worked better from the angle the writers seemingly wanted to go at it (meaning the SVU team debating the ethics of abuse victims killing their abusers) if this was more focused on the investigation and Annabeth hadn't just straight up confessed and said she wasn't remorseful. They could have uncovered a history of abuse during the course of their investigation. Once the writers chose to go in the direction they did, if they wanted to maintain any semblance of realism, they needed to focus more on the trial aspect, and not the SVU's reaction. Meaning, there would have needed to be more defense witnesses and Peter hashing it out with the defense team about a plea or trial. There really wasn't any ethical dilemma the way the writers framed it, because all the cops had to do was testify to what Annabeth confessed to them, and let the lawyers make the legal argument, and the jury evaluate the evidence to determine guilt or acquittal. It's not on the SVU here, and it's certainly not their job to lie/shade the truth on the stand. That's just straight up gross, unprofessional, and borderline illegal. I mean, it's not like they had conflicting evidence and they had to make a judgment call about indicting her or something. Annabeth straight up confessed to everything, and the SVU should have recorded her interrogation for posterity, so there wouldn't have been any ability to shade the truth on the stand. There was a way to get at the ethical dilemmas this episode seemed to think it was exploring, but the writers chose to throw realism out the window and throw in some character assassination along the way. 

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