This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Law and Order franchise. I’ve regaled before about the joys of L&O:Criminal Intent. to be fair, though, before L&O:CI there was the parent programme.
Now I’m not as big a fan of L&O as the CI off-shoot, but I do enjoy watching the occasional episode from time to time. I love the set-up of having the detectives do the ground work and then passing it onto the lawyers to prosecute and the mess in between of deciphering if it was actually the one they caught who did it.
Today the wife and I were watching an episode we recorded from Hallmark. We love watching Hallmark for that very reason because they slap on the main three programmes of the franchise a lot better than the other channels. They’re even doing a special weekend with the best detectives – so here’s hoping they go for Goren and Eames who rock. Anyway back to the episode we watched today. It’s ten years old next month and featured guest star Tom Berenger. Tom is not a major league actor, but his face is recognisable and so it’s a big thing for him to be L&O and the story in which he featured was a doozy. Whenever I look at Tom he looks guilty – I don’t buy him playing the good guy at all. His face was made to be the bad guy all the time.
So the set-up for the story called Panic was that a famous novelist is shot and her accountant who is with her is also shot. The accountant dies, but as it happens the target was the novelist. In the subsequent investigation it transpires that an FBI agent is suspected of the shooting out of a perceived jealousy over her husband’s affair with the novelist. As the cops conduct more research and the DA’s office gets involved it turns out that both the author and the FBI agent are agreed that she didn’t shoot her. So then the focus turns to the husband and it is uncovered that actually the initial FBI agent and the author were having a lesbian affair!
When I watch these programmes with the wife, it is important to listen to what she believes will happen. I disregard most of it as the usual rantings and ravings of a heavily prejudiced and involved analysis – what’s the chances of an objective view from such a breed?! Still, it is crucial to take on board what she’s saying because her insights can be as sharp as anything. So we’re meandering through the investigation and the joy of a programme like L&O is that you have to work out for yourself whether the cops and lawyers are right and if not who actually did it. So you have the set up – dead accountant, shot novelist (did she set it up for sales?), FBI agent woman lover (did she shoot out of jealousy), FBI agent husband (did he shoot on finding out the lesbian affair that virtually emasculated him?). With that set up the wife goes out and says that she reckons the daughter of the FBI agents did it. Still, what does the wife know, eh?
As I’ve stated, this Tom Berenger character was born looking guilty, so when the focus is finally drawn on him and he’s arrested and prosecuted I was just waiting for it all to work out. Guess what, though? Even at the brink of them finding the brother guilty news comes out that there was something that had not been considered. So after all that shenanigans they find out it was the daughter who did it and now they’re stuck because the distraught dad doesn’t want his daughter to go down for it so is willing to take the charge and go down for a crime his daughter committed! What would you do in that situation – you know your wife is having a lesbian affair and then find out that her lover’s been shot only to discover your daughter knew about it all along and was the shooter all along? Tough call, eh. But that’s why L&O rocks – and that’s why it also pays to take on board what the wife is saying … from time to time!