Sunday, December 30, 2007

Sam Waterston and Linus Roache – The New Dynamic in the DA’s Office

Here’s an article from the LA Times that talks about the new dynamics in the District Attorney’s Office.

"A few nips and tucks for 'Law & Order'

Jennifer S. Altman / For the Times



By Matea Gold, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer December 30, 2007
NEW YORK -- SAM WATERSTON said he subscribes to Meryl Streep's advice: "Stand up for your character."

So after Fred Thompson left NBC's "Law & Order" in June to pursue a presidential bid, Waterston initially rejected the notion of Jack McCoy, the acerbic prosecutor Waterston has played on the show for the last 13 seasons, succeeding Thompson's Arthur Branch as district attorney.

"Jack McCoy has been sort of anti-politics all his life and loves his job, so I couldn't think of any reason why he'd want to," the actor said. "Then they started talking to me about it, and it began to sound really interesting. Here you would have a guy insulting politics all his life forced into a political role. And you wouldn't have to do any exposition, because everyone would know it."
When "Law & Order" returns for its 18th season Wednesday, viewers will find McCoy already ensconced in his new office. The change has meant a decidedly new dynamic for the drama, whose future seemed precarious last season after its ratings dropped 19%.

"I think it's the most important paradigm shift since the fourth season, when women came into the show," said series creator Dick Wolf. "It's a really interesting turn. He is dealing with what a lot of guys our age deal with -- generational transfer. He's really a lion in winter."

The series' new focus comes as it makes its scheduled midseason return, but with an extra advantage as a result of the ongoing writers strike: at least 12 new episodes.

"We're going to be up against a lot of repeats, so I'm hopeful that the message gets out that we're all originals," Wolf said.

This season finds McCoy, after years of bucking the bureaucracy, contending with a new foil: Michael Cutter, an aggressive young prosecutor played by British actor Linus Roache. The chief assistant district attorney is cast from a different mold than his boss -- he wears dark dress shirts and does legal research on his BlackBerry -- but they share some traits.

"He's a bit of an attack dog, willing to go that extra mile to bring justice to bear," said Roache, who was most recently seen on NBC's "Kidnapped." "We've had some episodes that have been really fun, where there's almost been a Jack Bauer [the renegade agent from Fox's "24"] approach to the law."

"Law & Order" viewers are accustomed to seeing new characters cycle through the long-running crime procedural. (With the arrival of Roache and Jeremy Sisto, who joins the show this year as Det. Cyrus Lupo, the series has now had two dozen actors play one of the six main roles, Wolf noted.)

Still, this season's shift is a dramatic one: For the first time, McCoy won't be tussling with judges and pounding witnesses in the courtroom. Instead, he'll weigh in on cases from his new perch, a role that has been expanded to give Waterston more of a presence than his predecessors.

"You will still see the same level of intellectual and moral combat going on," Wolf said. "He and Linus are actually very different types of prosecutors, so there's a lot of real conflict over methodology."

Waterston acknowledged that viewers may initially find his new position jarring.

"The normal human response to change is, ooh, is it going to be OK?" he said. "I think the changes have brought a whole lot of fresh life to the show, so once people get over their initial worry that change might not be nice, I think they'll like it."

For his part, the 67-year-old actor appears to be enjoying the setup. As he passed Roache on his way to the set on a recent afternoon, Waterston grabbed him in a loose headlock and playfully pulled him along.

"Working with Sam is just a total joy," said Roach, 43. "We just share a lot of mutual passions about where we are at this time as a human species and what matters. You know how you just meet a human being and there's a connection? It's just there."

It helps that they get along, because following McCoy "is a daunting thing," he added. "There's a moral function that that role has, so there's quite a bit riding on it."

With Cutter, "the energy may be different," Roache said. "But the essence of the show will still be there: How do you deal with these incredibly complex, challenging, human predicaments?"
Waterston said he misses doing the courtroom scenes a bit, but pronounced himself delighted with the series this season.

"Part of it is that Linus is so good," he said. "You don't have to feel like you've left a hole or anything like that, because it's all filled up and then some."

Waterston, a classically trained actor who frequently performs in New York-area theater productions when he's on hiatus, said he never envisioned that he would be on "Law & Order" this long.

"Not for a minute!" he said during an interview in his unadorned dressing room at Manhattan's Chelsea Piers, where the series is shot.

Once, when he was contemplating ending his run on the show, Waterston said he had dinner with former "Law & Order" cast member Carey Lowell and her husband, Richard Gere, who dismissed the notion of him leaving the program.

"He said, 'I don't see how you can do that -- you're an icon!' And I thought, 'Hmm, I'm an icon! That's not bad,' " said Waterston, letting out a very merry, unMcCoy-like laugh.

In addition, he said he thrives on the topical nature of the show: "Whatever you were worried about in the morning when you read the paper, you're probably going to be shooting in the afternoon."

After 17 years and two ongoing spinoffs, it remains to be seen how many fresh iterations of its crime-and-punishment formula "Law & Order" can churn out. This season, one of the show's original writers, Rene Balcer, is back at the helm as executive producer, and Wolf called the writing "as sharp, if not sharper, than it's been in years."

The series' creator blames the show's Friday time slot last season for its ratings slump, when just 9 million viewers tuned in on average. This season, the program is returning to Wednesday nights, where it will be paired with reruns of "Law & Order: Criminal Intent" that originally aired on NBC-owned USA Network this fall.

"We're perfectly poised in my mind for another substantial run," said Wolf, who's aiming for the show to beat "Gunsmoke's" 20-year record as the longest-running prime-time drama.
"What does he have against 'Gunsmoke,' anyway?" joked Sisto, who replaces Milena Govich this season as the new partner of Det. Ed Green (Jesse Martin).

Like Roache, Sisto's last major television role was on "Kidnapped," one of the many serialized shows that failed to ignite last season. Playing Lupo "requires me to use a different muscle," he said.

"There's a responsibility to tell the story and make sure the audience understands how we get from point A to point B," he said. "There's a lot of information to get across, and in order for audience to have a fun ride, you've got to be able to express those clues clearly."

Martin, who has been on the show since 1999, said the arrival of Roache and Lupo "infused the show with something new.""They're affecting the energy a lot," he said. "It will be really interesting to see how the audience adjusts it. For us, it's been so organic. It invigorated it, at least for me, in a way it hasn't been for a while." "


Link to LA Times Article

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These Are Their Stories.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Bring in the New Year with Law & Order Marathons

Don’t forget that both TNT and USA networks will be having Law & Order and Law & Order Criminal Intent marathons starting on New Year’s Eve.

TNT will be running the L&O “mothership” starting at noon and finishing in the late afternoon on New Year’s Day. USA will be showing Criminal Intent beginning at 6:00 AM through 9:00 PM, with a break between 9:00-11:00 for WWE. LOCI picks back up at midnight and ends at 5:00 AM.

So if you’re bored of the Twilight Zone marathons, ring in the New Year in the Law & Order universe instead.

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Jeremy Sisto: Law & Order's New Detective

Associated Press did a nice piece to introduce Jeremy Sisto, the new addition to Law & Order. He'll be playing a detective named Cyrus Lupo. OK, just how do they think up these wacky names for people? Hmmm, let's check it out:

Cyrus: From Κυρος (Kyros), the Greek form of the Persian name Kûrush, which may mean "far sighted" or may be related to the Persian word khur "sun". The name is sometimes associated with Greek (kyrios) "lord". This was the name of several kings of Persia, including Cyrus the Great, who conquered Babylon. He is famous in the Old Testament for freeing the captive Jews and allowing them to return to Israel.

Lupo: From an Italian nickname meaning "wolf".

Lord Wolf? OK, I get it. Dick Wolf''s vanity is showing.

Anyway, here's the AP article:



"By FRAZIER MOORE, AP Television Writer Wed Dec 26, 4:20 PM ET
NEW YORK - When Jeremy Sisto got his first glimpse of the updated "Law & Order" opening, there he was, in a courthouse setting alongside his castmates, just like so many who had come before him.

Sisto hums a few bars of the "Law & Order" theme, and recalls with a laugh: "There I am, walking with the others. And I thought, `What's HE doing there?!'"

Maybe it was just time. The 33-year-old actor has already played Jesus and Julius Caesar, a high-school hunk who catches Alicia Silverstone's eye in "Clueless," and, recently in "Waitress," Keri Russell's loutish husband.

Last season, he tracked down abductees on the short-lived drama "Kidnapped." And among his most memorable roles: Billy Chenowith, a gifted photographer and tormented manic-depressive on the HBO series "Six Feet Under."

Now he's joining "Law & Order" for its 18th season. He plays Detective Cyrus Lupo, new partner to Detective Ed Green (series veteran Jesse L. Martin).

Also joining up is Linus Roache as Chief Assistant District Attorney Michael Cutter, who succeeds Jack McCoy (Sam Waterston), himself the newly appointed district attorney. Fred Thompson, who for five seasons played District Attorney Arthur Branch, exited last spring to launch a real-life presidential bid. Meanwhile, S. Epatha Merkerson (as Lieutenant Van Buren) and Alana De La Garza (as Assistant District Attorney Connie Rubirosa) remain on duty.


Bottom line: Sisto and Roache become the 23rd and 24th actors to fill the show's six slots for cops and prosecutors.

But "Law & Order" begins another season after surviving a near-death experience last May. It was almost canceled, the victim of a sharp ratings drop. Having won a reprieve, it's now back in the chase to overtake "Gunsmoke" (20 years) as TV's most-enduring prime-time drama. Two episodes air Wednesday at 9 p.m. EST on NBC.

"It's classic `Law & Order,' but it's been reinvigorated," says Sisto, munching a cookie at a favorite coffee hangout in his SoHo neighborhood.

The premise: After four years abroad working undercover intel, Detective Lupo is summoned to New York when his brother is found dead. Lupo joins Green to crack the case.

Unlike many of Sisto's roles, Lupo is a somewhat understated personality. Sisto has a knack for stirring up a thunderstorm in his performances. But not here.

"It's a different kind of acting, this `Law & Order' thing," he explains. "They want two partners who can play off each other well and are fun to watch, but depth of character is not necessary in this job. Too much character gets in the way of the story. This is a very specific gig."

Sisto fell under drama's spell growing up in Chicago, where his mom, an aspiring actress, brought him along to her auditions.

"Then someone would say, `Does your kid want to read for a part?' I did some plays and had a great time."

When he was 16, he landed his first film, the drama "Grand Canyon," playing the teenage son of Kevin Kline and Mary McDonnell.

"That got me a foot in, to come out and have a life in L.A. in this business," Sisto says. "It could very easily not have happened for me. To be an actor takes a lot of courage, but the way I did it takes less courage." He laughs. "I was very lucky."

Since then, he has tackled dozens of roles, roles that often took him to a furious or troubled place. Those are his faves, he says — "the kind of roles where you feel like you've expressed something that's private, and shared sides of yourself that are darker and you're less proud of.

"It's nice," he insists. "It's like having a good cry. Sometimes you NEED a good cry, you know? And if you happen to cry in front of the world, something about that is cleansing: `Here's me at my ugliest, and my weakest and most vulnerable, and it's OK — it happens to all of us.'

"I think it's good to put it out there for the audience," he says. "We've all had moments where we're sitting at a movie or watching a show, and we see it and feel understood for a moment; we feel a little less alone.

"I'm definitely craving some of that right now," he adds with a tight smile. "I'd love it if my character Cyrus Lupo had a breakdown. I tried to get 'em to write that: `Maybe he could freak out!'" Sisto chortles and shakes his head. "It's not gonna happen!

"`Law & Order' is different," he cheerfully concedes. "For the viewer, it's that old friend. It brings up moral questions and the legal aspects of them. It's fun to pretend to be a detective for a little while and go through all the clues. You put it on and you just feel better."

For 18 years and counting. No freaking out allowed."




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HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

E. Epatha Merkerson on Broadway




Sadly underutilized on Law & Order, it's great news to hear that the very talented S. Epatha Merkerson comes to Broadway in the return of “Come Back Little Sheba”.

Playbill has announced:

“Complete casting has been announced for the upcoming Broadway revival of Come Back, Little Sheba, which begins rehearsals Nov. 29 prior to a Jan. 3, 2008, debut at the Biltmore Theatre.
As previously announced, the Manhattan Theatre Club production will feature S. Epatha Merkerson ("Law & Order"), Kevin Anderson (Broadway's Death of a Salesman, Orpheus Descending, Brooklyn), Lyle Kanouse (Big River), Zoe Kazan (The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie), Brian J. Smith (Fabulous Life of Size Zero), Brenda Wehle (Pygmalion) and Matthew J. Williamson ("Boston Legal").


Newcomers to the production, which will officially open Jan. 24, include Joseph Adams (A View From The Bridge), Chad Hoeppner (Butley), Daniel Damon Joyce (Urban Cowboy) and Keith Randolph Smith (A Midsummer Night's Dream).

Michael Pressman directs the production, as he did an earlier spring 2007 incarnation in Los Angeles. Emmy and Golden Globe Award winner Merkerson also starred in the previous run at Center Theatre Group's Kirk Douglas Theatre.

In the classic by the Midwest writer Inge, "Lola (Merkerson) is a faded beauty queen trapped in a lonely marriage to Doc (Anderson), a recovering alcoholic on the brink of relapse. When a pretty young woman (Kazan) becomes a boarder in their cluttered Midwest home, their lives are unsettled as unspoken passions rise to the surface. As the emptiness of their marriage is laid bare, can they find their way back to each other or will they be undone? This new look at William Inge's great American story is an absorbing tale of lost hopes and unfulfilled promise, told with unflinching honesty and heartbreaking power."

The design team for the production will include James Noone (scenic design), Jennifer Von Mayrhauser (costume design), Jane Cox (lighting design), Obadiah Eaves (sound design), Peter Golub (original music), J. David Brimmer (fight director) and David Caparelliotis (casting).
The Biltmore is located at 261 West 47th Street, between Broadway and Eighth Avenue. For information on how to subscribe to MTC, which also operates two theatres Off-Broadway, visit www.ManhattanTheatreClub.com. “



Link to Playbill article


Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

NBC Synopsis of Law & Order 2-Hour Season Premier

The NBC web site has published a synopsis of the 2-hour Law & Order premier on January 2nd, titled Called Home/Darkness.

"Season 18
CALLED HOME / DARKNESS
Wednesday, Jan. 2nd 9/8c 2-Hour Season Premiere


CALLED HOME: DETECTIVE CYRUS LUPO (JEREMY SISTO) LEAVES TERRORIST REGIONS TO RETURN TO HIS OWN FAMILY TERROR AT HOME. After four years abroad, Detective Lupo (Sisto) returns to the United States to find his brother committed suicide by lethal injection because of his incurable illness. Before the case is closed, another man is found dead, having killed himself in an identical fashion. Lieutenant Van Buren (S. Epatha Merkerson) permits Lupo to work the case alongside fellow Detective Ed Green (Jesse L. Martin). Lupo and Green are suspicious of a recent parolee formerly known as "Dr. Death," and through further investigation they are inclined to believe "Dr. Death's" daughter (guest star Marin Ireland) could be a follower of her father's work.


DARKNESS: An executive's wife and daughter are kidnapped during a power outage.


Also starring: Sam Waterston, S. Epatha Merkerson, Linus Roache, and Alana De La Garza. TV-14"

Only two weeks to go! I don't know about the rest of you, but I can't wait!

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Sam Waterston Honored at Episcopal Charities Tribute Dinner

Sam Waterston has been in the news a lot lately. The New York Social Diary reports:

“The Episcopal charities held its annual Tribute Dinner at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. Honorees were Sam Waterston, Jon Meacham, editor of Newsweek, J. Christopher Flowers, and Mary H. White MD. Meryl Streep presented Mr. Waterston with his award.The evening was a record fund-raising effort for Episcopal Charities, raising more than $1 million, with more than 500 attending.The evening’s Chairs were The Bishop of New York, The Rt. Rev. Mark S. Sisk and Mrs. Sisk, and Mr. and Mrs. C. Douglas Mercer II. Co-chairs were: Robert Albertson, Brenda G. Husson, Rector, St. James Church; William H.A. Wright II, Hope Bryce Preminger, Wolcott B. Dunham, Jr. Anthony J. Walton and Kenneth Koen. Dinner Chair and emcee for the evening was Keith Reinhard, Chairman Emeritus, DDB Worldwide Communications Group.

Episcopal Charities provides funding and practical support to a broad range of community –based human service programs throughout the Diocese of New York. These programs, sponsored by Episcopal congregations, serve disadvantaged individuals, youth and families on a non-sectarian basis.

The Episcopal Diocese of New York has its seat at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. It includes 203 congregations and 65,000 people in Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island and Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Sullivan, Ulster and Westchester counties.”


The New York Social Diary also provided some great pics, which you can see below, and
here.




















Lynn and Sam Waterston

















Sam Waterston and Meryl Streep

On a side note, when I visited New York City as a teenager, I visited The Cathedral of St. John the Divine. It was an amazing experience. The place is absolutely HUGE and I felt very very small standing in there. They were also doing some work on the pipe organ at the time, and testing it out, and the sound was unlike any other pipe organ I’ve ever heard (and I’ve heard quite a few). The sound felt like it was going right through my body, and it was like every bone was vibrating. We received a very extensive tour of the cathedral and it has to be one of the most fascinating cathedrals I've ever visited. If/when I get back to NYC, that is one place I where I would like to return.


Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Newsweek Magazine features Sam Waterston

There is a great article about Sam Waterston in the recent Newsweek. It is also available on their website, at link:

Newsweek Sam Waterston


Here's an excerpt:

"Sam Waterston is sitting inside downtown Manhattan's City Hall restaurant, shooting a scene for what will become his 317th performance as tenacious prosecutor Jack McCoy in NBC's unsinkable crime drama "Law & Order." Today, his thespian pas de deux is with Jayne Atkinson; they're filming a type of scene that's among the show's staffs of life—the negotiation of a cozy deal in a cozy restaurant booth. For Waterston, 67, this has to be like tying a pair of shoes. Actually, like fastening a pair of Velcro shoes. But on this oppressively gray morning, Waterston is peppy, punchy even, as he and Atkinson, who's playing a politician, run lines from the script. "Have you ever heard of New Yorkers for Good Government?" she says. "No." "They want you to run for a full term in the next election." "They do?" "They admire you because you're not a politician." "So they want me to become one." "Ironic, isn't it?"

Ironic indeed. The scene is clearly a wink at Fred Thompson, who left his role on "Law & Order" (as District Attorney Arthur Branch) to mount a presidential campaign. It's also ironic because Waterston, who this season is taking over Thompson's D.A. chair, is himself circling politics, though from a safer distance. He's become the spokesman—he prefers "cheerleader"—for Unity08, a reform movement that aims to put a bipartisan ticket on the presidential ballot in all 50 states. But because cruel irony is the most excellent kind, the best part is that while Thompson is the "Law & Order" actor who is running for president, Waterston is the "Law & Order" actor who arguably cuts the best shadow of a president.

Have a look at this pedigree: he was born in Massachusetts to a semanticist father and a Mayflower-descendant mother; he graduated from Yale and spent a year studying abroad at the Sorbonne; he's deeply absorbed in his Episcopal faith; he's got two vertical inches over Bush 43; he's devoted a large chunk of his professional life to putting away special-guest bad guys while modeling fine suits. In fact, many of his roles suggest a fascination with morality, justice and human suffering. He earned an Oscar nomination in 1984 for his work as journalist Sydney Schanberg in "The Killing Fields." His first notable TV role came on the short-lived drama "I'll Fly Away," which was rooted in the social tumult of the 1950s. But lest you think he's humorless, he also appeared in a faux commercial on "Saturday Night Live" endorsing insurance for the elderly against robots who "eat old people's medicine for fuel." He has a folksy demeanor, not as genteel as you'd expect, but close. His natural speech is the stuff politicos practice—it's just eloquent enough that it doesn't sound calculated. "



Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

A Special Christmas Greeting, Law & Order Style: Now on YouTube

By popular demand, I have recorded my special L & O Christmas Greeting from Elf Yourself(Office Max®), and uploaded it on YouTube, video below.

You can still see the original at this link:

http://www.elfyourself.com/?id=1191299294
It may take some time to load there, but the quality is much better.

It stars the faces of Law & Order franchise favorites Sam Waterston, Chris Noth, Vincent D'Onofrio, and Chris Meloni.

Enjoy!




Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Law & Order Locations: The New York County Supreme Courthouse Building


The New York Supreme Court itself is actually in more than one building, all located near Foley Square in New York City. But, one of those buildings stands out to fans of the Law & Order franchise. It’s the ubiquitous New York County Courthouse at 60 Centre Street. I wonder over the years how many times Jack McCoy (Sam Waterston) and his various ADAs have traipsed up and down those stairs, not to mention the occasional fictional defense attorney or criminal.

Here’s a little information about the building. The architect, Guy Lowell, was from Boston, and his original design for the building was round. After a construction delay, it was changed to the current hexagonal design, and in Roman classical style. Construction began in 1919, and the building was opened in 1929.

The stairs leading to the courthouse are 100 feet wide, reaching to Corinthian style columns, above which are the words of George Washington: “The true administration of justice is the firmest pillar of good government" In 1966, the building was designated a national landmark.
Of course, it’s a big landmark for Law & Order fans.


Aerial from Microsoft Virtual Earth



Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Law & Order actors in other roles: Featuring (and remembering) Jerry Orbach

Many people identify Jerry Orbach with Law & Order, but his initial claim to fame is his work on Broadway and in off-Broadway performances.

In 1968, he won a Tony Award for Best Actor in a musical for his role of Chuck Baxter in the musical "Promises, Promises". He was nominated in 1965 for a Tony as Best Supporting or Featured Actor in a musical for a revival of "Guys and Dolls. In 1976, he was also nominated for a Tony for Best Actor in a musical for the original production of "Chicago." His last appearance on Broadway was in 1981, playing Julian Marsh in 42nd Street.

Here are a few YouTube videos that show Jerry in some memorable performances. The first is from a performance at The White House, I believe from 1988, singing, “Try to Remember” from the Fantastiks. Also here is a performance of "The Lullaby of Broadway" (from 42nd Street).

Jerry died on December 28, 2004, but he continues to live on for Law & Order fans as Lennie Briscoe.






Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Bobby Goren: Untethered – or Unhinged?

Last night’s (December 6) Criminal Intent brings the question to the forefront: is Bobby Goren finally going over the edge? The second question that comes to mind is: does the “Big Guy” need to go on a diet?

First, the episode. It was billed as an extended episode, but where was the extra time? I expected some time tacked on to the ending of the show, but I suspect the extra time may have been a result of less commercials. A little misleading, I think.

The story itself was good. Frankly, I think I may have liked it a little better had they not made Goren’s involvement a family issue. I suppose that had to be a big part of it to rationalize Goren’s behavior in getting so personally involved. Still, one of the things I always liked about the Law & Order franchise is we used to get so little personal stuff about the characters. Criminal Intent seems to have thrown that out the window, and I’m not sure I like it. I really do not care to know any more about Goren’s family, so I hope the show moves off the subject from here on end.

Vincent D’Onofrio pulled off one of his best CI performances ever. In fact, it was so good I wondered if he was pulling it from any personal experience. I even felt a little closed in and squeamish when he was restrained on that table.

I feel sorry for Eames (Kathryn Erbe) who continues to be caught in the Goren whirlpool, getting sucked into trouble with him. It’s clear, though, that she cares for Bobby and will do anything she can, including getting herself in trouble, to protect him.

Continuing to underwhelm me is Eric Bogosian as Captain Danny Ross. His delivery, even in scenes that should be very dramatic, is at best, lifeless and wooden. What made it even worse was the scene with Ross and medical examiner Rogers (Leslie Hendrix) in the elevator, clearly dressed for a night on the town together. They just strike me as a creepy pair.

Funny – but also not funny – was the continued reference to Goren as the “Big Guy”. Funny because he could have overpowered those guards if he really wanted to, not funny because D’Onofrio is really looking too large in an unhealthy way. The last few episodes, it even appears his walk is being affected by the extra weight. I find myself more concerned about D’Onofrio’s increasing girth than I am Goren’s increasing mental imbalance.

Oervall a great episode, but here's hoping that Criminal Intent reverts back to being a show about the crimes and not about personal matters. And a special note to Vincent D'Onofrio - take off some of those extra pounds, for the sake of your health!


Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

A special Christmas Greeting – Law & Order style

Many thanks to the people at OfficeMax®, who created a nice little template for people to create a holiday greeting, using photos of friends, family, etc. I've already made a few containing some of my family members (and their pets), but being the true Law & Order junkie that I am, you know what I had to do next.

At the link below is a special Law & Order greeting that I created, with some of our L&O favorites Sam Waterston, Vincent D’Onofrio, Chris Noth and Chris Meloni. The greeting at the link has sound, and you’ll probably laugh when you see it, so just be mindful if you're at work and don't want your boss to know your goofing off on the Internet. I know you will enjoy it.


Here you go!
http://www.elfyourself.com/?id=1191299294

(This elfin' greeting brought to you by OfficeMax®)

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Law & Order Criminal Intent Returns to NBC

Various news sources report that Criminal Intent will be moving back to NBC on Wednesdays at 9:00 PM, starting January 9. These will be rebroadcasts of new episodes aired on the USA Network. USA will continue to show the first run episodes.

This is great news for all CI fans like me, who don't get the USA Network in HD. I'll gladly watch reruns if I can see Vincent D'Onofrio (in all his largeness) and Chris Noth, in HD.

Now if they can just get rid of Alicia Witt I would be happy beyond reason. It would be great if Kathryn Erbe could do double duty for both shows. I can only wish.

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

12 Days Of Christmas – Law & Order Style

Here’s my version of the 12 Days of Christmas, but done with Law & Order in mind. I would like to have them delivered by Sam Waterston, please. He doesn’t have to wait until Christmas.

On the first day of Christmas
My true love gave to me,
Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the second day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the third day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Three Logan ties,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the fourth day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Four ADAs,
Three Logan ties,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the fifth day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Five guilty pleas,
Four ADAs,
Three Logan ties,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the sixth day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Six won appeals,
Five guilty pleas,
Four ADAs,
Three Logan ties,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the seventh day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Seven judges gaveling,
Six won appeals,
Five guilty pleas,
Four ADAs,
Three Logan ties,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the eighth day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Eight smart detectives,
Seven judges gaveling,
Six won appeals,
Five guilty pleas,
Four ADAs,
Three Logan ties,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the ninth day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Nine short arraignments,
Eight smart detectives,
Seven judges gaveling,
Six won appeals,
Five guilty pleas,
Four ADAs,
Three Logan ties,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the tenth day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Ten Briscoe punch lines,
Nine short arraignments,
Eight smart detectives,
Seven judges gaveling,
Six won appeals,
Five guilty pleas,
Four ADAs,
Three Logan ties,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the eleventh day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Eleven allocutions,
Ten Briscoe punch lines,
Nine short arraignments,
Eight smart detectives,
Seven judges gaveling,
Six won appeals,
Five guilty pleas,
Four ADAs,
Three Logan ties,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

On the twelfth day of Christmas,
My true love gave to me,
Twelve repeat offenders,
Eleven allocutions,
Ten Briscoe punch lines,
Nine short arraignments,
Eight smart detectives,
Seven judges gaveling,
Six won appeals,
Five guilty pleas,
Four ADAs,
Three Logan ties,
Two “Doink-Doinks”,
And Jack McCoy drinking 12 year old scotch.

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Friday, November 30, 2007

Criminal Intent Quick News

The USA Network web site says that next Thursday’s (December 6) Criminal Intent will be an extended episode. It’s a Bobby Goren episode, with an extra 5 minutes at the end. The previews appear that Vincent D'Onofrio will have another chance to overact - which means I won't miss it.

In other news, Chris Noth, and co-owner Steve Walter are looking for some investors to help move their “The Cutting Room” restaurant/lounge from the Flatiron District to Hell's Kitchen. Any takers? Check out the web site - and the food - before you invest.


http://www.thecuttingroomnyc.com/

Fox News has nice things to say about Law & Order's return

Fox News is confirming that Law & Order is returning to its old Wednesday time slot.
In fact, their news story on the subject is titled “TV’s 'Law & Order' Gets Last Laugh.” Here’s what they say on the subject. A link to the same information is also at the bottom of this story.

“Remember all the times we thought NBC was going to cancel "Law & Order"? Well, the original Dick Wolf series is getting the last laugh on the Peacock network.

It turns out there will be 13 new episodes shot and ready to go beginning Jan. 3 with Sam Waterston, Jesse L. Martin and S. Epatha Merkerson returning, as well as new stars Linus Roache and Jeremy Sisto set to revitalize the series.

The joke, of course, is that thanks to the Writers Guild strike, most shows will not have new episodes after the new year. But I’m told "Law & Order" has gotten the jump on its competition and will debut back in its old Wednesday slot at 10 p.m.

Waterston, as we first reported a long time ago, sees his Jack McCoy character finally move up to district attorney after nearly two decades spent implausibly as an assistant district attorney.

Sources say he’s terrific in the new position and has just as much air time as before. Roache, the gifted actor from "Priest" and "The Wings of a Dove," takes McCoy’s place as new executive ADA Michael Cutter.


And don’t think "Law & Order" will be without female representation. Alana de la Garza is joining the cast as new ADA Connie Rubirosa from "CSI: Miami," where she played David Caruso’s wife. Set insiders tell me de la Garza has had a total makeover and "is so hot it’s not funny." "

It all sounds great. I can’t wait for the new season of Law & Order to begin!


http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,313686,00.html

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

"Dancing" Pummels SVU in the Ratings (11/27)

How the mighty have fallen. Several sources reports that Law & Order SVU was second in its time slot on Tuesday, November 27, beaten by "Dancing with the Stars." The web site Zap2It reports, "At 10 p.m., the "Dancing" finale soared to 16.8/26, doubling up on "Law & Order: SVU," which finished second for NBC at 8.2/13."

Considering the SVU promo people have been touting the dramatic car accident with Olivia (Mariska Hargitay) and Elliot's wife Kathy Stabler (Isabel Gillies), this has got to be a blow to NBC.

And where is Detective John Munch (Richard Belzer)? Did I miss something that explains his absence?

Maybe the ratings drop will cause NBC to look at whatever formula they're using this year for SVU and rethink it. But I won't hold my breath for it.


Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

HOT NEWS! Sneak Peek of Law & Order Premier is on NBC's Web site

Check out NBCs Law & Order web site for a sneak peek at the season's first episode. The cast looks great, Sam Waterston looks like a tough DA, Alana De La Garza looks less like an alien and more like a human. The new cast members are also shown.

It appears from the promo piece that Law & Order will be back on Wednesday nights. HOORAY!

http://www.nbc.com/Law_&_Order/


Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Fred Thompson for...President?

The first time I heard about Fred Thompson throwing his hat in the ring, I had a bit of a chuckle. I was aware of his long political career, but for some reason, I am unable to get one image of Fred out of my mind.

It’s a scene from the movie “The Hunt for Red October,” the excellent submarine flick based on a book by Tom Clancy. In it, Fred plays Rear Admiral Joshua Painter. One line in the show always seemed to resonate with me. It occurred while he was having a discussion with Jack Ryan (Alec Baldwin), and went like this:

Adm. Painter: What's his plan?
Jack Ryan: His plan?
Adm. Painter: Russians don't take a dump, son, without a plan.

The last line made me chuckle at the time, but when Fred came to Law & Order to play District Attorney Arthur Branch, the line popped back into my head. I’ve almost been waiting for Fred to utter it during a scene with Jack McCoy (Sam Waterston).

But now that he’s running for president, that line could come back to haunt him. I can see it being replayed over and over, and not to make Fred look good, especially with "the Russians."

Personally, while I don’t think Fred has a chance of making very far in the presidential category, he made his chances even worse by waiting so long to throw his hat in the ring. He’s also been less than energetic in his appearances, and some of his early responses to questions shows someone who may have been out of politics, and the real world, too long. Maybe he is hoping for a VP slot or something else.

Either way, the one positive thing about Fred leaving L&O to get back into politics is that Jack McCoy is now in the driver’s seat in the DA’s office. And we know Jack McCoy doesn’t do ANYTHING without a plan.

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Law & Order actors in other roles: Featuring Angie Harmon

Angie Harmon, who played the tough as nails ADA Abbie Carmichael on Law & Order, now plays tough as nails detective (Lindsay Boxer) on ABC’s Women’s Murder Club (9:00 PM Fridays). The series is based on a book by novelist James Patterson.

I started watching the show because I really enjoyed Angie in Law & Order. I was curious to see if we’d just see Abbie again, or Angie really being able to act in another role. As far as I’m concerned, the jury is still out on that issue. There are many times that I swear it’s just Abbie Carmichael, wearing pants and casual detective clothes. But, the scenarios given to the character of Lindsay are, for the most part, different than on L&O. Angie seems a little stiff in the role, though, and I think of everyone on the show, her acting may need the most work. A big distraction for me is Angie’s obvious rail-thin body. She always looked thin on L&O, but she looks downright gaunt on this show. It reminds me of an episode of L&O (called "DWB") when Jack brings Abbie some lunch:

Jack: I bought lunch. I didn't know what you like, so I got salad, lo-cal dressing...
Abbie: Lo-cal? I burn it, I don't store it... what did you get?
Jack: Ribs. [Abbie takes the ribs]
Abbie: Great! Sounds good. I'll eat, you graze.

My suggestion to Angie: please get some ribs. And eat them!


The show has some decent plots, although I’m not quite sure if everyone fits in the supporting cast as far as the “Club” is concerned. Claire, the medical examiner (played by Paula Newsome), reminds me a lot of Penny Johnson Jerald (“Mrs. Palmer” from “24”), but acts like Oprah. So I’m not quite sure if she's too clinical, too nice, or what. Cindy (Aubrey Dollar), the reporter, seems just a little too young to be such a knowledgeable and connected reporter. Jill, from the DA’s office (Laura Harris, an alum from “24”) is the only one who seems to fit just right in her role, and in The Club.

The rest of the supporting cast, Tyrees Allen (who plays Lindsay’s partner Warren Jacobi) and Rob Estes (Lindsay’s current boss and ex-husband, Tom) seem to compliment The Club very well.

The Woman’s Murder Club seems to have the right mix of a crime show, plus a little personal “drama” in the background. While the story lines are a little thin, and the plots a little trite, the show is entertaining and I actually like it a bit. It’s one of those shows that fills an hour well, especially when there’s not much else on TV on a Friday night.

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Friday, November 23, 2007

My Favorite Law & Order Shrink

As far as “shrinks” in the Law & Order franchise, three names come immediately to mind: Dr. Elizabeth Olivet (Carolyn McCormick), Dr. Emil Skoda (J.K. Simmons), and Dr. George Huang (B.D. Wong).

My favorite is Dr. Skoda, who is portrayed by acting journeyman J.K. Simmons. Dr. Skoda always seems to be on an even keel, and he rarely, if ever, becomes overly emotionally involved in cases. The emotional component is what annoys me about Dr. Olivet. She always to take things so personally, sometimes standing on principles that seemed to be at odds with working with a prosecutor’s office.

Skoda seems to be the Lennie Briscoe of the psychiatric world, with frequent blunt, humorous lines. A prerequisite of his services to the prosecutor’s office appears to be frequent eating on the DA’s office meal tab. It’s a rare occurrence that when Skoda is called in to give his opinion that he’s not being given a cup of coffee, a hot dog, or sitting down to a meal in a nice restaurant. A psychiatrist may say that he has an oral fixation. It could be, though, that he’s just a very hungry guy.

As mentioned earlier, Dr. Olivet has sometimes thrown a wrench into a case when she gets on her soapbox and refuses to step off it. It’s nice to have convictions, but sometimes she lets her personal feeling cloud her judgment. The perfect example was in the episode “Helpless” where she personally investigates a doctor (played by repeat offender Paul Hecht) and her motives come under fire, almost tanking the case. Another case was in “Killerz”, where she comes to the defense of a young girl that seems to be a serial killer in the making. Olivet’s involvement for the defense helped the girl to avoid jail time. At the end of the episode, it’s made clear that this girl will probably kill again. So Olivet just plain annoys me.

As far as Dr. Huang, he’s OK. In a way, though, he is too tempered. Probably the most outwardly clinical of the three doctors, I think he tends to have a very textbook, rigid approach. He gets the job done, but not in such a colorful way as the others.

So Dr. Skoda is my doctor of choice. If I had to have my head examined, he’d be the one I’d chose to do it. And I’d even provide him a nice meal.


J.K. Simmons can now be seen starring in “The Closer” on TNT.


Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Criminal Intent: What’s in the Major Coffee?

Maybe you recall Mike Logan (Chris Noth’s) first appearance on Law & Order Criminal Intent, in the episode “Stress Position” (aired February 13, 2005). When Mike appears at the Major Case Squad, this conversation takes place:

Captain James Deakins: As you said, we're Major Case. Let me discuss it with my detectives.

Detective Mike Logan: No problem. Maybe I'll have some of your Major coffee.


I’m starting to wonder exactly what is in that Major coffee. You see, this past October, Vincent D’Onofrio announced that he and his wife Carin were expecting a baby. Not to be outdone, Chris Noth announced in mid-November that he and his girlfriend Tara Wilson are also expecting. Add the earlier pregnancies of Kathryn Erbe and Julianne Nicholson, and one has to wonder. That really must be MAJOR coffee.

I think I’ll pass on it.

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Law & Order SVU – Has it bottomed out?

There’s something wrong with Law & Order SVU this season. Did the writers go on strike early and not tell anyone? Has the show turned into a soap opera while no one was looking? Did someone open a Pandora’s box of the personal lives of the characters and now we’re being overloaded with too much information? These are only a few of the burning questions.

Not to forget the questionable addition of Chester (Adam Beach), who seems to know everything there is to know about EVERYTHING, and has super special instincts. Beach’s wooden acting puts Elisabeth Rohm (Serena, Law & Order) to shame. About the same time Chester makes his appearance, the gradual virtual disappearance of Detective John Munch (Richard Belzer) begins. The entire chemistry of the team seems to be thrown into a tizzy.

Last week, Casey Novak (Diane Neal) seemed to be working for the defense, helping the defense attorney in just about every way she could. She got a much-needed butt kicking from new District Attorney Jack McCoy (Sam Waterston). That in itself was another mystery. The big event that all Jack McCoy fans have been waiting for, and it doesn’t happen on the original series – AND the network never promoted the event.

This season, we’ve been bombard with personal information and story lines about many of the characters. Stabler’s wife is pregnant, Stabler (Chris Meloni) “goes blind” (well not really and not for long), and the preview for next week – “the car crash.” (I won’t say any more so as not to spoil you.) We hear all kinds of things about newbie Chester, including that he was brought up in the foster care system. We are finally hearing less about Olivia’s parentage and issues as a child, do we now have to start with Chester? This show is clearly moving outside the L&O formula that says we should get as little information about the characters’ personal lives as possible.

And dumb mistakes and questionable judgment abounds. Case in point, and episode from two week ago titled “Svengali”. In it were several gems:

1. Requiring the tech team (TARU) to process a crime scene photo through an image recongition program to identify it as the Venus De Milo, one of the most recognizable sculptures in art;

2. After a threat was made on her life, Olivia (Mariska Hargitay) gets a pizza delivery she did not order, no one questions it and no one actually opens it to see that there’s a pizza in there. Of course it’s a bomb and it explodes when a hungry Chester throws it on his desk.

3. Again, there is still a threat on Olivia’s life, the station had been bombed, yet Olivia goes home without a protective detail. She has to twist a loosened sconce light in her outside hallway before she unlocks her door. Of course someone is waiting in her apartment to attack her.

I could go on, but it’s too painful.

Law & Order SVU used to be a gritty crime show about subjects most people don’t talk about. The detectives had their issues, but they didn’t over dramatize them and continue to fling them in our faces. The show featured an ensemble cast, which had great chemistry. It now seems to have all but disappeared in favor of episodes showcasing individual characters. It’s as if the show has reduced itself to begging for Emmys.

Of course being a faithful fan of all things Law & Order, I will continue to watch. But even Law & Order junkies have their limits. I may be reaching mine with SVU.

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Law & Order actors in other roles: Featuring Sam Watertson

Law & Order actors in other roles will probably be a recurring topic on this blog, since so many of the L&O actors have done other work outside the show.

Today, I’m featuring a movie starring Sam Waterston called Rancho Deluxe. I had never heard of this movie, but I received an email yesterday alerting me that another website had reviewed it. When I clicked on the link, I got quite a surprise. The article included a photo of the cover art for the movie – and there was Sam, wearing a huge black hat, holding a huge gun, and sporting a huge smirk. (I’ve included the photo and a link to it below.) Needless to say, the picture made me laugh. A lot.

The review on the website “This Distracted Globe” (link below), written by Joe Valdez, says, “Jeff Bridges gives an early variation on the societal goober he’d play throughout his career, but Sam Waterston (it’s strange to see this dude not wearing a tie) is sublime, playing a Caucasian looking Indian who could either be the smartest character in the film, or the dumbest.” Mr. Valdez’s overall review makes the movie sound like it’s worth checking out.

I think I just might.

Picture of Sam Waterston on cover art, and link:

http://www.dvd-online.be/images/RANCHO%20DELUXE.jpg



Link to review:
http://thisdistractedglobe.com/2007/11/17/rancho-deluxe-1975/

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Addicted to the Law & Order franchise? Take my test

You watch a lot of Law & Order, SVU, and CI. A lot. How do you know when you're addicted and you’re a serious Law & Order junkie? Take my test and find out. Keep count of the number to which you can relate, and find your score at the end.

1. You can recite the intro from memory for every show in the Law & Order Franchise

2. You’re upset that they changed the intro music on Criminal Intent from a hard rockin’ sound to something more orchestral.

3. You’ve seen every episode more than once. OK, more than twice. More than three times…you get the picture.

4. You know how the repeat episode is going to end after watching only the first few minutes of the show, but you watch it anyway to the bitter end.

5. You are glued to TNT in the afternoon, and in the evenings. You record even the episodes that they show in the wee hours of the morning. You catch every new episode on NBC and USA, of course.

6. You’ve got names for each one of the shows in the franchise, like “the mothership” or “original recipe” for Law & Order; “SUV” for SVU; and “L&O extra crispy” for CI.

7. You have a hard time watching “Aftershock” because you know what’s going to happen at the end, and started watching “Crossing Jordan” so it would seem that Claire was not really dead after all.

8. You were upset when Jerry Orbach died.

9. You’re excited when you have to serve on jury duty. Then you annoy the rest of the jury because, since you watch L&O, you have all this legal expertise.

10. You find yourself talking back to the television, giving Jack McCoy (Sam Waterson) or Casey Novak (Diane Neal) legal advice. (You usually shout more at Casey than at Jack, by the way.)

11. You can identify all the “repeat offenders” (actors who have starred on other roles on any of the L&O franchise), even when they show up on other non-L&O shows. (Ritchie Coster really gets around in the L&O Universe.) Sometimes you’re incredulous that, for example, Bobby Goren (Vincent D’Onofrio) doesn’t recognize one of his criminals as someone who played an attorney in a L&O episode.

12. You look forward to episodes with repeat appearances from people like Danielle Melnick (Tovah Feldshuh), Randy Dworkin (Peter Jacobson), and Shambala Green (Lorraine Toussaint) because you know there will be fireworks or an outrageous defense.

13. You frequent all the message boards and forums to talk about and rate each episode after it’s over.

14. Your bracelet, “WWJD” stands for “What Would Jack Do?”

15. You frequently say along with, what Dann Florek called “The Doink-Doink” (some call it the “chung-chung), when scenes change.

16. You’re crazed if you miss a new episode because your DVR didn’t work, you forgot to program the show, you had a power failure, etc.

17. You feel happy, yet someone odd, when something personal about a L&O character creeps into the show, because you’re really not supposed to know them.

18. The phrase “Is this because I’m a lesbian?” has crept into your life as an excuse for everything, and you’re not even a lesbian.

19. You read the paper and pick out stories that you know will become “ripped from the headlines” episodes.

20. Characters from the Law & Order universe appear in your dreams.


How did you score?
0-5: You’re dead or you don’t own a television
6-10: You watch the show occasionally, or not all shows in the franchise
11-15: You’re developing a problem
16-18: Addicted, a junkie
19-20: Get a life!

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Criminal Intent - A show with a split personality?

When Law & Order Criminal Intent started its run, Detectives Goren and Eames (Vincent D’Onofrio and Kathryn Erbe) were the featured detectives of the major case squad. Sometime in 2005, however, the show decided to add another detective – and dimension – to the mix, with the return of Detective Mike Logan (Chris Noth). In my opinion, it was a welcome change to the show. LOCI seemed to be slightly confused on exactly which Bobby Goren we were going to see each week. Would he be the intense detective who found an obscure clue to solve the case, or would he be the loose cannon detective who seemed like he was one step away from going off the deep end?

As the years passed, the character of Goren seemed to become more fragmented. During that time, Vincent D’Onofrio was hospitalized, twice, for exhaustion. Shortly following these events, the show introduced Mike Logan to the mix.

The character of Mike Logan seemed to be a little more world-weary, but seeing Logan in action was a nice change of pace. The only problem is they paired him with a rather lifeless Detective Barek, played by Annabella Sciorra. I’m not quite sure if Barek was written to be lifeless, or if Sciorra was just going through the motions. Either way, she didn’t seem to work. Logan has been paired with two other detectives since then, and seemed to have relatively good chemistry with Detective Megan Wheeler (Julianne Nicholson). While Julianne was off having a baby, she was replaced by Alicia Witt (as Detective Nola Falacci). I find that either Witt's character is being presented as particularly annoying, or, if she’s doing the annoying act very badly. I find myself thinking that someone like Erbe could have pulled it off better. So right now I’m giving this new detective a low score as far as being a good match for Logan.

Since the show alternates the detective team each week, it sometimes seems like a different show each week as far as writing style and even the cases handled. And I like that. Maybe D’Onofrio really needed the reduced time, and maybe the show needed to close out some issues with Goren, but the character seems a little more stable. Likewise, Chris Noth has taken Mike Logan up a notch by making him the (gasp!) voice of reason in the episode “Courtship.”

It may seem like we’re seeing a series that’s got two personalities, but I like the change. Sadly, the show is no longer on NBC, and I’m forced to watch it on USA, which I don’t get in HD. So while the quality of the show has taken a step forward, my ability for my eyes and senses to enjoy it have taken a step back. But I’m still a faithful fan.

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Are you suffering from Law & Order Withdrawal?

I’m an admitted Law & Order junkie. I’ve probably seen every episode of the “mothership” several times over. I try to catch the reruns of SVU and CI as well, although they don’t have the coverage that TNT gives the original series.

I didn’t initially think it would be so bothersome that we’re not getting any new episodes. But with CI now on USA (and I don’t get USA in HD, a major annoyance) and with SVU starting the year with some awful episodes (more on that at a later date), I am missing my weekly dose of new L&O shows. One can only watch so many reruns on TNT before it gets confusing. After all, you can see and older and worn Jack McCoy in one hour, and the next, he’s much younger. Or, one episode he’s got Claire as his ADA, the next it’s Serena. I feel like I am time shifting. I am even trying to catch the ancient Ben Stone and Paul Robinette episodes when TNT sometime shows them in the wee hours of the morning. I wish TNT would show MORE of the “oldies.”

While the quality of L&O has gotten a little stale in the last several years, they finally made a big change by moving Jack to DA, and bringing in someone new to replace him. The rub is that we have to wait what seems like forever to see if this change will revitalize the show, or, drive it to the grave. After all, the show teetered on the grave during the Elisabeth Rohm years. The show was also hurt, in my opinion, from NBC moving it from the Wednesday night slot.

I’m still turning to TNT for my fix, but I can’t last much longer. I hope that the show has enough scripts prepared so the writer’s strike won’t delay its season premier even further.

I don’t think I could take it.

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Happy Birthday Sam Waterston

OK, I'm a day late. Sam's birthday was November 15. He turned 67.

We'll have more on Sam - who plays newly promoted District Attorney Jack McCoy - in upcoming days. In fact, his first appearance as District Attorney almost went unnoticed on this past week's episode on SVU titled "Blinded" (airdate 11/13/07). But first, I thought I'd share an old picture of Sam that was shared on Flickr. The notation on the photograph said it was from Mademoiselle magazine, in the April 1970 issue. Enjoy!

And happy birthday, Sam.

Link to picture:







Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!

Also, see my companion Law & Order site,
These Are Their Stories.

Welcome to All Things Law & Order!

Welcome to All Things Law & Order, the place to share information about anything and everything dealing with the Law & Order franchise. This includes the Law & Order (also know as the "mothership" or "original recipe" show). Law & Order Special Victims Unit (SVU), and Law & Order Criminal Intent (CI).

Here you'll find the up to date news - and old news - about the shows and the people involved with the show.

Stay tuned!

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information,
HERE!