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Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



I started watching the original in the last week or two and I'm hooked, just pulling episodes at random from the Briscoe and McCoy era. I really like how it's not so much a whodunit but rather seeing what kind of legal defense they're going to have to deal with. It's great how some episodes I'm stoked to see McCoy eat poo poo even when the defendant is guilty, but then the next episode I'm all "ohhhh poo poo, inevitable discovery bitch, your rear end is goin' to jail".

Death penalty episodes are the best because McCoy turns his assholery to the max.

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Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



Do the detectives ever shoot their guns in this show? I haven't seen it once yet and so far I like how they don't rely on stuff like action sequences, maybe chasing a perp down the street at most. I get the feeling if it ever happens it's gotta be an oh poo poo moment and I hope it surprises me.

Wait, I just remembered the one where Lt. Van Buren ices an intellectually disabled kid. She was off duty and being mugged for that one though, but the ensuing poo poo show was an alright hook for an episode plot.

Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



That sounds like a good way of handling it, like the one where Briscoe is under scrutiny about what may or may not be a false confession. Maybe it's because I'm watching them out of order but Briscoe and Green's antagonism in that one was a bit over the top, although I like how they showed how it's because Lennie's getting up there in years and it's getting to him but they don't beat you over the head about it.

Just finished Patsy and drat that was a good one. McCoy saying gently caress it and being held in contempt was awesome since I was pretty sure he was intentionally going for a mistrial so that the woman in the coma could be called as a witness whenever she wakes up. Then they close it with finding a hair in the trunk of her car and facing the prospect of two Ls in one episode Jack is all "y'know what, who cares. We'll deal with it if she wakes up".

Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



Does the original series start feeling more like what I assume SVU is like at some point? Just watched the crossover episode with the con artist mother and daughter and it felt weird, like it was more about some villain they have to put away than any kind of interesting legal situation. They only ended up locking away the daughter due to a last-minute old crime that came out of nowhere (oh by the way she gave birth to a hosed up infant she immediately killed and buried when she was 14) which isn't nearly as interesting a resolution as the courtroom stuff. The season premiere with the guy kidnapping a kid to sell to a pedophile was similar, but at least there was some meat there about a suspect extorting a deal and negotiating with terrorists.

The inconsistent character writing you guys pointed out can be pretty funny. In one episode Jack is all mad about the guy who followed the mass shooter in his car which led to an accident when he was boxed in; pulling up in front of the stolen SUV and braking is reckless endangerment since it caused the shooter to hit the gas, spin out and crash into a restaurant. We live in a society where that kind of vigilantism is unacceptable and anything more than calling 911 is irresponsible. No big deal in the next episode when a dude in a box truck sees the car in an amber alert and fuckin' rams it into a wall, though. Then the next episode concludes with the guy who embezzled a pension fund found domed in the trunk of his car and Jack's all \_(ツ)_/

Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



I love how lovely the office looks once Jack becomes the interim DA.

Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



This show gets fuckin weird after Detective Green leaves huh.

Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



It's not so much the characters but rather the bizarre plots like the fight club, the child slavery ring, the psychotic boomer nerd mad about sororities, the JFK hair thing, and so on. It felt more like they were relying on the novelty of weird poo poo coming from out of left field than interesting investigative or legal dilemmas. They also tried to have overarching season-long plots with villains like the governor or the cartel lawyer, which felt like they were trying to shift to a more serialized format which I wasn't a fan of.

As such I kind of get what someone was saying earlier in the thread about a modern revival not being able to capture the feel of the series on its best days because street crime is way down. After the great recession there seemed to be more focus on corruption and white collar conspiracy, which resulted in a lot of the stories revolving around strange rich-people plots. The transition from random New Yorkers stumbling across a crime scene to showing a before and after of the victims also took away from the local flavor and made the investigative detective parts less interesting, I thought.

Some of the plots were also really bad. Abortion episodes can already be kind of eye-rolling but the one with the murdered late-term clinic doctor was really hosed up. It's just more "clean" and "dignified" to bring your hosed up baby with no skin to term so they can die of natural causes. Finding out about the George Tiller case made it even more gross with how they wrote the doctor in the show as a baby killer to justify the murder. The Scientology episode right after Detective Green leaves was also similarly bad - the victim claiming to be harassed by the cult was actually just a paranoid maniac!

A show from the point of view of the defense for regular crimes would be really cool and topical but only if they had the talent to pull it off, which seems unlikely. The one where ADA Rubirosa has to represent a dude because of a legal aid strike was really good, and I loved Jack's speech when some of her colleagues were ribbing her about working for the "dark side".

Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



I'm going back to the ones I missed from the Briscoe and Curtis days and the stories are definitely way better than the final couple of seasons. I'm watching one right now and it slowly dawned on me that it's the episode Brandon Bird based the coloring book on. The old lady was talking about how there's a dude down the corner who might've seen something and I lost my poo poo when she said it was Ray-Ray.

Don't worry Mr. Davis. In this house, I'm the man.

Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



The shootings really started picking up in the later seasons, and from what I hear also in the other L&O series. The way it leads to investigations like when Lt. Van Buren shot a mugger or Detective Green's last episode they actually carried some narrative weight, but especially once Bernard joined up they're gunning dudes down like it's no big deal.

Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



I know that the other people in the cell with Jack are just defendants that are dressed nice because they're attending their own trials, but I'd like to think that when Jack got arrested for contempt he was thrown into special Lawyer Jail.

Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



Fisher Stevens is an awesome defense attorney, I still don't know if his initial "it was God's will" opening statement was a strategic move or if he hosed up by being green. I was worried that it was going to be a plot about a rookie not defending a baby killer zealously enough and the route they instead went with was great. He made Jack so angry.

I wish there was more of him but apparently that was his only episode. That Jewish guy they got for a couple episodes later on who initially looked like a nebbish was similarly entertaining, but he wasn't fresh out of misdemeanor court so it wasn't as funny when he'd be styling on Jack; he didn't get to the point where he'd refuse drinks from the guy after a case.

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Coxswain Balls
Jun 3, 2001



Watching an episode from 2003 about a carjacking which turns out to not be the main plot because they find vials of coronavirus in a cooler in the trunk. I know the original SARS epidemic was a thing back then but it's funny and quaint to run into the 'rona in a pre-Covid world.

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