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!

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