Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Law & Order SVU: “Fight” is a Losing Battle

Photo by NBC

Why, why, why did I bother to watch this episode of SVU again? I guess I had amnesia because I completely forgot how absolutely horrible “Fight” was. This particular episode featured wooden acting, a dull story line, silly red herrings, and a worthless appearance by Ice-T’s wife, CoCo.

The story itself was uninteresting. A woman's dead body is found in the park by two kids, her lips apparently cut from her face and left at the crime scene. The lead detectives on the case are Chester (Adam Beach) and Fin (Ice-T). Ice-T is usually tolerable when paired with John Munch (Richard Belzer, who seems to have almost disappeared from the SVU group). But paired with the hard to understand and hard to tolerate Chester, it makes for an unwatchable show.

We get a red herring story line with the mixed martial arts fighter, which seemed to have limited purposes. We learn the worthless yet fitting fact that Chester was a mixed martial arts fighter, named “Naptime.” Fin makes the statement, “What, they call you Naptime ‘cause your boring stories put everybody to sleep?” I call that the most accurate description of the show itself, frankly. The whole martial arts angle only gave them an excuse to feature Ice-T’s real life wife Coco and her ample fake-looking “assets” and her less than ample acting skills, a low point for the franchise in my opinion. It also gave them an excuse to have a shooting in the hallways of the SVU squad. How a gun could make it that far in to the facility is beyond me. Other than that, those characters had little if anything to do with the crime. The only crime her was that we had to have Coco shoved in our faces. Please, never again.

A suspect confesses to the crime at the urging of his junkie mother. Going in front of the judge, he pleads guilty despite the protests of his attorney, and then fires his attorney. Casey, however, gets sloppy when he allocates and forgets to even press for details on the fact that the victim had her lips cut off. She would have saved everyone a lot of trouble had she not wondered why that point was never addressed.

Even more ludicrous was the whole chase scene where, when Ice-T is chasing another suspect, the suspect jumps off a building (seemingly without looking, mind you) and jumps right into a garbage truck below. Unlucky for the suspect, the garbage truck is compacting its load, the truck being operated by a man who is too busy to listen to music with his headphones on to notice Fin yelling to him to stop the struck. Now really, couldn’t Fin have done something like take off his shoe and throw it at the guy to get his attention? Both Fin and Cragen (Dann Florek), standing next to him, didn’t really act smart here and stood by while the suspect was killed.

Of course, because the ever wise Chester gets an epiphany and believes the original suspect to be innocent, he gets help from Elliot (Chris Meloni) when Elliot falls for Chester’s “I was a foster kid” sob story. And conveniently when it is all said and done, even the gun charge gets thrown out when key evidence gets “lost.” But the real kicker is when Chester learns that the brothers' mother has apparently died of an overdose; he decides to fulfill her wish of getting to take her boys to Red Lobster. How much did Red Lobster have to pay for that product placement? Something smells fishy to me here.

Anyway, this episode was just about unwatchable and I wish I wouldn’t have done it. But, I feel I owe it to Law & Order fans everywhere to warn them of episodes that don’t deserve to be watched. While that seems to be a good portion of this season’s SVU episodes, “Fight” is one where viewers should really fight the urge to watch.

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Deleilan said...

Hello ATL&O, I've been reading your L&O blogs for the past few weeks and I enjoy them very much. No fawning admiration here, you shoot straight from the hip and I like it!

It's so funny we had the same thought — I was actually screaming "Throw your shoe, you *bleepin'* idiot!" at the TV while watching the dumpster truck scene. How an experienced investigator and his captain could both just stand there and not come up with any alternative way to attract the guy's attention is beyond me...

And Chester's "acting" was just cringe-worthy.

Truzen said...

I just saw this episode as a rerun at the gym and it was rather cringe-worthy. I found the writing for Coco's segment to be simply awful; her being appalled by the insinuation of being a "gold digger" than have "tape" for ready for the planned divorce. And I know that this is an older episode, but "tape"? She used a USB drive. The writers should of used "video", instead of "tape".

Walter White said...

I watched the episode again and I still think Coco did it good.