Monday, July 14, 2008

Criminal Intent “Reunion”: Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll – and Murder

Law & Order Criminal Intent’s episode “Reunion” had it all: sex, drugs and rock and roll. It also added in a dash of murder, which is what gets the Major Case detectives involved.

The episode opens with Rock-N-Talk TV show host Sylvia Rhodes (Joan Jett) getting a surprise when one of her show guests, rocker Jordie Black (Michael Massee) tells her on air that her son Milo (Noel Fisher) is going to be joining his band. She’s clearly concerned about the news, and later we see her son, in a highly agitated state, trying to contact her by phone. Before you know it, Sylvia is dead on her apartment floor.

Logan (Chris Noth) and Wheeler (Julianne Nicholson) get involved in the case, and Wheeler is somewhat star struck when she leans that Jordie Black, who was part of one her favorite group Twisted Strands, is involved in the case. Black and his wife Tara (Dana Wheeler-Nicholson) live next door to Rhodes, and Black has some sort of relationship with Rhodes’ son, Milo.

The detectives find themselves first checking out the episodes prerequisite red herring, Rhodes’ assistant Ava/Bianca (Denise Ramirez), who had helped herself to one of Rhodes’ credit cards, but didn’t have anything to do with the murder. As the detectives continue to investigate, they come to believe that despite Jordie’s work with abused and endangered children, that he could be an abuser himself. Wheeler, of course, is having trouble believing it to be true. But, they also have some suspicions about Rhodes’ attorney, Bo Levy (David Patrick Kelly), who was working on a revised will for Rhodes, and Milo, who has a drug problem and who also seems to have been recently cut out of his mother’s will.

About halfway through the episode, though, my husband and I had both come to two separate yet accurate conclusions: that Milo was Jordie’s son, and that Jordie’s wife Tara was the murderer. While the episode seemed to have some twists and turns, it was no surprise at the end when these facts were indeed revealed. The only thing I didn’t suspect early on was that Tara and Milo were having an affair. I had just assumed she killed Rhodes out of jealousy about Rhodes’ connection with Jordie.

This episode showed that Mike Logan still has a little bit of life left in him, when he broke down the door to Milo’s apartment. But the real focus seemed to be on Wheeler, who was clearly a fan of Jordie’s band, much to Jordie’s surprise, since she appeared too young to even know about him. What the episode could have done without was the corny recording session segment, which showed Jordie in clear lip-synch mode, despite the fact that the style of microphone was used to try to cover up the fakery. They also spent a little too much time on Jordie’s singing and his song. There is nothing worse than a bad lip-synch job than maybe a bad lip-synch job of a bad song.

Joan Jett’s star billing was somewhat wasted here, as she was dead before the opening credits. That facts was made clear and spoiled long before the episode aired, when a photo was released of Logan looking over Rhodes’ dead body.

Still, while the story had some twists and turns, there seems to be some drama and intensity lacking from the Noth/Nicholson episodes. It was great to see Logan break down the door, but that was about all the surprise excitement we were going to see. Wheeler’s reactions to one of her favorite rock stars involvement in the case were also interesting, but not interesting enough to create any real conflict in the case. Eric Bogosian, though, pulled off another episode where he actually was not half bad. I am trying to figure out why he seems to blow hot and cold at times, and why I just can’t warm up to him. The best I can do is hope in every episode that he just won’t annoy me.

“Reunion” turned out to be a somewhat predictable episode, but it still wasn’t all that bad. Still, I wish that they could find a way to reunite Mike Logan with his edginess. I jus hope they don’t wait until his last episode to do it.

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Music Wench said...

I enjoyed this episode, too. Apparently I was fooled by the whole thing. I was surprised about Tara and Milo and that Milo was Jordie's son.

I miss Logan's edginess but as I said before, I believe he's just matured.

The last Logan episode is entitled Last Rites and from the casting call it sounds rather ominous for Logan. I'm hoping they don't kill him off. Seeing Warrick killed off on CSI was quite disturbing and I thought unnecessary. Now if they killed off Sarah, I'd have been much happier.

samfan said...

It will be interesting how the episode will turn out with Logan leaving. I wonder how he will leave if they don't kill him off?