Friday, September 25, 2009

Law & Order Criminal Intent: D’Onofrio, Erbe, Bogosian Out

There is a disturbance in the Law & Order Criminal Intent force. The Hollywood Reporter says that Vincent D’Onofrio, the linchpin of Criminal Intent, will be exiting sometime during the ninth season. Kathryn Erbe, his work partner and conscience, and Eric Bogosian, the oftentimes-deadpan captain, will also both be phased out. As reported earlier, Julianne Nicholson will not be returning, leaving Jeff Goldblum at the helm, and THR says that Saffron Burrows will replace her.

The full story is available here:
The Hollywood Reporter: Vincent D'Onofrio exiting 'Criminal Intent'

Personally, they may have just dealt a deathblow to the series. I believe that the Vincent D’Onofrio following is what has kept this show in the ratings, especially when it made the transition from NBC to USA Network. Goldblum did pick up steam as the season progressed, but many loyal “VDO” fans never completely warmed up to him. Since D’Onofrio and Erbe have been in their roles as Robert “Bobby” Goren and Alex Eames for so long, their absence will leave a huge gaping hole. Not to minimize Bogosian departure, but his role was never critical to the series. Still, while I wasn’t thrilled with his performances when he first started on the show, I’ve warmed up to him, as they seemed to give him more meaningful dialog this past season.

While we do not know the details behind this change, usually when a shakeup of this magnitude occurs, the actors themselves are not driving it. However, Vincent and Kathryn have been at the helm for a long time, and I have to entertain the possibility that one or both of them wanted out. Hopefully the real reasons behind this change will be made public, if not to at least help fans to move on.

Sad news for all fans of Law & Order Criminal Intent, who seem to be left with a shell of a show. It's criminal, I tell you.

Check out my blog home page for the latest Law & Order information, on All Things Law And Order, here.

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


Anonymous said...


This will be a problem for the show. D'Onofrio IS the show.

Nice knowing ya, Criminal Intent.

Anonymous said...

I've looked at most of the LOCI and VDO forums and many are saying they won't watch the show anymore and that USA may dumb it down.

Some do agree with you ATLAO that maybe D'Onofrio wanted out and was tired of the routine.

Anonymous said...

I am heartbroken. Why couldn't they at least keep Eames(Erbe)? She worked great with Nichols(Goldblum) in his season finale. I am extremely disappointed in this decision. What could Universal be thinking. I tell you, it will definitely be this series demise. No Donofrio no CI for me.


Shelly said...

While I did warm to Goldblum as the season wore on, it's still not going to be the same without Goren and Eames.

It does sound like the Hollywood Reporter story is thinking that cost had at least something to do with this. But I agree there are a lot of fans who watch ONLY for Goren, and with him and Eames gone, they won't watch.

The phrase that keeps going through my head is, starting with the next season, this won't be our daddy's CI anymore.... sigh....
Btw, All Things... I remember awhile back you posted those interviews with Kathryn Erbe and I believe Vincent as well? Would you be able to post the links to those again? I don't recall either indicating they were ready to be done with the show. Or did they and I just forget? Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Sorry but not am I really disappointed in Bogosian's departure I've always been underwhelmed by Burrows "talent"

All Things Law and Order said...

Shelly, here is the link to the interview if this helps (you may have to cut and paste, links sometimes come out funny in the comments section:

I don't think they really said they wanted out, but there were comments made about how much time it takes away from his family.

A. Lowe said...

It's all money. Erbe & VDO were probably still making network money and USA wants to cut some costs, so they go with one team of Goldblum and this burrows. Hopefully they still have a Capt though. And I know that a change of this magnitude wouldn't happen w/o Wolf's blessing.

Anonymous said...

I think this is a big shift, especially for the franchise show that has the smallest recurring cast. If Goldblum wasn't such a strong actor I probably wouldn't even try to watch season 9.

Anonymous said...

I'm hoping it goes well and that Goldblum is able to save the 9th season. If he does, I think there might be a renewal in interest for a 10th, both from previous fans who left in protest and from new fans.

I have to say, having watched all 8 seasons of CI over this summer, D'Onofrio's act was a bit wearying in times and in this last season, I really found myself looking forward to the Goldblum/Nicholson episodes more than the D'Onofrio/Erbe ones. I'm actually more upset about Erbe leaving than D'Onofrio. I have to wonder if it's partly for D'Onofrio's health; many people were commenting on his vast change in appearance over the past couple seasons and how he didn't look well.

Either way, I really hope that CI can pull a phoenix and raise from the ashes stronger than the past season made it out to be! If it doesn't, I hope it's not just because D'Onofrio left, because I really don't think he's been the strongest actor for at least a full season and the Goren character has really been going downhill in appeal since they split the show between the two pairings.

Anonymous said...

I'm late to the news, and only wanted to say that in my household (and my mom's), Eames is the bigger draw than Goren. I liked Goren at the beginning of the series, but lately his energy is so far down that he seems to be on some sort of medication. D'Onofrio appears to be just going through the motions without any investment in anything. But, we really do not like Goldblum's character, at all. He grates 100%. Like a Goren-lite, and oh so Quirky! Gag.

So, if Eames isn't back, and neither is Wheeler, we won't be back. Not a fan of Burrows's work, either, and frankly I'm tired of Dick Wolf pulling in pretty faces who can't act when things get dicey.

Very, very disappointing news.