Thursday, May 9, 2013

Law & Order SVU “Poisoned Motive” Recap & Review

Law & Order Criminal Intent – oops, sorry, I mean SVU – "Poisoned Motive" was an episode that had no special victims. It did start with the shooting of SVU’s own Amanda Rollins by a sniper, right outside the SVU precinct. This episode DID feel more like a Law & Order Criminal Intent episode, even throwing in Alex Eames to enhance the vibe. This is not necessarily a bad thing, especially for Criminal Intent fans. The episode was rapidly paced, getting Rollins’ shooting out of the way quickly so fans didn’t have to wait long to see what the NBC promos and photos had already shown. The story provided a look into Fin’s undercover narcotics background and the ripple effects from his narcotics partner taking a bullet for him years ago. It seems now TWO people have taken a bullet for Fin; hopefully he will be doubly appreciative of and attentive to both his new AND his old partners.

There was plenty of action early on and the investigation moved quickly. Maybe I’ve been watching crime shows for too long, but the minute Gloria came into the picture, I knew she was the shooter. I have mixed feelings about the use of Gloria’s video message. I did like that the writers used a slightly different technique to work toward the climax. However, we already had a good idea of why she was shooting people;  listening to her give her reasons in the video,  while she and the others made their next moves,  slowed the pace. Did the writers think that her story was too complicated to follow so they had to recap it?

There were a few minor things that bugged me. In a previous episode this season, “Deadly Ambition,” Fin and Rollins handled a training exercise poorly, which got Rollins shot in the exercise. In “Poisoned Motive,” there was something about how Benson and Fin walked into the massage room that made me think that they detectives weren’t properly watching who was around them, especially after chasing those women out of the room. Did Fin plant that gun? I assumed he did, as they made a point of showing him get a gun just like it out of his desk drawer, and then showed the gun prominently as he “discovered” it on the couch. I know that detectives can deceive when interrogating others, but are they permitted to plant evidence, even it if is to simply get someone to talk?  And, since when is it OK to beat up someone in a prison holding cell and hold their head back and threaten to remove their eyes?  I guess when a shooting involves “one of their own” it’s OK to throw out the rule book. Just for once, I would like law enforcement (in any crime show) not to go off the rails when “one of their own” gets hurt. It gets…old.

I also wondered why, after Gloria refused to answer the telephone in the Hamill household that suddenly, after Mr. Hamill arrives on the scene and Amaro asks him to dial again that Gloria decides to answer? If she didn’t answer his previous calls, what made her pick up this time?

All that said – I really DID like this episode. It moved, it had an interesting, “outside the box” story, it had nice location shots, and it had Kathryn Erbe!

Here is the recap:

Mariska Hargitay – Detective Olivia Benson
Ice-T – Detective Odafin “Fin” Tutuola
Richard Belzer – Sergeant John Munch
Dann Florek – Captain Don Cragen
Kelli Giddish - Detective Amanda Rollins
Danny Pino - Detective Nick Amaro

Guest stars:
Kathryn Erbe - Alexandra Eames
Yul Vasquez – Luis Montero
Jessica Camacho Gloria Montero
Cathy Moriarty-Gentile – Lt. Howard
Jennifer Lim - Mrs. Chang
2 Chainz – Calvin "Pearlie" Jones
La La Anthony – Ana Tejada
Emilio Rivera – Escobar
Fredric Lehne – Warden Jones
Karl Kenzler – Sam Hamill
Coy DeLuca – Earl Talley
Colin Crest - Tom Hamill
Noelle P. Wilson – Giselle Hamill
Harry Chambarry - Doctor

At the SVU squad, the detectives are all busy bringing in a group of girls while Rollins attempts to fingerprint the woman who was holding them – Mrs. Chang. When Rollins tells them to take Chang to central booking, Captain Cragen says One PP wants a “show and tell” with her, adding that “Dragon Lady” sells papers so make sure that the cars are washed and the doors unlocked. When Amaro and Fin discuss wearing ties, Cragen adds that the spotlight will be on Rollins who was lead on the case. She humbly replies that it was a group effort. Benson approaches and informs them that the girls are talking and they will give statements. Fin tells her she’d better fix her lipstick.

As Rollins leads Mrs. Chang out of the precinct, and the other detectives follow with other suspects, a crowd of reporters and photographers take photos and yell out questions. But, from another view, someone is looking at the detectives through a scope. As Fin puts Chang into the car, Rollins heads over to the driver’s side. A shot is fired and Rollins is hit, falling against the car. As she slumps to the ground, everyone ducks and some bystanders scream. Fin attends to Rollins and points Benson and Amaro to a nearby rooftop where the shots originated. As Benson and Amaro race to the building, Fin calls in a 10-13, saying an officer was shot and instructs them on what they should do, all the while applying pressure to Rollins wound as she lay bleeding.

Benson and Amaro get to the rooftop yet find no one. They look down on the scene. Meanwhile, Fin carries Rollins to the back seat of a car and drives off

Later, Rollins is in a hospital room, under pain meds, and Fin walks in. She holds up the button for the pain meds and tells him it doesn’t hurt. He explains it was a shoulder wound, straight through and through. She’s loopy from the meds and smiles about it being a through and through. She asks if he got the guy that shot her, and then she falls asleep. Fin leaves the room to find Cragen and the detectives and other police waiting for word. He tells them she feels no pain; the bullet hit muscle and came out her upper back. There is no permanent damage, and ask if there are any leads. Amaro says there was nothing on the roof and there are no witnesses; he just melted away, Benson adds they are checking cameras and license plate readers. Amaro explains CSU pulled one 45 caliber full metal jacket slug from the sidewalk and it was pancaked so they won’t get much from ballistics. Fin thinks a 45 is a long range for a pistol. Amaro replies that one bullet and a rooftop sniper means this is a targeted hit. Benson wonders if they got everyone in the organization involved from Rollin’s bust. Fin replies that the Dragon Lady was mouthing off to Rollins. Cragen suggest they go and bring her back from central booking.

Back at SVU, Benson and Fin bring Chang back into the interrogation room, who complains about the disgusting conditions in the cell. Fin tells her it is 5 star compared to where she is going. She says she will post bail and be home in time for her Mets. When Benson brings up the attempted murder of a police officer, Chang looks surprised and Fin suggests her people did it and she is an accomplice. Chang counters that if one of her people did it, that pretty lady would be dead and those messages she got weren’t threats. Benson asks what were they, and Chang says her girls were happy and they wanted the detective to leave them alone.

Back at the hospital, Fin comments to Rollins that she did get threats from Chang’s people. Rollins replies it was just a few texts, to which Benson says Rollins did not report. Rollins says she did not want TARU and IAB going through her phone and when Cragen asks why is that, she explains that there were friendly reminders from people to whom she owed gambling debts. Cragen asks if there are any other surprises, and Rollins says nothing. Cragen suggests he step out of the room for a cup of coffee. After he leaves, Fin tells Rollins that they need to see her phone and have to follow this up. She says OK, and then says she heard from Earl Talley, and idiot friend of her sister’s who is mad she shot Jeff, saying it is hot air and she can take care of it herself. Benson replies – says the girl who is sitting in a hospital bed with a hole in her shoulder. Fin tells her they have this.

Later, Benson, Amaro and Fin forcibly enter Earl Talley’s apartment and find him bent over the toilet. Benson comments that they knock and he doesn’t answer, and Talley says he was sleeping. Fin asks him if he is sleeping while he is flushing, and Talley says he was sick and he doesn’t feel good. Amaro tells him next time try aspirin and not hillbilly crack. Fin asks him where he was at 10 in the morning and Talley asks who knows stuff like that?

Back at the hospital room, Fin tells Rollins she was right about Earl, he couldn’t shoot himself in the foot if he had a shotgun taped to his ankle. Amaro says at the time she was shot, a camera showed Talley at a bodega buying mountain dew and donuts. When Amaro adds that he and Fin are headed upstate to talk to her bookie Rollins doesn’t see what’s in it for them; if they shoot her, she stops paying. Fin reminds her they did not kill her, it could be a warning, Rollins also think that with Mrs. Chang, it is a big step from prostitution to cop killing and wonders if this is not about her. Benson gets a message that there has been another sniper shooting with the same MO – a 45 caliber FMJ.

At the emergency room at Brooklyn Mercy Hospital, as Benson and Fin arrive, Fin recognizes his former narcotics supervisor, Lt. Howard. Her son Mark was shot and he is in surgery. He was walking out of his apartment and it was a single shot from a rooftop sniper. As the doctor calls over Lt. Howard, Fin tells Benson he worked for her in his last 2 years undercover. Benson thinks it is no coincidence that his partner and Howard’s son were shot. As Howard begins to sob, Fin walks over to console her.

Back at SVU, Howard is there and Cragen offers his condolences on her son and thanks her for coming in. Amaro explains that the slug that hit her son was from a Les Baer Prowler, and Fin adds that is a high end pistol. Benson thinks they are dealing with a pro. Cragen asks Howard if that means anything to her, and she shakes her head no. Fin comments that the gun I sold school and thinks someone is mad at both of them for something back in the day. When they can’t recall anyone with a specific grudge, Cragen suggests they go over every old case and they will need contacts for everybody in the unit to see if anyone has come after them recently. Fin will make a call to an old partner Luis, who took a bullet meant for him. He lost contact with Luis.

Fin and Amaro arrive at the apartment of Luis Montero, who explains his daughter Gloria moved back in to help him out. He explains he has a lot of medical bills. The discuss the case with Howard’s son and Rollins. Fin says they think someone is coming after them and to keep his daughter and wife close. Luis explains that Rita passed 8 months ago. Gloria enters and Luis explains she is in the academy. Luis explains why Fin and Amaro are there. Gloria asks about Escobar, explaining that he tried to shoot Luis once, and he had a parole hearing but he did not get out. Luis said Fin would have known that if he was there, and Fin comments that he meant to but it was Christmas time and he had a lot of family stuff going on. Luis tells him maybe next time.

Outside the apartment building, Amaro comments that Escobar was top of the food chain and could still have reached out from the prison. Fin said it took two years, they worked their way through hundreds of dealers and others to get to him. Fin explains that the bullet was meant for him, they were making their last buy from Escobar and someone must have ratted him out. They next thing he knew, he had a .38 to the back of his head. Luis jumped in and the gun went off and Luis got his twice, in the hip and knee. Fin left narcotics that day. When Amaro said it was not his fault, Fin replies just like it was not his fault with Rollins, and tells Amaro to do himself a favor and walk behind him.

At Attica State Prison, Fin and Amaro speak with Escobar and when Escobar quietly taunts Fin about Rollins, Fin becomes irate and gets in Escobar’s face. But Escobar is not phased and Amaro tells him they are going through his visitors and friends and family and they will be up inside him so deep he won’t be able to walk straight. Fin and Amaro leave the cell.

Later, Amaro and Fin speak with the warden who explains the restrictions they have on Escobar but nothing seems to slow him down. When Fin asks if they tried to lock him in the hole, the warden said Escobar hit them with a bunch of lawsuits for inhumane treatment due to his health issues. When a clinic nurse backed his claim but he had turned her too; they fired her after he got her pregnant. She brings their little boy for visits.

Later, Benson speaks with the nurse, Ana, who says it was worth it to break the rules and they don’t know what Escobar is like. Benson reminds her two people were shot who were connected to putting Escobar in prison. They need to know if he is involved and if he is not, they move on. Ana wonders how he can be involved when he spends 23 hours in a tiny cell and he can’t make any calls and they censor his mail. Benson questions if, when Ana goes to visit him if he asks her to relay messages. Ana replies when she visits him, he plays with Benito, Jr. and they talk about feeding his son on a part time job and food stamps, keeping them alive and avoiding them being homeless and it is kind of a full time conversation.

Back at SVU, Benson tells the others that Ana lied, Benson checked her phone records and after visits to Escobar, she called a member of his old crew, Calvin "Pearlie" Jones. Fin knows him, saying he served 8 years for dealing blow and is probably back on the streets. Amaro says he looks like a punk and Fin says he used to be Escobar’s middle man and wonders if he hired out. Fin says he has it, and Cragen instructs him to take Benson. Cragen adds he spoke with Rollins and she will be there a few more days, she picked up an infection. When Fin asks if she will be OK, Cragen replies that’s the thing about hospitals – the longer you stay, the sicker you get. He tells them to find out who did this. Fin grabs his gun from his desk.

At the Sukey Tawdry Lounge, Benson and Fin walk in on Jones who is getting a “massage.” Fin finds a gun hidden on the couch – which looks like the one Fin pulled from his desk - and Jones denies it’s his, saying he is on parole. When Benson brings up the call from Ana, he replies whatever it was, he told that bitch he was not interested, adding that the dude is crazy. Jones gets on Fin for trying to bust him on a gun he planted, and tells him to do his thing. Fin tips over the massage table and as Jones falls to the floor, Fin and Benson pull their guns and ask Jones if now he wants to tell them about Escobar. Jones says this man will peel his face off if he talks, and sew it to a soccer ball and kick it into his mother’s yard, adding they might as well shoot him as he is no snitch.

Back at Attica, Amaro and Fin get rough with Escobar and while Amaro restrains Escobar, Fin punches him in the gut and asks him who is the shooter. As Fin continues to beat him, Escobar collapses to the floor. Fin asks if he loves his son and Escobar says that is his boy and he swears he will have to kill him. Fin holds up a jagged spoon and says he will have to take this and take his eyeballs out and he will never see his boy again. Amaro holds Escobar’s head back and tells Fin to just do it. But the warden buzzes into the cell and Amaro asks for a few more minutes. But the warden says he has some news. The nurse that Escobar knocked up just got shot and she is dead. One shot, straight to the head. Escobar collapses to the floor, sobbing while Fin and Amaro watch, wondering.

Back at SVU, Cragen asks the group if Ana being killed clears Escobar. Fin and Amaro have doubts he did it. Lt. Alex Eames enters and asks if this is the third shooting and it if is the same MO. Fin gives the details and mentions the last shooting was from the housing project. Benson asks if there is any surveillance, and Eames explains that is why she is here, they caught a break. That project is near a power plant which is under joint terrorism task force surveillance and they are going through it frame by frame. Benson thinks they are looking with someone who has a grudge against NYPD and Escobar. Eames wonders if it is a rival gang and Cragen asks Fin if anyone comes to mind. Fin says they had just broken the back of a gang and there was a full turf war going on, and Luis used to like to write things down when he got home, Fin admitting he never liked to leave a paper trail. Cragen tells them to take a look at Luis’.

Amaro and Fin are back at Luis’s looking through his files and Luis comments that taking out Escobar’s girl in broad daylight is bad ass. Fin says the good thing is the terrorist task force has the whole area on video lockdown so they are sure to get as solid picture. Amaro adds that they are looking for gangsters who didn’t like Escobar. Luis thinks it could be Bautista and his Dominican gang who were having a turf beef but they put them away too. Amaro gets a message and Luis asks if they have any other leads. Fin says the shooter was dead on from 100 yards with a Les Baer Prowler. Luis asks if it was a new one. Amaro says no, they just tracked it down, it as last reported used in a Brighton Beach gang shooting in 1997. Luis says it doesn’t ring a bell, but Fin asks about the Russian mobster and Luis says the names are hazy and he will find that box and get back to them. Amaro is carefully watching an uncomfortable Luis.

Back at SVU, Cragen recaps that Escobar warred with 2 gangs, and asks which one is on the hook. Amaro says neither, Bautista is gone and so it his gang, and Petrovich and his people are back in Moscow smuggling weapons and sex trafficking and life is great for them. Cragen wonders how a gun used then for a hit surfaced now, and Fin recalls the took down a rival dealer and that Luis worked with 2 Ukrainian undercovers. Benson asks if there is any way Luis would look the other way for one of them, and Fin says maybe for pocketing a piece but never going after one of their own. Amaro says he saw Luis’ face when then told him it was a Les Baer, it hit a nerve. Cragen tells Fin to sound out Luis and tells Benson and Amaro to track down the UCs.

In a bar, Fin  questions Luis about the Ukrainian UCs and says they are off the grid and ask if Luis ever heard from him. He said they sent him a condolence card when Rita passed. He adds they are in Europe working for Interpol or something. Luis put his arm around Fin’s neck and tells Fin he spent more time with him than he did his wife and if he want to ask something, just ask it. Fin asks about the Les Baer pistol and asks if those guys could have picked it up. When Luis says no way, Fin asks how he can be so sure. Luis admits that he did. He puts a box on the bar and opens it, and the gun is inside. Luis asks if there is anything else he wants to ask him. Fin looks stunned.

In the SVU interview room with Benson and Amaro, Luis says he had been trying to get a shot on Rollins for a few weeks, He heard about the perp walk and fired from a rooftop across the street from the precinct As Cragen and Fin watch from the other room, Rollins walks in and when Cragen asks what she is doing there, she says she is caught up on Duck Dynasty. She had to get out of there. She was sorry to hear about the Lieutenant’s son. They listen as Luis continues to explain the shootings. He says he shot Ana from the fifth floor landing. He wanted to wait until she put her little boy down but had to shoot before somebody came. It was one shot each time, one for each wrong. Benson asks him to tell her about the wrongs, and Luis says Escobar put him on disability and he lost his job. His wife did not get the medical attention she deserved and Escobar gets conjugal visits and his son is on Medicaid. He asks how is that right. Amaro asks why shoot Rollins, he never met her. Luis says Fin turned his back on him and didn’t come to his wife’s funeral but he has time for her? In the other room, Fin apologizes to Rollins for not seeing this coming. Rollins asks if they are sure if he is their guy, and Cragen asks her not to go Amaro on him. Fin thinks Luis has motive and he knows all the details about the shooting. Rollins replies that Luis also has a police scanner and the guy who shot her disappeared fast from a roof, and Luis is on disability. Fin says Luis handed him the gun, and Rollins counters that doesn’t mean he is the shooter, asking if anyone else has access to the weapon. Fin mentions his daughter Gloria who is 25 and in the police academy. Cragen comments that her mother just died and she is having problems with the insurance. Fin replies that everybody has problems with the insurance. Benson walks out of the interview room as Fin says he is sick that it is him but they have their man. Rollins thinks there is something else, the motives…  Benson counters that they heard Luis, he is angry, and Amaro mentions at Fin, Escobar, and the Lieutenant. Rollins wonders how come none of them are the ones that got hit, the targets are always next of kin, partners. She wonders if maybe Gloria is trying to make the people she is angry at hurt the way she got hurt when her father got shot. Fin says not Gloria, she is a sweet kid. Cragen, looking at his computer, says oh boy, did they know she was kicked out of the academy on a psychological, two months ago? Fin thinks Luis would have told them that, but Benson wonders if he did not know. Amaro thinks he pieced it together when he heard about the Les Baer. Rollins tells Fin that Luis took a bullet for him, doesn’t Fin think Luis would take one for his daughter? Cragen suggests they find her and find out.

As police and fire arrive underneath the Queensboro Bridge, they are on the scene where Gloria’s car was located, with a burned body inside. Fin asks if it is her, and Amaro says maybe, Benson adding she could want them to think it is and she is somewhere out there.

Later on the scene, Cragen tells a group of police officers about Gloria who was recently expelled from the police academy and is Army trained and took a general discharge two years ago. Benson adds that the body inside the car is Yolanda Brooks, a traffic enforcement agent who ticketed Gloria’s vehicle. Eames informs them that Gloria is an efficient marksman and the daughter of a retired detective who knows how they think and work. Benson adds Gloria is known to have purchased several automatic weapons in Philly at a gun show after her dismissal from the academy. Amaro says they have a report of a white delivery van stolen from the area and they have the plate number out on the license recognition system. Cragen instructs them that Gloria is to be considered armed and dangerous.

Back at SVU, Luis is waiting in the break room and Rollins brings him his things, saying he is free to go. Luis says they can’t release him, he confessed and is the shooter, telling them to book him. Fin tells him it is over, they have Gloria on video. He shows him a photo of her from the video leaving the scene where Ana was shot. When Luis says so what, Rollins says they get why he confessed, he knew they would go through the footage and find her eventually. Luis insists he did it, and Rollins reminds him that Gloria lost her mother. Gloria was 10 when she got shot and it must have been devastating, and to also have a disabled dad. Fin mentions the army discharge and getting fired from the academy, but Luis says he just found out. Fin asks when – when he confronted her about the Les Baer? Rollins says they found her car burned out in Queens with the body of a traffic officer inside. They appreciate he is trying to protect his daughter but right now she is the target of a massive manhunt and they are going after someone who shot a cop and he knows that doesn’t end well. Luis says those things she said is not his daughter and he knows his rights and if they want to keep talking he wants a lawyer.

Back at the scene, Eames asks Benson if Luis gave them anything, and Benson advises her that he is still claiming his guilt. Cragen thinks he is buying time for his daughter, Amaro races out of the NYPD Mobile Command Unit and says they have a sighting of the missing white van heading south on Woodhaven Blvd. Eames asks if she is going to the airport she will never get on a plane. Amaro mentions Howard Beach or the hospital, and Benson says the hospital has been closed since Hurricane Sandy. Amaro says that is where Gloria’s mother died. Cragen tells Benson and Amaro to go and they race off.

As Benson and Amaro arrived at the hospital, clearly damaged from the storm, Fin arrives right behind and they find a security guard dead, shot through the head. The complex is large so Benson suggests they start with the oncology room. More police arrive on scene.

Along with heavily armed police, Benson, Fin, and Amaro walk through the hallways and check out the rooms. They hear a voice and find a computer sitting on a bed with a video of Gloria talking. She is saying she considers herself a good person and a loving daughter, and as responsible citizen. She says the actions she has taken are a last resort to address the unconscionable mistreatment that her family has suffered at the hands of the NYPD and other bureaucracies.

As Gloria drives away in a car, Cragen and Eames listen to the message on the murder scene at the bridge. Gloria continues to state on the video that her father was shot multiple times in 1998 on an undercover operation and that Escobar was about to assassinate Fin and her father heroically threw himself on the weapon and saved his partner's life. As Gloria arrives at a house, she sits in her car and brings up the police scanner on her phone, her video message goes on to say that her father was given a disability retirement but he never recovered and he got depressed and began drinking.

Back at SVU, Rollins watches the video message. Gloria speaks of her mother’s illness and death and when she asked for time off to deal with her mother’s health, they told her that due to her inability to perform her duties. She would be offered a general discharge. Cragen, Benson, Amaro and Fin return with Eames and the rest of the team. Gloria’s message continues on, and she explains that to help cover the cost of her mother’s medical bills, her father took a security job and he former Lieutenant, Howard, upon discovering this, informed on him to the department then terminated his disability benefits. Elsewhere, still in the car, Gloria readies a gun, while back at SVU, her father watches the video where Gloria goes on to say that as a result, they could not afford her mother’s medical treatment to save her mother’s life an eventually they lost their home. Gloria explains her mother passed away in this room in physical pain and emotional distress in August of 2012. Gloria watches as a man and his wife and child step out of their house. Gloria mentions a month later she entered the police academy and was still depressed over her mother’s death and her father’s decline. In the car, she watches the husband pull out of the driveway. Her message goes on to say that the academy, rather than offer help, expelled her without due process, In the car, she takes the police scanner and that all of those who have destroyed her life will soon know what it is like to lose a loved one. As she steps out of the car and walks to the house, her message states she has police and military training and she knows their tactics and to not try and stop her. She walks up to the steps of the house. Dressed in military garb and carrying large bag.

Later, at a street near that house, the NYPD Mobile Command Unit, and ambulance, and several police cars on the scene. Eames mentions that Gloria is not picking up the land line and when Cragen asks if they know she is inside, Eames says there is no visual confirmation, she pulled the blinds. Eames explains where they have people stationed and they are working on hand held infrared. Amaro informs them that Luis swears there is no second home and no other family in their life, adding they have unmarked cars in front of her apartment and police academy, adding Gloria is alone and without friend and there aren’t many place she can go. Benson says the security footage from the hospital confirms it is a gray Ford Explorer and it is the car that she left at the hospital. Amaro comments that Luis said Gloria has a police scanner app on her cell phone and they should keep the chatter to a minimum. Someone calls out for Cragen, and it is Mr. Hamill, the man to whom the house belongs. They explain Gloria used to live in that house and they're not sure if she is in there. When he moves to go in they stop him and Cragen explains that need him to call his wife as nobody is picking up the land line. Benson asks when was the last time he tried her, and he says he tried 4 times on the way there. Amaro asks him to try dialing again, and he does so.

Inside, the phone is ringing and Mrs. Hamill and their so are sitting on the floor, tied up. She says she should pick up the phone and it is her husband and he will be worried. Gloria points a gun to her head and tells her not to move. As Mrs. Hamill begs her to let her son go, Gloria tells her to be quiet and she answers the phone, asking who is this. Mr. Hamill explains he would like to speak to his wife. Eames asks him to find out if everyone is OK. Gloria asks if they have a hostage negotiator there, and if she is telling him what to say. Hamill says his wife is pregnant and to just tell him she is alright. Gloria says his wife has a nice house and she is fine. Hamill says he is sorry he did not know it was her house. Gloria says it is not hers, it was her father’s, and she wants to talk to him.

Benson and Fin bring over Luis, and Benson says he can talk to Gloria but that is all. Luis wants to try to go in, but Fin replies they will not let him. Eames hands Luis a phone and tells him to keep her calm and tell her they will wait as long as they need to. Luis gets on the phone and she begins to cry. He asks what she is doing and she says she really screwed up. He says no, just let those people out. She says they are going to shoot her like a dog, and he says he will not let anyone do that to her. She says she is sorry and he says it is not her fault, it is his. He put too much on her and he didn’t see what he was putting on her. She says it is not his fault, it’s his. She asks if he is with him, and Luis asks who. Gloria says Fin, the one he took a bullet for. Luis says Fin is here, Gloria explains she has a gun on the little boy and the boy cries “Mommy!” Gloria tells Luis to tell Fin to come inside or he will shoot the boy and his mother,

Outside, they are wiring Fin and Cragen tells him they can wait this out. Fin asks until Gloria shoots them? Eames explains they will be listening in and they will have backup adjacent and they can be through the door in seconds. Fin says he can handle it, and looks to Luis. Benson comments to Fin that he knows none of this is on him, and Fin asks “do I?”

Fin walks toward the house and sees all the police standing by. He walks in the front door and calls out to Gloria. She tells him to lock the door. He hears Mrs. Hamill and her son crying and sees them on the floor. He tells them to put the gun down, and she says it is a good idea bus then says she will shoot them first. He says “whoa whoa” and not to shoot them, and suggests if she is going to shoot anybody, to shoot him. She points the gun at him and walks toward him, saying she will. He takes off the bullet proof vest, and he tells her to get it over with, he deserves it. She asks if he is feeling guilty, and it sounds like she wants him to shoot him. Fin says he was supposed to die 15 years ago from a bullet to the head, the one her father took. The way he looks at it, he has been playing with house money, He tells her that her father is a good man and if it wasn’t for him, he would have never seen his son grow up. Gloria angrily says that because of him and the NYPD her father lost everything – this house, her mother. Fin replies that what happened to her family he did not know – he should have, he should have stayed in touch. She shakes her head, replying that Fin didn’t call and he didn’t care and he didn’t know her mother was sick. Fin says he didn’t want to talk to her father and he was guilty, he didn’t want to think what happened to her father could have happened to himself. Fin explains that he can’t undo what happened or make it better, but he is sorry. She counters that he should tell her father that. Fin explains they can both do it, he is right outside. He tells her to put the gun down and give it to him, he does not want to let them kill her. He tells her he will take her outside and be her bodyguard. Gloria looks to her hostages and then says no, she will take him out too, she is not getting out of there alive, and neither are they. Gloria moves to shoot and Fin lunges for her, knocking her to the floor. A gunshot is heard and Eames tells the team to go in there. As Fin struggles with Gloria, the gun goes off again as the police call out “NYPD!” as they enter. Fin tells them nobody is hurt and asks to take Gloria out. He helps her to get up and then cuffs her.

 As he walks her out the front door, she sobs as she walks to her father. Amaro takes her away, and Fin tells Luis he is sorry about everything. Luis says no - she is alive – and then thanks him. As the Hamills reunited, Fin watches. Rollins approaches and Fin says she should not even be there. She explains that once she heard he went inside she had to come, he was there for her…and Fin finishes when she took the bullet for him. She thinks he would do the same, that is what partners do. Fin looks off to Luis and says, “Yeah” and as Fin and Rollins walk off, we fade to black.

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Lisa said...

I enjoyed the episode very very much. The show Fin ans being this hard and tough as nail cop it was nice to see him admitting the guilt he feels and kept buried for 15 yrs. Fin is my favorite character its so nice to see his persona evolve.
and as for the comments above about the unessary force. Warren tweeted that he felt they (nick and fin) did cross the line and didnt help the investigation.

lois said...

I found this episode to be really dull. I don't know why cause everyone else is raving about it. Svu is so hit or miss to me. Some Eps have me on the edge of my seat and some like last night's barely hold my attention. I am pissed that they promised eames and then made her role so minor that it was irrelevant. Having my hero Nick beat up on a prisoner left a bad taste in my mouth. It seemed out of character for him.

CLA said...

I have not seen the episode. I just want to say that SVU has risen through the ranks. And it shows strength every week. It is amazing the vitality of the series after 14 years.

BensonFan said...

In real life, would SVU be allowed to investigate Rollins' shooting? They didn't even try to explain this with a stern warning from Cragen that wink wink nod nod SVU can't investigate this but I know you guys will anyway.

I liked the episode but like Lois said I would not rave about it.

I'm glad Erbe/Eames was barely there.

Unknown said...

Funny - while I was watching this I had the same thought - it was a story that would fir Criminal Intent. I guess that even the writers need a change from SVU cases and nothing helps the show like a shooting of a main character. The "action" at the early part of the episode ws good but after that the episode dragged as it got closer to the end. I hated - HATED! - Gloria's drawn out video. Did I mention that I hated it?

The episode made it clear to me that Ice-T cannot act. His "acting" in this case was him lowering his voice. When he hugged Lt. Howard, he was stiff as a board and it felt fake. BTW, I have not been able to take Cathy Moriarty seriously since her L&O episode AND her role in "Soapdish."

Rollins in the white coat - she should have just painted a target on her back.

Amaro and Fin's behavior was ridiculous and not believable for Amaro. I don't care if Rollins was one of their own, I can't see Amaro doing what he did with Escobar.

The episode was likeable - in a B+ kind of way.

Shinnoky said...

I knew there was something I didn't really like about the episode....It's the Criminal Intent vibe. I HATE...HATE when the suspect gets their own scenes. That's kind of what I hate about current SVU aside from Amaro.

Petra S said...

I just loved this episode. Yeah I do know it wasn't perhaps solid all the way & no Ice won't get any Emmy awards but there was just so much Finanda feels all over it so I happily oversee any faults.

I was sorta surprised to learn Amanda was keeping so many secrets (hey the season of secrets) with the threaths from bookies, that Hill Billy and the Dragon Lady (loved that name btw). Loved how Cragen handled that one scene though. And that Fin seems to have the blinders on when it comes to her.

Eames/Erbe was underused yes. And it's sorta a bummer when you're a tv-holic and you see a familiar face and just know that character will have a bigger role in whatever's going to happen.

Leigh said...

I enjoyed the episode, but I was disappointed how underused Eames was. CI will always be my absolute favourite, and I was thrilled that she was going to be on again, but it just seemed like a token effort to have her there, and then not make any real use of her. Such a shame. Other than that, I enjoyed it - maybe because it did have such a CI feel to it.

aMasterofMooses said...

You can't buy "automatic weapons" at gun shows--only semi-automatic, which means one trigger pull fires one round.

lois said...

Amasterofmooses but that little truth wouldn't fit it with their agenda to ban guns. Because dontchaknow guns are eeevil. He

Maureen Gonzalez said...

I think this episode was another "ripped from the headlines" story based on the Christopher Dorner saga that took place out here in Los Angeles. The manhunt was very similar to the one that took place, the burned out car to throw the detectives off happened out here, and the wording in Gloria's video message was almost exactly the same as the wording in Dorner's manifesto, in which he vowed revenge against the LAPD and their family members who he thought had wronged him. As I watched the episode, I wondered why the story seemed so familiar. Then I realized it was the real life LAPD drama from a few months ago!

queenpinkhead said...

maureen gonzalez...that's exactly what i thought.
sadly, LAPD did screw him over

Chloe Arreola said...

To Me Gloria just looked like she was just a psychopathic murderer who is using all of this as an excuse. There's a thing called a lawsuit.