Law & Order: Criminal... Episodes

2001, TV Show

Law & Order: Criminal Intent Episode: "Brother's Keeper"

Season 6, Episode 15
Episode Synopsis: An investigation into the murder of the wife of a televangelist (Tom Arnold) leads to the discovery of a seedy relationship he had with a hustler that may have contributed to the crime. Meanwhile, Goren runs into his brother (Tony Goldwyn) while visiting his ailing mother (Rita Moreno).
Original Air Date: Feb 20, 2007
Guest Cast Theresa Randle: ADA Patricia Kent Rita Moreno Tony Goldwyn: Michael Goren Tom Arnold
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Season 6, Episode 15
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Length: 43:28
Aired: 2/20/2007
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February 20, 2007: Brother's Keeper Season 6, Episode 15

I was a little worried that Criminal Intent would get too political with this reality-based preacher-murder case, but I should have known better. While some series function as tools designed to shove their creators' political beliefs down viewers' throats (a brief kick to Aaron Sorkin while he's already down), the guys behind the Law & Order family know better than to talk down to the faithful. So while this episode raised complex questions about the adequacy of science, faith, even God, to fix what's wrong with the world and its inhabitants, it didn't offer any easy answers. For those who didn't make the real-life connection (which was surprisingly not trumpeted in the previews), this episode's case was based on the recent scandal that tarnished the National Association of Evangelicals when a male prostitute claimed he provided organization president Rev. Ted Haggard with some "booty bumps" of his own. (Side note: If you don't know what that term means, you're better off staying in the dark. I know I was.) The TV twist was the murder of the preacher's wife, which I didn't find particularly interesting or well-executed - labyrinthitis apparently does not involve a fear of David Bowie and/or singing, dancing puppets, which would be a lot cooler than a fear of Venice. And, once again, will somebody please stop playing with the slow-motion and motion-blur features on the Criminal Intent cameras? Just because you can, doesn't mean you should. That questionable judgment was actually balanced out by a solid performance from none other than Tom Arnold - yes, I did just praise a Tom Arnold performance outside of True Lies, and I will go clean out my desk immediately - as the aforementioned beefcake-and-crank-loving preacher man. I found him surprisingly believable as pious, self-loathing, tortured - and apparently very allergic to something on the CI set. Was it just me, or did he sound really nasal? Now, on to more important matters. I loved how much of Goren's mixed-up family life we got to see tonight. Now we know that both cancer and schizophrenia were correct answers in the "What's Wrong with Det. Goren's Mom?" trivia game. It was interesting to see how he brought his police methods into dealing with his mother's care - researching experimental treatments, calling in favors, bargaining with the doctor - though it was heartbreaking that it doesn't look like any of it will work in the end. Even more interesting, though, was Bobby's surprise conversation with his brother outside of the reverend's church - though he claimed that he'd cleaned himself up, the contrast between the two Goren boys couldn't be much starker: one a homeless, maybe ex-drug addict (an affecting Tony Goldwyn), the other one of the best detectives in the city. And it was truly touching to see Bobby playing his "brother's keeper," giving him money and even the coat off his back. And they really had me at the end there when Goren raced over to the morgue, only to find that it wasn't his brother laying on the steel table - just his coat, with an anonymous dead guy in it. Still, these story lines clearly won't be over till someone - either the mother or the brother, or both - dies. And along the way, we get to know even more about the previously mysterious detective who has become far more painfully human this season. Next Week: This is another ripped-from-the-headlines case I won't mind seeing CI take on - partially because all that spies-and-espionage stuff never really gets old. But mostly because of the killer twist: the victim, who has been given slow-acting poison by those ever-wily Russkies, will be working with Logan and Wheeler to solve his own murder. Is it too premature to say "genius"? show less
I was a little worried that Criminal Intent would get too political with this reality-based preacher-murder case, but I should have known better. While some series function as tools designed to shove their creators’ political beliefs down viewers’ throats (a brief kick to Aaron Sorkin while he’s already down), the guys behind the Law & Order family know better than to talk down to the faithful. So while this episode raised complex questions about the adequacy of science, faith, even God, to fix what’s wrong with the world and its inhabitants, it didn’t offer any easy answers.For those who didn’t make the real-life connection (which was surprisingly not trumpeted in the previews), this episode’s case was based on the recent scandal that tarnished the National Association of Evangelicals when a male prostitute claimed he provided organization president Rev. Ted Haggard with some “booty bumps” of his own. (Side note: If you don’t kn... read more

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Premiered: September 30, 2001, on USA
Rating: TV-14
User Rating: (3,110 ratings)
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Premise: This second 'Law & Order' spin-off focuses on New York detectives known as the Major Case Squad, which handles high-profile and unusually difficult investigations. Its storytelling differs from the original series in that it presents the criminal's perspective as well as the deductive methods used by the cops.

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