Law & Order: Criminal... Episodes

2001, TV Show

Law & Order: Criminal Intent Episode: "Players"

Season 6, Episode 17
Episode Synopsis: A judge's son is found shot to death following a rapper's trial. Meanwhile, Wheeler investigates her estranged father's alleged illegal activities.
Original Air Date: Mar 27, 2007
Guest Cast John Dossett: Judge Nicolas Fenner Griffin Dunne Michael Stahl-David: Riordan Shea Theresa Randle: ADA Patricia Kent
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Season 6, Episode 17
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Length: 10:06
Aired: 3/27/2007
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March 27, 2007: Players Season 6, Episode 17

Here's the thing about giving your detectives more backstories: They can't come at the expense of interesting cases, which are always the driving force behind every Law & Order incarnation. But that's exactly what's been happening on Criminal Intent lately. Surrounding nearly every emotional glimpse into Det. Bobby's troubled family life, there has been a by-the-numbers case that wouldn't have stood so well on its own, but was buoyed by the "behind-the-scenes" drama. And tonight's episode was the best (or worst) example of this problematic duality I've seen yet. On the one hand, we had a whole bunch of clich├ęs: another semi-rapper-related killing, more spoiled rich kids turned criminals, and such a convoluted web of motives and machinations, it was hard to keep all the "players" straight, let alone care. And that rapper's name was Apocalypto? Seriously? Of course, it's a well-known fact that nothing gets you more street cred than naming yourself after a Mel Gibson flick. Though, come to think of it, Braveheart, Mad Max and even Lethal Weapon wouldn't make terrible rap monikers. Bird on a Wire, not so much.... Anyway, getting back to the other hand, we had Wheeler's interesting backstory involving her not-so-dear and possibly departed father, a semi-crooked lawyer mixed up with a whole lot of the criminal element. While this all could have been fleshed out a little more (and possibly will be in the future), it did give Julianne Nicholson some dramatic opportunities, which she seized on in an appropriately Wheeler fashion. Seeing the usually steely detective's face fall and tears well up in her eyes as that wine merchant talked about all the ways Mr. Wheeler had been there for him growing up was truly painful watch. And that closing scene, which featured a graceful camera pullback revealing a field of freshly reopened mob graves - with old bones spread out on tables - was haunting, both in its imagery and its possible implications for Wheeler. So "Players" was a mixed bag, to say the least. This exchange pretty much sums up my feelings about tonight's episode. My wife, a very occasional Law & Order watcher, asked me, "How was the show?" My response: "Eh. Next week looks good." Speaking of... Next Week: A killer targeting deaf women should make for an interesting case. This idea has been done before on the big screen - anyone remember Marlee Matlin's Hear No Evil? Anyone? - and probably on the small screen, too. But I'll take a somewhat-gimmicky, straight-ahead thriller over a convoluted mishmash any day of the week. Bring on the G&E. show less
Here’s the thing about giving your detectives more backstories: They can’t come at the expense of interesting cases, which are always the driving force behind every Law & Order incarnation. But that’s exactly what’s been happening on Criminal Intent lately. Surrounding nearly every emotional glimpse into Det. Bobby’s troubled family life, there has been a by-the-numbers case that wouldn’t have stood so well on its own, but was buoyed by the “behind-the-scenes” drama. And tonight’s episode was the best (or worst) example of this problematic duality I've seen yet. On the one hand, we had a whole bunch of clichés: another semi-rapper-related killing, more spoiled rich kids turned criminals, and such a convoluted web of motives and machinations, it was hard to keep all the “players” straight, let alone care. And that rapper’s name was Apocalypto? Seriously? Of course, it’s a well-known fact that nothing gets you m... read more

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Premiered: September 30, 2001, on NBC
Rating: TV-14
User Rating: (3,134 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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