Season 8 Episode 13

The Ripple Effect

Aired Friday 9:00 PM Feb 10, 2012 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
97 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary


A bike courier, minus his bike, tumbles to his death down the 187th Street Steps and a man out for a jog is found impaled by a hunting arrow against a tree. There is no apparent connection between the two except for an unusual type of chewing gum. Meanwhile Mac and Jo try to get to the bottom of Sid's mysterious absences.


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  • My Favorite Episode in Some Time

    It's unfair to compare anything to the season opener (Indelible) because of the subject matter and the wonderful way it was presented but, that episode aside, this is my favorite since Stella (who I still miss) left.

    I always enjoyed the earlier episodes which featured two cases. I felt they added something to the show and were unique compared to other procedurals which focus on one case per show. This show had not only two stories which confusing causes of death, but also mysterious happenings with Sid and Mac's friendship with his late partner's sister, which was a heartwarming way to conclude the episode.

    I think what I love most about CSI: NY are the relationships and how the team genuinely care about each other. Yes, team dynamics and well written plot lines are vital to any show, but I enjoy these more. Whether it's Jo reminding Sid that lawyers and accountants are not the same as friends, Danny and Lindsay teasing each other in the park, Mac looking out for Christine and the success of her business, Jo playing the piano or any number of those 'milk of human kindness' moments that permeate the series, they add up to remind us of the innate goodness of most people and that's nice to see as a counterbalance to what we see far too much of on the news.moreless
  • Mac and the team look into two separate deaths which appear to be unrelated, but the subsequent investigation proves otherwise.

    "The Ripple Effect" seemed to not know what it was going to be about. The focus of the story shifted away from the investigations to Sid striking it rich with his new invention (A storyline from a previous episode that I never cared for in the first place) to Mac's friendship with the widow of his late partner. I almost forgot there were two cases featured here. The cases themselves had a hollow feel to them once they reached their respective conclusions. Despite that, there was a certain appeal to it that kept me interested. There are many memorable episodes of "CSI: NY" but "The Ripple Effect" is not one of themmoreless
Sela Ward

Sela Ward

Josephine "Jo" Danville

Gary Sinise

Gary Sinise

Detective Mack "Mac" Taylor

Carmine Giovinazzo

Carmine Giovinazzo

Danny Messer

Anna Belknap

Anna Belknap

Lindsay Monroe

Robert Joy

Robert Joy

Dr. Sid Hammerback

A.J. Buckley

A.J. Buckley

Adam Ross

Alex Weed

Alex Weed

Scott Perfito

Guest Star

Tim Barraco

Tim Barraco

Greg Barbera

Guest Star

Connor Barrett

Connor Barrett

Toby Delafont

Guest Star

Megan Dodds

Megan Dodds

Christine Whitney

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (9)

    • When Mac meets Christine at her restaurant, Christine asks if she can get him anything and Mac says 'coffee'. However, in the episode 8x10 Clean Sweep, Mac says that he gave up coffee a year ago.

      When Mac leaves the restaurant, he is carrying his food container with the lidded coffee on top. When he reaches the vehicle and opens the door, he hands both towards Jo. She takes the coffee thanking him, showing that the coffee was for Jo to drink and not him.

    • Goof: In the previous episode 8x12 Brooklyn Til I Die Christine refers to his brother as 'Steven' and in this episode he is referred to as 'Stan'.

      Moreover, a Stan Whitney was featured in episode 2x24 Charge Of This Post during a flashback that showed Mac during his military time but who had fallen in battle in Beirut (listed as 'Corporal Stan Whitney'). During the flashback we see Mac as a police officer after he had already left the military and joined the police, so Stan Whitney could not have been alive when Mac was on patrol.

    • Goof: When Scott Perfito describes his chase, he says Barbera fell after running down the first 20 feet or so of the 187th Street Steps which is also seen in the flashback view. Barbera falls on the first stairway and then rolls all the way down the next four sets of stairs coming to rest on the very last step.

      The 187th Street Steps consist of five continuous 26 step long sets of stairs, separated by four landings each about 10 feet long. It is doubtful a falling person would roll past even one of those landings, never mind all four. The steps are also not as steep as they are made to appear in this show.

    • Goof: When Greg Barbera is first shown dead his right hand is resting open on his thigh. However, when Jo is taking pictures of the body, Greg's right hand is closed and resting on his belly.

    • Goof: The stunt running down the fire escape has noticeably longer hair than Flack and no gray hair.

    • Sid has sold the patent of his Hammerback Sleeper (which we first heard about in episode 8x06 Get Me Out Of Here!) for $27 million to a Japanese company which will market it as an anti-snoring pillow.
      Scenes from episode 8x06 Get Me Out Of Here! can be seen during this episode.

    • Jimmy Philbrook's case is #2011/71012.

    • Christine Whitney has opened a restaurant six month ago called "Carolyn's Cookware".

    • Jo plays the piano. Sid has bought one and is trying to learn how to play it.

  • QUOTES (17)

    • Jo: I knew I shouldn't have done the Stairmaster this morning.
      Mac: It's a long way down.
      Flack: It's even longer coming up, trust me. 130 steps. I finally counted after the third trip.

    • Jo: (About Greg Barbera, who has been found dead after falling down 130 steps) This kid took one hell of a fall.
      Flack: The question is: was he pushed?
      Mac: Looks like we'll have to back up a few steps to figure that out.

    • Mac: We still don't know whether his death was an accident or murder.
      Hawkes: No. But judging by the shape that this kid is in, if I still had Sid's job and had to answer that question, I'd probably take the day off, too.

    • Lindsay: The purple wad that you found? It's violet-flavored gum.
      Jo: Violet flavor? Like the flower?
      Lindsay: Yep. Makes for a nice bubble bath, but I don't think I'd want to chew it.

    • Christine: (answering the phone) Hello, Mac Taylor.
      Mac: Christine, did I get you at a bad time?
      Christine: No, perfect, actually. How do I murder a produce guy and get away with it?
      Mac: Well, you could always hit him over the head with a coconut, but you'd be better off using that for a piña colada.
      Christine: Yeah. Point very well taken. Besides, overpriced coconuts probably warrant something closer to a misdemeanour rather than a full-blown felony, right?

    • Flack: (To Scott Perdito after falling down a fire escape when accused of pushing Greg Barbera down some stairs) Karma's a bitch.

    • Scott Perfito: I should be in a hospital resting.
      Mac: They already gave you a clean bill of health and released you into our custody, Mr. Perfito.
      Scott Perfito: Well, my arm still hurts and my head hurts, too.
      Flack: How about your pride?

    • Danny: (About a man found dead pinned to a tree by an arrow) Vic's name is Jimmy Philbrook. He was spotted by a group of lnwood Hill nature enthusiasts. I'm thinking they're probably not so enthusiastic anymore.

    • Danny: Climbed a lot of trees back in Montana, didn't you?
      Lindsay: Damn straight, city boy.
      Danny: Was that before or after you started cow tipping?
      Lindsay: (Fakes a laughter) Wow!
      Danny: What?
      Lindsay: (Pretending) Is that a snake?
      Danny: (Jumping out of his skin) Where? What?

    • Jo: When it comes to crime, there are no coincidences.

    • Jo: Sid, you've been absent from work all week.
      Sid: Oh, well...
      Jo: You're sweating like a pig. You've been rubbing your palms together like you're trying to start a fire. And you've done that little thing with your glasses about a half dozen times since I walked in here. It's Profiling 101. You're a nervous wreck. Come on, tell me what's going on.
      Sid: Uh, no, my, uh, attorneys and accountants told me not to say anything.
      Jo: Well... with all due respect, Sid, your attorneys and your accountants aren't your friends.

    • Sid: (About the Hammerback Sleeper) It was purchased by a Japanese firm. Apparently, they're going to market it as an anti-snoring pillow.
      Jo: Anti-snoring, huh? God, I could've used that with my ex-husband. I would've paid dearly for that.

    • Jo: Sid, are you okay?
      Sid: Uh... actually, no. I'm, um... incredible. Jo, they bought my patent... for $27 million.
      Jo: What?
      Sid: I'm a very rich man and... and I have no idea what to do about it.

    • Flack: I told my guys to be on the lookout for bright orange zip ties, you can imagine some of the witty responses I got.

    • Flack: All due respect to her zip tie cacti, what I find most interesting is the address on her permit.

    • Flack: That's the craziest thing I've ever heard but it actually makes sense.
      Mac: One crime leads to another.
      Hawkes: And another.
      Danny: And another.
      Lindsay: And another.
      Jo: And that, ladies and gentlemen, is known as the Ripple Effect.

    • Sid: (Playing a piano at the morgue) Jo. Look, I bought a piano.
      Jo: Yeah, I can see that.
      Sid: Well, I took your advice and decided to celebrate.
      Jo: Well, that's great. But, um... why did you have them deliver it here?
      Sid: Well... I guess it was a little impulsive, but there's no way it'll fit into my eighth-floor apartment. I guess I'll just have to get a new one of those, too.

  • NOTES (3)

    • Despite featured in the opening credits and for two weeks in a row, A.J. Buckley (Adam Ross) does not appear in this episode.

    • Music Featured:
      Hang It Up by The Ting Tings.

    • Original International Air Dates:
      Canada: February 10, 2012 on CTV.
      United Kingdom: April 21, 2012 on Channel 5.
      Czech Republic: June 6, 2012 on AXN.
      Turkey: December 3, 2012 on CNBC-e.
      Germany: December 3, 2012 on Vox.
      Norway: December 5, 2012 on TVNorge.
      Finland: June 4, 2014 on MTV3.


    • Danny: Big Brother's watching you, buddy.

      Big Brother is the head of a country in the novel 1984 by George Orwell, where everyone is under constant surveillance.

      Big Brother is also a television show in which a group of people are to live together in a big house and isolated from the outside world while constantly being watched by television cameras broadcasting the experience.