Law & Order: Criminal Intent

Season 9 Episode 9


Aired Sunday 9:00 PM May 25, 2010 on USA

Episode Fan Reviews (3)

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out of 10
47 votes
  • No originality. Not anymore anyway.

    Since the "D'Onofrio/Erbe exit" the show is going down. From it's writing to it's ratings. I don't understand it. You're not ripping episodes from headlines anymore. You're ripping from episodes of the other series. Especially SVU's! All you've done is Nichol-ized them. And you've pretended D'Onofrio/Erbe were never with the show!

    The ratings were good when the season started in with D'Onofrio and Erbe with the cast, soon as they left the ratings, writting, and stars went DOWN son!

    It's not right. I hope this show does get canceled. Last Tuesday you ripped off "SVU: Authority"! What's next tuesday, "SVU: RDK"? It seems like it. Boo!
  • Goldblum shines brighter than ever in this "Criminal Intent" masterpiece that almost feels like a movie.

    "Traffic" is one of those all too rare delights when watching cable television becomes such an emotional experience that you don't want to change the channel when the commercials roll for fear of missing the slightest trivial detail in what has become the most important hour of your life. After the murder of a high profile magazine editor with a penchant for younger women supplied to him by a colleague with contacts in the Russian mafia, the detectives start one of the best written and most deceivingly simple (yet necessarily complex) investigations that we've seen on "Criminal Intent" in months. This episode could have ended to the audience's satisfaction three or four times before the truth that we know is simmering begins to bubble and boil over with one of the best interrogation scenes in recent memory along with some risky but effective police work. This is Jeff Goldblum's finest hour so far as a member of the "Criminal Intent" cast, exposing a deeper understanding of Detective Nichols that the audience has been eager to see and that justifies his often flippant and insouciant approach to police work. We are finally given the opportunity to see another layer of the onion as portions of the character's dialogue allude to his father and what motivates Nichols himself behind the shield. Getting a rare glimpse into the heart of a detective (at times this episode also touches on Stevens's inner workings, for good measure) gives "Traffic" an almost film-like quality; that as the story unfolds we are treated to rare introspective snippets of superb television writing that unravel the characters and bring them into the real world in a way that this franchise has been criticized for neglecting in the past. This is the episode to beat so far this season, and with "SVU" having already gone on vacation and the original L&O having been reduced to a mere DVD box-set commodity by the Einsteins that pull the strings at NBC, it's nice to see "Criminal Intent" coming in off the bench to score some much needed points for the home team.
  • Solid look into the world of journalism. Just left a few strands too undeveloped.

    Once again, this is an episode powered by great acting. Jeff Goldblum is really coming into his role. Now, especially with the cancellation of the mother series, he is without a doubt the best male actor in the Law and Order franchise. We'll have to wait until the new Law and Order Los Angeles series debuts, but Goldblum is undoubtedly the new face of the franchise. And he holds his own very well. The character of Nichols is wonderfully quirky. As to the episode itself, it provides some interesting insights to the world of the journalism, the greed and power that can lead a mother to become jealous of her daughter. Again, very solid guest actors. My one slight beef with the episode concerns the structure of the plot. As has become almost a trademark for CI, the show opens by throwing a ton at the viewer. Both the Russian mob and the journalism world are thrown together here. The opening is fine, but the problem is that the Russian mob side disperses fairly quickly. We barely see the Russian mob at all. The result is that the episode becomes a bit too predictable. I think if they had kept the Russian mob strain in more, and intertwined it more, it would have become more suspenseful. As it was, as soon as the explained away the mob as being responsible for the sex ring, which was early on, it was obvious who the real culprits was/were.

    Nevertheless I did enjoy this episode. It was perhaps not as suspenseful as it could have been, but the writing (the dialogue), and the acting were good enough to carry the episode.