Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

Season 9 Episode 1

Alternate

4
Aired Wednesday 9:00 PM Sep 25, 2007 on NBC
7.2
out of 10
User Rating
335 votes
25

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

EDIT
Benson and Stabler investigate a suspected child abuse case only to learn that the woman who reported it is the real case.

Who was the Episode MVP ?

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Wonderful season premiere that deals with a woman with multiple personalties.

    10
    This episode was simply amazing. Wonderful acting by all the cast, including recurring actress Isabelle Gillies who plays Elliot's ex wife turned girlfriend Kathy and Cynthia Nixon, it seems, was born to play this role. She played each different character to perfection. This episode not only sparked the new season of SVU, but it started the beginning of Adam Beach's character Chester Lake, Kathy's pregnancy, and what I'm sure to be a season of dramatic moments and episodes. The plot was amazing, and yes the whole multiple personality thing is some what overused in TV and film, but it still made for a very compelling episode. Plus, I am a believer that people with multiple personalties do exist, and up until that last scene where it's reveled that Janis lied, I really believed that she had multiple personality. Plus we had some humerus moments with the short lived Sgt Munch, so that made me happy. The only thing I could find wrong with this episode is I'm not a fan of Adam Beach's acting.

    Amazing episode, the best season premiere we've had since the pilot.

    All in all 10/10

    EO shippiness 2.5/10moreless
  • When a child is reported missing the team finds out that it is the women reporting the missing child that is really the case.

    10
    I really like this episode it was awsome. I was on the edge of my seat waiting to find out what happened. I love how they had Elliot and Olivia based on the case. I loved how the woman had several personalities and then to find out that she was sain. I was not expecting her to kill her parents but it was an interesting story twist. Also when "Dory" held Elliots wife hostage and they had to go in when she had the knife. It was an awsome episode. I really loved it and I can't wait to see more episodes to this season. I love this show.moreless
  • Benson and Stabler get a report of suspected child abuse. While looking into this case, they will find more about this certain child abuser than they thought.

    10
    First of all, this episode was brilliant. I loved Cynthia Nixon's character most of all. She did an amazing job with her character, and the different levels she had to take this character. The whole case was twisted and chilling. Especially at the end, where we find that the whole case was pretty much planned out and faked. I rate this episode exciting, because it kept my attention the entire time. It was certainly an episode I look for in the series. Definately chilling, great guest stars, and most of all amazing writing. The writers did a great job with this one!moreless
  • An overall good episode with a nice ending twist.

    9.0
    The episode starts with a woman walking into the precinct and reporting a case of child abuse. When the detectives go to the apartment where the mother and baby live they discover that the woman that reported the abuse is the same woman that she accused. They set out to find her baby, and they find the woman, Janis, hiding in a cave and saying that she is only a kid. They take her to the precinct and Huang evaluates her. He says that she has Dissociative Identity Disorder. As the detectives progress in the case, they discover that Janis and her sister were abused by their father when they were younger. While the sister, Cass, was in prison, they developed a plot to kill both of their parents. The plot was for Janis to pretend to have Dissociative Identity Disorder, and get off for killing their parents. The find this out after the trial, so they cannot arrest Janis or it would be double Jeopardy, so they arrest her sister.



    I, personally, liked this episode. The twist at the end, when we find out that Janis had been faking the disorder, had me wondering what was going to happen. My personal favorite 'alternate' was Dory. I loved the scene were she was at Elliot's house with a knife and Kathy. This was a good start to a new season and I thought it was a winner. I recommend this episode.moreless
  • Great Episode.....until the end

    9.4
    Cynthia Nixon has to be one of the best guests to appear on the show. I thought she was great, her sister (on the show) and the stars of the show were all very good. It was the ending that was really skeptical. Thats where some episodes of Law and Order really bother me. Its like they can't admit that the "suspects" can be innocent or get away with a crime. the way it ended with stabler and DA Casey using a magnifying glass to find a law book in the background was really reaching for straws in my opinion. The way Nixon was the whole episode for them at the end to call her out as being fake i thought was really shoddy. i dont believe anybody could fake 5 personalities like that and in a courtroom of all places. then for Nixon to admit she was faking was bad in my book also because if someone was that smart, they would never have admitted it in the last 5 minutes of the episode... i mean, come on. This episode reminded me of the one where their was a rape victim against a teacher, and they ended it without telling us the verdict. first 50 minutes, 10/10, last 5 minutes, 0/10. Nixon's character and her sister were sexually abused by their Father while the Mother watched, so i didnt really feel bad for them. i would have given this a 10 if not for the really bad ending in my opinion.moreless
Mariska Hargitay

Mariska Hargitay

Det. Olivia Benson

Richard Belzer

Richard Belzer

Sgt. John Munch

Diane Neal

Diane Neal

ADA Casey Novak

Ice-T

Ice-T

Det. Odafin 'Fin' Tutuola

Adam Beach

Adam Beach

Det. Chester Lake

BD Wong

BD Wong

Dr. George Huang

Laura Allen

Laura Allen

Cass Magnall

Guest Star

Ann Morgan Guilbert

Ann Morgan Guilbert

Prince of Peace Church Employee

Guest Star

Stephen Spinella

Stephen Spinella

Morgan

Guest Star

Isabel Gillies

Isabel Gillies

Kathy Stabler

Recurring Role

Allison Siko

Allison Siko

Kathleen Stabler

Recurring Role

Joe Grifasi

Joe Grifasi

Heshy Horowitz

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (4)

    • One of Janis' "personalities" is "Dr. Anna Jung", which Munch states is a combination of Anna Freud and Carl Jung. Anna Freud was the daughter of Sigmund Freud, the father of psychoanalysis, and she carried on his work in psychoanalytic research after he died. Carl Jung was a Swiss psychologist, and he worked closely with Sigmund Freud in developing the theory of psychoanalysis. Freud's theory, called "Psychoanalysis", and Jung's theory, called "Analytical Psychology," are two of the most famous psychoanalytic theories, and both still have a heavy influence in the field of psychology.

    • John Munch has been promoted to Sergeant in this episode. Back in his days on Homicide: Life on the Street, Munch attempted to take the sergeant's exam with Kay Howard, but a 'comedy of errors' prevented his even reaching the exam. This time, he took the exam on a bar bet, and passed.

    • Fin refers to Munch getting shot by white supremacists. This happened during the episode "Raw".

    • Munch was temporarily placed in charge of the unit after Cragen was moved to another branch due to concerns involving Benson's actions (among other reasons).

  • QUOTES (14)

    • Chester Lake: I'm not saying I didn't see crazies in Brooklyn, but you guys are cuckoo magnets.
      Fin Tutuola: This is nothing. You should of been here when the white supremacist shot Munch in the ass. He still has to sit on a special pillow.

    • Fin Tutuola: (answers the phone) Special Victims Unit. (pauses) I think you need to adjust your TV. The baby we're looking for is Caucasian.
      Casey Novak: And the circus begins.

    • Janis Donovan: (as Dori) Where's your gun?
      Elliot Stabler: In my locker.
      Janis Donovan: Can I see it?
      Elliot Stabler: Well, I'll tell you what. If you tell us where April is, I'll be glad to show it to you.
      Janis Donovan: If I knew … (giggles) I would so tell you.

    • Dr. George Huang: (about Janis) Tell me about her alters.
      Olivia Benson Her alternate personalities? So far we've seen a shrink, a little girl and a tough Russian.
      Elliot Stabler: And I bet she does a mean Christopher Walken too. Look, she's playing us.

    • Dr. George Huang: From what you're telling me, she has Dissociative Identity Disorder, or what we used to call multiple personalities.
      Elliot Stabler: Right, and I call it a crock.
      Dr. George Huang: Well, you're not alone.

    • Olivia Benson: (regarding Cragen's reassignment) We're the ones who screwed up.
      Don Cragen: On my command. 1-PP calls that 'failure to supervise'.
      Olivia Benson: That's insane.
      Elliot Stabler: You want insane? Guess who they put in charge?
      John Munch: I had nothing to do with that. If drafted, I will not run. If elected, I will not serve.
      Fin Tutuola: You're lying like a politician. You took the Sergeant's exam right behind our back. What's up with that?
      John Munch: I took it last year on a bar bet.

    • Heshy Horowitz: (to Janis, in response to being dismissed) I still say you're making a big mistake. Call me if you change one of your minds.

    • Olivia Benson: (about the missing baby) Tammy told us that Burt took her. She was about to tell me where when Petra showed up and bitch-slapped Elliot.
      Elliot Stabler: Yeah, I'd sure like to have five minutes with Burt.

    • Casey Novak: (about Janis Donovan's multiple personalities) They're all the same person, so I don't care how many names she goes by, I'm putting a body in jail.

    • Kathleen Stabler: (to Elliot) She's not supposed to be pregnant! (to Kathy) You're too old, I'm in college - people will think it's mine!

    • John Munch: (seeing a spider on the filing cabinet) Great, the captain leaves me with three months of back reports and a tarantula!

    • Olivia Benson (referring to Cragen): Is the captain in?
      Fin Tutuola: You better catch him while you can.

    • Olivia Benson: Is she a patient of yours?
      Dr. Henry Carlisle: Sorry, I'm not at liberty to say.
      Elliot Stabler: You just did. Confidentiality only applies to patients.

    • Chester Lake: It was an honor serving under you, sir.
      Don Cragen: I'm not dead yet, Detective Lake.

  • NOTES (4)

    • International Episode Titles:
      Czech Republic – "Osobnost" (Personality)

    • Original International Air Dates:
      Czech Republic – June 15, 2010 on TV Nova

    • Special billing was given to Isabel Gillies (with) and Bronson Pinchot (and) for this episode.

    • The opening credits have been updated for season nine with new photos for all of the cast and the group photo. All the regular cast from last season are back, and Adam Beach has been added to the starring roster. In order, the opening credits read: Christopher Meloni, Mariska Hargitay, Richard Belzer, Diane Neal, Ice-T, Adam Beach, B.D. Wong, Tamara Tunie and Dann Florek. With nine people in the cast, this is the largest main cast that this show (and any Law and Order show for that matter) has ever had.

  • ALLUSIONS (1)

    • Cellmate: Hell, Cass read that book Sybil like it was the Bible.

      The cellmate is referring to the 1973 book written by Flora Rheta Schreiber about Shirley Ardell Mason, who is supposed to have developed sixteen different personalities to help her cope with abuse at the hands of her mother when she was a child. Mason's psychotherapist, Dr. Cornelia B. Wilbur, used hypnosis and sodium amytal interviews to draw the personalities out of her. In 1998, Robert Rieber of the John Jay College of Criminal Justice (neither of whom have any psychiatric training) concluded that Wilbur used the hypnosis and medication to manipulate Mason and create the appearance of MPD for the purposes of publishing a book, though that conclusion has been disputed as well.

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