Law & Order

Season 14 Episode 2

Bounty

1
Aired Monday 10:00 PM Oct 01, 2003 on NBC
7.7
out of 10
User Rating
31 votes
3

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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Bounty
AIRED:
The investigation into the murder of a bounty hunter leads to a reporter with compromised ethics and a dubious defense strategy.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • The issues that this episode tries to deal with are well laid out... too bad the plot makes absolutely no sense.

    6.0
    I've seen about every single episode of Law & Order multiple times, and I'd have to put this one on my Top 10 list of episodes that make no sense. If you really sit and pay attention to the way Briscoe and Green track down the killer, you realize that the investigation really doesn't lead where they pretend it does at all. For example, when they first meet Kellog, they assume he had a phone interview with Mitchell Moss, the rapist. Upon reading his article, they realize that Kellog has described a tick fluttering over Moss's eye that no one else has ever noted. They attribute this to either a "literary flourish" or assume that Kellog met with Moss. Ok, fine so far... They talk to Kellog again and he admits that he really did meet Moss. Then they try to put the squeeze on him to figure out where. Only problem is... he didn't really meet with Moss, therefore Kellog really had made up the tick that led them to conclude that he had in the first place. Under those circumstances, why didn't Kellog just go back to saying he talked to Moss on the phone and that he made the tick up? Since he made it up anyway... Then, they start looking for a reason why Bobcat came east looking for Kellog. They decide it's because something in the article tipped him off that Kellog was lying. Fine so far... but really, who's going to believe that a bounty hunter would conclude that some reporter was lying just because he confused where Moss sat at a baseball game? Ludicrous, but they had to reveal that Kellog made the article up somehow or they couldn't carry on with the rest of the story.



    I don't have the episode memorized, so I can't point out where the rest of the goofy crap was, but there's plenty of it. It's clear that the writers didn't care about making sure the plot made sense, about the rapist character they added, or even the guy who got murdered. All they cared about was doing an episode where they could discuss equal opportunity. I think it was a nice idea to have an episode about this... I really wish they'd just taken the time to make sure it was a decent episode by ironing out the sadly obvious plotholes. Watch it again if you don't believe me... the dots don't connect up.moreless
  • A well-written look at a social problem.

    10
    This is one of my favorite L&O episodes, taking on a difficult social issue without being preachy, presenting an interesting and well-thought out case, providing some interesting one-shot and recurring characters and allowing the main actors to shine as well. The return of nebbish lawyer Randy Dworkin was welcome as he and McCoy sparred both in and out of court. The problems for and against affirmative action were laid out quite nicely (My favorite quote was Arthur's talking about five justices deciding that the Fourteenth Amendment did not mean what it says). Interesting one shot characters like the call girl Cosette and the Vietnamese nail stylist (Bob from Philly, Ten Dollar Tip). Also Lenny's gut hunch about the manicure, over Green's exasperation, eventually being the break in the case was pretty good. And a controversial touch at the end where Kellog agreed to go to prison, rather than have the Black community see that he was seeing a married white woman. That move took some guts on the writer's part, as it seems to play into the much-debated idea that successful Black men seek out White women as a validation of their success. McCoy's final line in the show is one of the all time greats.moreless
  • One of the more amusing instances when McCoy contends with an aggravating defense attorney, in an interesting case.

    9.6
    There are only a few instances when defense attorney Randy Dworkin makes an appearance, but his presence makes "Bounty" one of the most amusing and surprisingly intellectual episodes from the fourteenth season. His dynamic with McCoy, which premiered in an earlier season, leads to nothing short of annoyance when he insists on defending a murderer with a racism plea, only this time it is on the basis that current government and political correctness demand too much of the black general public. It's an intense and fascinating episode from a purely racial perspective, since McCoy winds up fighting the harsh battle of arguing that there is no distinction between the races, while his counterpart feeds an age-old frenzy in the public eye.



    It's an episode that is very plausible given current concern about racism, and the characters both make valid points. Dworkin longs for a society in which there is no little racial box on applications, and McCoy detests anyone who uses racism to attempt to circumvent the justice system. The two best scenes are them squaring off against one another's politics, in the private sector. Dworkin is one of the most annoying and yet amusing attorneys ever to make an appearance on the show. If you're not laughing along with the jury midway into his opening, you've got more stamina than the rest of us. He hops about throughout, while McCoy stands in his corner like a hawk, annoyed with an irritating little frog jumping around at his feet. I'm just sorry the writers didn't force Dworkin on us more often, because he certainly makes watching L&O fun.moreless
Elisabeth Rohm

Elisabeth Rohm

ADA Serena Southerlyn

Jerry Orbach

Jerry Orbach

Det. Lennie Briscoe

S. Epatha Merkerson

S. Epatha Merkerson

Lt. Anita Van Buren

Sam Waterston

Sam Waterston

Exec. ADA Jack McCoy

Jesse L. Martin

Jesse L. Martin

Det. Ed Green

Fred Dalton Thompson

Fred Dalton Thompson

DA Arthur Branch

Peter Jacobson

Peter Jacobson

Randy Dworkin

Guest Star

Reuben Jackson

Reuben Jackson

Brian Kellogg

Guest Star

Richard Topol

Richard Topol

Arnie Gleason

Guest Star

Leslie Hendrix

Leslie Hendrix

Dr. Elizabeth Rodgers

Recurring Role

Andrea Navedo

Andrea Navedo

Ana Cordova

Recurring Role

Karen Shallo

Karen Shallo

Judge Anna Shiro

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (1)

    • Goof: Dworkin refers to "Goodwin, Chaney and Schwerner" when arguing with Jack at the bar, but presumably he meant Goodman, Chaney and Schwerner, the civil-rights workers who were killed in Mississippi by the Ku Klux Klan in 1964.

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Dr. Elizabeth Rodgers: The good news, death came quickly.
      Ed Green: And the bad news?
      Dr. Elizabeth Rodgers: My cable's on the fritz.

    • Lennie Briscoe: Do you know a guy named Arnie?
      Cosette: Arnie? I got a news flash for you, guys usually don't give their real names.
      Ed Green: The guy who calls himself Arnie.
      Cosette: He's a once-a-weeker.
      Lennie Briscoe: Where do you meet him? (Cosette takes a long pause) I got news for you, Cosette, there's no such thing as hooker/client confidentiality.

    • Brian Kellog: What would happen to that trust if I started betraying sources?
      Ed Green: Your crime writers would have less to do.
      Brian Kellog: And if Deep Throat couldn't rely on Woodward and Bernstein's confidences Nixon might be on a mountain.

    • Lennie Briscoe: Birds of a feather still drink together.
      Ed Green: Especially reporter birds.

    • Lennie Briscoe: The car is registered to a Robert Rafelle.
      Anita Van Buren: Better known as Bob.
      Lennie Briscoe: The Philly police know him well. Bobcat Rafelle, have gun will travel.
      Anita Van Buren: Even if it's unregistered.
      Lennie Briscoe: Word is that Bob is an outside of the box kinda guy.

    • Lennie Briscoe: Guy checks into a sleaze ball motel, pays cash and has chili dogs for dinner doesn't strike me as a guy would spend 20 bucks on a manicure. (Looks at Rodgers.) Elementary, my dear Rodgers.

    • (Green picks up bloody ashtray.)
      Lennie Briscoe: I usually take the towels.
      Ed Green: Looks like a couple blows to the skull did the trick.
      Lennie Briscoe: That's why I always get a non-smoking room.

  • NOTES (0)

  • ALLUSIONS (4)

    • Ed Green: F. Scott McStupid, next door, said the music went on around nine.
      This dialogue compares the wannabe novelist who discovered the body to F. Scott Fitzgerald, author of The Great Gatsby.

    • Randy Dworkin refers to having framed photographs of "Chaney, Schwerner and Goodman" in his office. James Chaney, Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman were civil rights workers who were murdered in Mississippi during the summer of 1964. Chaney was an African-American man from Mississippi; Goodman and Schwerner were Jewish and lived in New York. The three of them had been in Mississippi trying to register African-American voters when they were kidnapped and then shot to death. These murders were the inspiration for the 1988 movie Mississippi Burning.

    • Brian Kellog: And if Deep Throat couldn't rely on Woodward and Bernstein's confidences . . .

      Deep Throat was the inside source who gave information to Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein during their investigation of the Watergate scandal. For decades, this source was known only by the nickname Deep Throat and his identity was a matter of widespread speculation. Eventually, former Deputy FBI Director Mark Felt came forward to say that he was Woodward and Bernstein's source.

    • This episode appears to have been ripped from the headlines of the Jayson Blair scandal. In May of 2003, Blair resigned from his position at The New York Times after his credibility came under question. Subsequent investigations revealed that many of the stories Blair had submitted over the years were in part fabricated, and in other part plagiarized. Parts of this episode also appear to be ripped from the headlines of the Andrew Luster capture. In June of 2003, bounty hunter Duane Chapman (Dog the Bounty Hunter) had tracked Luster to Mexico. Chapman was charged with kidnapping for his role in capturing Luster.

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