Law & Order

Season 20 Episode 14

Boy On Fire

2
Aired Monday 10:00 PM Mar 01, 2010 on NBC
AIRED:
8.5
out of 10
User Rating
32 votes
4

EPISODE REVIEWS
By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

The detectives investigate the death of a high school student, which leads them to questioning the adults in his life.

Who was the Episode MVP ?

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Not a bad episode but certainly not a great one.

    5.0
    The pacing makes it a bit confusing and it's hard to believe that some of the characters really have the motives that the story gives us for their various actions, or perhaps that's just because a lot of the acting is extremely weak, namely the bleeding heart principal of the high school that the suspects attend who is a one woman cliche factory. If the writing on this series was ever to be considered sub par it would doubtlessly be this episode's fault. It has a stiffness to it that feels like an amateur wanting to write a deep and twisted "Law And Order" plot, but only managing a twisted "Law And Order" outline. Good ideas surely went to waste this go-round.moreless
  • Great Episode

    8.0
    The start of the episode was innocent and later chilling. A boy was burned alive, what would make a person so angry to burn him. We soon find out but I won't spoil it for you. This episode was amazing the characters, perps, the principle each had great depth. The explanation for the gruesome crime is that surprised me and probably surprise you as well. The episode grabbed from the beginning and really touched me at the end. When the killer maned up to his crime and his mother cried for him to come back. The episode showed that the detectives and the lawyers dedicated to their jobs and don't let many cases affect them. After the case they go on with their lives and take on a different case.moreless
  • Good plot line but a lot of missed opportunities.

    8.0
    I definitely enjoyed this episode- it was mysterious-even though the DA's office was fairly certain of who was responsible, it was also a constant question- which I feel is reflective of real life- seemingly good people can do atrocious things. My gripe with 'Boy on Fire' was that they missed out on so many opportunities to humanize the characters- especially the 'bad guys'- because in this episode, they were basically misguided kids and the crime was monstrous- so it begs the question, 'how did they get to the point where they burned another kid'. The following details would have made this a perfect 10: 1) They needed a scene where Able (the young boy's brother) expresses hatred for the private school kids, says 'they aren't like us', gives evidence of an inferiority complex over how he's been treated, and says he wasn't going to let his brother become one of 'them.' (this is one instance where the writers should have shown the motive (prejudice) in action, not just told us it.)



    2) They needed a scene where they tell the principal that while she was busy teaching her students pride for their school- she was also teaching them prejudice and hatred for the children at other schools. ( I can't believe they never made mention of the move 'Lean on Me' in this ep.)



    3) Finally, they needed a scene where the girl who watched as her friend's murder (and was later raped to silence her), shed her tough exterior and broke down about the whole thing. Even if she wasn't the victim's girlfriend, she could have sobbed about how 'he didn't understand that we come from two difference places, and we couldn't be seen together, never mind be together. that he was sweet but stupid (for thinking he could be with her).' I think with those additional dramatic flourishes would have taken it to a deeper level and made this one truly unforgettable.moreless
  • boy on fire

    7.5
    Finally, Law and Order is back! Sure, it has only been on hiatus for a few weeks, but that is far too long for a show that has finally gotten its groove back. The current cast is perfect and while I still yearn for the days of Lenny, this is not the worst group of cops the show has ever had by any stretch. The case was entertaining tonight, but I have to wonder if this was better suited for Benson and Stabler over at Special Victims Unit, what with the kids being involved and all. But good nonetheless.



    While the cast is good, I am starting to miss Jack McCoy going nuts on some defense teams though.moreless
S. Epatha Merkerson

S. Epatha Merkerson

Lt. Anita van Buren

Anthony Anderson

Anthony Anderson

Det. Kevin Bernard

Jeremy Sisto

Jeremy Sisto

Det. Cyrus Lupo

Sam Waterston

Sam Waterston

DA Jack McCoy

Alana De La Garza

Alana De La Garza

ADA Connie Rubirosa

Linus Roache

Linus Roache

Exec. ADA Michael Cutter

Debra Winger

Debra Winger

Principal Woodside

Guest Star

Aaron Grady Shaw

Aaron Grady Shaw

Moses Dolan

Guest Star

Shamika Cotton

Shamika Cotton

Mrs. Dolan

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (6)

    • Principal Woodside: Charter schools, magnet schools, they take all our best students, and then we're blamed for having the worst. Kids from poverty, from broken families, a hundred years of neglect, and we have to get them ready for college with just a few hours a day. Some charter school that gets 20 million dollars from Bill Gates, and they get a few students into Dartmouth, it makes front page news. You want to know what the real success stories are? When a student from Aaron Burr who couldn't even read in the ninth grade manages to graduate and get a job in an auto-parts store instead of becoming a drug dealer. That's a success story, our success story. But no one cares. No one wants to hear about it.

    • (After Principal Woodside is arrested)
      Jack McCoy: Grand larceny? What did she steal?
      Michael Cutter: Well, how about a decent education for her students? Their integrity, their potential?
      Jack McCoy: I don't think there's a law against stealing potential.

    • Mike Cutter: So Abel Dolan couldn't have murdered Cesar on Tuesday night because he was busy beautifying Aaron Burr High School, and he was at a night school class in Mott Haven.
      Connie Rubirosa: Well, maybe he has an evil twin.
      Mike Cutter: Two alibis, it's an embarrassment of riches.

    • Kevin Bernard: (referring to Moses Dolan) And Moses wept.
      Anita van Buren: Wasn't that Jesus?
      Cyrus Lupo: Yeah, him too.

    • Principal Woodside: Yes I've heard about the murder, everyone's talking about it.
      Kevin Bernard: Anyone talking about who did it?
      Principal Woodside: Most of these kids worship at the Church of Don't Snitch.

    • (After finding Cesar Ramirez's body)
      Cyrus Lupo: School ID to Sunrise Academy. It's a few blocks that way. One of those charter schools.
      Kevin Bernard: Trying to help kids in the lousy neighborhoods. Give them a better education to break the cycle of violence.
      Cyrus Lupo: Looks like they've got a little ways to go.

  • NOTES (3)

  • ALLUSIONS (2)

    • Some aspects of this episode appear to be ripped from the headlines of the Houston Independent School District scandal. The district's schools were widely praised for lowering dropout rates and improving test scores, and this achievement was used to promote then-President George W. Bush's No Child Left Behind Act. It turned out that schools in this district had inflated test scores by keeping low-achieving students from taking the tests. They also reported (falsely) that students who dropped out had transferred to other schools or received a GED to prevent them from being classified as dropouts.

    • Kevin Bernard: Dude looks like a lady.

      "Dude (Looks Like A Lady)" is an Aerosmith single from their 1987 album Permanent Vacation.

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