Law & Order

Season 17 Episode 13

Talking Points

Aired Monday 10:00 PM Feb 02, 2007 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
52 votes

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Episode Summary

The shooting of university student Jason Miles at a political rally hosted by controversial speaker Judith Barlow leaves any number of suspects, but after Green and Cassady prove that two of the people they've questioned are lying about their alibis, they turn their attention to Malcom Yates, a grad student who claimed to be with Jason's girlfriend at the time of his death. McCoy and Rubirosa realise that Yates went after Barlow because of her open criticism of stem-cell research, something that Yates had high hopes could help find a cure for his own Parkinsons.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

  • Who Is L&O Fooling

    Without a doubt this is one of the most biased episodes of Law & Order. They made a caricature of Ann Coulter and make her more extreme. Would they do it to Bill Maher or Chris Matthews? No because they share Dick Wolf's political views. Then they have the audacity to have the murderer to have Parkinson's for sympathy and to use the stem cell controversy to make a statement because George W. Bush was against it. As for the bitch judge she is a real piece of work.moreless
  • Not bad, but it shocked me a lot that some of the characters were in such a friendly terms with that Barlow lady.

    What the summary says, I felt uncomfortable with the friendliness that Van Buren and Branch treat the lady in question. OK, Branch is a little cold with her, but Van Buren... mmmm... It shocked me.

    I don't know, but the real villain here is Judith Barlow and she gets away with murder (pun intended), besides that most of the characters (except Green and Rubirosa) seemed to agree in some degree with her.

    I expected that someone from the public shot her at the ending or something like that, so justice is done in both ways, but it seems that this wasn't possible in conservative America.

    And, yes, most of the extreme leftist are narrow-minded (as extreme rightist also are), but here it seemed that anybody to the left of GWB is a communist moron.

    Too bad.

    The good point: the allusion to Foucault. Obvious, but clever.moreless
  • Parkison Stem Cell controversy!

    This reminds me of both the Michael J Fox and the Ann Coulter situation as a university student is murdered and one of his lovers happens to be also stricken with Parkinson's the same disease that Fox has. And that the author has spoken out about stem cell research, much like Coulter has been. We also learn of Ed's father having alzeimers as well.
Charlotte Ross

Charlotte Ross

Judith Barlow

Guest Star

Ron Silver

Ron Silver

Bernie Adler

Guest Star

Louis Cancelmi

Louis Cancelmi

Malcom Yates

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

    • Goof: In Van Buren's office, just before she sends Green and Cassady off to check on Jason Miles' history, she refers to Jason as "Justin".

    • Green tells Cassady that his father has Alzheimer's.

    • Nitpick: Bernie Adler advises the judge and McCoy that Malcom Yates is exhibiting tremors (dyskinesia) because he didn't take his medication. Medication itself can actually cause dyskinesia. Michael J. Fox's advisers recently explained this after Rush Limbaugh accused Fox of not taking his medication to look sicker during a television appearance. Also depending on how advanced Malcom Yates' illness is, his medication may not always be effective in treating his symptoms.

  • QUOTES (12)

    • Judith Barlow: So what happens next, Detective Panty-Line gives him a mani-pedi and a massage?
      Anita Van Buren: What's your problem with female police officers?
      Judith Barlow: Nothing personal, but last year down in Atlanta, that animal wrestles a gun from a female guard and shoots both her and the judge. I doubt that would have happened if the guard shaved every morning before work, and I don't mean under his pits.
      Anita Van Buren: Do you talk like this in public?
      Judith Barlow: I like you. This is me being polite.

    • Nina Cassady: (about stem cell research) Yeah, reasonable people might disagree--
      Ed Green: Reasonable morons!
      Nina Cassady: I really wish you'd learn to speak your mind, Ed.
      Ed Green: Well you try explaining to your dad every Sunday that you're not the neighbor's kid Frankie, the accountant, then you can talk to me.

    • Jack McCoy: Did you try to kill Judith Barlow?
      Malcolm Yates: She said that the value of the life of a fetus has the same value as my life. I am more important than cells in a petri dish!

    • Jack McCoy: You were working in the lab on Friday, the day of the shooting.
      Malcolm Yates: That's correct.
      Jack McCoy: Well, it must be hard for you to stand over those microscopes all day shaking like that. Oh, that's right! You took your medication that day, the medication that prevents uncontrollable shaking.

    • Malcolm Yates: The gun must've gone off because my hand was shaking uncontrollably.
      Jack McCoy: From the Parkinson's?
      Malcolm Yates: Yes.
      Jack McCoy: Did you really think it was a good idea to hold a gun in a hand that was shaking uncontrollably?

    • (Discussing Judith Barlow)
      Jack McCoy: You have to admit she's smart.
      Connie Rubirosa: I do?
      Jack McCoy: All right, provocative then.
      Connie Rubirosa: She's a huckster.

    • (After Judith Barlow gives Det. Green her phone number.)
      Nina Cassady: Looks like someone's a little sweet on Eddie.
      Ed Green: I would rather have root canal.

    • Ed Green: Hey, you want a hot cup of black disappointment?

    • Judith Barlow: I've got a ten-year-old niece who can't even tell you who the vice president is, but she can sure as hell put a condom on a banana in two seconds flat.
      Ed Green: Yeah, the whole world's going to hell. That's a damn shame. You know what else is a damn shame? There's a dead kid ten feet away from you and you're --
      Judith Barlow: Well, that wouldn't have happened if Rudy still ran the city.
      Ed Green: (motions to an older officer off to his right) Officer, take those two in. Take her, too. (under his breath to Cassady as they're walking away) No wonder they call her 'the most hated bitch in America.'
      Nina Cassady: You mean 'woman', right?
      Ed Green: No, I mean 'bitch.'

    • Judith Barlow: People love me.
      Arthur Branch: I'm sure some people love spiders, too.

    • Danny O'Toole: 'Vengeance belongeth to me', sayeth the Lord.
      Nina Cassady: That sounds great on paper, but --

    • Female Student: Bitch!
      Judith Barlow: Which brings us to the feminist problem.

  • NOTES (2)


    • The professor calls Judith Barlow "Tokyo Rose in a designer dress." "Tokyo Rose" is a nickname for Iva Toguri D'Aquino, a young Japanese-American woman who broadcasted anti-American propagandist messages to American forces during World War II over Radio Tokyo. She was convicted of treason after the war but later President Ford pardoned her because he believed she had been coerced into her wartime activities.

    • Judith Barlow: I think they had a tea party for Hugo Chavez here last month, and a parade for Cindy Sheehan.
      Hugo Chavez is the President of Venezuela. He likes Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, dislikes President Bush, and has a questionable human rights record. Cindy Sheehan is an anti-war protester whose son Casey was killed in Iraq. She has visited Hugo Chavez and is known for frequently getting arrested and sometimes making bizarre statements (she said that the National Guard delivering aid to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina constituted a military occupation).

    • Panopticon: This is a reference to the french philosopher Michel Foucault's book "Discipline and Punish". The Panopticon was an ideal design for prisions developed by Jeremy Bentham.
      What the professor says is an application of Foucault's ideas and theories to the current political situation of the USA.

    • Ed Green: Now we're not exactly talking Boys from Brazil here.
      This is a reference to the book The Boys from Brazil by author Ira Levin (and the 1978 film), in which scientist Dr. Mengele tries to resurrect the Third Reich by cloning Adolf Hitler.

    • Dr. Rooker: ... most notably, the actor Michael J. Fox.
      Actor Michael J. Fox, who starred in the Back To The Future movies and the TV series Spin City and Family Ties, told the public a few years ago that he suffers from Parkinson's Disease. He has since started a foundation to help raise awareness of the disease and fund research for a cure. Fox supports stem cell research because of its potential to help people with Parkinson's and other neurological problems.

    • Arthur Branch: The last thing I want is for this to turn into another Scopes trial.
      John Scopes was a teacher who was put on trial during the 1920s for teaching Darwin's theory of evolution. Clarence Darrow represented him. This case was very controversial because it was considered anti-Christian to teach such theories. Scopes was convicted but later pardoned. The Scopes trial was the inspiration for the play Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee. This was later made into a movie by the same name starring Spencer Tracy and Gene Kelly.

    • This episode appears to be ripped from the headlines of the Ann Coulter controversies. Ann Coulter, a Conservative political commentator, has gained a reputation for being biased against gays, minorities and Liberals. Some Republican party members, her viewing base, often disagree with her beliefs and theories. She has also given several speeches at college campuses worldwide (including those in Arizona, Connecticut, and South Florida) that have ended with mass protests. At one speech, a pie was even thrown at her. The resemblance between the character and Coulter is noted on-screen when another character comments that, "[Judith Barlow] makes Ann Coulter look like Mary Poppins."

    • Judith Barlow: I thought we'd at least get a Cheney joke.
      In 2006, Vice President Dick Cheney accidentally shot a friend of his in the face while they were hunting quail. The man survived, although he suffered a heart attack shortly after the incident. Cheney was not charged but he was reprimanded for not having an up-to-date hunting license. This made Cheney a popular target (pun not intended) for comedians.

    • Ed Green: No wonder they call her "the most hated bitch in America."
      Nina Cassady: You mean "woman", right?
      In 2006, The National Enquirer dubbed Ann Coulter "The Most Hated Woman in America". As the character of Judith Barlow is meant to represent Ann Coulter, the comment is being recycled to use for Barlow.