Law & Order

Season 11 Episode 12

Teenage Wasteland

1
Aired Monday 10:00 PM Feb 07, 2001 on NBC
8.6
out of 10
User Rating
34 votes
1

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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Teenage Wasteland
AIRED:
The beating death of a restaurant owner leads Briscoe and Green to thrill-seeking teenagers; McCoy and Lewin are forced to decide how young is too young for the death penalty.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • A brutal death of a Chinese man and a pending death penalty lead to the question how old one has to be for the execution.

    10
    One of the best episodes ever. There is absolutely nothing that could be reproached. A Chinese restaurant owner is ambushed and savagely beaten to death by a bunch of teenagers just because they didn't have how to pay him, so they decided to take the meal for free, but then the oldest of them said they can't let him go, as he saw their faces. It wasn't true, the victim lost his life nonetheless, his skull being crushed just to stop him from moaning.

    This episode has many moments which make it stand out: first, Jack McCoy is present in the precinct during the interrogation of the main suspect, he makes the decision to arrest him and the others, second it is him who is the first to suggest a death sentence to the surprise of D.A. Nora Lewin and despite his personal beliefs. She then summons the senior A.D.A.s to discuss the penalty, I dare to say, such a meeting has never been showed before. And third, once decision taken, Nora Lewin makes the press statement on the steps of the Supreme Court. While the trial is mentioned only in allusions, we watch the sentencing part, the defendant's mother begging for the life of her son, who fails to persuade anyone how much sorry he is. The death penalty verdict is a very strong and a moving moment. My hat off to the acting of the homeless man, the perpetrator, his mother and all D.A.'s office. This was one of many things that made this episode get the highest ranking from me.moreless
Jerry Orbach

Jerry Orbach

Det. Lennie Briscoe

S. Epatha Merkerson

S. Epatha Merkerson

Lt. Anita Van Buren

Sam Waterston

Sam Waterston

Exec. A.D.A. Jack McCoy

Angie Harmon

Angie Harmon

A.D.A. Abbie Carmichael

Jesse L. Martin

Jesse L. Martin

Det. Ed Green

Dianne Wiest

Dianne Wiest

D.A. Nora Lewin

Murphy Guyer

Murphy Guyer

Leslie Stanton

Guest Star

Alex Feldman

Alex Feldman

Mitch Regan

Guest Star

Molly Regan

Molly Regan

Mrs. Regan

Guest Star

John Ramsey

John Ramsey

Judge Walter Schrieber

Recurring Role

Lou Sones

Lou Sones

Clerk

Recurring Role

Leslie Hendrix

Leslie Hendrix

Dr. Elizabeth Rodgers

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (1)

  • QUOTES (4)

    • (Lewin addressing the press regarding her decision on the death penalty.)
      Nora Lewin: My decision today continues this office's decision of objectively applying the laws of this state to the cases it's charged with prosecuting in this great city. Ours is an island but we are not untouched by the national debate or its dictates concerning the death penalty. That being said, my decision goes against my personal feelings, but as District Attorney, I took an oath to uphold the law which includes applying the death penalty fairly with due process of law. To do otherwise would be to substitute my own judgement for the judgement of those the people elected to make such decisions. Accordingly, I am forced to conclude that notice to the court of our intention to seek the death penalty in the case of the People versus Mitch Reagan is appropriate.

    • (After Mitch Regan says the killing was an accident)
      Jack McCoy: Charge him with murder. A person doesn't lose the back of his skull unless the killer intends him to.

    • (Talking about Mr. Ngai)
      Lennie Briscoe: Guy works fifteen hours a day, ends up in a puddle in the rain.
      Ed Green: He left his mark though. Three kids and a business that supports two families.

    • Nora Lewin: What should be the standard to take the life of a teenager?
      Abbie Carmichael: Where I come from, it's where the crime committed is so vicious, so cruel, he forfeits the right to get any older.
      Nora Lewin: Where I come from a person can't forfeit that right. We can only take it from him.

  • NOTES (0)

  • ALLUSIONS (1)

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