Law & Order

Season 1 Episode 3

The Reaper's Helper

Aired Monday 10:00 PM Oct 04, 1990 on NBC



  • Trivia

    • This is one of only a handful of episodes in which the district attorney (Adam Schiff) shares a scene with the accused (Jack Curry).

    • The department's fax number is 212-555-8342.

    • Goof: When the police hit Jack Curry's door with the ram, the door is already slightly open. This eliminates the need for the ram, as it would be much simpler to just open the door and go inside.

  • Quotes

    • Ben Stone: (After being punched in the jaw by a gay rights activist) It only hurts when I prosecute.

    • Max Greevey: Who shoots in the head besides dealers?
      Mike Logan: A robber who gets surprised?
      Max Greevey: A burglar who's so surprised, he leaves behind a full wallet?

    • Max Greevey: Do you think a lot of cops are gay?
      Mike Logan: No way, man. The department's got a special test. They look you in the eye, and if your left eye blinks before your right eye, they know you're gay. (slowly blinks his left eye at Greevey)

    • Jack Curry: What gives you the right to decide how I should live the rest of my life?
      Ben Stone: Unfortunately, you did. Not once, not twice, but three times.

  • Notes

    • Paul Robinette says about an attorney, "She's the greatest Civil Rights lawyer since William Kunstler." Four seasons later, in the episode "White Rabbit", the late Mr. Kunstler appeared as himself, the only time in the franchise's history a real-life attorney had appeared defending a client.

    • This is actor John Fiore's first appearance as Detective Tony Profaci.

    • German episode title: "Sterbehilfe", meaning "Euthanasia".

    • This episode was the first "warm weather" episode (with no one wearing overcoats) of the series ever to air.

    • When A & E aired this episode of the series prior to TNT taking over the first eight seasons in September 2002, A & E would air a disclaimer at the end of the episode, noting it originally aired in 1990, and that AIDS research had greatly advanced since the episode originally aired. A & E also gave a number to call for more information on AIDS.

  • Allusions

    • This episode appears to be ripped from the headlines of the Dr. Jack Kevorkian case. Dr. Kevorkian became famous in the late 1980s and early 1990s as a supporter of assisted suicide, and was lucky enough to have three acquittals and a mistrial before being convicted of the second-degree murder of Thomas Youk in 1999.