About Last Night...MOM, GREY'S ANATOMY, LAW & ORDER Crossover, and More - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

About Last Night…MOM, GREY’S ANATOMY, LAW & ORDER Crossover, and More

April 2, 2021 by  

LAW & ORDER: ORGANIZED CRIME — “What Happens in Puglia” Episode 101 — Pictured: (l-r) Autumn Mirassou as Maureen Stabler, Nicky Torchia as Eli Stabler, Christopher Meloni as Detective Elliot Stabler, Allison Siko as Kathleen Stabler, Jeffrey Scaperrotta as Dickie Stabler, Mariska Hargitay as Captain Olivia Benson — (Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)

Let’s talk about Thursday night’s TV!

MANIFEST: Okay, so WTF is going on with that plane tail? (And the Major’s daughter coming in is going to be straight. up. trouble. for Saanvi.)

MOM: Oh, hello Bob Odenkirk! That was a fun guest spot.

I love that they brought back Christy’s strip club posters, even though it’s crazy they just discovered it. But it was a great way to showcase how the group is still there for Christy, even though she’s moved away.

GREY’S ANATOMY: I know this may be sacrilegious, but I really wish if Mark was coming back, we got him with Derek rather than Lexie. (Especially because it felt distractingly obvious that Chlyer Leigh was not filming with them.) And, really, Lexie barely felt…needed? The most moving parts of that sequence was Mark talking about checking in on

And, man, the texts from Cristina demanding to see Meredith’s info was probably my favorite part of the episode. I don’t know if I trust that Meredith is actually waking up next week—why ruin it in a promo if it’s that straight-forward?—but if she does, I desperately hope we see Cristina on that freaking beach with her. Yes, Cristina is alive, but the show has established if Meredith hears them in her room, they can be there. So, like…FaceTime check-in which brings here to the beach? Please?

(If you had told me a few years ago that Teddy and Amelia would be delightfully babysitting kids together, I would have laughed. I love their unexpected friendship.)

LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT & ORGANIZED CRIME: So, that was messy as hell. (But I don’t mean that in a bad way.)

When Elliot was written out ten years ago—after Chris Meloni had exited the series—the groundwork they laid at the time meant that whenever he returned, in whatever capacity, it was going to be angst-filled.* He didn’t just leave the force…he cut his entire work family out of his life, and seemingly didn’t answer any messages.

The SVU hour of the crossover had a lot to handle: they had to reintroduce Elliot (and his family), give some kind of answer to where he was and what he was doing over the past decade, have an actual criminal case, and contend with Elliot and Olivia’s reunion.

In a perfect world, I wish SVU had the space to tell the story the way they had originally planned, with the Stablers returning in an episode before teeing up Elliot’s reemergence in the universe. Olivia had her own special relationship with Kathy and many of those kids (including literally helping Kathy give birth to their youngest kid, Eli, which…more on that in a second), and it would have been lovely to see her process their reintroduction into their lives/all the time she lost with them before the show brought back Elliot.

But the reality is things had to move fast to set up OC in the next hour.

Meloni and Mariska Hargitay did some of their best work of the series as Elliot and Olivia had to suddenly contend with being back in each other’s lives. There was a gorgeous physicality to their tension, as they were clearly drawn to each other, but they—especially Olivia—tried to pull back as much as possible.

It was also fascinating to see these characters at this point in their lives, after so much time apart. During their partnership, they knew each other better than virtually anyone else, but often weren’t upfront when the other hurt them—both out of self-protection and to keep their working relationship intact—and it led to years of misunderstandings. Now? They don’t have that tie. Yes, they are an important part of each other’s history—and could be an important part of each other’s futures, obviously—but if Olivia told Elliot how he devastated her when he walked away, that he was the most important person in her life and he just abandoned her…she could take that risk, because she had absolutely nothing to lose.

The writing of that confrontation (by Warren Leight and Julie Martin) was beautifully deceptive, because it appears fairly simple and straight-forward—Elliot apologizes to Olivia for overstepping in interrogation, she tries to leave, he apologizes, she initially rebuffs him, but eventually listens, and then she says her piece, only for him to explain why he didn’t tell her—but it was one of my favorite crafted moments of the show’s run.

Even the simple note of how frequently they said each other’s names—with Elliot swapping from Liv to Olivia, as the moment needed—rang brutally real, as if the characters couldn’t believe they were finally getting this moment to air things out. Plus, Olivia being so rattled she couldn’t figure out how to leave once she got called away? Gut-wrenchingly realistic. (And, yes, it absolutely does not hurt that it was was the best Hargitay and Meloni were in the crossover. Reiterating again how absolutely incredible they were.)

Obviously a lot changed as the crossover came to be, but I do wish the franchise had reconsidered killing off Kathy. Elliot was clearly doing this job without the “extra” motivation. If they wanted to make him a single man/father, their on-screen marriage in 1-12 certainly had its share of hardships. Yes, they were in a decent place last we saw them, but a decade passed and he absolutely likely spiraled after he killed Jenna. Given we saw Olivia have to once literally talk Kathy into not leaving Elliot, it’s not far-fetched to imagine a scenario where Kathy, understandably, was done. And there could have been so much drama there.

Instead, it seemed like they were in a good place. (Outside of, uh, potentially Elliot lying to her about what he was doing in Italy?) As Elliot noted, they were happy, and they had built a new life with Eli in Rome. It feels especially cruel to do this now, especially at the expense of a character who had been a part of SVU from the very first episode—and they made it extra tragic by once again muddying the waters of when Kathy and Elliot met. (At her funeral, the priest said Elliot introduced him to Kathy when Elliot was 14; the show had alternated between them being high school loves, but one episode said they met while drinking at a party.) And Elliot didn’t even get to say goodbye before her death? Ouch. (If it was another show, I’d wonder whether the character was in WITSEC, but SVU already did that with Cabot, albeit with that twist revealed in the same episode…)

The one…quasi?…bright spot to her death was the show acknowledging its own history. As Olivia was grappling with Kathy being hurt in a car bomb flashed back to the last time Kathy almost died, after Olivia’s car was destroyed on the way to take a very pregnant Kathy to the doctor. (Kathy + cars = ER’s Romano + helicopters, apparently.) And just like Elliot grabbed Olivia to hug her after he saw Kathy and Eli survived their near-death back in ’07, he did the same (down to the same framing) in the aftermath of her death.

One of the things I worried about, early on, was that Olivia having to contend with Elliot’s grief meant she wouldn’t get to feel as much as she deserved to about his exit. We saw blips of emotion, but I expect and hope more is to come. Like, he (AND FIN?!)…thought it was a good idea for her to be blindsided at her award ceremony? In public? After a decade? (Also, if Kathy felt so strongly about them going to this ceremony, and she was so confused by them not speaking for a decade, why didn’t she push him to call? It’s absolutely not her job to do that, but odd this was what she put her foot down about.) There should be anger coming, including at Fin. (I LOVE their friendship, but, come on. Even if he wanted to stay out of it, by day-of, he should have given her a head’s up.)

The thing about Meloni returning to the franchise vs. just coming back to wrap up Elliot’s story is that there is a lot still to be answered: What, exactly, happened after he quit SVU? Where did he go? Who, out of the characters we know, knew he was back in the NYPD? Does he know about Olivia’s ordeal with Lewis? Why is he still a detective if he had what appears to be a prestigious gig? What the heck is going to happen with his teen kid? What was in that freaking letter he handed Olivia?

I am loving ORGANIZED CRIME, though, and few things on TV have delighted me as much as the reveal that Richard Wheatley took his Black wife’s last name to piss off his racist father. (Tamara Taylor was an underrated gem on BONES and I cannot wait to see her knock this out of the park.) And Sgt. Bell is a freaking delight so far; I’m curious to see what team they build out in the next seven episodes. The pilot was gorgeously shot, and I’m curious how it feels week to week since it’s clearly serialized, which is relatively new for a LAW & ORDER.

(*I thought frequently about SUPERSTORE, oddly enough, while watching the SVU hour of the crossover. While those writers knew in advance America Ferrera was leaving, the writers also left Jonah/Amy in a tough spot where a single episode wouldn’t have been able to smooth things over. But as awful as the show’s cancellation was, the quick turnaround also allowed for her doubts about her actions to work. SVU didn’t have the luxury here, because a full decade passed. There was no way to smooth this over fast. And the difference in a reunion for closure/the end versus a reunion in an ongoing narrative really plays different.)

CLARICE: Oh my God, I absolutely loved the gorgeous, messed up dinner? Let’s be clear: it was awful, traumatic, and Catherine is Going Through Stuff. But it was incredible and I would watch the three of them existing in their tension for hours.

A MILLION LITTLE THINGS: We. Do. Not. Deserve. Darcy.

It’s so important and also heartbreaking that the show tackled anti-Asian racism and it was so timely. I’m glad Eddie defended his son, but, uh, yeah, him taking it out on the racist neighbor’s car has to backfire? And I’m glad his using is out there now, but this should have long-lasting ramifications.

And, damn, the Rome and Theo scene broke my heart. Absolutely beautiful.

Which shows did you watch last night?

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