About Last Night...LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT, GREY'S ANATOMY, LAW & ORDER: ORGANIZED CRIME, and More - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote


May 20, 2022 by  


LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT — “A Final Call at Forlini’s Bar” Episode 23022 — Pictured: Mariska Hargitay as Captain Olivia Benson — (Photo by: Michael Greenberg/NBC)

Let’s talk about Thursday night’s TV!

LAW & ORDER: It’s kind of crazy this is what brought Olivia to the mothership, especially when several episodes (including the premiere!) could have had SVU ties.

But, um, the case was very messy.

MASTERCHEF JUNIOR: Okay, the kids essentially having to play Operation with a cow to get their pieces of meat made me laugh. I always find steak-cooking challenges to be such a fascinating thing, because the “correct” style is medium-rare, but not everyone likes their meat that raw. (When I ate meat, I certainly didn’t.) Poor Cruz tried something different with his steak, but it didn’t work out.

LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT: Okay, I’ll start briefly with the good. It’s always lovely to see Raúl Esparza back as Barba, and it was good to see him utilizing his impressive skills in the courtroom for an actual victim who needed a fighter on her side. Jordana Spiro was heartbreaking as a domestic violence survivor who killed her abusive husband; the case was one of my favorites of the season.

Honestly, I would have rather erased last week’s episode and had this be a two-episode arc. Let us see Delia and that case and then have her kill him. Have this final hour be this twisted courtroom case. I wanted to see more of how—if?—this was taking a toll on Carisi, given what he used to do. I feel like he would have been tormented by having to prosecute a victim, given what she went through.

As for the rest? Sigh. Starting at the very beginning, I’m really bothered by how the show decided to utilize Olivia in therapy. It’s been very difficult getting so little insight into her state of mind over the past few years, and last we heard, she “joked” (hopefully, maybe) to Fin about lying to her therapist.

Since then she: continued a complicated relationship with her former partner, who promptly went undercover multiple times; reunited with the man she told herself was her first love (but in actuality was her groomer), where she found out she was just one in a string of his victims—one of whom accused him of rape; underwent the personal and professional ordeal of the Wheatley trial, which taxed two of the closest adult relationships she’s had in her life; missed Christmas with her kid due to a case, which led to her killing their suspect, in public, a few days later; Noah was put in a cage (where apparently the answer to that was just not allowing him to visit that home rather than look into WTF the bully was doing to others); and then she reunited, again, with said groomer who (aggressively) asked for forgiveness—only for her to discover he was accused of another rape.

That’s not including the stress of leading a difficult unit, where we were told the average person only spends a couple of years (and she’s been there more than 23), which faced squad turnover and a new boss; being a single mother; the ongoing global pandemic; and a serious ankle injury that required surgery.

So, yes, we needed to see how Olivia was doing. We needed Olivia in therapy.

Two weeks ago, I would have been thrilled to see Lindstrom digging into her general unease and pushing her to acknowledge she’s stagnant with Elliot. There’s a comfort there, in staying where they’ve always been, that is in direct conflict with the reality of where they are actually now. It’s messy! She deserves to talk that out. Heck, she deserved to talk out the Barba situation, though that is a whole other story.

But she reunited with Burton Lowe last week. A thing that was entirely ignored in this scene, including Olivia listing the stressful things she went through in the past year.

Do I believe it would be easier for Olivia to talk with her therapist about Elliot than Burton? Sure. If we take Olivia’s comment about lying at face value, it’s very easy to believe Lindstrom has no clue who Burton is or that he ever reappeared in her life. But as an audience, we are all too aware of what just happened. The thing that Olivia actually needs to discuss the most is hovering over the scene, completely ignored.

I absolutely get she might still struggle to see herself as a victim, but does she really, truly not see anything wrong with the fact she betrayed a rape victim who reported what Burton did? (And to be clear, she 100% did. She took the information she was given as a captain of SVU, went to the accused rapist, and told him about what was said and the evidence they had. That’s wildly, deeply, not okay.) Does she not want to talk about the fact that Burton was asking for forgiveness, using his alcoholism as an excuse/cover—not only was her mother an alcoholic, but her rapist father also self-medicated. These are things Olivia really should be talking out. I just wish there had been any acknowledgement of it.

(On a structural note, by the show splitting up the therapy scenes also meant we didn’t see a lot of the direct reactions to Lindstrom’s points. I really wish they had let the moments breathe and see Olivia react to what her doctor had to say.)

On, somehow, a lighter note, I do not get how this is how the season ended. This is how Olivia and Barba ended? I really hope Barba is able to return at some point, but Raúl works constantly and he didn’t really return, post-exit, until Warren Leight was back. If this was it, they barely took a step forward. Yes, them admitting they miss each other is big, but Barba is still defending the decision to defend Wheatley when he went on to cause absolute mayhem post-release. I really wish Barba had been able to acknowledge he made a mistake. Olivia, specifically, asked him to not do that—and doing something against someone’s wishes isn’t caring, it’s selfish and assuming you know better for them than they do. That’s not fair. And now we’re left with them still in this murky state…I would really like their friendship to get back on track.

And, frankly, I’m bummed by the Rollisi “I love you.” It took them a year to say it? It was clear, for a while, they loved each other, but it’s crazy they went on a family vacation, told her kids about their relationship, had a dinner with his family…and never used the words.

GREY’S ANATOMY: Uh, how did it just become real for Kai that Amelia has a kid? I get they saw Amelia with Scout, but…it’s not something Amelia has ever hidden. But I guess this is the beginning of the end for them, which is sad.

BokHee rarely speaks, so the power of her speaking when the doctors were talking about the hate crime against their patient was just so profound and painful. She was right—their faces are American.

Also: A dinner party at Meredith’s never goes right. At some point they’re going to stop trying, right? But it was fun to see the docs desperately trying to have fun. (Poor Bailey just wanted to relax!!)

LAW & ORDER: ORGANIZED CRIME: Going into the finale, the thing I kept worrying about was how much needed to be resolved in a single episode. Uh. Well, their answer was to do everything on basically fast-forward?

The leap to Elliot’s UC being outed didn’t make a lot of sense. And Kilbride being arrested was anticlimactic, especially after him being a factor in the show all season. (The Denise of it all, of course, became a bigger thing. More on that in a second.) Webb’s death? Super fast!

Then Elliot got shot, and they decided to fake his death, which….um, did they tell the cops he knows/cares about what they were doing? Because if Jet or Olivia (or, heck, Fin) heard that over the radio, I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t have gone particularly well.

And, yes, the absence of Olivia—or even mentioning Olivia—was actually distracting this episode. Olivia got Elliot into this undercover op to begin with. She knew the complications of the combat cross and how much his father’s possible lies hurt him. She would have been at his ceremony. Even Cragen showed up…it was very odd to have her entirely absent and there be no mention of her, either.

I really hope Frank killing himself doesn’t haunt Elliot going forward. (Also, dear God, may he remove that terrible, terrible tattoo.) I also hope this is the end of Elliot going undercover, in any significant way. The only reason this was able to work was because Elliot went UC as himself; after the Wheatley trial, after Wheatley made him publicly broadcast his sins on live TV…this man should be known and never able to pass as anyone else.

But, God, I feel terrible for Bell. She warned Denise about Kilbride. She begged her not to take the job. And now Denise took Jack and left?! This is going to, understandably, mess up Ayanna a lot. Is there any chance Denise realizes she was actually in the wrong here? (Also, what does Denise think Bell should have done? Let Kilbride get away with his crimes just because Denise was working for him? Yikes.)

Uh, also, how worried should we be that Nova killed Webb?

Which shows did you watch last night?

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