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


April 19, 2024 by  


LAW & ORDER: ORGANIZED CRIME — “Crossroads” Episode 410 — Pictured: Danielle Moné Truitt as Sgt. Ayanna Bell — (Photo by: Will Hart/NBC)

Let’s talk about Thursday night’s TV!

NEXT LEVEL CHEF: Okay, a photographic memory challenge was interesting, because the smallest thing could be a big problem—AKA a missing lemon, in this case. And there’s so much to take in, with so little time, in addition to making it taste good. I do feel bad for Mada, because that mistake has to be eating him up. But he left in a really lovely way, and it’s really nice how lovely he was when he was eliminated.

LAW & ORDER: I actually think I liked the episode more before they revealed who did it. I get it would have been a bit more unorthodox, but leaving it unresolved would have actually been an interesting curveball for the series. Alas.

GHOSTS: It was well done, but I sobbed.

To some degree, death is death. We know these characters all died, it doesn’t change their fate with the show, they’re here now. But there’s something extra tragic about the fact that Hetty had been keeping this secret about her death for so many years. That the pain, regret, heartbreak, and sadness had been so thoroughly hidden, just like the cord itself.

It’s also a very, very difficult balance to have a topic this depressing on a show that’s a network comedy; I think everyone—writers, directors, actors—did it well and respectfully. The ghosts acknowledged they didn’t know, and Sam and Isaac were the ones to press a little further to get the backstory from Hetty. This was perhaps Rebecca Wisocky’s best performance of the series; it was deeply moving, while still being so very Hetty.

And how incredible that she made herself this vulnerable to save Flower? How lovely. And I’m so glad Flower is back.

(Also, I love when we get new ghost rules. Hey, they don’t show up on FaceTime!)

[For more on the episode, here’s what Wisocky shared.]

LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT: I’m glad the Maddie case appears to be done. (We’ll see if that sticks better than last time.)

  • It remains deeply baffling the show has not utilized the court device more, both because it opens up the storytelling to different avenues/ways there can be twists, but also because Carisi is not supposed to be a cop; let him actually get wins at his job. I guess on the flip side, in what is supposed to be a milestone season, there’s been virtually nothing to actually honor or celebrate this show’s legacy (outside of Maria), and it seems like Carisi may be the only series regular character outside of Olivia to get a quasi-centric episode this year, so…he did get that. I hope they let Peter Scanavino do more court scenes in season 26. 
  • Relatedly: I really liked we saw the jury deliberation and judge’s chambers!
  • I’m still liking the addition of Curry and really hope they keep her around. Does it make a lot of sense? Probably not. But she really has fit in well here, with interesting dynamics with everyone. I’ve really loved what we’ve seen of her and Olivia together, plus the stakeout with Velasco was great.
  • It’s frustrating to have really, really, really blatant Lewis parallels and nothing be done with it. (I know this has happened in previous seasons, as well, but this felt like the most egregious storyline we’ve seen.) There were parallels between Maddie and Olivia’s kidnapping situations (at the very least, the jewelry left behind) and then this court case was filled with it, from the juror who was obsessed with the psycho and the perp representing themselves. To have this come an episode after Lewis was specifically brought up and then arguably way too casually tossed aside* and, again, nothing be done…I don’t get it. If it’s intentional, you don’t have to say a long, exposition-y speech; all it would have taken was a loaded look between Olivia and Fin. That way viewers who know, know, but you’re not overtaking another episode with it. Or, you know, Olivia could have actually utilized therapy herself**. But, heck, this is network TV, where the obvious frequently gets hammered home: A single line (or flashback) would have conveyed it was an intentional homage. Then the argument could have been Olivia was handling something that might have been a trigger better than in the past. Instead, given how we’ve seen how they’ve handled references to past episodes this season (both with the Maddie case and Lewis/Johnny D last week) it certainly felt a large part of this was…unintentional. Maybe they’ll retcon it in the finale, but…
  • *I understand why Johnny D is/was important to Noah, overall, last week. But Noah has spent the past 16 months of his life witnessing his mother nearly get killed in front of him (and subsequently got sent away for three weeks to live with virtual strangers), her leave the state and come back shot, God knows what else in the eight months we missed, and now become obsessed with the Maddie case and barely be around. You’d think he’d be just as concerned about any kind of bad guy coming to get his mom now and the dangers her job puts her in. If they didn’t have the bandwidth to dive into the Lewis of it all with her kid—which is absolutely fair—there were a million ways for him to stumble across the Johnny D information without opening up the Lewis door and seemingly ignoring it.
  • **It turns out the only thing more frustrating than Olivia Benson being tormented repeatedly and getting no peace is witnessing that happen while she spirals as she thinks she’s “healing.” To be clear: Healing is not linear. I don’t expect—and never expected—her to go to therapy and suddenly be magically healthy and fixed. It’s not realistic. Nor do I want/expect/hope Olivia will suddenly become perfect. But the amount of boundaries she’s crossed this season, with both survivors and perps, have been absolutely wild—and not in a remotely good way. Taking Maddie to therapy without her parents’ consent? And not just any therapy—EMDR, which would presumably require ongoing appointments and a commitment? What are we doing here? (We know this therapist has been awful, but how is she okay with that, too?)
  • How was the hair not evidence?!
  • Okay, I’m sorry, Fin may be divorced, but he and Phoebe have been together for longer than Rollins and Carisi. Are we supposed to think Fin is now suddenly single or is Carisi being a little dismissive of his relationship…?
  • Was that supposed to be Bruno’s ex in bed with him?!

[For more on the episode, here’s what Scanavino shared.]

LAW & ORDER: ORGANIZED CRIME: You know that first line I wrote about GHOSTS a few sections up? Ditto that here.

My denial about Sam’s death was deep. I didn’t want to believe the promo. I didn’t want to believe the glaring red flags; I was clinging to it being a misdirect. Even when I knew, I still was clinging to the tiniest of flickers of “…maybe there’s hope?” But no, the first few moments of the episode made it abundantly clear we lost him.

It’s brutal. Full stop. In a season full of loss, this may be the toughest one yet. Abubakr Ali was incredible as Sam and very plausibly could have become a member of the team. Sam had a wife, an adorable kid, and a baby on the way. And yet…

I mean this as a compliment, but the hour felt so much like parallels to past seasons, paying off foreshadowing and previously unexploded land mines, and setting up absolute mess and mayhem to come. It felt like we got homages to the Albanian arc, Donnelly, Rita, and Jamie’s death (God, the loaded look between Jet and Reyes, acknowledging what they went through last time they lost a team member), while also thrusting the Joe Jr. mess into Elliot’s undercover operation at full speed.

I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve watched the sequence where Elliot tells Bell (and, by proxy, the team) that Sam died via a veiled story while they’re undercover at a support group. Christopher Meloni and Danielle Moné Truitt are always incredible together, but they somehow found another whole other level in that moment. We know what this loss means to Elliot and Bell—it’s not just Sam. It’s Sam and Jamie and Gina and Morales. Elliot knows what this has done to him, both in losing Sam, and being the one to have to bury him. He knows what it will do to Sam’s wife. What it will do to the team; this is a group of people that nearly fractured the last time this happened. And everything was banking on him and Bell not breaking their cover while he delivered this absolute kick in the gut. 

Truly, if you haven’t, go back and rewatch the scene. Listen to how carefully Elliot tells the story (thank you writers), how beautifully it’s shot (thank you to the director and the crew), watch Meloni and Truitt’s microexpressions and physical mannerisms. It’s an absolute masterclass in, well, everything.

And, God, Bell absorbed the blow. Elliot had time to try and figure out how to best plan his approach and quasi-school his reaction; Bell didn’t have that luxury. Truitt’s face when Bell realized what was going on? My God. Gut-wrenching. It may be her singular best acting moment of the entire series so far. (Also: It was fantastic to juxtapose that with the team back at OCCB HQ, who did have the luxury to react more openly.)

Do I wish Sam had survived? Absolutely. But whenever something happens that breaks my heart, all I want is for it to be done well. This was.

  • There’s a parallel between Angus and his mama with Reggie and Agnes, for sure, but, man, that Angus/Mama scene at the start really made me think of Elliot and Bernie, too. It’s different circumstances, but both men have found themselves deep down a road that may not ultimately be best for them (Angus with his bad partner; Elliot with his UC operation and constant running) and their moms just want them to pull back and be okay.
  • Angus also has shades of a less messed up Donnelly, too. In another world, with different choices, he and Elliot probably could have been friends. The shades of grey here are going to hurt Elliot a whoooole lot.
  • Maybe one day Elliot will get to have a nice dream.
  • For as much as I cried, I also laughed. And I don’t know who thought to pair up Randall and Vargas (!?!) but props to you. Never would have put them together, but it was comedy gold. As was Randall trying to be stealth and break into the warehouse.
  • I’m intrigued by Trisha being ATF. She was a suspicious character, but I worried she was a double agent for Redcoat. Will this end well? Probably not! But I’m intrigued to see where they go with her next episode.
  • Major props to Ainsley Seiger and Rick Gonzalez for really landing their Big Look. They didn’t have a moment to privately touch base, but, again, we know Jet and Reyes’ history and how something like this specifically would have impacted them. The show trusted us enough to give us just enough to pay homage without having to make it a whole scene. It’s important and makes it feel like the show cares about its own past.
  • My real-time reaction to what we thought was going to be the Redcoat reveal: Saying repeatedly, out loud, “Please don’t be Joe Jr., please don’t be Joe Jr.” (I am AWARE this does not remove him from the suspect list since he’s clearly spiraling and probably not in the position to be making big moves. Let me live in my DELUSION. No matter what, absolutely thrilled one of my favorites is coming to play in this storyline in the next episode.)
  • The tragic reality is that even if Joe Jr. is “just” an underling, he’s still connected to Sam’s death. And there’s probably no chance Sam’s death wasn’t triggered by Elliot asking him to look into the drugs a few episodes back.
  • I’m truly intrigued to see how the rest of the season plays out. I guessed they’d dive more deeply into the Joe Jr. of it all in the final episodes, but they jumped into it earlier than expected. So will this play out the rest of the year? Or do we have another mini-arc (or standalone episodes) coming our way?
  • I can’t believe we have to wait two weeks for the next episode. (To be clear, a miracle we’re getting 13 episodes in this strike-impacted season. Thankful for everything the writers/actors/crew are doing across all shows to make these seasons possible.)
  • I also still can’t believe this show hasn’t been freakin’ renewed yet.

Which shows did you watch last night?

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Filed under About Last Night



  1. Gail Brinkmeier on April 20th, 2024 12:25 am

    How I love how this show respects the viewer. Well done writing shows just enough to tell the story without extraneous dialogue. The actors can do so much with just looks and expressions. The viewers are bright. The actors convey the emotions the script intends us to feel. That’s adult storytelling. I’m comparing this to SVU and I’m so confused with what’s happening there. Stories aren’t clicking and the right actions aren’t emphasized. And this is S25. This should be their crowning glory. They had LOTS of time to think about this; they knew it was coming. Original actors are littered across NYC. They would have gladly come back for guest spots. In fact, Jordana Spirano guested in a wonderful episode where she killed her husband after he beat her repeatedly. Even that could have been revisited. Instead she’s there as a new, irrelevant character. And don’t even get me started on Elliot Stabler who should be there repeatedly – there would be no SVU if Chris Meloni and Mariska Hargitay hadn’t cemented the foundation of this show for 12 years. Instead we’re focusing on Rollins and Carisi who are pleasant but not earth shaking. Amanda’s best days were way before she hooked up with Carisi. I hope the powers that be renew Organized Crime soon. Then at least we can continue to get great stories and maybe settle the Olivia/Elliot relationship finally.

  2. Annie on April 20th, 2024 4:15 am

    I enjoyed both SVU and OC eps this week. I do find it a bit frustrating however that while people are (sometimes validly) critiquing SVU for not giving Olivia enough of a healing narrative, that they don’t do the same to OC and Elliot. We’ve at least seen a big win for Liv with the Maddie storyline, from finding her, rescuing her alive, to getting the perp convicted. I liked seeing that play out for her. We see her in therapy. But Elliot has gone from trauma to trauma each ep (Rita, Sam, his own capture, his brother, his father…and that’s just this season). We never see him have downtime without it being somehow connected to drama eventually, from work or his family, we don’t see him healing or going to therapy. If it’s a valid critique of one show, it should be of the other too.

  3. Marisa Roffman on April 20th, 2024 8:56 pm

    It’s apples and oranges, IMO. If the therapist storyline was playing out on OC versus SVU, I’d have the *exact* same criticism for that show. I’d also have different comments about SVU if they hadn’t made this therapist a recurring part of the season and we just had to infer whether Olivia was seeing a therapist.

    Olivia deserves healing—but she’s deserved healing for basically the entire series. We’ve seen her in therapy before, casually in the first half of the series, but obviously more extensively post-Lewis.

    The issues here are:
    a) Her therapist is wildly, wildly, wildly, wildly inappropriate. Even by fake TV therapist standards. Every time we’ve seen her or she’s been a part of the storyline, she’s either done, suggested, or allowed something that is deeply harmful and completely unethical. (Literally EVERY single time.) To be clear, someone like Lindstrom also crossed lines (and that was not okay/I’m not excusing that), but it wasn’t 100% of the time. We’re seeing how harmful she’s being to Olivia. It’s actually stunning they haven’t had a single episode where we could see why Olivia would trust her—or why the audience should trust her with Olivia—instead of making her actively harmful in every appearance.
    b) OLIVIA is not getting better. Yes, she saved Maddie! (Thank goodness!) But her behavior has not changed and, as I mentioned, she’s crossed many lines since then. (Both in this episode and in the season as a whole.) Taking Maddie to her therapist is inappropriate, full stop. Then you add on it was done, seemingly, without the teen’s parents’ consent, without any guidance for how to handle the aftermath, continued treatment, etc…that is not okay? In any world. The fact that Olivia doesn’t see how that’s a huge line she’s crossing, with someone who is extraordinarily vulnerable, is not great. The fact the THERAPIST would consent is awful.

    We don’t know if Elliot is in therapy. He was last season. And, yes, he’s had repeated trauma…no one is denying that. But the difference is also in his reaction.

    I will not make assumptions about whether you regularly read this column (I don’t have that kind of hubris, haha), but I actually addressed how OC has been handling Elliot’s healing —with some things that worked, as well as moves that DIDN’T last season—back in January. We may not be seeing Elliot in therapy regularly—and he may not be going!—but we’ve seen how he handles his emotions now compared to a decade ago. Even compared to how he handled them a year or two ago. Even with the trauma and the toll it has taken on him, he seems to be in a better place with the punches being thrown at him than Olivia. (Not that it should be a contest.) To me, that is showcasing more healing compared to someone saying they’re fine while we’re witnessing them spiraling with our own eyes.

    Also, notably, off-screen, the SVU team has talked specifically about healing for Olivia over the past couple of years. The OC team has not—to my awareness—made that claim about Elliot this season. It’s not saying he doesn’t deserve healing, too; he does. But if one show is very specifically saying they intended to do a storyline and are instead doing the opposite, based on what we’re seeing on screen, and actually showcasing deeply harmful elements…that is a very different situation than hoping something is handled on another show.

    But, obviously, YMMV.