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Lennie Briscoe Was NOT Great: Unpopular Opinions

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Did not like Chris Noth.  There was a lot of press years ago about him abusing his girlfriend, Beverly Johnson, and anytime I see him in someone's face I am reminded of that

Could you elaborate?  From what I understand she was a nut who has made weird accusations about other boyfriends and they took restraining orders out on each other.

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The woman who accused Noth of domestic violence did make the exact same allegations against another of her ex boyfriend and yeah they did take out restraining orders and one of them sued her for false allegations. It does appear she was unstable. Nothing came of it. 

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Please do not call out people about their opinions. Everyone here is entitled to what they feel/think. It's the selling point of a good discussion board.

Also, no one should have to explain why they like or dislike someone/something. Not saying anyone can't if they want to, but neither is it a requirement.

So respect each other and all will be well.

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Some Fontana episodes have been showing on TNT...and he isn't as awful as I remembered. Not to say he'd ever touch Lennie in terms of greatness, but I think poor Mr. Farina got so much flack being Jerry Orbach's immediate "replacement".

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Yeah I agree that Fontana got a lot of hate just because he wasn't Lennie. I was one of the one's who liked Fontana, I liked how he didn't try to imitate Briscoe and instead brought his on unique style, I liked how he wasn't from NYC and how his personal life remained a mystery. He was certainly an arrogant and polarizing detective but I enjoyed his episodes. 

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Speaking of not getting a fair shake, I've been watching a few Nina Cassidy episodes lately. Did everyone hate her? I know Van Buren and Green were supposed to be wary of her early on, but the ADAs didn't seem to like her either. I wonder if that reflected things that were happening off-screen. I know she wasn't great (the character or the actress), but she certainly wasn't horrible. No wonder she only lasted one season. 

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My UO: even though the ADA teams were all male/female after Robinette left, I was fine with all of the detective pairings being male/male. Cassidy didn't work out because she didn't seem to be interested in establishing good relationships with her partner and superior officer and didn't have much personality beyond being a defiant loner. Maybe a different female detective might have worked, but I wasn't sorry they never tried it again.

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On 6/7/2017 at 4:31 PM, topanga said:

Speaking of not getting a fair shake, I've been watching a few Nina Cassidy episodes lately. Did everyone hate her? I know Van Buren and Green were supposed to be wary of her early on, but the ADAs didn't seem to like her either. I wonder if that reflected things that were happening off-screen. I know she wasn't great (the character or the actress), but she certainly wasn't horrible. No wonder she only lasted one season. 

I think it's pretty universal and it does reflect what was happening off-screen. Bringing in a young attractive woman was something imposed from above that was supposed to revive interest and get younger viewers. They had no real interest in making her work, so they never bothered to develop the character. There was almost always conflict when new characters were introduced that usually gave way to some sort of respect, usually by either smoothing down the rough edges a bit like with Lennie or by the characters figuring out how to work together. But they just kept writing her as making the same mistakes and Van Buren riding her mercilessly. They could have easily had her showing skill in some particular area and adapting to expectations while occasionally pissing off the Lt. by subtly disparaging her as old fashioned (much as with Logan and his sexism) if they wanted to. I mean they kept trying with Borgia who was far less interesting...

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What do you mean Logan and his sexism?  He displays quite the feminist streak sometimes.

 

Wendy, I don't know if you were referring to me up above but I was just wondering if the poster before me knew something I didn't re Noth.

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13 hours ago, wknt3 said:

I think it's pretty universal and it does reflect what was happening off-screen. Bringing in a young attractive woman was something imposed from above that was supposed to revive interest and get younger viewers. They had no real interest in making her work, so they never bothered to develop the character. There was almost always conflict when new characters were introduced that usually gave way to some sort of respect, usually by either smoothing down the rough edges a bit like with Lennie or by the characters figuring out how to work together. But they just kept writing her as making the same mistakes and Van Buren riding her mercilessly. They could have easily had her showing skill in some particular area and adapting to expectations while occasionally pissing off the Lt. by subtly disparaging her as old fashioned (much as with Logan and his sexism) if they wanted to. I mean they kept trying with Borgia who was far less interesting...

I did enjoy the side eye and snark that L-T would throw Cassidy's way though.  

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11 hours ago, Maherjunkie said:

What do you mean Logan and his sexism?  He displays quite the feminist streak sometimes.

I probably should have said "perceived sexism" since some of it was clearly him carrying on behaving the same way he had with Cragen, not realizing that it would be taken differently by a new CO who had to fight for respect than it was by Cragen who had different experiences and a totally different relationship with Logan (who was partners with his #2 and longtime friend at the beginning of the series and seemed to have worked for him for some time.) The whole "That's Lieutenant Anita to you." bit. There were a number of other instances of that most memorably perhaps "What you don't get is my rank in a skirt." And Van Buren wasn't the only one who had that reaction to Logan sometimes either. There was Olivet's classic line "Is it just me, detective, or is it all women with triple digit IQs?" and moments in other episodes like "Discord" where he was rather dismissive of female POVs. He did display a feminist streak sometimes as well, being pro-choice, showing understanding at times, and asking the IAB hack in "Competence" if his issue with Van Buren is "that she's wearing a skirt or that she's Black?" Logan was a complicated character with layers and flaws. He definitely wasn't a bigot, and certainly was shown to be more progressive than most cops at the time, but he was also capable of displaying casual sexism or thoughtlessness.

Edited by wknt3
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Yeah Logan could be politically incorrect and insensitive but he was not sexist or bigoted IMO. He did clash with Van Buren sometimes but I think that was mainly because of the big difference in the style of Cragen and Van Buren : Cragen was a Manhattan homicide detective and still acted like a detective and less like a boss IMO, he didn't give as many orders and was more into discussing and dissecting the case, he was Greevey's partner at one point, and everyone called him Don or Donny, not Captain. With Van Buren, she didn't have a history with the detectives, she wasn't a Homicide Detective beforehand, she was more authoritative and order giving than Cragen and she was never referred to by her first name except for that one time by Logan. Logan was liberal in most ways IMO, much more so than the likes of Greevey and later Rey Curtis, not saying they were sexist but they were pretty conservative. 

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20 hours ago, Xeliou66 said:

Yeah Logan could be politically incorrect and insensitive but he was not sexist or bigoted IMO.

And really, if you balance Logan saying that some women provoke getting hit, as he did in Indifference, against asking Ceretta why he was the one who felt like taking a shower once he found out that Olivet had been raped, he still comes out ahead. He may well have had a problem with her triple digit IQ, but though he later questions her wisdom in going back to the skeevy doctor's office, he seems genuinely sickened by the idea that she got hurt in that way.

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On June 10, 2017 at 1:35 AM, Maherjunkie said:

Oh god they were dinosaurs.

I assume you are referring to Greevey and Curtis and yes I agree. Greevey's constant whining about young people and his grumpy old man act was tiresome, and Curtis was worse, a sanctimonious judgmental hypocrite who could never stop moralizing and preaching and generally being a narrow minded hypocrite. His worst was when let the dad slap the kid in the interrogation room and Van Buren rightfully chewed his ass out over it, and also the episode about the fertility clinic when he was constantly ranting about in vitro fertilization and told Van Buren that her sister "wasn't meant to have kids" ;Van Buren gave him a classic nasty look. I couldn't stand the sanctimonious punk that was Rey Curtis.

Edited by Xeliou66
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Yes.  Oddly I like the Greevey Logan combo.   I would have loved to tell Max I'd had an abortion just to see his response, even though it would be a total lie,

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It wouldn't be professional, and in reality, I doubt it was the case, but I wonder sometimes if Max being a blowhard some of the time was the writing staff's way of toying with George Dzundza since, by many accounts, he was difficult on set.

I do think there's at least some truth to his reputation since he also abruptly quit that '90s sitcom Jesse after S1, where he played Christina Applegate's father. (And, yes, I'm ashamed of myself for remembering that show.)

Edited by WendyCR72

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Yeah Dzundza was disliked by everyone, he apparently wanted to be the star of the show and get more scenes than everyone else and had a big ego, no one liked him, that's why they got rid of him. The Greevey character was apparently a lot like Dzundza in real life.

I thought Curtis was way worse than Greevey, his hypocrisy and constant sanctimonious sermons made me want to punch him and he regularly crossed the line in his behavior and judgmental attitude, and he frequently didn't practice what he preached. 

Edited by Xeliou66
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18 hours ago, Cobalt Stargazer said:

And really, if you balance Logan saying that some women provoke getting hit, as he did in Indifference, against asking Ceretta why he was the one who felt like taking a shower once he found out that Olivet had been raped, he still comes out ahead. He may well have had a problem with her triple digit IQ, but though he later questions her wisdom in going back to the skeevy doctor's office, he seems genuinely sickened by the idea that she got hurt in that way.

In other words, Logan wasn't perfect-which made him PERFECT for ME!❤️He was flawed, but he wasn't sanctimonious or a judgmental ASS (looking at YOU, Rey Curtis), and pretty much got over whatever issues or bitterness/resentment he had at losing Cragen and reporting to Van Buren pretty quickly. He became one of her loyal detectives and supporters. And maybe because it hit me personally after I was diagnosed and went through the surgeries and chemo, but I FUCKING LOVED him in "Second Opinion." And even though I get ????at all the women who would rather die than get massacred (guess they never heard of reconstructive surgery), I do ????when Van Buren asks him how he'd feel if he didn't have a certain appendage that defined his manhood, if you will.

As for "Indifference," he didn't say that some women deserve to be hit, but that "some women do provoke it" and when Max asked if he learned that on Oprah, Logan told him no, it was his mother. And that's just one example of how great the Mothership was in revealing to the viewers, the history and personal lives of its characters. Instead of ramming it down our my throat so that practically every episode was A Very Special Episode about Olivia, Elliott or Bobby.?

As for Dzundza, he pretty much wasn't happy having to move to New York to do the show, when he was told it would be filmed in Vancouver, which was closer to CA, then NY, when he signed up. That aside, I accepted his own prejudices and judginess in stride, but still called him out on his hypocrisy. But I saw where he was coming from, and more often times than not, he would see the error of his ways. UNLIKE Rey Curtis. I will NEVER forgive him for telling Van Buren that maybe her sister wasn't meant to have children and that in vitro was "unnatural" and against what God intended, or whatever BULLSHIT he spouted.???

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Perfect post.  What I didn't like about Van Buren  when she said that is that the obvious response should have been "So you choose death?"

Too give Greavey credit, he did treat people fairly, except in Life Choice when he was awful.  I guess you can't expect an old school catholic to change at that age.

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Greevey was awful in Life Choice, he was also awful in Prisoner of Love and Kiss the Girls and Make Them Die. However he was not a hypocrite, he usually practiced what he preached, which cannot be said for the smug bastard that was Rey Curtis. Curtis was toned down a bit by the end of his tenure, but he was a judgmental asswipe who constantly was moralizing and shoved his views down others throats and was downright inappropriate with Van Buren and Lennie on multiple occasions. 

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The fertility episode was the worst by far, but he was also incredibly annoying in episodes such as Stalker, when he attacked Lennie for changing his story when he had done the same, and he generally acted morally superior to everyone while not behaving the way he talked. He was a douche. 

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1 hour ago, Xeliou66 said:

The fertility episode was the worst by far, but he was also incredibly annoying in episodes such as Stalker, when he attacked Lennie for changing his story when he had done the same, and he generally acted morally superior to everyone while not behaving the way he talked. He was a douche. 

 I hated him in Stalker just as much as the fertility one he couldn't understand why Lennie changed his story. I mean really? At least Lennie felt bad about what happened to the girl and was trying to do something. Rey really thought he had the morally superiority? Over someone who actually was trying to help the girl.

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Yeah, and they really don't know if the girl was thrown or not, I didn't think Lennie's story was total bullshit, it was not likely but plausible, and Curtis was so judgmental and holier than thou, I loved seeing McCoy take him down on cross, it was Curtis at his hypocritical finest.

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37 minutes ago, Maherjunkie said:

Luckily Ben Bratt did not like his character in real life, redeeming himself to me.  

For me the two aren't comparable-I can still loathe a character even if I like the actor or actress. My liking Bratt didn't redeem the character of Rey Curtis, who was a cheating, judgemental, sanctimonious, holier than thou ASSHOLE.

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Did Bratt ever say that he didn't like his character? If so I've never heard that. I agree that Bratt is not like Curtis in real life, but I've never heard him say he disliked the character. Rey Curtis sucks though. He always manages to irritate me with his sanctimonious preaching, even after they toned him down he was still annoying, I also hated how they had a woman hit on him in every episode basically and he was just a self righteous prick. He was in a lot of great episodes, season 7 won the Emmy, but Curtis always drags episodes down and the only detective I dislike more was the wooden Nina Cassady. 

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1 hour ago, Xeliou66 said:

I also hated how they had a woman hit on him in every episode basically and he was just a self righteous prick.

Not just women. But men too! It annoyed the ever lovin' frack out of me. Like, he ain't all THAT.

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9 minutes ago, GHScorpiosRule said:

Not just women. But men too! It annoyed the ever lovin' frack out of me. Like, he ain't all THAT.

That second thing is partly redeemed by the fact that Lennie told Rey (after some waiter had hit on Curtis), "Hey, he seems like a fun guy. You could do worse." Making a joke out of the idea that Rey was just so hot that no one could resist making a pass makes it just a touch more bearable, IMO.

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11 hours ago, Xeliou66 said:

Yeah, and they really don't know if the girl was thrown or not, I didn't think Lennie's story was total bullshit, it was not likely but plausible, and Curtis was so judgmental and holier than thou, I loved seeing McCoy take him down on cross, it was Curtis at his hypocritical finest.

They really didn't. It could have gone either way but Lennie's story was plausible. Watching McCoy take him down was awesome. If only it happened more often!

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On 6/7/2017 at 1:31 PM, topanga said:

Speaking of not getting a fair shake, I've been watching a few Nina Cassidy episodes lately. Did everyone hate her? I know Van Buren and Green were supposed to be wary of her early on, but the ADAs didn't seem to like her either. I wonder if that reflected things that were happening off-screen. I know she wasn't great (the character or the actress), but she certainly wasn't horrible. No wonder she only lasted one season. 

I enjoyed the perspective of the rookie detective, where as all the rest of them were on top of the game. For all the backstage stuff about her being forced on the air, well every ADA including the Deputy DA's on the Los Angeles show fit that mode after they got rid of Richard Brooks' Paul Robinette

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On June 12, 2017 at 9:21 PM, GHScorpiosRule said:

Not just women. But men too! It annoyed the ever lovin' frack out of me. Like, he ain't all THAT.

I despise ANY character, male or female, that multiple characters fall in love with acting like they are some kind of perfect precious snowflake. Because most of the time, like you put it, they're usually not so great.

Okay, here's an unpopular opinion of my own. I loathe Serena just as much as you all do. However, once in a blue moon, I found myself agreeing with her on certain things. Ew, I feel dirty just by typing that.

The one instance I'm referring to was in "Dead Wives Club", with her sympathy to the ex wife who murdered her husband's new wife. The douchebag fireman left her and the kids high and dry to marry his dead best friend's widow after 9/11, so it was definitely a case of an unsympathetic victim.

And while Jack was right that the perp had to own up to the consequences of her actions, I don't think the post 9/11 PTSD defense was complete bullshit. Jack's cross examination pointing out that she had never sought any kind of treatment or therapy for it made me angry. Perhaps I'm biased about mental health issues because of my own experiences, here's the thing: lots of people with these issues have a hard time admitting they need therapy, let alone help. And given the fact that this woman was struggling to raise her kids and work full-time, since her no-good ex barely supported her financially, when would she have found time/money for therapy, let alone herself?!

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On 7/15/2017 at 11:08 AM, Spartan Girl said:

I despise ANY character, male or female, that multiple characters fall in love with acting like they are some kind of perfect precious snowflake. Because most of the time, like you put it, they're usually not so great.

Except when it's Mark Harmon's characters.  Because HE? IS ALL THAT!???

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I actually was with Serena on that one too @Spartan Girl. But then she had to go ruin it by trying to defend the mom and dad who essentially sold their son for the weekend to the Michael Jackson knock off for money (yeah I know they needed it for the younger son, but really??)

I think the mute I watch the older episodes the less Serena annoys me and the more Claire does.

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That was Serena's lowest moment, how she could defend parents selling their son to a pedophile is beyond me, and that was arguably the worst moment any main L&O character ever had, right up their with Bernard's appalling comments about rape victims getting pregnant in Dignity. 

Serena did annoy me a lot with her frequent sympathies with the defense, same with Nora, when they were on together in season 12 it could be unbearable. Sometimes she was right, but she irritated me frequently and I thought Branch made the right move firing her, she was too soft for a DA. 

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On 2017-07-25 at 9:50 PM, callie lee 29 said:

I actually was with Serena on that one too @Spartan Girl. But then she had to go ruin it by trying to defend the mom and dad who essentially sold their son for the weekend to the Michael Jackson knock off for money (yeah I know they needed it for the younger son, but really??)

 

On 2017-07-26 at 6:12 AM, Xeliou66 said:

That was Serena's lowest moment, how she could defend parents selling their son to a pedophile is beyond me, and that was arguably the worst moment any main L&O character ever had, right up their with Bernard's appalling comments about rape victims getting pregnant in Dignity. 

Serena did annoy me a lot with her frequent sympathies with the defense, same with Nora, when they were on together in season 12 it could be unbearable. Sometimes she was right, but she irritated me frequently and I thought Branch made the right move firing her, she was too soft for a DA. 

To me, that was a writing issue. In those days, the show wanted every episode to be an ethical debate. Loosely, Branch would be Right and Serena would be Left and McCoy would be Baby Bear. But, given the RFTH episodes they were always doing, the ethical debate approach didn't make sense. Not everytihng has multiple sides a resonable person could be expected to take. So Serena looked like an idiot most of the time, not helped by the fact that her actor played her like she didn't speak English and learned her lines phonetically.

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On ‎7‎/‎26‎/‎2017 at 6:12 AM, Xeliou66 said:

That was Serena's lowest moment, how she could defend parents selling their son to a pedophile is beyond me, and that was arguably the worst moment any main L&O character ever had, right up their with Bernard's appalling comments about rape victims getting pregnant in Dignity. 

Serena did annoy me a lot with her frequent sympathies with the defense, same with Nora, when they were on together in season 12 it could be unbearable. Sometimes she was right, but she irritated me frequently and I thought Branch made the right move firing her, she was too soft for a DA. 

While I wouldn't defend them, and I would stand up for the child, I don't know if I could judge them.  It's not like they did it for a sports car. They were trying to save their other child's life.  It's hard to know how far you would go in a case like that.  I did like Branch's story about the Civil War mother, though.

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I don't give a fuck what they were using the money for, selling your son to a pedophile is beyond sick and evil. Serena defending them was her lowest moment. Nothing justifies selling your son to a pedophile. 

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On th eother hand, is it OK to let your son die?  I don't know.  I can't judge people in this situations.  Thta's not to say they shouldn't go to jail.  They broke the law. But punishment and judgement are two different things.  

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I have to side with those who think I don't give a shit if it's for "good reasons". A good parent would NEVER ALLOW their child to be sexually molested to help another child, dying or not.

And I wanted to smack Serena for defending it.

As this is the UO thread, however, topic: The early seasons were on WE and Sundance recently and, while I respect and get why NBC added some women to the cast in Season 4 (due to complaints, etc.), I think the first 3 seasons, even so old, still held up well. And I didn't care if the main cast was all male.

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Yeah the first 3 seasons are great, they still hold up well. I loved how L&O came out of the gate taking on controversial issues in season 1 ( abortion, assisted suicide, racial conflict, police misconduct, gun violence, S&M ) you really didn't see this stuff much on TV in 1990 and L&O didn't shy away and those episodes are still good now. The cast was good as well, I always liked Cragen and Stone and Robinette were very good on the legal side and I think Cerreta was underrated. Schiff and Logan are almost universally popular with L&O fans, I never liked Greevey much though. 

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Here's another UO where I am likely alone, but that's okay! I didn't mind Alexandra Borgia as ADA. No saying she was Totally!Awesome!, not even close. But I still preferred her over Serena. And the admittedly-curious part of me does wonder why Annie Parisse bolted so quickly.

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10 hours ago, WendyCR72 said:

As this is the UO thread, however, topic: The early seasons were on WE and Sundance recently and, while I respect and get why NBC added some women to the cast in Season 4 (due to complaints, etc.), I think the first 3 seasons, even so old, still held up well. And I didn't care if the main cast was all male.

Never thought that was an UO. At least in this forum.

7 hours ago, WendyCR72 said:

Here's another UO where I am likely alone, but that's okay! I didn't mind Alexandra Borgia as ADA. No saying she was Totally!Awesome!, not even close. But I still preferred her over Serena. And the admittedly-curious part of me does wonder why Annie Parisse bolted so quickly.

I didn't hate the character. In fact I also preferred her over the later seasons of Serena. She was too much of a nonentity to generate any sort of visceral reaction. Which was the problem. They never seemed to develop any sort of personality or distinctive traits or legal philosophy. I've said before that they seemed to want to go in a different direction from previous ADAs without ever figuring out how to do that. So you ended up with someone who was vaguely conservative and kind of moralistic, but never really stood out in any way. It was a shame that they didn't cast Annie Parisse as Serena since she was a decent actress who might have been able to pull off some of the decent ideas they had for Serena and if they were going to hire the Rohmbot have her play the white bread sandwich that was Borgia.

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14 hours ago, WendyCR72 said:

I have to side with those who think I don't give a shit if it's for "good reasons". A good parent would NEVER ALLOW their child to be sexually molested to help another child, dying or not.

And I wanted to smack Serena for defending it.

All of this—fortunately—is moot in today's world of GoFundMe.com options for desperate families facing life and death health care cost decisions. I think there may have been a mention of this in a recent episode—perhaps on SVU.

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