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Law & Order: SVU Season 21 Finale Digs Into the #MeToo Movement

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Sir Tobias Moore, an Englishmen with curly gray hair and a face that’s mostly teeth is the focus of the 21st season finale of Law & Order: SVU.

We were initially introduced to this Weinstein figure in Season 21 Episode 1 “I’m Going to Make You a Star,” where his habit of assaulting aspiring actresses was displayed. The connections he had with authorities only deepened as the investigation continued. Tapes of women who auditioned for him were voluntarily handed over by DA and former Judge, Alana Barth.

He evaded authorities at every turn until SVU sent in an undercover, (Kat from Vice) he attacked her and they arrested him. Knowing they still had to make a case he remarked to Detective Benson while in handcuffs, “there’s nothing as funny as watching a beautiful woman make the biggest mistake of her life.” Victim Gemma Brooks quickly turned around and made an announcement that what happened between Sir Toby and herself was a consensual affair.

Soon after she hopped a plane to New Zealand to direct a film for Moore’s company Picflix. Fortunately, that video announcement alerted DA Carisi to the updated furnishings in Sir Toby’s office. Footage was found of his assistant replacing the casting couch.

Law and Order Season 21 Finale Review

Ian McShane as Sir Tobias “Toby” Moore — (Photo by: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)

We see the producer again in Season 21 Episode 21 “The Things We Have To Lose.” His trial was delayed for a year.

“Men’s reputations can be destroyed overnight, how many innocent men have been convicted in the name of the Me Too Movement?,” asked his female DA on the courthouse steps.

When Moore failed to show up in court due to a “worsening heart condition,” Carisi claimed this is another delay and obfuscation. One victim is stressed and terrified while another was branded promiscuous by the tabloids.  Benson said to DA Barth, “what do you need Alana because whatever Sir Toby is paying you, it’s not worth it.”

Finally, the trial is ready to begin but again, Sir Toby is absent. Carisi pushed the limits of the law saying, “your clients afraid to have the women he raped confront him in open court.” Despite Benson’s determination that has lasted decades on SVU, it seemed there was no justice to be served. Later, Detective Rollins sauntered by Carisi’s office to see if he’d like to go for a drink, further extending the ‘will they won’t they’ vibes carried throughout the seasons between them.

Law and Order: Special Victims Unit on NBC, Peter Scanavino as Dominick “Sonny” Carisi, Jr.

Joelle and young son André who we met in Season 21 Episode 5 “At Midnight in Manhattan” when her soon to be ex-husband, beat her while their 7-year-old watched prompting him to call 911.

It ended with Leon in jail. Episode 21 tells us that he’s been recently paroled. Joelle is under the impression that he was sentenced to a year but Detective Tutuola clarified it’s 6 months in and 6 months out, served with probation, and the order of protection still in place. Leon started showing up anyway. Tutuola is concerned for their safety. He gave André a phone for emergencies. The next time we see them Leon is holding Joelle hostage at knifepoint while the detective tried to calm him. “He’s my boy, not yours,” Fuller threatened, nostrils flared. Tutuola insists, “your son loves you that’s all he ever talks about.” André rushed to his father despite the warnings not to. Leon freed Joelle, now holding his son hostage.

Leon made a move and Tutuola fired his gun. André is left crying over his father’s body. Benson met Tutuola at the scene afterward and he told her, “the boy saw his father get shot. No child should ever see that.” Despite his best efforts to protect, effective yet tragic, Joelle sued Tutuola for wrongful death. Episode 5 ends with Deputy Chief Dodds stepping down and making Detective Olivia Benson, Captain.

Lakira, a transgender woman also introduced in Episode 5 reappears in the finale. She was assaulted with a flashlight by Paul Davies, a man Lakira referred to as “a blue-eyed vulture” he paid her off so she would not testify against him. Lakira didn’t see this as a loss but instead, “turning vultures into angels,” she twirled in the light of the setting sun on the pier, happy to have enough money for a place to stay. It’s not until Episode 21 that her tone changes. The lawyer from Westchester strikes again, assaulting another sex worker so brutally she had to be put into a medically induced coma.

LAW & ORDER: SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT — “The Things We Have to Lose” Episode 21020 — Pictured: (l-r) Gisela Chipe as Ramona Diaz, Peter Scanavino as Detective Sonny Carisi — (Photo by: Heidi Gutman/NBC)

Lakira blamed herself. If she hadn’t been too afraid to testify after her own assault, “he’d be in jail. Dakota would be alive.” As expected, Davies pleaded not guilty but his bail was denied and DA Carisi felt optimistic. “So they believe us?” Lakira asked.

“The Things We Have To Lose” ends with the same song heard at the beginning, the haunting chorus of ‘Holy Water’ by Freya Ridings.

The episode wasn’t the intended finale and was actually supposed to usher in the return of Stabler after almost a decade of the character being of the show. Stabler’s time-away seems to have done well for him as his character scored his own spinoff on NBC with a 13-episode order. 

It remains unclear if he will return in Law & Order: SVU Season 22 or how his story-arc will be reframed to lead into the aforementioned spinoff. 

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Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin

Pretty Little Liar: Summer School Review – Sweet Sixteen (203)

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Pretty Little Liar: Summer School Review - Sweet Sixteen (203)

There was nothing sweet about Mouse’s sweet 16 on Pretty Little Liars: Summer School Season 2 Episode 3. 

At such a tender age, these girls have survived one serial killer, only to be preyed on by another, seemingly more deranged, one. 

My whole heart hurt for Mouse as she realized that the location where Lola dropped her off for her surprise party was a trap set by Bloody Rose Waters, considering how depressed she was when she thought her friends weren’t prioritizing her birthday.

All sweet Mouse wanted was to feel special, but instead, she was fighting for her life at every turn—and thanks to some quick thinking, managed to make her way out of the abandoned restaurant after Bloody Rose set it on fire. 

All those months of therapy went down the drain in a flash as the trauma returned upon the realization that it was happening again—their biggest fears were manifesting. Not to mention poor Imogen is going to struggle between distinguishing reality from her nightmares/hallucinations as Bloody Rose exists in both.  

The final girls needed to once again prove that they could survive a serial killer. 

Throughout the episode, I kept trying to figure out who could be behind Bloody Rose. While there’s always the possibility it is actually Archie’s mom, I’m inclined to believe it’s someone who knew what happened to them and wants to continue preying on them. 

Pretty Little Liar: Summer School Review - Sweet Sixteen (203)

Credit: PLL Summer School/Max

However, all of the topline suspects were at the roller rink for Mouse’s actual surprise party—that she sadly didn’t get to enjoy—including Imogen’s crush, Johnny, Noa’s juvie friend, Jen, Tabby’s new work crush Christian, and Kelly and Gregg. 

There were a few people missing, including Henry and Sean, which I found suspicious. I don’t actually think Sean is behind any of it, but I can’t shake the feeling I’m getting about Henry, especially as it would make sense for the killer to be someone all too familiar with what happened to them last year. 

Then there’s Ash, who wasn’t at the party but did come to Mouse’s rescue, once he found out about her other “surprise” party from Lola. He seemed very much in the dark the whole time, so I think we can rule him out. 

I’m not counting out Kelly’s mom, Chip’s mom (who has a reason for wanting revenge), and Dr. Sullivan herself, who knows the liars’ deepest darkest secrets and can frankly use them against them. 

Murder and serial killers aside, Tabby and Imogen both confided in their new crushes about their trauma and PTSD—and much like in the original, the guy seems like they will be a source of support, which is nice. Everyone needs supportive partners, especially when you’re being hounded by a psychopath.

Faran owned her power after a terrifying experience at the pool, and while being intimidating might warrant some haters—especially the dude she fired—it was also warranted as he was negligent on the job twice, and it almost led to a terrible accident. 

And I’ve got to ask, what’s with all the douchey dudes in Millwood? For every good one, there are several around to make derogatory and misogynistic comments for absolutely no reason.

What did you think of the episode? Is Bloody Rose taking things too far? How will the liars ensure their survival this time around?

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Chicago Med

Chicago Med Review – Get by with a Little Help From My Friends (912)

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Chicago Med Season 9 Episode saw a lot of people overwhelmed by work and life in general. 

It all started with Sharon Goodwin, who is coming to the realization that her life is going to be a lot different now that Bert is experiencing memory loss. 

The incident that kickstarts everything involves him forgetting to turn the stove off, but as Cruz informs her, it had a good outcome but may be the first of many. As Goodwin’s ex-husband is treated for smoke inhalation, she struggles to figure out how to manage it all. Eventually, when Bert has another meltdown, she realizes that she’s the only person that can calm him down. Even when he’s disoriented, he recognizes her and feels comfort when she’s around, which again, puts an immense burden on her. 

As he pleads for Sharon to take him home, she agrees to be his caregiver, a situation that Dr. Charles informs her cannot be permanent. But it’s easy to see why she feels responsible—this is the man she’s loved her whole life who still needs her. It’s almost like he’s regressed to an infant mentality, not really understanding the what and why behind what’s going on. Bert is doing a fantastic job portraying all of those emotions and vulnerabilities on screen, providing audiences with a heartbreaking look at the disease.  There’s no reasoning with him, all she can do is provide care, though hopefully, not at the expense of her own mental health and sanity. 

Newcomer Jackie, played by La Brea’s Natalie Zea, arrives in the ED for her second shift in a row, when Maggie immediately notices something is off. Jackie isn’t her usual self, and paired with the stress at home and the blood dripping from her arm—a cut she claims to have sustained earlier in the day while leaving the house—there’s definitely room for worry. 

A quick diagnosis from Dr. Charles reveals that the cut may have been self-harm, as he suggests Jackie is distracting herself from the daily pain she witnesses in the burn unit. This is proven to be true after Jackie loses a patient, runs off to the bathroom to cut herself, and then collapses in Maggie’s arms, revealing scars from previous cuts. Intervention becomes necessary at that point, even though to Jackie, it feels like the ultimate betrayal, but eventually, she comes around to see that Maggie was simply acting in her best interest. It’ll be interesting to see if Med finds a permanent place for Zea on the team as I think she’d make a great addition—plus we all know Maggie needs a new friend around. 

Dr. Marcel also wasn’t spared from the harsh realities when his celebration over his young patient Colin’s new liver quickly soured when he realized the child had an infection. While he tried his best to advocate or Colin, knowing that the boy might not live to see another donor match, he ultimately had to make the hard, yet right, call and give up the organ to someone who could survive the surgery. It’s not the outcome anyone wanted, including Colin’s disappointed father (this is why as a doctor, you never make any promises), but due to the illness, he wasn’t strong enough to move forward. The final gut punch was Colin asking if he was going to die, making Crockett question every decision he’s ever made. 

Hannah teamed up with Ripley—while also sealing their romantic fate—to help his childhood friends, Lynne and Sully, welcome their new baby, born prematurely at 30 weeks and not breathing. Thankfully, they were able to save the child, which was comforting considering everything Sully is already going through. They need a shred of happiness. 

Archer also got a little scolding from Sharon, who didn’t take kindly toward his harsh attitude toward the new intern, reminding him that this is a teaching hospital after all. Turns out, when Archer wants to, he can be a great mentor—and that’s something some students need when they are letting their fears and doubts cloud their judgment and get the best of them. None of us are born with the knowledge and skills—it takes patience and practice.

Thankfully, in every situation, the good outweighed the bad as everyone was supported by loved ones—friends, family, and staff who truly cared about their wellbeing. 

What did you think of the episode?

If you are having a mental health, substance use, or suicidal crisis, call 988. 

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Chicago P.D

Chicago PD Review – Voight Becomes the Victim (1112)

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Chicago PD Season 11 did not come to play! Through the course of 11 seasons, fans have seen it all—and been through it all with the detectives working in Intelligence, but Voight getting taken by the serial killer he’s been obsessively chasing down takes the cake!

The Sgt. Voight somehow got outplayed—and it’s equal parts disappointing, concerning, and intriguing. These writers know what makes good TV. It’s also a change of pace to see someone like Voight end up as the victim. We always see them in these powerful positions, dominating crime scenes, dictating how situations will turn out, and demanding that criminals and suspects be held accountable, but now, we’re seeing him on the other side.

Voight has gotten what he’s wanted for some long—facetime with the serial killer terrorizing the streets of Chicago. It’s likely not the way he wanted this to unfold, or how he imagined the situation would go down, but it’s the unfortunate twist that it took as the suspect realized that the cops were on his tail and needed to regain control of the situation.

What he failed to anticipate is that Voight’s team was following a lead that he thought was no longer viable. Right before Kiki’s tragic death—and it pained me to hear that she didn’t pull through after being filled with so much optimism about the future just mere moments before she was gunned down—and before she could reveal who her informant was, she mentioned a key piece of information that was enough for Hailey Upton to go on. Upton located Kiki’s John, who previously told her that someone in his family was a serial killer, which is how she knew so many of the personal details of the case that weren’t made public. 

While Bobby wasn’t immediately comfortable with sharing, he eventually disclosed the name of his cousin’s husband, who blabbed about his love of torture when he was intoxicated, allowing Upton to pinpoint lockup keeper Frank Matson. 

He was right there, in front of them, the whole time, with access not only to all the victims upon cross-referencing, but to intel, cameras, and everything in between. It only makes sense that this person was close to it all having been able to get away with so much. Hiding in plain sight truly is one of the best ways to pull off a crime of this nature. 

And, now, he’s moved in on Voight, who found himself drugged with some kind of paralyzing agent after his trip to the bar. I wish that before he fell unconscious, he gave anyone on his team a ring to let them know he wasn’t feeling well, but, he tried his best, even locking the door after himself. Matson, however, was one step ahead—as he had been this whole time—breaking in, before creepily checking Voight’s eyes and pulling his frozen body to another location.

Once Hailey arrived to check in on Voight, she knew something wasn’t right. And once again, Matson takes the lead in an investigation that’s now racing against the clock. 

The team is currently searching Matson’s place, as his poor wife seemingly didn’t know anything was wrong, though, I’m willing to bet his daughter has some insight. The girl looked like she wanted to spill.

But Matson has proven time and again to be pretty crafty, so tracking him down might be very difficult, especially with Voight’s life on the line adding additional pressure. 

Will the team be able to pull it off? I’ve not heard any murmurings of Jason Beghe leaving the series, so odds are they will get to him in time, but the case, which has already taken an emotional toll on him, might leave a permanent mark. To be honest, all I want to see is Voight get his revenge and justice as Matson burns in hell—and as we race toward the season finale, this seems like a really fitting plot to finish on, all while lending itself to Upton’s inevitable exit.  If there’s anything to convince you that a career change is healthy and necessary, it’s seeing your boss almost get murdered by a serial killer. And, as we’ve seen with her vulnerable chats with Petrovic (who I am now convinced will join Intelligence after commenting on the “family vibes”), Upton isn’t in a great headspace to begin with so she’s going to need to take a step back and find something that allows her to move forward without all the baggage she’s been carrying from her childhood and divorce from Jay.

Also, with Chicago PD Season 11 Episode 12 being Jesse Lee Soffer’s (remember him?) directorial debut, I have to give him a shout-out for a job well done. The episode kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time—and that’s not an easy feat for a show 11 seasons in, but no one knows these characters better than the man who spent so much time on the show! 

What did you think of the episode? Did you expect Voight to become the next victim? Share your thoughts now! 

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