This week's episode of Law & Order: Los Angeles seemed to run fairly quickly; this may be due in part to the pleasurably predictable plot line of this installment.
Within the first 15 minutes the show reveals illegal permit activities of the city of East Pasadena and the rest of the show is spent seeing how far the rabbit hole goes.
There is a simple joy to be had in the reassurance of one’s hunch that Lt. Petracelli was the one that shot Comptroller Wheeler. This episode also finds pleasure in its deliverance of justice.
Whereas the first two episodes of the season evaded a true sense of justice either through complete escape or a plea agreement, "East Pasadena" satisfied viewers’ desire to see the bad guys punished with the strict punishments handed down to the defendants.
The joy to be had in the judgment is only enhanced by the polarity between the victim and the perpetrators; the victim selflessly serving her country with honor and the perpetrators' abhorrent violation of the public trust they were elected to serve.Detective Morales continues to prove himself as an exceptional officer of the law throughout his actions on the street and testimony in court. It is understandable that the show feels a need to compensate for the role shift from attorney to detective.
Giving back history of Morales’ actions 20 years in the past and current acts, like his firearm prowess, does go to support his new role; it does come off as forced.
Furthermore, the singular attention to Morales has a Criminal Intent feel to it, versus the more equitable partnerships found in Law & Order and SVU. It would seem that “East Pasadena”, thankfully, begins to address the issue of Morales and TJ as partners thrown together.
The foundations of trust between the two are laid out in this episode, which is much needed to balance the show out. Hopefully this season will continue to build upon this relationship to attain that familiar buddy cop feeling that keeps viewers returning.
The council room hostage scene was another instance of Law & Order writers looking to headlines for inspiration, as a similar instance occurred during Panama City, Florida school board meeting.
This borrowing of real life events is a common occurrence within all of the Law & Order series. It is often asked if this is good or poor writing; does it make the show more realistic, plausible, current, or is this just lazy writing?
What do you think of this practice? What do you think of the partnership of TJ and Morales?
How did you feel about this episode of Law & Order: LA overall? Discuss below!