Will Kat ever learn?
On Law & Order: SVU Season 21 Episode 13, Benson had her hands full trying to keep Kat from jumping the gun, only for Kat to defy orders and almost ruin the case.
Kat is headstrong and passionate, but how many times can she screw up before she loses her position at SVU?
It's not that I don't like Kat.
She's a determined, passionate potential advocate, much like Benson was during Law & Order: SVU Season 1
But she's also a loose cannon, and this business of her impulsively breaking rules she doesn't quite understand and getting chewed out is getting old.
Kat: So Romeo's good for this, right?
Benson: Slow down, Kat.
Kat: But the grandmother just described grooming and the shoulder was just an excuse.
Benson: Maybe, but there are two scenarios. One, he's a predator and two, he's a trainer who cares about his girls.
And in this case, she easily could have found herself at the receiving end of a wrongful death lawsuit.
SVU doesn't generally go for false accusation storylines. That would defeat its mission to empower rape survivors through stories about an ideal justice system that always has their backs.
But what if Romeo hadn't molested Cammy? What if it had turned out that Kat and Benson and her grandmother's accusations were enough to get Cammy to make up a story to get everyone off her backs?
If that had happened, then Romeo's family, if he had one, might have been able to claim that Kat's overzealousness led to Esperanza landing that fatal blow on him. And Romeo told Fin in the ambulance that Kat set him up, which could have been used as ammunition against her.
That's one of the many reasons that Kat needs to get this under control.
When you first got here, did you start seeing predators everywhere?Kat
Benson is more than patient with her. She remembers being young, idealistic, and determined to rid the world of predators in any way possible.
After all the years of Cragen mentoring Benson, it's fun to come full circle and have her mentor both Kat and Rollins.
But Kat needs some serious help with impulse control before some higher-up decides to terminate her employment regardless of Benson's opinion on the matter.
And in this case, Kat was so busy trying to prove that Romeo molested both Esperanza and Cammy that she missed the obvious.
Esperanza's reaction when Kat said her father was here told me everything I needed to know about what was going on with Esperanza.
She didn't want to see him or let him help her with a lawyer even though she could be facing jail time for this whole mess, so something was wrong. And since she acted like an abuse victim but insisted Romeo didn't touch her, it was obvious who did.
Hadid's refusal to prosecute Santos sucked, but Kat's stunt didn't help.
I'm not a lawyer, but it seemed to me that the whole case was in jeopardy because Kat talked to Esperanza without a lawyer present.
Couldn't Santos' defense lawyer claim that Esperanza was coerced into accusing her father of rape and thus any further investigation the cops did was tainted by what Kat did?
Plus, neither Esperanza nor her sister was willing to testify, so there was no case at that point anyway.
It was annoying that Cammy and her case vanished after Romeo's death.
While there was no point in moving forward with the case after the defendant's death, Cammy claimed to be in love with Romeo, so it was inconceivable that she wouldn't have a strong reaction to Esperanza being accused of causing his death.
It might have added another dimension to the story if Cammy blamed Esperanza and was trying to help get her convicted or if her grandmother's accusations against Romeo made the news and muddied up the case against Esperanza.
Instead, we got nothing. It was as if what happened to her wasn't important now that we had a shiny new manslaughter case to work on instead.
The Graciella angle was interesting, but it seemed like the writers needed a Hail Mary to get justice for Esperanza.
Santos made it sound like she was dead, which was never explained.
He knew she was alive -- otherwise, why would he have met up with her to try to keep her quiet about what he'd done to her and her sister?
Likewise, the whole wanting money angle was confusing. She wanted the money and then she didn't.
Also, was it legal for Kat to pay her to set Santos up? Nobody seemed to have a problem with it but that seemed like yet another way Kat interfered with the process.
While all this was going on, there was also a subplot about Benson's difficulty with Tucker's death that is sure to ramp up as we get closer to the end of Law & Order: SVU Season 21.
Carisi: I was in the neighborhood. My mom made you soup.
Benson: Oh, I'm fine.
Carisi: It's my mom's soup. Take it.
Maybe it was a good thing that Kat needed to be babysat so she didn't ruin the case anymore because before that, Benson was sitting in her office all the time ruminating.
That did give Raul Esparza a nice cameo, though Barba's oversight of the Iowa caucus was ironic considering the real-life chaos surrounding that vote.
In any case, Benson's isolating herself and insistence she's fine is concerning, and this is no doubt the beginning of a challenging time for her.
What did you think, SVU Fanatics?
Are you as irritated with Kat's inability to follow procedure as I am? Did you wonder whatever happened to Cammy?
And is Benson headed for a major fall?
Hit SHOW COMMENTS and share your thoughts.
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Law & Order: SVU continues its historic 21st season on NBC on Thursdays at 10 PM EST/PST.
Jack Ori is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.