Recap/Review of Law & Order: SVU – “Personal Fouls” – 9/28/11

From the very first scene, Dan Lauria, as Coach Ray Masters, shows he hasn’t lost his flare. (I still can’t help but wonder where Kevin, Paul, and Winnie are… but I digress.)

It’s pretty obvious where this episode is going when he is the coach of young boys and his induction ceremony is interrupted by a man who yells “you know what you did” in the most dramatic fashion. So we just wait for the fallout.

But was I the only one wondering how Elliot’s absence would be addressed in this the second episode of the season? Will his absence affect Olivia more and more throughout the season, or will he eventually not be mentioned at all? I hope the former is the case so we get to see how well Mariska Hargitay can play the emotions we know she’s capable of. Cragen makes Olivia face the fact the Elliot is not coming back by telling her to clean out his desk. This is obviously a very hard task for her. His abandoning her is still very hurtful. But I can’t imagine how Olivia would feel if anyone else cleaned out his desk. I think this pain is going to go on long into the season.

Jump with me to read the rest of my review.

In this episode, we are introduced to the newest detective to the fold, Nick Amaro, who transferred from warrants. I have to say I was leery about a new man taking Elliot’s place, but Amaro is very attractive and Danny Pino is a good actor for this role. I think I’m going to like him. Olivia isn’t too keen on hiring so many new people. She even referred to the department as a day care. We didn’t see much of Rollins in this episode, but we did see showed she’s on top of her game. I think Olivia will be impressed with Rollins in the long run.

The rest of the story plays out as it appears it would. A famous basketball player who was coached by Coach Masters accused the coach of sexual abuse and testified against him before the grand jury. He used his power to implore other kids to stand up against the abuse. Male sexual abuse is still, unfortunately, a taboo subject for most people. Hopefully, this PSA will help some men and boys who are suffering and too ashamed to say anything.

This theme is near and dear to Mariska’s Joyful Heart Foundation, which supports those abused. Again in this episode, the FEARLESSNESS is front and center. It’s obvious that Mariska has major pull this season with the episodic themes.

Best line: “A cop who doesn’t eat donuts? How can I trust you?” – Benson to Amaro

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