NYPD Blue: Summary/Review by Amanda Wilson aka Puedo01@aol.com

Episode 19, Season 6
"Judas Priest" 5/4/99
Teleplay by Meredith Stiehm
Story by David Milch & Bill Clark
Directed by Dennis M. White

Don't you love these story arcs? I want 8 more new episodes just like the last few. Sadly, we've only got three more after this one...

SUMMARY

A Side Of Mayo

Cullinan has been arraigned on a charge of criminal possession and was let go on a 150-thousand dollar bond. Leo Cohen arrives in the 1-5 still angry. He's got a lot of anger still toward Jill, but is also angry at the way the squad handled the arrest of Cullinan last week. He thinks that Jill's blowing up at Cullinan and Andy's threat to crack his skull (all captured on video tape) will hurt his case. He suggests instead they find the drug dealer Roberts used to supply Cullinan with heroin. If that dealer can testify that the drugs Cullinan offered Jill were the same cut he gave Dolores then they have a case for the attempted murder of Jill.

Before this discussion with the squad, Fancy advises Leo to do an attitude check, but he doesn't do it. He's openly hostile to everyone, especially Jill, whom he won't even call by name. Danny and Diane defend Jill, saying her comments to Cullinan were sarcastic. They defend Andy by saying that his threat of violence was a way to shut Cullinan up so violence wouldn't actually be necessary.

Leo is not pleased: "Grateful as I am being edified by minds of your caliber about the legal strengths and weaknesses of my case..." he goes on. The conversation gets more heated when Andy calls him a "big syllable douchbag," and ends with Jill calling him an asshole. Fancy wonders whether to have Leo taken off the case.Leo's point is taken, however, and efforts to find Roberts' drug source are stepped up. Andy has already found a woman who used to know Roberts and his hooker girlfriend, Didi. This woman, Tammy, is also a hooker and had been busted a few times with Didi.

They pick Tammy up. She's offered money to give up the source, but refuses. Then Danny offers her a detox program which makes Andy laugh. Tammy tells how she's scared a bit now because Roberts is dead and because someone bailed her out of her last bust for 75-grand. Andy and Danny tell her she should be worried--she might be next. She gives up the drug dealer, a man named Kenny who owns a wall street messenger business.

Kenny is found by Andy and Danny with 100-thousand dollars worth of heroin inside his backpack. When they bring him in, he tries to blame it on a disgruntled former employee. Andy and Danny don't buy it, thinking that'd be one hell of a grudge. Kenny, promised a complete walk on the possession charge, spills how he knew Roberts and how he gave Roberts smack for a "weird" client. He even gives up the "weird" client's name: Malcolm Cullinan. Kenny is secured to testify. Danny's going to stay in a motel with him until the trial.

In the midst of unfolding the drug connection between Roberts and Cullinan, the members of the squad are surprised by a visit from Dolores' father. Mayo walks into the squad room extremely upset, agitated and yelling. He demands to know why he wasn't told that Dolores was murdered, why no one told him that Cullinan gave her pure smack to watch her die. He's asked where he heard this information, and UpJohn, sitting at his desk watching it all, confesses that he's the one who told Mayo about all about the case. Everyone is stunned. Fancy comes out to see what the commotion is all about. He explains to Mayo that the police don't tell family members information about ongoing cases because it does them no good to have partial information. Mayo is told to go home. Before he leaves, he tells the detectives that if they don't do something about Cullinan, he will.

Later, they discuss whether to take that threat seriously. Diane says someone should have dealt with Mayo years ago--when he was sexually abusing his daughter. Jill offers that Mayo's threat wasn't exactly a direct threat on Cullinan's life. Danny says Cullinan will probably have good security. They decide not to take any action.

John isn't so lucky, however. Fancy hauls him into his office and angrily tells him how stupid it was for him to have told Mayo about the case. John begins to cry. Fancy tells him that if he does it again, he might lose his job. John says nothing but continues to weep. Fancy is softened a bit by this emotional reaction and tells John he knows how upsetting it all must be. He also tells John that he's well-liked by everyone in the squad. He offers to let John have some lost time, but John bucks up, apologizes and goes back to his post. He spends the rest of the day apologizing to everyone again.

The Jerk

Cohen's little spat with Jill in front of everyone has caused great concern in the squad. Andy and Danny in particular are worried about her and consult with Diane to make sure Jill's OK. Andy offers Jill some comfort saying she's better off without him and patting her on the shoulder. He tells Danny he thinks she's upset less for herself than for her kids who enjoyed spending time with Leo. Diane agrees, so Danny offers to take Jill's kids to a Mets game. Diane tells him not to offer it so quickly after the fight she had with Leo. Andy agrees with that saying if he tells her too soon it'll seem like pity. Danny waits. When he tells Jill, he casually mentions that a friend has given him tickets and asks if her boys would like to go. She says they'd love it, when? Danny's busted now, because he doesn't have the tickets in hand. He stammers a little and tells her his friend is hooked up and he can get them for any time. Jill then asks if she can go along. Danny seems a little surprised but realizes he can't say no.

Meanwhile, Leo has called Diane from downstairs. He wants to talk to her about Jill. Diane is not happy with this but agrees. She meets him downstairs and he tells her he wants to know if his relationship with Jill is salvageable. Diane says he should talk to Jill about it. Leo tries to go on, but Diane won't hear much of it and tells him he should either talk to Jill or give it up. They part less than friends.

Diane and Jill have a moment in the locker room. Jill tells Diane she asked to go along on the Mets game outing. Diane seems surprised but tries not to let it show. She asks how Danny took that. Jill says he was OK with it. Jill makes a crack about how being out with a younger man is illegal in some states. Diane reassures her that it's no big deal, but Diane isn't not comfortable with the idea of Danny and Jill together. Diane tells her about the conversation with Leo. Jill makes it clear that she's done with Leo. Diane agrees that's the best thing.

Leo, however, doesn't. He's in the squad room when they exit the locker room, and Andy has him over in the corner by Jill's desk making sure he knows that if he misbehaves with Jill again everyone is going take it personally. Leo promises to be good. He is. He and Jill have a civil chat, and just when Leo thinks they're getting back together, Jill tells him that their relationship isn't big enough to try to save. She asks if they can end it well. He says yes and tells her she won't have to worry about him being hard on her during the Cullinan case. Jill takes that to mean that Leo will not be handling the case.

Later, Danny and Diane talk about Jill. Danny makes no big deal out of Jill going along to the game: "Yeah, it's just one more ticket." He seems concerned at how Diane will take it but says nothing. Diane is awkward about having asked. She seems to check herself on this jealousy thing.

AA Good Friend

Andy and his ex-wife Katie are attending an AA meeting together. It's clear this is something they've been doing for a while. Katie is no longer the mess of a person she was when we saw her last. Now, she's leading the group in prayer. A man named Michael is at the meeting and seems a little interested in Katie. Andy offers him a little bit of information. Dornan arrives at the meeting drunk and belligerent. Andy offers to take him somewhere and talk, but he refuses strongly. He tells Andy he's not a cop anymore.

Later, Andy solicits help from Fancy. Art initially balks at the idea, saying he can't help. Andy tells him he's tried himself, but that Art should reach out to one of his own. Art, still reeling with Leo's nasty attitude and struggling with whether to get Leo off the Cullinan case, agrees to talk to Dornan.

They meet in a restaurant, but it's not a friendly or helpful meeting. They begin by comparing stories of how tough it is to be a black man. Things aren't going well at all when James and Greg arrive decked out in goofy fishing gear. They spot Art and walk over, "Hiya boss." The fishing trip is discussed, and even though James and Greg can sense the tension, they go on with how they bring their catch to the guy at this restaurant who fillets the fish for them. Finally, they wander away, curious about the meeting but getting no satisfaction. Left alone again, Art is not impressed with Dornan's comments about his hard life and angrily tells the story of his own parents. His mother worked for the post office but did laundry for strangers to make extra money. His father would be so drunk that he didn't care. He had no job, and used to steal his mother's money for booze. Dornan tells Art that he's taken terminal leave. Art is so angry at the way Dornan is handling his situation that he tells Dornan to stay on leave, to keep drinking and to end up living with a bottle in the street. Fancy leaves furious. Dornan is speechless.

Later, Art tells Andy he met with Dornan and that Dornan is in bad shape. Andy is surprised and a little angry that Fancy didn't get very far with Dornan. Andy expected Art to help. Art blows up demanding to know why Andy thinks he'd have any better luck with Dornan than someone else. The racial tensions flare between them again. Andy is about to storm out of Art's office but closes his door instead. He tells Art the story of how his drunk of a dad lost his eye. Art listens half-pissed off and not making eye contact. When the story is over, Art sums up by saying Andy can't stand owing a black man a favor.

Andy blows up this time, telling Art that he's learned he can't generalize now, that Dornan taught him that. He tells Art that he's been wrong about a lot of things but drinking isn't one of them. Andy goes on to describe how Dornan's life is going to turn out if he's not helped: Dornan will end up dead on a street with shit in his pants. Fancy is moved to near tears by this, but tells Andy he can't help and to find someone else. Andy notes Art's emotion and stays quiet for a minute. Perhaps remembering that Art once told him his own father was a drunk, Andy doesn't push anymore. He tells Art he'll find someone else to help.

Andy calls Katie to ask her for some contacts in AA who have helped her. He tells her he needs the list for a friend, but Katie assumes it's really for Andy. She tells him she's on her way down to see him. He tries to tell her it's not for him, but she won't believe him. (During this, John is sitting at his desk overhearing the entire call. He's pained by it and is trying not to listen, but since Andy is so close, he can't help it. He puts his hands over his ears.)

After having worked out the situation with Kenny, Danny goes and tries to find Art so that he can set up the motel. Danny finds him in the crib upstairs crying. Danny is immediately uncomfortable at finding his boss in tears but tries to go on with business as usual, asking about the motel. Art asks a little about Kenny and Danny tells him, but Art is still upset. Danny closes the door to the crib and Art spills how the Dornan situation has brought up painful memories of a family member. This family member died a drunk out in the streets. Art says over and over that no one could help the man and that you just have to learn in life that you can't help everyone. Danny doesn't know what to say but promises Fancy he won't tell anyone that he found him crying. Art thanks him. Danny leaves Art sobbing.

Katie arrives at the 1-5 some time later and chats with John about gardening until Andy arrives. When she meets Danny, she's moved. He must remind her of Andy J., and she can't take her eyes off him. She and Andy go to the coffee room to talk. Katie still thinks it's Andy who needs the help. He gets angry with her over that and tells her to stop bothering him. She's wounded. He backs off right away, saying he didn't mean it. She tells him she's not perfect, she's just glad she has her life back. He says he's glad too. He tells her about Dornan and she gives him the list.

At the end of the day, Andy leaves to go call Dornan and give him some of the contact names. He runs into Art on the way out; Art's just coming downstairs from his crying time in the crib. He tells Art of his plan to call Dornan with the list. Art says at first "yeah, because I can't help," then offers his office as a private place Andy can make the call. Andy accepts. Art adds that maybe he could try to talk to Dornan again. Andy says he could talk to him, too. They decide in this way to do it together and return to Fancy's office. They call, both of them on the phone, but get no answer. They page him, and decide they'll just sit and wait together for Dornan to call back. "We're not going to go searching..." Andy says, almost suggesting that's what they should do next. The show ends with them waiting.


 

REVIEW

A Side Of Mayo

For those of us who love the prolonged story arcs and the weaving together of good stories, this one is a keeper. They've brought the Dolores and Roberts situations together, and there's no indication that it's over yet.

We've got a lot to look forward to here, and I suspect it'll all come together in one way or another at the trial. It seems like they're going to give us a look at the trial--the first once since the very early days--and it seems to me that this is where Sylvia will make her return. If Leo is indeed off the case, it makes sense that Sylvia will get it.

It's a good story to me because it's being presented in an arc. We don't know what's going to happen to Cullinan; we don't know if Dolores' father was serious about his threats; we don't know if there's going to be any more fall out for our beloved John. Lots of lovely loose ends to ponder.

We're also getting the best of both worlds in this story with the professional and the personal. We're hearing about, and maybe soon seeing, the process in court. We're seeing investigation beyond the initial arrest of Cullinan. On the personal side, we've got John's involvement with the case and Leo's anger at Jill spilling out all over the place. It's all tight and moves quickly. What's not to like? (And as if to answer my own question, we now move to .....)

The Jerk

Well, I'll always like Leo, no matter what a jerk he is. And he is. He's the ADA I love to hate, but I don't really hate him. He's such a fish out of water with everyone in the squad. Yes, he's obnoxious and rude about it, but he just doesn't know any better!

Michael Buchman Silver plays him perfectly. He's got that snot-nosed-rich kid thing down pat, and no one drips smarmy sarcasm better. Makes you want to take him out back and beat the shit out of him, doesn't he? Perfect!

As for his "relationship" with Jill--he has no one to blame but himself, of course. His childish antics sealed his own fate. And all of that was underscored perfectly by his junior high school plan of talking to Diane about things. (One note about that conversation. Did anyone else think it odd that Ms. Issues herself uttered the phrase, "When people say they have issues, I get sleepy." She must doze off a lot when she's alone!)

I'm sure this love-triangle is weighing heavily on some of you out there. First, relax, it's only TV. If I ever had an inkling that Danny and Diane would someday explore their increasingly obvious mutual attraction, this episode sealed it for me. Yes, I know he's taking Jill to the game, but did you see his face when she asked to go along? He was stunned, or confused, I'm not sure which, but he was clearly not thrilled about it. It was not his intention to turn it into a date. That was all Jill's idea. I even caught him once glancing over at Diane to make sure he hadn't offended her over it. That was right before he shrugged Jill's presence off as "just one more ticket."

As for Diane, her attraction is so obvious now that I'm shocked Jill didn't pick up on it. She's a detective, right? Diane seemed very uncomfortable with the idea of Danny and Jill going somewhere together. She tried to joke around it, but she didn't seem to like it at all. My first theory on all of this is that Diane and Danny will end up together at some point, if not in bed, then at least talking about it. It's become a big elephant now. My hats off to Kim Delaney again in all of this. That one little second after she asked Danny about the game when she pinched the bridge of her nose and closed her eyes had "reality check" written all over it. Diane seemed to be taking stock in that second, saying to herself, "Wait a minute. What the hell am I thinking?"

For those who can't stomach the notion of Diane and Danny together, let me float a few other things. First, it could be that Diane is not upset at all at the thought of Danny and Jill; rather, she's upset that love is happening around her and she's still painfully alone after Bobby's death. Second, it could be that when she asked Danny about Jill going along she was giving him an opportunity to ask her to go too (which he should have done, IMO, whether he's attracted to her or not. I mean, Jill lost a boyfriend in a fight--Diane lost a husband to heart disease--who needs a ball game here??), and maybe she'll be so miffed that he didn't ask her that she won't give him another thought. Maybe....but I doubt it. Here's why:

There are a limited number of people in the Blue world that Diane or Danny can get hooked up with. The cast is already pretty big, why add another person who would likely end up in a Sharon Lawrence situation? Or worse, in a Gina/Lillian/Abby situation? Diane and Danny, both being major characters (both more so than Jill so far), will probably both have personal lives that we'll see a lot of. And since it's a cop show, it tracks that they'd be involved with cops. While they could hook Danny and Jill up, that still leaves Diane out in the cold. Who's she going to get? Right now, it's between Greg and Danny. I think Greg is pretty well out of the question. So that leaves Danny.

Some say it's too soon for Diane to get involved. Maybe that's true, and if so, it would certainly provide for some interesting friction in the relationship. Some say she's too old for him. I don't see that at all, frankly. She may be a few years older (as she told Jill tonight), but they are well within the realm of reality and what's normal. Anyways, all the magazines say it's OK which is always how I try to guide my behavior. ;)

AA Good Friend

A nice look into the world of Art Fancy, but I had a few little problems with this part of the show.

I was totally put off by the interruption of James and Greg into the scene with Fancy and Dornan. I realize it may have been designed as an awkward, annoying interruption, but I think the scene could have done well without it. There I was, not having seen James or Greg all episode and not particularly noticing that fact, when all of a sudden in walk the Ringling Brothers. Maybe I missed something there, I dunno, but why where they there? The point of that?

If you excise those two, you've got a fine scene with two good actors. Here are two men who, according to Andy's Law, should be getting along just fine. Of course, it's real life and they've got no particular reason to get along. Nice irony that the very thing that was, in Andy's mind, supposed to bring them together (their race) is the very thing they end up arguing about.

Of course, that's only the surface of that relationship for Art. Like Andy, Art is reminded of his father when he sees Dornan. We see even more of a common ground between Art and Andy in this episode. And we are also reminded of the common ground between Andy and Dornan. How fascinating that Andy is the one who becomes the bridge between Art and Dornan. Andy is the one who has lived the experience of both men: He's been the drunk Dornan is and he's had the drunk father Art has had.

That's a nice turn on the character Sipowicz--incredibly well crafted. Check this out: We saw it all when Andy was in Art's office and Art began to fall to pieces. Andy saw something there and he responded to it. In the very moment he was relating to Dornan (the moment he was ranting at Art about how Dornan would end up), he looked at Art's teary eyes and related just as strongly to him.

As fantastic as I think that was, I was left cold by the scene in the crib. I didn't feel Art's emotion was genuine. I'm not sure why I feel that way, but it just wasn't very real to me. Rick Schroder seemed a little lost in it all, though maybe he was trying to affect that because the character Danny was supposed to feel awkward. It's just that when he came in the room and shut the door I was wondering why he did that. If Danny were so uncomfortable about finding his boss like that, why not just close the door and leave? Something there just didn't work.

Everything was working, though, with Katie. Nice to know that she and Andy have been going to the meetings. That's a reminder, too, that just because we don't see it doesn't mean it's not happening in the lives of the characters.

I like the interaction between Andy and Katie. They seemed easier with each other than in the past. She's not put off by his gruffness (I'm sure she's used to it). He's annoyed by her in many ways but also cares for her. They're sweet.

Guest Cast

Returning: Michael Buchman Silver as Leo Cohen. Debra Monk as Katie Sipowicz. Richard Gant as Dornan. Bob Glaudini as Mr. Mayo. Those are the ones I know for certain, but I regret that didn't get a cast list this week so I can't name the others with speaking roles. I did recognize the man who led the AA meeting from an episode that I think was called "UnAmerican Graffiti". He played a sweet artist who witnessed a murder and came forward bravely. Andy and Bobby were worried about his safety. Hard to forget that face. When I saw him at the AA meeting, I honestly thought he was the same character and his path had just crossed with Andy's again.

Lines Of The Week

Several goodies:

Katie, concerned about Dornan: "He could use God's help now."
Andy: "Short term he ought to settle for getting his head out of his ass."
(almost a separate LOW came right after)
Katie: "Language."

Diane after Leo makes a snide remark about her friendship with Jill: "Doesn't that tire you out after a while? Thinking of absolutely the most clever way to say everything?"
Leo, after she walks away: "You can't imagine."

 Non line line: Andy's zipped lips pantomime to John.

And my very favorite....
Danny to the drug source: "Kenny, you're a guppy. You realize the luck of that? You're a guppy. You're holding 20 years of weight, you're a guppy. Embrace your guppiness!"


Winding down to what looks like a good season's end....see you next week!

Amanda Wilson aka Puedo01@aol.com