Law & Order: Los Angeles – The Problem


Law & Order: Los Angeles NBC logo from “East Coast-West Coast” promo

“You know what really grinds my gears?” – People saying the cast, the location, and the immediate style of “Law & Order: LOS ANGELES” sucks! Well let me tell you America, United Kingdom, Canada, Asia, Japan, etc: YOU ARE ALL WRONG!

THE REAL PROBLEM with LAW & ORDER: LOS ANGELES is the show runners: I’ve got no problems out of Mr. Rene Balcer, Mr. Peter Jankowski, and even Mr. Dick Wolf himself – but who the freakin’ hell are Christopher Misiano and Blake Masters?!

The ‘pilot episode’ (“Hollywood”) lacked a lot of what we would call ‘a Law & Order episode’. We missed the thrill of a LOS ANGELES voice-over introduction spoken by Steven Zirnkilton, a proper opening sequence (and not some 10 second ‘dun-dun’ crap), a failure to use the ‘DOINK-DOINK’ when desperately needed. I think I heard ‘DOINK-DOINK’ only once or twice in the whole one hour episode. But this is all the minor aches and pains.

However I did like the ‘trial’ parts of the episode with Sr. Deputy District Attorney Ricardo Morales and Jr. Deputy District Attorney Eva Price (Alfred Molina and Regina Hall); I won’t dispute with those scenes.

The second episode (“Echo Park”); which also lacked Steven Zirnkilton and a proper opening sequence. The ‘DOINK-DOINK’ was used a little more though, so one positive. A negative is introducing Detective Rex Winters’s (Skeet Ulrich) wife Casey (Teri Polo) with bad blood behind it. Bring characters in when everything is all Jim Dandy; this is what “Law & Order: CI” does, let THEM do that for their final season – DO NOT BRING IT TO LAW & ORDER: LOS ANGELES.

Also I thought District Attorney Jerry Hardin (Peter Coyote) was brought in on bad timing with Sr. Deputy District Attorney Joe Dekker (Terrence Howard). It made me think that we’re going to forever see Dekker and Hardin quibble over controversial cases in every episode. Also, I think Jr. Deputy District Attorney Lauren Stanton (Megan Boone) needed more lines that what she had.

Again the ‘trial’ parts were okay, I think Terrence Howard needed to turn the sadness down and the angst up, but nothing majorly wrong with his scenes though.

This episode needed to stick to the case at hand and not introduce characters with personal drama going on; the mothership  (Law & Order) only did that around season finale time – let’s keep it that way!

The MAJOR PROBLEM is NOT the actors, NOT the city, and not the arrangement. THE SHOWRUNNERS. Which again asks the question: “Who the freakin’ hell are Christopher Misiano and Blake Masters?!

Law & Order: Los Angeles is a good show, I don’t care what anybody says; I’m willing to scrap with someone who says it’s not. But when a good show has bad showrunners – you’ve got a problem.

For example: Last year was SVU’s eleventh season and about 89% of the seasons 24 episodes sucked (IMO)! Neal Baer of course is SVU showrunner and people were ready to throw him out for someone else. This year, as of SVU’s twelfth season, people can’t be more proud of Baer for turning SVU back around to its version of normal (it makes you wish the season 5 fanbase would return).

LOLA is in the same boat, the showrunners (or Blake Masters/Chris Misiano) don’t know what kind of crap stories they are writing up for this show! I guarantee if LOLA’s showrunners keep these crappy off base ‘LA’ stories going with no improvement; it’s going to do like SVU last year and have a severe drop in ratings!

So a message to Dick Wolf; tell Christopher Misiano and Blake Masters to shape up this show – or ship off; or I guarantee fans will ship off.

I see Law & Order: Los Angeles lasting on NBC at least 10 seasons with Rene Balcer running it. If Fred Berner, Ed Sherin, Richard Sweren and/or Ed Zuckerman came to LOLA; I guarantee fans would not be disappointed – CALL THEM TO WORK ON LOLA!

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7 Comments

  1. gahks
    Posted October 14, 2010 at 5:54 am | Permalink | Reply

    Chris Misiano worked with Balcer in the late ’90s, so I’m not sure you should be blaming him just yet. Blake Masters created the critically-acclaimed Showtime series ‘Brotherhood’ and resigned as producer on another show in order to develop ‘LOLA’ with Dick Wolf. Judging by fans’ reception, I’d rather have seen Balcer develop/co-create with Wolf and not let Masters get in the way! At the very most, he ought to be a co-exec. producer, until he gains some experience.

    Richard Sweren and Michael Chernuchin have already written episodes for the show. I would dearly love Balcer & Ed Zuckerman to pair up again as they did on the mothership, but Zuckerman went to do ‘The Whole Truth,’ currently bombing on ABC. Don’t know what Ed Sherin is doing these days… can he direct a couple of episodes?

    I also enjoyed the work of Barry Schindel and William N. Fordes, and would like to see them work their magic on ‘LOLA’.

    Balcer did say that he was going to introduce more character development into ‘LOLA’, implementing stylistic ideas and techniques he developed on ‘CI’: it might work, it might not.

    • mortonsloci
      Posted October 14, 2010 at 1:36 pm | Permalink | Reply

      BLAKE MASTERS i feel needs to be dropped to co-ex. and bring Fred Berner to LA.

      • gahks
        Posted October 15, 2010 at 10:11 am | Permalink

        Yeah! That’s exactly what I meant!

        Demote Masters! xD

  2. gahks
    Posted October 14, 2010 at 9:31 am | Permalink | Reply

    The other thing I should note is that the third episode, ‘Harbor City’, was written by Judith McCreary, who is an experienced ‘SVU’ writer. ‘All Things Law & Order’ gave a positive review, so maybe things are looking up for ‘LOLA’.

    • mortonsloci
      Posted October 14, 2010 at 1:39 pm | Permalink | Reply

      I thought Judith did a WONDERFUL job writing “Harbor City” myself – a refreshing change of pace from the premiere/Echo Park.

  3. gahks
    Posted October 14, 2010 at 9:43 am | Permalink | Reply

    A further note: you want Richard Sweren? He is the writer of next week’s episode, ‘Sylmar’, based on the Jihad Jane controversy.

    • mortonsloci
      Posted October 14, 2010 at 1:39 pm | Permalink | Reply

      SHYEAH!!

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