T.V. Series Review: Law and Order: SVU Season 4

Law and Order: SVU Season 4 Trailer

Law and Order: SVU Season 4 Summary

Season 4, Episode 1: Chameleon

The detectives go on the trail of a recently paroled rapist responsible for the murder of a sex worker during a raid at a men’s club and are called to the scene where he was shot in self defense by his own gun. However, the murder weapon was also used in another crime while he was still in prison, leading the detectives to investigate the victim (Sharon Lawrence) through a trail of previously unsolved cases, a spending spree and another victim

Season 4, Episode 2: Deception

A family portrait painted by a kindergartner (Jennifer Michelle Brown) leads the detectives to investigate her mother for child sexual abuse of her teenage stepson (Jonathan Bennett). When the boy’s father (Tom Mason) is found murdered, the focus of the investigation shifts to the boy and his stepmother (Sherilyn Fenn) goes to great lengths to protect him and prevent the detectives from learning the truth.

Season 4, Episode 3: Vulnerable

When an elderly woman (Jane Powell) breaks into an apartment, the detectives discover she had been mistreated but have to investigate with no credible information from the victim because of Alzheimer’s disease. They discover that she had been released from a nursing home to the custody of her financially scheming son (Jay Thomas) who becomes the prime suspect. However, they go back to the nursing home to find a pair of suspects, including the director (Mary Kay Place) who details the dangers faced by both patients and staff with her own heroics precariously standing out.

Season 4, Episode 4: Lust

The wife of a retired attorney (Michael Gross), a public health doctor, is found murdered and raped in Central Park. Her work involved contacting sexual partners of HIV patients which gives the detectives a long list of suspects. The discovery of a second body in Central Park with the same signature shifts the focus to a serial killer; however, the trail leads to a man who has no knowledge of the crimes but has a distant connection to the doctor and her husband.

Season 4, Episode 5: Disappearing Acts

The detectives respond to a brutal rape only to have the victim (Caprice Benedetti) taken into custody by federal agents on racketeering charges. The investigation leads them to a father-son duo (John Heard and Tom Guiry) who are in the Federal Witness Protection Program and an agent (Pam Grier) who appears bound and determined to protect them, regardless of consequence, so they can testify against the Russian mob.

Season 4, Episode 6: Angels

The body of a battered young boy found in a luggage compartment of an airport shuttle bus sends the detectives to his guardian who was discovered to be a pedophile only to find his corpse in bed with his genitals removed. The subsequent investigation leads them to a travel agency specializing in exotic trips for sexual predators. Stabler is disgusted when he discovers that the man responsible for the murder and castration (Michael Hayden) is himself a child molester who killed a member of his own organization for using more coercion.

Season 4, Episode 7: Dolls

When the decomposing body of a sexually molested five-year-old girl is discovered, Benson’s and Stabler’s investigation leads them to the painful reality that they are searching for a serial child rapist (David Harbour) as they race to save the life of his latest victim. As the mother of the missing girl (Gloria Reuben) frantically awaits news of her daughter’s whereabouts, she must reconcile the fact that her own recent bout with addiction may have played a part in her daughter’s fate.

Season 4, Episode 8: Waste

The investigation into the rape of a comatose woman leads to a doctor (Bruce Davison) whose stem cell research is funded by a billionaire (Philip Bosco) with Parkinson’s disease who is desperate for a cure. The woman’s parents (Henry Woronicz and JoBeth Williams) petition for custody of the child who was intended to be harvested for stem cells, while the defense argues that their experimentation on a patient who will probably never wake up serves the greater good.

Season 4, Episode 9: Juvenile

A cancer patient who was growing marijuana in her apartment is found raped and murdered, sending the detectives on a hunt for two junior-high students (Shane Lyons and Connor Paolo), each blaming the other. The prosecution team is faced with the dilemma of trying the older boy as an adult, despite evidence that he was not mentally capable of being able to carry out the crimes.

Season 4, Episode 10: Resilience

When a fifteen-year-old girl (Rachael Bella) is saved from jumping in front of a train, the SVU is called in to help her. She falsely accuses an ex-boyfriend (Billy Lush) of raping her, but when the search turns to her dysfunctional family, surprise discoveries are made. From an overly helpful father (Titus Welliver), mysterious children and a bracelet that belonged to a murder victim, the detectives unravel a plot by the girl’s parents to use children as surrogates.

Season 4, Episode 11: Damaged

When a six-year-old girl who was critically injured in an apparent robbery gone bad later dies and tests positive for a sexually transmitted disease, detectives investigate the family, the store clerk, and the son (Christopher Denham) of a prominent attorney (Michael Gaston) who had appeared to foil the crime. After evidence turns up that the little girl’s older sister (Ari Graynor) was dating the alleged sexual predator, ADA Cabot attempts to eradicate the deal that had been made with the older sister for her testimony.

Season 4, Episode 12: Risk

When a baby dies after drinking baby formula found to be laced with cocaine, the detectives clash with Sgt Ed Tucker (Robert John Burke), who has been pursuing a drug syndicate smuggling cocaine in baby formula. Tutuola’s experience in the Narcotics Division proves useful and Stabler is sent undercover as a potential dealer. The team is led to one of their own, Detective Greg Kendall (Matt Mulhern), a highly-decorated cop who has gone rogue. However, the operation hits a snag and Stabler is faced with a choice to either kill or be killed.

Season 4, Episode 13: Rotten

In their investigation of a prisoner’s death, Benson and Tutuola learn that he was assaulted before being incarcerated. They subsequently discover several killings of drug dealers in the precinct where the man was arrested, and that two cops (William Mapother and Terry Serpico) from this precinct had a connection to every case.

Season 4, Episode 14: Mercy

When the body of a baby girl is found inside a cooler, the detectives need to investigate just who she is, and how she got there. They soon learn that the little girl had a genetic disorder known as Tay–Sachs disease that would lead to a painful death in childhood. When the parents (Elizabeth Mitchell and Gregg Edelman) admit to having killed their daughter humanely to spare her that fate, Cabot has to prosecute them for murder, despite reservations. Taking an interest in the case, Detective Munch sits in on the trial.

Season 4, Episode 15: Pandora

With Olivia tied up with a child moleststion case, Stabler and a homicide detective (William McNamara) work to solve the rape and brutal murder of a woman who turns out to be luring pedophiles into being arrested. The trail leads to a missing fourteen-year-old girl (Alexis Dziena) who was abducted by a foreign child pornographer (Lothaire Bluteau). The hunt takes Stabler to Prague, where Interpol is investigating the sex trade in Europe. When customers in New York are discovered, Stabler rescues a girl from the home of a child molester (Stephen Gevedon).

Season 4, Episode 16: Tortured

A Tibetan woman who was tortured in her home country is found murdered, with her foot missing. After an exhaustive search of potential suspects, the killer (Charlie Hofheimer) is found to be a victim of torture at the hands of his mother (Margaret Colin) who tried to use violence to cure him of his shoe fetish.

Season 4, Episode 17: Privilege

Detectives Benson and Stabler are called to a crime scene – a young woman dressed in a maid’s uniform has apparently committed suicide by jumping off a penthouse; however, because of the degree of sex-related bruising, they believe she might have been raped and murdered. The motive for murder is exposed when the detectives investigate a strange relationship between one of the penthouse occupants (Erik von Detten) and his grandmother (Michael Learned).

Season 4, Episode 18: Desperate

After a young boy (Max Jansen Weinstein) witnesses the brutal sexual assault, rape, and murder of his stepmother (Amy Dorris), his biological father (Rob Estes) blocks the efforts of the detectives to question him. The boy is unable to speak due to fear and trauma of his father. The boy’s father is the prime suspect in his second wife’s murder. Although the court order to compel the boy’s testimony succeeds, the judge still orders SVU not to talk to the boy. Since there is not much time before the trial begins, a desperate effort is carried out to put the boy back into contact with his biological mother (Signy Coleman) who disappeared 3 years ago with the help of a support network for victims of domestic violence. After the boy talks to his mother, she gives him courage to reveal the identity of his stepmother’s killer.

Season 4, Episode 19: Appearances

On a field trip, a student tells his teacher about a suit-case he found. The teacher immediately contacts NYPD to call the bomb squad out. The police find the body of a little girl inside the suit-case. The case is then handed over to Detectives Elliot Stabler and Olivia Benson. They discover that the girl was on the beauty pageant circuit. One of the suspects tells the detectives how he came across a way to kill the girl. A pornographer (Brian Kerwin) is put on trial for giving instructions on how to kill via an alleged child porn story on his company’s website. The material is found to fall outside the letter of child pornography laws since it consists of images of models that have been digitally altered to appear under age. The implications for freedom of expression prompt Cabot’s former mentor to aid the defense.

Season 4, Episode 20: Dominance

A quadruple homicide with sexual overtones is just the start of an intense rampage of killings that brings a homicide detective into the mix. As the entire squad races against time to prevent further murders, the evidence leads Tutuola to a building superintendent (Frank Langella), his two sons (Ian Somerhalder and Jason Ritter) and a cross to bear.

Season 4, Episode 21: Fallacy

Benson and Stabler try to prove self-defense when a rape victim (Katherine Moennig) kills her attacker. Events take an unusual turn when they learn that the victim is transgender. The victim’s boyfriend (Chad Lindberg) is shocked to learn this and commits suicide. When the woman’s lifelong anguish is detailed in court, Cabot begins to feel guilty about sending her to prison (which would be a male prison for a pre-op transgender woman)

Season 4, Episode 22: Futility

After arresting a man (Fred Savage) accused of raping several neighborhood women, Detectives Benson and Stabler attempt to obtain an indictment for their suspect with the help of a key eyewitness – his last victim (Myndy Crist). However, the suspect’s decision to handle his own defense casts some doubt over the trial’s outcome as he proves to be a formidable opponent for ADA Cabot.

Season 4, Episode 23: Grief

A waitress is found dead outside of a bar. Her death is ruled a suicide because the victim’s boss (Paul Leyden) continually raped her and drove her into depression. When the victim’s father (Joe Morton) becomes too close to Stabler, the victim’s father snaps and vows revenge against his daughter’s rapist.

Season 4, Episode 24: Perfect

A murdered fourteen-year-old girl leads the detectives to a prominent physician (Gale Harold) who specialises in reproductive therapy. In order to fund his research into human cloning, he has set up shelters around New York for troubled teenage girls. When they discover a missing girl (Kimberly J. Brown) in one of them, the SVU learns that the shelters actually indoctrinate the girls into a cult with the purpose of impregnating them. The doctor’s own children are sold to naive couples unable to conceive who think that their own DNA has been used to produce a cloned baby. With many subordinates taking the fall, Cabot is unable to prosecute the doctor until the missing girl’s shelter leader (Barbara Barrie) comes forward with the truth.

Season 4, Episode 25: Soulless

A rape victim, Chloe Dutton (Peyton List), is brought into the hospital one night with a bar stamp on her hand, and when Benson tries to interview her, she insists that she wasn’t raped after all and that she was drunk. A short time later, the nurse announces that the rapist snatched Chloe from the hospital. Chloe is later found deceased and one of the suspects involved in her death (Logan Marshall-Green) turns out to be a sociopath with a history of murder.

Law and Order: SVU Season 4 Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

If you can’t handle talks of sexual assault, rape, domestic abuse and more, this is not the show for you. That being said, it is a great show to get caught up in and while fictional, are inspired by true stories.

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