I missed the first few seconds of the episode, so combined with the fact that I don't watch this show regularly at all, I initially thought the penitent was a one-shot character, a criminal or something. But no, it's Elliot (Stabler).
"For penance: call your wife."
So, the new partner is sprung on him no warning and is godawful from his very first moment. Referring to the victim as a "hottie" (no panties, no purse) and the homeless woman getting called "Marie Antoinette" [that might have been by the on-scene officer; I forget] and the partner yelling at her calling her a "witch" and accusing her of stealing the purse and cutting off the finger. Then he attacks the guy in the car, and is insistent that using kids in tobacco stings is putting them in harm's way. (I appreciated them having Elliot comment that stores lose money when their tobacco licence is revoked 'cause I was like, "Dude, broad daylight, public place, regulated establishment, where is the danger?")
Attacker was a girl... weighing 240lb... with Type 2 Diabetes.
I'm not even sure which set of texts I've been spending too much time in but as soon as I heard the attacker was a woman by brain went to all sorts of power dynamics gendered issues. Even though I knew this was the teen obesity episode (since that's why I was watching it, after all). [Haven't seen anything about this ep on BFB -- which I really should start reading regularly -- which kind of surprised me given all the talk around the CSI episode.]
Blaine's all "window of opportunity ... talk to me now!" when Jessica's being wheeled out of surgery and Stabler is yet again holding him back, but then when they are interviewing her, Blaine is very respectful and decent and actually gripes to the captain (I think it was) about the "Stabler Intimidation Routine." This is where the characterization starts to fall apart for me. Okay, Stabler's pissed at Blaine for goading testimony out of a minor with no parent present and won't back him up in court and we get the following great exchange with Cragen:
Captain: "You know why I put you with Blaine?"
Stabler: "You started drinking again?"
Captain: "I wanted you to know what you're like to work with."
I get that Stabler's complicated, and I trust this is backed up by seven seasons of canon. But there doesn't seem to be any coherency to Blaine.
I liked the exchange between Stabler and Cragen -- Queens SVU spoke very highly of him. / Then why'd they dump him on us?
"You screwed her and you're gonna screw me" - Blaine on Stabler's partner (Olivia) "dumping him"
She says: We were partners for 7 years, longer than anyone here, we needed a break, it's too complicated.
As an outsider who hasn't seen previous eps, all I know is that he has an apparently-estranged wife and there's this awkwardness between him and Olivia. As a veteran television watcher, I can guess of course, but would Queens SVU actually know that sort of gossip? Because if Blaine knows his former partner was a woman and he thinks she was the one who initiated the split (rather than a decision from higher up, since obviously Stabler didn't want a new partner) I wouldn't think he would use terms like "screw" and "dump" if he didn't suspect a sexual/romantic relationship.
The "1/3 of our kids are overweight" / "What you do about it?" conversation actually didn't make me rageful.
"Cameras get here before you ... investigate a 3-week-old crime."
"We investigate crimes when they're reported." - Blaine
Very nice line.
When Rudi raised the gun after shooting the guy, I totally thought he was gonna turn the gun on himself. (So suicide was also my suspicion when he wasn't in court for the sentencing.)
"Did I kill him?"
I approve of the ambiguity of the tone behind that statement.
Trial Part 38 [The ending scene says "Trial Part 38" again, which threw me.]
The clinic closed. I was reading some article a while back about diabetes management clinics closing because they weren't turning a profit. Wish I could find it now.
I love the blond woman (ADA Casey Novak?).
After the "You're not sorry, are you?" bit, Rudi's face looked so childlike, and I wonder if that was on purpose or just an accident of round features, 'cause it was somewhat dissonant (helped by the fact that both the "I'm sorry" and the "I'm not sorry" bits were delivered fairly flatly it seemed to me).
Jessica? Is freakishly skinny.
I'm still parsing how the whole self-loathing + obsessive fat-hatred thing plays out in a psychologically coherent way.
While in an ideal world there would be talk about how much one can help being fat in terms of body ground state and mention of how fat and fit are different issues and not mutually exclusive and how dieting can wreck your system, I did appreciate that they articulated the idea that hatred/revulsion towards fat people is considered acceptable because while you can't help being black, for example, being fat is considered a failure of will or whatever.
And of course the new partner brings up the fact that he's, how did he put it, "a bit heavy"? -- which prompts me to mention that most every cop show, not to mention plenty of sitcoms, have major male characters who are wide, beerbellied, or whatever, and as far as females we have, what? Camryn Manheim in The Practice and that's about it. (And okay, since I mentioned sitcoms -- which are full of not very attractive men married to, well, Hollywood actresses -- there was Roseanne.)