Law & Order: SVU
Original Air Date: Oct 22, 2014
Caitlin- Senior Staff Writer
When Elliot Stabler left the show, so did a tradition of one-word episode titles. Two-word titles are fine, often great. But sometimes they leave you with a few questions. Like “Is this title just for there for the ratings?”, and “Since when did ‘porn star’ become one word?” But anyway. Moving on.
A girl is interviewed on camera for what is supposed to just be an erotic photo shoot. It turns out to be quite a bit more. We don’t know how okay Evie is with that, but she’s very clearly not okay with two male college classmates deciding to imitate what they saw in a video with her.
Her RA calls the police and Amanda and Fin come to investigate. Evie makes it clear to them that she was not expecting to wind up working in porn, and that she believes the incident is the cause of her assault. The accused guys say that they just wanted what they saw online, and that she gave it to them willingly. We already know that’s not true, but it’s enough to create doubt.
The detectives mull over the implications of Evie’s history, knowing it will make their case more difficult. Olivia sends everyone out to gather facts and then has a cheery meeting with a defense attorney, who claims to have a video that shows Evie and the guys having consensual sex- and really enjoying it. I don’t know about that, but I think he enjoyed watching the evidence.
When we watch the video in question, we learn immediately that the attorney has a really twisted idea of “consensual”. The footage from one of the boy’s phone cameras leaves no doubt that Evie was raped. Unfortunately, there are also other videos- of more porn Evie shot, apparently willingly. This does not go over well with the new chief of police, who wants Olivia to drop the issue.
Amanda assures Evie that they’ll be doing no such thing, but Barba knows their offense is going to have an uphill battle. As such, Carisi is sent to throw a wrench into the defense’s efforts. He turns Matt on Daniel, getting him to say he genuinely thought Evie was only pretending not to want to have sex, and firing his lawyer in the process. At least he seems genuinely remorseful?
Evie’s father is much less sympathetic. All he can think about is how Evie’s exploits make him look. He storms out, not bothering to hear about his daughter’s actual case. The mother cares more, but doesn’t stick around- or commit to coming to trial. Evie is left understandably numb, but also tells the detectives that she’s more determined than ever to tell the truth in court.
She defends her film work to the jury and stands strong on the fact she said “no” to Daniel and Mack. The attorney points out that she filmed rape fantasy porn, often acting exactly as she did in the footage of her actual rape. He argues that the only reason she accused his clients is that she wasn’t being paid, as she was when she worked for professional videos.
The next day, Matt testifies, saying Daniel only told him after the fact that they had, in fact, been raping Evie. Still, the defense makes him look wishy-washy on the subject, which admittedly doesn’t take much effort. David then tries to make himself into a hero for men falsely accused of rape. Thankfully, Barba shoots that angle down in about ten seconds.
The defense finds Daniel guilty, but the happiness is extremely short-lived. Evie is expelled from Hudson University for violating their code of conduct. I’d try to understand the argument that it was because of the porn if not for the fact the university president immediately brings up false accusations to defend David staying in school. Still, Liv asks for leniency.
This is where things turn truly rage-inducing: when Daniel is supposed to be sentenced, the judge overturns the jury’s verdict. He accuses Evie of enjoying the popularity of her victimhood (yes, really) and tells her to respect herself more in the future. I can’t remember the last time I wanted to punch a judge this badly. Barba is equally outraged, but there doesn’t seem to be much he can do.
The chief comes back again, now wanting to know why Olivia is making trouble for Hudson There are justtons of despicable characters tonight. Finally, Evie’s mother shows up. Evie has disappeared, leaving behind what looks like a video suicide note. Instead, Evie has returned to a life in porn, saying that at least there, they understand the meaning of “stop.” Morbid as it is (and saving a grain of salt for the many issues that exist within the world of porn), she has a point. I still don’t like this title very much- I think “Requiem” would have been just fine on its own. Sadly, those days passed several seasons ago.
Next Week: Glasgowman’s Wrath