Monday, April 06, 2009

TV Review: CSI:NY "Green Piece"


Leave it to CSI:NY to open an episode with a bang. After a house explodes, Mac Taylor (Gary Sinise) and crew must pick up the pieces. Good thing Adam Ross (AJ Buckley) is playing street hockey nearby — he helps a man out of the rubble, a man who plays a bigger role than people realize.

For once, Buckley gets airtime for more than his typical lab routine. Viewers see his versatility, which is always nice. I like his getting hurt, it's the nature of police work. Besides, the scene looks odd if nobody has an injury. The house explodes, how does everyone in the immediate vicinity walk away without a scratch? Yes, the focus of the main episode is nothing new, but even so, the twists and turns are classic for this show.

The last time people saw the Feds and NYPD work together, an ATF agent attempted to prove a point about preparation for a large scale emergency ("Charge of This Post"). Granted, the response was different then. More lives were in danger instead of cops only arriving on scene after the fact. Still, Det. Don Flack (Eddie Cahill) understands that extra hands are crucial to getting the case solved. Why? Federal agencies have greater resources and a larger jurisdiction.

Cahill shows disbelief at the FBI agent's promise of help at first, which makes sense. Something has been rotten in Denmark ever since a cipher was stolen out of the evidence room long ago ("Sex, Lies, and Silicone"). This time, though, there is more at stake than turf wars. A Timothy McVeigh wannabe is someone to be taken seriously. Everyone gets that.

Whoever cast the role of Mr. Mayhem did a brilliant job. Sinise perfectly shows off his skill at intimidation without compromising police standards. I kept waiting for the eco-terrorist leader to spit in Mac's face. He doesn't, which says a lot for Mac's questioning abilities. The interrogation once the case concluded is a treat for the ears. The two actors are in sync as they each vow to continue their jobs. Could this be a continuing storyline? Perhaps not this season, but next would be good. Hmmm.... Shane Casey (Edward Furlong), who went to prison on a misguided brotherly mission ("Raising Shane"), and Mayhem could team up nicely.

The diction on the part of some of the actors could improve a bit. Stella (Melina Kanakaredes) talks about a person detonating a bomb with the pronunciation as 'bow mur'. Whoops! Major difference. What she meant is easy to figure out, but this show is taped. Splicing things together correctly would be helpful.

Dr. Sheldon Hawkes (Hill Harper) finally says out loud how his role is defined — a crime scene investigator. Okay. So why is he acting like a cop? Last time I checked, that role generally involves the police academy. Adam doubtless does not appreciate the blurring of lines. After Hawkes asks if Adam had blown up the house, the look of shock is just the right touch from Buckley. Yes, Hawkes is teasing. I winced anyway. Whoever is in the props department might want to consider putting that badge Hawkes wears on the other side of his body, btw. The distinction would be appreciated.

Oh yes, Danny (Carmine Giovinazzo) and Lindsay (Anna Belknap) have now tied the knot. This has been coming for a while, but the question of whether she would become a permanent part of the rough edged cop's life makes for good viewing. Longtime fans will appreciate the clips of Lindsay's first appearance on the show. Mac and Stella waiting at the city clerk's office is perfect. Flack, Hawkes, and Adam not being does not mean much. Someone has to keep an eye on things back at the station.

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