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"Smoke"
L&O, Episode 13.24
Production number: E3322
First aired: 21 May 2003
  th of 456 produced in L&O  
th of 456 released in L&O
  th of 1185 released in all  
Teleplay By
Michael S. Chernuchin

Story By
Dick Wolf

Directed By
Constantine Makris


Plot

Briscoe and Green are assigned to a case involving an eccentric comedian who may have killed his young son by dangling him off a ledge. It is later discovered that the comedian, Monty Bender, is a sexual predator. An attempt to charge him fails when his one known victim refuses to testify. The parents, who took a settlement rather than file charges, are arrested for conspiracy to commit sexual abuse in the first degree and explain that they took the money because they needed it to save the life of their younger son due to his deformed heart. On the stand, the victim, Sammy, testifies that he lied to his parents about the sexual abuse so that they could get the money they needed to save his brother's life, but McCoy discovers a check from Monty to Sammy's parents the week before the abuse happened for a million dollars. McCoy reveals to Sammy that his parents were actually paid by Monty to allow him to abuse Sammy. This changes Sammy's mind and horrified by what his parents did, he testifies against them and reveals the details of his sexual abuse. Sammy's parents are found guilty by the jury while Monty Bender is arrested for sexual abuse in front of a "phalanx and a half" of paparazzi and denied bail. With Sammy now willing to testify, Monty is expected to be convicted and sent to prison. Serena Southerlyn, the only one in the DA's office without children, is left conflicted about what Sammy's parents did, their reasons behind it and what happened to them as a result while McCoy and Arthur Branch are less conflicted.

Cast

Main cast

Recurring cast

Guest cast

References

The character of Monty Bender is plagued with rumors that he molests children, in ways meant to evoke rumors that commonly circulated about pop star Michael Jackson. Jackson also became notorious for dangling a baby dangerously off of a fourth-story balcony in Berlin in 2002 (and being photographed doing so), something which Monty also does, resulting in the baby's death.

Quotes

"America's a wonderful place, isn't it? We love the underdog, we cheer him on all the way up the mountain. Then as soon as he gets to the top, we enjoy nothing more than kicking the son-of-a-bitch off and stomping him into the ground." - Larry Miller (as himself)

"No John!. Do You wanna know why we took his money? (speaking to A.D.A. Jack McCoy). Our youngest son is sick. He was born with a deformed heart. We didn't have insurance. We couldn't pay the doctor's bill. We had to take the money! David would have died if we didn't. What would any parent have done?" - Lisa "Lisa Lisa" Velez (Lucy Miriles)

"You know, good comics look at the world and see a funny place. Great comics look at the world and don't." - Larry Miller (as himself)

  • Lennie Bricoe: You like prison movies? I love em. Write about what you know.


  • Sammy Dominguez: You sold me?!
  • Lucy Mireles: It wasn't like that!
  • Sammy Dominguez: What was it like?
  • Lucy Mireles: It was only one time, Sammy. We did it for Davey.
  • Sammy Dominguez: What about me?! I was eleven years old! You... you knew what he was gonna do to me?!
  • John Mireles: You weren't gonna die.
  • Sammy Dominguez: What do you call this?
  • John Mireles: We'll talk about this later.
  • Sammy Dominguez: Like hell! (to McCoy) Can... can I testify again? (McCoy nods)

Background information and notes

By advertising this episode as the 300th episode of Law & Order, NBC network executives did not include the CBS pilot in their calculations.

In an unusual cameo, Larry Miller appears as himself, despite appearing in two previous episodes as Michael Dobson, a fictional character who arranges for the murders of his wives.

This is one of the few Law & Order episodes that picks up directly after the previous episode ("Couples") ended; these two episodes have independant storylines and are not a two-part conjoined arc.

Episode scene cards

1 2 3 4

Mercy General Hospital
796 Broadway
Thursday, March 7

Camberwell Hotel
53 Park Avenue
Thursday, March 7

30 Rockefeller Center
Thursday, March 7

Apartment of
Mr. & Mrs. John Mireles
304 Riverside Drive
Monday, March 11

5 6 7 8

Hudson University
Study Lounge
Monday, March 11

Supreme Court
Trial Part 84
Tuesday, May 14

Supreme Court
Trial Part 84
Wednesday, May 15

Supreme Court
Trial Part 84
Friday, May 17


Previous episode:
"Couples"
"Smoke"
Law & Order
Season 13
Next episode:
"Bodies"
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