CSI: Crime Scene Investigation--'Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda'

Discussion in 'CSI Files News Items' started by CSI Files, Nov 26, 2008.

  1. CSI Files

    CSI Files Captain

    Feb 28, 2003
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    <p><b>Synopsis:</b><p>Janelle Rowe is found dead, her young daughter Nora injured but alive next to her. Brass tells Grissom that a neighbor heard shots and called the police. Janelle's husband, Peter, rushes in, but he tussles with the officers and is arrested. A .38 is found in his car, but Rowe insists he was using it for target practice. Back at the Rowes' house, Greg finds blood on the edge of the kitchen table and wonders if Nora hit her head on it. Greg discovers a spent round in a phone book on the shelf, and Riley notices the lock on the door has been forced. Brass asks Rowe about the three calls for domestic violence on his record and Rowe claims his wife was dramatic--but that he never laid a hand on her. Rowe's fingerprints ID him as Mark Redding, a suspect in a nine-year-old homicide of a private investigator named Trevor Murphy. Rowe says he's been getting death threats threatening that he'll "rot like Trevor rotted" and posits that someone is framing him for Janelle's murder. Brass brings Trevor's daughter, Kelsey, in for questioning; the e-mails to Rowe were sent from an e-mail account set up at her IP address. She angrily turns her computer over, but the e-mails are traced a halfway house where Kelsey's brother, Nathan, lives. Nathan admits to sending the e-mails and says he wants Mark dead, but he clams up and asks for a lawyer after Brass asks for an alibi. Rowe's gun isn't a match to the bullet that killed Janelle, but a gun Trevor Murphy used to take down a robber a year before his death is. On a surveillance camera at the hospital Nora was taken to, the CSIs spot Kelsey Murphy approaching Peter Rowe with something under her coat. The CSIs track her car through her GPS system and find her in the desert, aiming a gun at Rowe and forcing him to dig up the body of her father--and admit he killed him. Brass tries to talk her down, telling her Nora is going to be okay and saying he knows her murder of Janelle was an accident, but Kelsey aims the gun and fires several rounds into Peter. One of the officers with Brass fires at her, killing her.<p>Nick and Detective Cavaliere are at the scene of a car crash, where two young men, Chase Bowman and Max Poole, are dead, apparently killed when their car crashed into a tree. Nick immediately notices something is off when he finds splinters in Chase's wound--on the opposite side of the car from the tree. Chase's arm is also broken in a way that is incongruous with the car crash. Nick views footage from the car's internal computer showing him the five seconds before the airbags deployed, which reveals that the car swerved to avoid hitting something. Hodges confirms Nick's suspicion: the splinter in Chase's arm doesn't match the wood from the tree their car hit; the splinter is from a baseball bat, leading Nick to wonder if the boys were playing mailbox baseball. Nick and Hodges play a little mailbox baseball game of their own, trying to figure out how Chase broke his arm. Nick and Cavaliere retrace the boys' route and notice a brand new mailbox at one of the houses. They question the owner, Hal Jackmin, who says his old mailbox got smashed. Nick notices a concrete walkway with one stone out of place. He turns it over and finds a mailbox with a concrete center buried beneath. Jackmin tells Nick and Cavaliere that the boys destroyed four of his mailboxes before he decided to take matters into his own hands. Nick tells him that Chase hitting the concrete mailbox caused his arm to break, and the car to swerve, killing both boys. Jackmin tries to defend himself, but Nick has him arrested for two counts of negligent homicide.<p>Grissom receives a summons to testify in a hearing that will determine whether Natalie Davis, the miniature crime scene killer who nearly ended Sara's life, is mentally fit to be transferred from the psychiatric hospital she's been in to prison. Grissom observes Natalie respond to questions lucidly and clearly in the courtroom, and ADA Nichols arranges for Grissom to see the disturbed young woman. He visits her at the hospital, where she says she's unsurprised to see him. She asks if Sara is going to testify, and he tells her Sara has left the crime lab. Natalie apologizes for what she did to Sara. Grissom asks her if she truly feels that way or only thinks she should, and she insists she truly is sorry for what she's done. Grissom testifies, and when asked by the lawyer representing Natalie if he's there for revenge for what Natalie did to Sara, Grissom answers that he has no personal stake in the proceedings--he's trying to believe people can change even if they're damaged, but he doesn't know if they can. The verdict comes down: Natalie is fit to be transferred to prison. Grissom goes to see her as she's leaving the hospital and she tells him he's wrong about her: she's changed, and she believes people who do bad things need to be punished. After she leaves, Grissom finds a tile out of place on the floor and lifts it up to find a miniature of Natalie in prison garb hanging from a rope.<p><b>Analysis:</b><p>After the significance of the miniature crime scene killer in season seven, it's gratifying for devoted fans of the show to see a follow up with Natalie Davis. Because Natalie more or less suffered a psychotic break in <A class="link" HREF="http://www.csifiles.com/episodes/csi/season8/dead_doll.shtml">"Dead Doll"</a>, Grissom didn't really have a chance to go up against her and, as he puts it to Natalie, "see the real you." Grissom is a scientist; he needs to make sense of things in a logical way, so for him it's essential to see a rational Natalie. Grissom may have been telling the truth when he said he had no personal stake in the hearings--and I truly believe he wasn't there for revenge or with a desire to see Natalie shipped off to jail--but he obviously has a personal stake in seeing Natalie. Just his proclamation to her that "I wanted to see the real you" reveals that this visit is beyond the mere call of duty to testify as to her behavior immediately after being apprehended.<p><HR ALIGN="CENTER" SIZE="1" WIDTH="45%" COLOR="#007BB5"><p>To read the full reviews, please click <A HREF="http://www.csifiles.com/reviews/csi/woulda_coulda_shoula.shtml">here</A>.<center></center>
  2. jafox

    jafox CSI Level Two

    Jun 15, 2007
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    Love your review, as always, Kristine.
    Especially the analysis of Grissom, and the death/change metaphor. Never thought of it that way, which is why I'm not a writer, I'm sure. That makes the 'ambiguous' ending more acceptable for me.
    And I'm glad you discussed Brass' storyline; I thought it was interesting how it showed that he has seen so many cases, can't remember them all, but I think will definitely remember this one with it's tragic ending.
    I, too, almost felt for the mailbox guy, except that he took the bat, buried the mailbox(on his own property, really stupid), and didn't report the accident. 'Hapless' was a great way to describe him.
    I thought Jessica Collins was great in this. Still creepy, even if 'normal'.
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2008
  3. myfuturecsi

    myfuturecsi Corpse

    May 27, 2005
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    I felt sorry for the mailbox guy too. His solution was very stupid, but it doesn't appear to have had much malice too it. He simply wanted to teach them a lesson.

    And I felt bad for Grissom in the end because I think he felt Natalie should be in a hospital rather than jail. He doesn't seem to hold much contempt for her.
  4. Faylinn

    Faylinn Adam Fangirl Super Moderator

    Nov 30, 2005
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    Excellent review, as always.

    Seeing Grissom's path leading (ultimately) to him having to make a choice about his career and his personal life is interesting - however, I'll admit that I'm ready to see the storyline resolved. It's not that I want him gone, but I want to see other characters get focus and development that are being sidelined during this time. (And while I like Grissom as a character, I haven't personally watched the show all of this time just for him - so his exit, for me, doesn't need half a season of focus and buildup.) I'll be a bit relieved when Grissom finally makes his exit and the show can settle into a new groove.

    The Brass storyline was very sad all around - him not remembering Kelsey was a nice touch. Horatio Caine probably remembers every child he's ever spoken to, but in real life, you just can't remember everybody. It's unavoidable, but I can't imagine that's much comfort to Kelsey - who has not only been haunted by the death of her father, but has ultimately had her own life fall apart because she can't forget it.

    I'm with you on feeling kind of bad for 'hapless Hal' - while the death of the two teenagers was tragic, and filling a mailbox with cement is a really stupid thing to do (nobody seems to think about dangerous consequences, although I doubt he would have even considered the idea that the kids would die), you can't help feeling bad for the guy for trying to stop them from destroying his mailbox again - and then seeing what actually happens as a result of his actions.
  5. Moonman190

    Moonman190 Victim

    Nov 20, 2008
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    I remember reading at the IMDb some crazy theory that the word "BLEACH" was an acronym.

    These are in order of her victims, most succeeded, one failed, one may come shortly.
    B - Blunt force trauma
    L - Lethal OD from liquid nicotine
    E - Electrocution
    *A - Advance-placed Carbon-monoxide poisoning *
    C - Crushed or Car Accident
    H - Hanging

    *I can't remember the exact name, it's either a synonym for carbon monoxide, or she used arsenic, leading to Arsenic poisoning.

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