Law & Order – Corruption Empire

Yesterday afternoon, I went to my local library to return a book and took the time to leaf through dvds before leaving. A dvd caught my attention, Corruption Empire.

It is an odd release. Although presented as one program, this show is actually two (loosely related) episodes of Law & Order  tacked together to form a “movie”, with the end credits removed from the first and the opening credits removed from the second. The episodes are from 1996 and 1999 and feature the same detective pairing, Lenny Briscoe (Jerry Orbach) and Rey Curtis (Benjamin Bratt), although Benjamin is obviously younger in the second episode. Both also feature ADA Jack McCoy (Sam Waterston) as the prosecutor in charge of the case. These are good quality episodes of the show but why they have been released in this fashion is not something I can answer. The episodes are:

  1. Empire – Series 9, Episode 20 (May 1999) – A businessman and philanthropist dies of a heart attack in his city apartment after taking Viagra. Two people who seem to be involved are a business associate of his, Julian Spector and the professional fundraiser who organized the dinner he attended on the evening before. Her name is Miss Ludlow (Julia Roberts) and the presence of a pair of her knickers in his apartment seems to point to her intimate involvement.
  2. Corruption – Series 7, Episode 5 (October 1996) – A cop shoots a drug dealer during an undercover operation while being backed up by Briscoe & Curtis. He says the guy went for his gun but Curtis is not convinced and starts to investigate despite threats and the objections of Briscoe.

No prizes will be awarded for guessing how they came up with the title for this disc – Corruption Empire. ;)

It was good entertainment for a Friday night and it was nice to go back to the days when Benjamin was still starring in L&O. Actually, I still enjoy watching L&O, though now without Jerry Orbach and Benjamin – Briscoe and Curtis made up the my favorite detective pairing – it still focuses on good old investigation work without indulging on gory details as it is so often the case with procedural shows today.

5 thoughts on “Law & Order – Corruption Empire”

  1. Personally, I loved “Empire” and liked Julia Roberts’ performance in it. It was good for a change to see her play and prove that she is able to play a bitchy character instead of the romantic comedy type character that she has done too much of.
    I guess that working with the person you’re dating can be a mixed blessing, pleasant as well as hard, something that can unite as well as put a strain on a couple. :ponder:

  2. Hello all — I have excellent memories of “Empire” when it first aired. It was highlighted as the 200th episode of the show, I believe. A few celebrity news stories circulated about Julia and Benjamin working together while dating; one report is that Benjamin said it was hard to work together–each wanted to make the other one look good. She was nominated for a guest star Emmy award for the show.

  3. “Empire” was indeed the 200th episode and not only was Julia Roberts nominated for an Emmy, so was Benjamin, as Best Supporting actor in a Drama. I remember while watching the episode, I thought Ben had done a really great job.

    The name comes from 1) New York is called the Empire State, but it also comes from the empire the mogul was building.

    “Corruption” has very fond memories for me. It was featured in a fan fiction written by my very first cyber friend, a Jerry Orbach/Lennie Briscoe fan. The fan fic was a novella, and so good I put it into html format and posted it on the web. (It may still be posted somewhere, I just don’t know where.) Sadly, the author, Lori Kem, had cancer at the time and died the next year. She was absolutely delightful, super funny, even when having endured a bad bout of chemo.

    The title comes from the corrupt detective who’d been a friend of Lennie’s. Lennie was caught between his friend’s old-school police-buddy attitude and partner Rey Curtis’ upright moral code. In the end, Rey tried to reach out to Lennie, and I think that was the beginning of their friendship.

  4. A close friend of Lori Kem found this site and sent it to me. I am delighted to have it and have read them again. I think I may have the originals in storage. Lori was my beloved baby sister. And now our darling brother is gone also… yes, also cancer, 2011. Our mother is living with me and my oldest son. I am so glad Lori’s cyber friends remember her for her talents and wonderful personality!

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