Monday, January 12, 2009

Cold Case - Recap & Review - Breaking News

Cold Case
“Breaking News”

Original Airdate: Jan 11, 2009

Amanda — TwoCents Reviewer

Coming up, we’ll have the latest on the 1988 murder of WCNU reporter Jane Everett, found strangled in Fairmount Park. Also, the latest on the ongoing character assassination of Scotty Valens, and a look at Nick Vera’s hilarious Flyers hat. All this and more, on this week’s Cold Case!

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[photo: CBS]


  1. Coming up, we’ll have the latest on the 1988 murder of WCNU reporter Jane Everett, found strangled in Fairmount Park. Also, the latest on the ongoing character assassination of Scotty Valens, and a look at Nick Vera’s hilarious Flyers hat. All this and more, on this week’s Cold Case!

    Amid Vera’s hat-enhanced plans for watching the Flyers game at Jones’ that night, WCNU reporter Tory Roberts comes in with a tape of Jane’s final broadcast. Scotty is all over this interview, for reasons that have nothing to do with the case, and which will, unfortunately, become important later. The tape shows Jane receiving a phone call and agreeing to meet the caller the night of her death.

    In an interview with Scotty and Kat, Jane’s mom reveals a disagreement they had over what constituted “news.” Jane didn’t object as strenuously to being stuck with the fluff stories as her mother wished she had been. Meanwhile, Lilly and Jeffries interview Jane’s boss, Nathan, who tells them about her conflict with her jealous co-anchor, Mort, who repeatedly harassed Jane, and who won a Peabody Award for his coverage of her death.

    And here’s where that hockey fanwanking comes in handy: Scotty’s chatting Tory up at Jones’ when Vera and Jeffries walk in. Vera reveals that Jane had filed a complaint with HR about Mort’s harassment two weeks before her death, and then Philly scores and we’re interrupted by cheering…from Frankie. In a scene I will rant about later, they head for the back room, where Frankie accuses Scotty of using “Newsroom Barbie” to make her jealous, says it might be working, and then they kiss a bit before sneaking out the back door.

    The next day, Lilly interviews Mort, switching from autograph-seeking fangirl to Detective Rush, Badass on a dime. Mort admits to the harassment, but insists he didn’t kill Jane. He recalls Jane poring over some tapes of a story she did on a fundraiser at Shaw Plastics, watching a confrontation between a Shaw employee and his boss. Mort followed her to the employee’s house, where she met with a slammed door.

    After a brief bit of exposition where we learn that the employee, Evan Briggs, no longer lives in the neighborhood and that Shaw has since been bought out by Meijers Plastics, Scotty and Kat interview Meijers’ PR man David Wyatt. He says the altercation was about Evan’s termination for failing a drug test, and he barely knew Jane. Scotty then decides to swing by WCNU and asks Kat to come with; she sees right through it, realizing that he doesn’t want to face Tory alone after ditching her, and Kat wants no part of it. So much win.

    Scotty braves the wrath of Newsroom Barbie, who doesn’t buy his pathetic excuses for ditching her, then presents him with all of Jane’s tapes. Meanwhile, Vera talks with Jane’s cameraman, Clay, who filmed the argument between Evan and Wyatt. He recalls going to Evan’s home again; the door was open, and Jane discovered Evan’s wife lying sick in bed surrounded by medications, including one prescribed to Evan that led to his failed drug test. Evan caught them and angrily ordered them out; Jane said she could help, but he wasn’t interested.

    Lilly and Jeffries then go to Evan’s new place, where he refuses to talk, then sics his dog on them. After leaping the fence to escape the dog, Lil and Jeffries bring Evan in. He admits that Jane’s offer to help wasn’t about his drug use, it was about his wife, who died of cancer. In a flashback, he recalls telling Jane about his wife’s death, and Jane told him she’d learned that tubing made at Shaw contained asbestos, which sickened many, and which Shaw knew about. She said she found a Shaw insider who was willing to confirm this on camera. Evan warned her of the danger, but she had a responsibility as a journalist to break the story. To make this story even sadder, Evan is also dying of cancer.

    Another visit to Jane’s mother produces the tape, and Scotty recognizes Wyatt’s voice. He and Kat confront him with the tape, and he says he asked Jane to destroy it, but she was confident that Shaw couldn’t hurt them. He then called Andrew Powers, Shaw’s CEO, who told him that all he had to do was call WCNU, and the story would disappear.

    After Vera and Jeffries learn that Powers called Nathan, Lilly confronts him with his financials; in exchange for stopping the story from airing, he received an insider tip before the Meijers buyout that made him a millionaire. After Lilly figures out that he, too, was jealous of Jane, Nathan tells the rest of the story: he met with Jane during her morning jog in the park, then, after she told him about the story, he asked to see the tape first. She refused, they argued about ethics, and then he strangled her.

    So that was the case. And now the rant. My hatred of the Scotty/Frankie story arc has reached a new level. Where it was at first annoying, it’s now just disgusting. Scotty’s hit a new low, ditching one floozy in the bar to go have skanky handcuff sex with another. Apparently two minutes in a back room with Frankie is enough to make him forget completely about betrayal, vandalism, and physical assault that visited him last week courtesy of her. Scotty is a fascinating, multi-dimensional character who, in the past, has been elevated above the “womanizing Latino” stereotype, but now, that seems to be all he’s good for. If I were Danny Pino, I’d be seriously offended and demand better stuff.

    So that’s my two cents, which, in 1988, would have bought a tiny bit of hair spray, but not nearly enough for Jane’s ‘do. I’d love to hear your thoughts!

  2. Yeah I did not like this new girl with Scotty either. I missed the last episode or two so I was totally confused about her. I thought the handcuff bit was kind of cute, but I agree with you about the "womanizing Latino" thing.
    And how can they put "Frankie" with "Scotty Valens"...the whole time I kept thinking about Frankie Valens, the singer!

    The whole reporter plot was a nice, classic Cold Case style story. She died in the end because she finally stood up to be the hard-hitting reporter she (and her mom) always wanted to be. Typical Cold Case tear-jerkiness. Tragic. Would you call it Ironic too? Or like Poetic Injustice?

  3. I made the "Frankie Valens" connection, too. I wonder if the writers figured it out...

    I think the Frankie storyline would be more believable if perhaps they'd given us some reason why Scotty apparently can't resist her, even though he has a bunch of really, really good reasons not to. If they wanted to give him a love interest, fine, but I think the show in its current format has tried to take on a more complicated story with these two than they have time to believably achieve.

    The case? Yeah. It was awesome. I think tragic and ironic; she finally got some real news, only she died before it got a chance to air. I loved the scene with her mom watching Tory break her story after 20 years. That was awesome.

  4. "Frankie Valens"?...are you thinking Ritchie Valens or Frankie Valli?

    What bothered me about this episode was the way they talked about asbestos...twice it is mentioned as if it's a newly discovered poison most people have never heard of.Asbestos had a long history as a widely used and valued fireproofing material...the sensation was the discovery that it was dangerous.(I'm about Jane Everett's age and would never have talked about it the way she old is writer Erica Shelton?)


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