'Law & Order: SVU' Recap: Going After the Russian Mafia
'Law & Order: SVU' Recap: Going After the Russian Mafia
This week on Law & Order: SVU, the investigation of a woman found murdered -- fingers chopped off, teeth pulled and face unrecognizable -- leads to the Russian mafia. Captain Cragen goes undercover to bring them down.

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We Want More Captain Cragen


It is entertaining to watch the Captain go undercover -- on a date, no less! Cragen has been the focal point of episodes in the past, but it's still pretty rare we we see him in the field like this.

We also see some deep emotion from him, which is what struck me most about him during his date with Lena. He's still affected by his wife's death, and there seems to be a little bit of regret in his eyes when he says he doesn't have any children.

Cragen's playing a lonely, rich man trying to woo a Russian woman, but the lonely aspect seems real. He brushes off the emotional parts of the conversation when Benson asks about it later, but there's more to it than that. What does he do outside of work? He doesn't have someone to go to, no kids. Aww, Cragen, we love you.

Benson and Amaro Bond (Yay!)

I'm starving to learn more about Amaro and Rollins -- maybe a little TOO much. I know it's a long season and we are getting to know them a little more as we go along. For instance, Amaro and Benson are in the morgue when we learn about his thoughts on marriage: "I'm a firm believer in divorce." We learn that his parents divorced (his dad was abusive) and that he's probably in Miami causing trouble. It'll be interesting to see we'll see his troublemaker father enter his life again.

Of course when he flips the subject of parents over to Benson, she isn't going to divulge so easily, as she responds with "That's a long story." It's the truth, but I also think Benson is still reluctant to get close to her new colleagues.

Don't Mess With the Russian Mafia

A Russian mafia-run prostitution ring, killing women and blackmailing men for money? Been there, done that. Despite a story line that we've seen before, I thought it was still entertaining. It starts with Lena's unsuspecting husband, who seems so in love with her. You feel for him because he just seems like a sweet old man in love.

Fooled to the End

It's not a surprise that Lena, who has been fooling men into thinking that she's actually in love with them, has one last trick up her sleeve. She has the detectives -- and myself -- fooled that her daughter is actually being held hostage. So I am confused when all the detectives are inside the safe house, and a shot is fired outside, where Lena and a young detective are waiting in the car. She shot him!

All along she's playing the victim in front of the detectives, but that evil laugh and the way her expression changes prove otherwise. She's just as much the one with the power as the mafia leader is, and that's an unexpected twist.

Were you duped?

Best Tweets About the Episode

Esther Gim
Contributing Writer

(Image courtesy of NBC)



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