Back to Sky One for more LA Law. This tape comes before the most recent ones we’ve seen, but it’s still from Season 7.
First, there’s Bare Witness. It opens with Gwen having a nightmare related to being stalked by Daniel Morales’ fake wife. It’s a weird nightmare…
Gwen’s stalker is manipulating Benny by telling him she’s Gwen’s fairy godmother. She’s getting him to give her Gwen’s mail.
Douglas is representing the owner of a topless bar in a dispute with the city council. Representing the city is David Schwimmer.
He’s good as the rather amoral city lawyer who’s prosecuting a dubious moral stance, but actually has no objection to the club – in fact he’s the kind of man who likes to spend time there.
Stuart is giving evidence against the men who dragged him from his car and beat him during the LA riots.
Gwen gets a phone call from her doctor. She’s been diagnosed with Huntington’s Chorea, a hereditary disease that will almost guarantee an early, lingering death. She’s devastated.
I’m not sure about the leery way the show is using the strip club. It seems rather out of place in a show that’s usually quite progressive. Here, suddenly, it’s all blokes together, and very leery.
In the next episode, Parent Trap, William Hickey Guest Stars as Tommy Mullaney’s father. He tells Tommy he’s dying.
He also spends time in the strip club – second episode in a row. It’s really gross.
Gwen’s stalker manages to kidnap Daniel’s child.
The final episode here is Hello and Goodbye. The search is still on for the stalker and Daniel’s child. She even talks to him in the courthouse, but because she’s someone he vaguely knew in a previous job, he doesn’t connect her with the kidnapper.
She calls and tells Gwen to meet her, and the police let her go alone. It gets a bit Fatal Attraction.
Gwen gets a letter from her doctor telling her she hasn’t got Huntington’s Chorea, because it was the stalker who was phoning her up. And there’s a bit of a cliffhanger ending, as the policeman they were working with to protect Gwen ends up shot in the back with an arrow. At this point it’s definitely getting a bit silly.
I’m reminded about that interview we saw with Corbin Bernsen on a previous tape, where he talks about the return of one of the original showrunners. If you look at the credits, these shows were exec produced by John Masius and John Tinker, who also ran St Elsewhere. Two episodes later (immediately after the resolution of the Gwen stalker storyline) they’re gone, and William Finkelstein is back as exec. Going by Bernsen’s comments, they obviously felt Tinker and Masius were taking the show in the wrong direction, concentrating on soapy plotlines for the regulars, so they went.
This also might explain the creepy, leery obsession the show was having with the topless bar. I don’t remember that location recurring afterwards. And it always did feel out of character.
After this episode, the tape ends. Once again, no ads on this tape.