Saturday, April 19, 2008

Plagiarist suffers on Law & Order

On 19 April 2008, Law & Order: Criminal Intent viewers got to see that Detective Goren (Vincent D'Onofrio) really does not like
plagiarists ("voice stealers") as he grabbed the Peter Coyote character (named Lionel Shill ) by the arm and forced a verbal admission. The Coyote character remarked it seems personal with him.

Glen Poshard got off a lot easier than Coyote.

Book reviewing at the New York Times took a hit, too, as it was depicted as involving personal favors and conflicts of interest. A slimy agent (named Gareth Sage) in the show was given a great line commenting on the situation. The gist was that, if book reviewing at the Times were as depicted by Goren, Sage would be disgusted. As it turned out, book reviewing was as depicted by Goren. The Shill character had actually done what the Sage character believed could not be done and would have found offensive.

The murder victim, an aspiring black writer, was shot with a gun used to kill a police officer in the Newark riots of 1967.

There were a lot of "things are not what they seem to be" elements in the story. The aspiring black writer had been tortured earlier in the night of her death by drug dealers looking for drugs her boy friend had taken. The drug dealers, however, did not kill her. The plagiarist arranged her death by sending one of his colleagues [Hawkins], with the 1967 gun from one of his other author-associates. The aspiring black writer knew that a book of Hawkins, pushed by Shill, was a complete fraud, and died because of that. In living at an interface between a stereotyped ghetto black world and an upscale white world, the black writer was killed by the white world over a fraud issue, not by the world of drugs. It was separately true that Shill had plagiarized the work of the aspiring black author. The story also played off the differences between Shill, portrayed on-screen as refined, elegant, and in the company of Nobel laureates, and Sage, portrayed on-screen as a slick (yes, greased down hair), woman-exploiting, do-anything to win, slime ball. The irony in the story was that "Sage" would not believe that the New York Times could be manipulated in book reviews, as "Shill" actually did. As seemingly world-wise and street-savvy as "Sage" was, "Sage" did not understand what "Shill" was getting away with. [Think about the VIOXX articles, written by ghost writers, published in JAMA, that JAMA has belatedly recognized!]

The episode, titled "Self-Made," originally aired on 15 Nov. 2007, but has not been much discussed on the internet.

One mention of the plagiarism angle is found on televisionwithoutpity :

But manhandling the old plagiarist (much as I despise plagiarists--not to mention pompous ones) seemed a bit hamfisted and brutal for Goren.

Then again, Old Plagiarist Guy did, in fact, ruin two lives with his conniving, so I guess he kinda deserved the shakedown.

Also, was Old Plagiarist Guy planning on bumping Freykins ["TJ Hawkins"?] off? OPG couldn't have thought Freykins would never, ever read the plagiarized book. Maybe he was planning to blackmail Freykins into keeping quiet, as in, you don't tell people I'm a fraud, and I won't tell people you're a murderer?

Guests--> Peter Coyote (Lionel Shill), Pablo Schreiber (TJ Hawkins), Fisher Stevens (Gareth Sage), Al Thompson (Dante 'D Tour' Heath), Barbara Walsh (Ariana Cypher), Victoria Dillard (Sharon Adams), Sharon Hope (Ida Danforth), William Jackson Harper (Chayne Danforth), Shamika Cotton (Kira Danforth), Amy Flanagan (Paige Aldwyn), Ron Simons (Detective Willis), Zack Robidas (Chad), Cherelle Cargill (D Tour's Mother), Derek Milman (Amos), Marlon Morrison (Driver), Patricia Cardello (Constance), Nicole Beckwith (Tina), Dustin Olson (Tom)

IPBiz wonders if Glen Poshard of SIU and Laurence Tribe of Harvard can be referenced as "old plagiarist guys"?

[IPBiz post 3699]



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