Written by: Larry Moskowitz; Watch Now: – Sorry, not available on Amazon
[When a protagonist just sit’s and takes abuse, not offering defense arguments which are blatantly obvious, it makes the plot line seem arbitrary and “forced” and the JAG characters weak. I didn’t like the arrogant Spinoza when he played on Murphy Brown either!]
An angry, verbally abusive, history teacher started an argument with JAG officer Bud Roberts(B) and Mikey (Mk) while they were shopping for shoes. Flailing his arms in histrionics, the man appeared to be striking Mk with a shoe so B defended his brother by slugging the man. B was then tried for assault. Creswell (Cr) was pissed that B hadn’t told him of the incident and ordered Turner (T) to defend him, saying: “make it go away,” then “you’ll have to answer to me when it’s over.” The prosecuting attorney was shown with smug arrogance and the judge was clearly biased against B in nearly every objection T made. Big Bud (BB) “chatted up” the court reporter, then told T that the judge hated the military for getting her son killed. Mk testified that he never felt in danger (so B had over-reacted), and Harriet testified that when B got angry he got “that pouty face.” When the prosecutor and judge seemed to be colluding to make B out to be an aggressor, with a history of temper outbursts, T asked for a mistrial. The judge angrily denied the request, threatening T with contempt for insulting her. Then, completely out of character with how she had acted the whole trial, the judge “magically” reversed her antagonistic attitude and judged that B had acted reasonably in defense of his brother when he had seen the shoe raised; but, then she called and tattled to Cr, recommending “anger management courses for B.” She told T that her “son had been killed, but her daughter was still serving.” Cr ordered B to attend the classes without even talking to him about it.
Harm (H) defended, and Mac (M) prosecuted, three MPs who beat and choked a Guantanamo detention camp prisoner into a coma. Army General Spinoza wanted “exposure to public opinion,” so HE requested the court-martial for his own political reasons! Harm was assigned an army JAG, Captain Tam, as his co council, who then initially bull-dozed over her clients and H. When she justified herself to H by saying that she was only acting as “devils advocate,” H told her that “the devil has enough advocates, you start defending your clients.” The injured man was actually Corporal Gino Hatanian who had been posing as a detainee in a training exercise about uncooperative prisoners. He finally awoke from his coma, but refused to testify against the MPs. Both M and H tried to get him to tell the truth, so others wouldn’t be mistreated; but, he replied, he didn’t care if they were mistreated, because “they hate us and deserve it.” The mistreatment had been video taped but the tape had been mysteriously “misplaced.” Brett Orman, a private contractor for the CIA, denied that he expected MPs to abuse prisoners, but claimed they needed to “fear up” high value detainees. “Pain is not as good of motivator,” he said, “as the fear of pain.” Tam was the one who finally found the tape in the “recycle” bin, even though Spinoza said they were looking for it. It showed that Orman had lied and had been standing on the sidelines watching the beating. St. Sgt. Lantana, in charge of the detail, and others were found not guilty of two of the charges, but “guilty” of mistreatment.
The condescending and adversarial Gen. Spinoza got in M’s face. Being pushed, M told him that in her opinion the “wrong person was on trial here.” He smugly told her to “come and serve under me and then your opinion might count for something” and that “If you want to put me on trial you know where to find me.” [It’s too bad the show ended before we could see this happen]