Law & Order (season 8)

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Law & Order (season 8)
LawAndOrder S8.jpg
Season 8 U.S. DVD cover
Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 24
Original network NBC
Original release September 24, 1997 (1997-09-24) – May 20, 1998 (1998-05-20)
Season chronology
← Previous
Season 7
Next →
Season 9
List of Law & Order episodes

The eighth season of the legal drama Law & Order aired on NBC from September 24, 1997, to May 20, 1998, and consisted of 24 episodes.


The cast of season 8 remained unchanged from season 7.


No. in
Title Directed by Written by Original air date Prod.
U.S. viewers
158 1 "Thrill" Martha Mitchell René Balcer September 24, 1997 (1997-09-24) K2508 N/A

The cops break the seemingly random murder of a fried chicken deliverer with a little "undercover" work in the park, but McCoy and Ross face a harder battle to get a conviction when the two defendants resolutely point the finger at each other, and the one item identifying the actual killer is the recording of a confession-made to a priest. Meanwhile, Curtis learns that his wife has multiple sclerosis.

159 2 "Denial" Christopher Misiano Teleplay by: David Shore
Story by: David Shore & René Balcer
October 8, 1997 (1997-10-08) K2504 14.3

Bloody sheets and an apparently stolen credit card lead Briscoe and Curtis to a pair of college-age lovers who present McCoy and Ross with a united front of denial that one of them killed their newborn son and disposed of the body.

160 3 "Navy Blues" Jace Alexander Teleplay by: Kathy McCormick
Story by: Dick Wolf & Kathy McCormick
October 15, 1997 (1997-10-15) K2510 11.8

McCoy finds himself battling the Navy and the office of the Judge Advocate General as he tries to prosecute a female pilot accused of murdering her married lover after he tried to break off with her.

161 4 "Harvest" Matthew Penn Teleplay by: I.C. Rapoport
Story by: I.C. Rapoport & René Balcer
October 29, 1997 (1997-10-29) K2506 14.2

A discrepancy concerning the time of death of a drive-by shooting victim leads McCoy and Ross to initiate prosecutions against both the shooter and the doctor who harvested her organs as transplant donations.

162 5 "Nullification" Constantine Makris David Black November 5, 1997 (1997-11-05) K2507 13.0

After the cops trace an eagle tattoo on a man shot and killed while holding up an armored truck to a group of militia members, McCoy finds himself facing one of their number as the pro se counsel for his friends, arguing for the concept of "jury nullification", the right of a jury to protect a defendant from an unjust law by acquittal despite the evidence.

  • Inspired by Militia actions such as the sieges of Ruby Ridge, Idaho and Waco, Texas, the Oklahoma City bombing and the trial of the Chicago Seven. Writer David Black said while researching for the episode that he found some aspects of the movement to be bigoted, but found that some of it reminded him of "original revolutionists of America. They do sound like Tom Paine and Thomas Jefferson... I don't think they should use terrorist tactics, but philosophically I have some sympathy."[5]
163 6 "Baby, It's You" Ed Sherin Jorge Zamacona November 12, 1997 (1997-11-12) K2511 16.0

It's old home week for Briscoe when an apparent murder of a teenage model in New York City develops ties to Baltimore, and Detectives Munch and Falsone pay a visit to the Big Apple to observe the case. Meanwhile, McCoy finds himself battling the attorney of the victim's parents for access to his clients while also battling the Baltimore DA for jurisdiction.

This is part one of a two-part episode that concludes on Homicide: Life on the Street.

Special appearances by Richard Belzer as John Munch; Yaphet Kotto as Al Giardello; Jon Seda as Paul Falsone

164 7 "Blood" Jace Alexander Teleplay by: Craig Tepper
Story by: René Balcer & Craig Tepper
November 19, 1997 (1997-11-19) K2502 15.1
The paternity of a black baby given up for adoption by a white mother who later fell from an apartment balcony might provide a clue to her murderer, but it also unearths some long-buried family secrets that it seems more than one person would kill to keep hidden.
165 8 "Shadow" Matthew Penn Richard Sweren November 26, 1997 (1997-11-26) K2505 14.8
The murder of a bail bondsman looks fairly routine until the chance words of the chief suspect uncover possible case-fixing between a shady lawyer and an unknown contact within the judicial system.
166 9 "Burned" Constantine Makris Siobhan Byrne December 10, 1997 (1997-12-10) K2501 14.2
A message overheard on an answering machine leads Briscoe and Curtis to a confessed murderer and the home of wealthy Carl Anderton, an old friend of Adam Schiff, whose stubborn non-cooperation with the district attorney threatens to create a serious miscarriage of justice.
167 10 "Ritual" Brian Mertes Kathy McCormick & Richard Sweren December 17, 1997 (1997-12-17) K2516 13.9

Curtis and Briscoe investigate the death of Josef Moussad, an Arab man found behind a dumpster, the victim of an apparent mugging. The detectives soon realize that Moussad had brought a doctor into the country to perform a clitoridectomy on his young niece, and suspicion turns to the family. Ross is horrified that young Alison's grandmother and uncle were both in full support of the operation, which makes it hard for her to prosecute the case objectively.

168 11 "Under the Influence" Adam Davidson René Balcer January 7, 1998 (1998-01-07) K2517 17.0
After Briscoe and Curtis finally determine who was driving the car that killed three people, the legal prosecution stands in danger of becoming a kangaroo court when McCoy's feelings over Kincaid mesh with the political agenda of Gary Feldman, an ambitious judge anxious to make an example of the defendant to boost his election chances against Adam Schiff.
169 12 "Expert" Lewis H. Gould David Shore & I.C. Rapoport January 21, 1998 (1998-01-21) K2518 13.6
The shooting of two people in a restaurant restroom takes some abrupt turns as they try to discover who exactly the intended victim was, and the prosecutors have to deal with a defendant claiming to have been in a dissociative state while committing the crime — the same defense used years before by the defendant's father.
170 13 "Castoff" Gloria Muzio David Black & Harold Schechter January 28, 1998 (1998-01-28) K2512 15.6

The street murder of a woman who worked with underprivileged kids takes a turn towards the bizarre when the detectives uncover she had a predilection for kinky sex, and that one of her current partners appears to be a serial killer, who offers an overexposure to television violence as his defense during his trial.

171 14 "Grief" Christopher Misiano Suzanne Oshry February 4, 1998 (1998-02-04) K2514 14.6
The cops, as they try to pin down the specifics of an assault on a man reluctant to talk about it, uncover the alleged rape of two women in custodial care. But as the prosecutors attempt to prepare their case, a reluctant witness changes their view of the cases.
172 15 "Faccia a Faccia" Martha Mitchell René Balcer & Eddie Feldmann February 25, 1998 (1998-02-25) K2519 13.8

Taking on an apparent Mafia murder, Detectives Briscoe and Curtis are stymied by a dead witness and a seemingly incoherent mob boss.

173 16 "Divorce" Constantine Makris Barry M. Schkolnick March 4, 1998 (1998-03-04) K2520 14.7
The stabbing death of a psychologist draws Detectives Briscoe and Curtis into a heated divorce case and pits Prosecutors McCoy and Ross against a manipulative attorney.
174 17 "Carrier" J. Ranelli David Black April 1, 1998 (1998-04-01) K2525 12.7
The death of a college student leads to a case involving an HIV-positive male who's seeking to infect as many young women as possible. McCoy, testing right-to-privacy ethics, wants to charge him with murder.
175 18 "Stalker" Richard Dobbs Kathy McCormick April 15, 1998 (1998-04-15) K2523 16.4
When a woman is found unconscious at the bottom of her apartment stairs, Briscoe and Curtis must figure out what happened — before it's too late. In order to make his case, McCoy pits the two detectives against each other in the courtroom.
176 19 "Disappeared" David Platt Richard Sweren & William N. Fordes April 22, 1998 (1998-04-22) K2528 14.2
A defendant refuses to allow his lawyer to raise the issue of insanity. This complicates matters for the brother who turned him in with hopes of securing medical treatment for him.
177 20 "Burden" Constantine Makris David Shore & I.C. Rapoport April 24, 1998 (1998-04-24) K2526 11.3
After a 12-year-old quadriplegic dies at home in his bed, paramedics claim that he was suffocated and the suspects include the boy's parents and sister.
178 21 "Bad Girl" Jace Alexander René Balcer & Richard Sweren April 29, 1998 (1998-04-29) K2524 14.3

Schiff's re-election may hinge on the stabbing death of a police officer; Briscoe's daughter is arrested for dealing drugs.

179 22 "Damaged" Constantine Makris Janis Diamond May 6, 1998 (1998-05-06) K2522 14.3
The case of a teacher's shooting uncovers a vendetta involving the rape of a mentally challenged coed by three students, whose attorney claims they weren't aware of her condition. Briscoe is devastated to learn of his daughter Cathy's death at the hands of a killer that an unknown Prosecutor failed to convict.
180 23 "Tabloid" Brian Mertes Teleplay by: David Black
Story by: David Black & Alec Baldwin
May 13, 1998 (1998-05-13) K2515 13.3
Tabloid journalism comes under scrutiny during the investigations into the deaths of a gossip columnist and a celebrity target he pursued.
181 24 "Monster" Ed Sherin René Balcer & Richard Sweren May 20, 1998 (1998-05-20) K2527 14.8
A 10-year-old girl is raped and rendered comatose by a pedophile. A snitch offers Briscoe a chance to avenge his daughter's death. The NYPD brass is looking to force Lieutenant Van Buren out of her job, while Ross resigns from hers to devote more time to her family life and her ongoing divorce. McCoy, meanwhile, must contend with Judge Feldman as an adversary both at trial and outside the courtroom due to an ethics complaint the judge filed against him. While all of this goes on, Schiff begins to consider the possibility that Feldman might defeat him in the election.


  1. ^ Dwyer, Kevin (2006). Review: True Stories of Law & Order: The Real Crimes Behind the Best Episodes of the Hit TV Show. Penguin. pp. viii, 179–184. 
  2. ^ Wyatt, Edward (2005-01-08). "Even for an Expert, Blurred TV Images Became a False Reality". New York Times. 
  3. ^ Courrier, Kevin (1998). Law & order: the unofficial companion. Renaissance Books. pp. 285–286. 
  4. ^ Courrier, p.287
  5. ^ Courrier, p.288
  6. ^ Courrier, p.288-290
  7. ^ James, Stanlie Myrise (2002). Genital cutting and transnational sisterhood: disputing U.S. polemics. University Press of Illinois. p. 73. 
  8. ^ Lo, Malinda (June 13, 2005). "Law and Order Treats Gay Men Fairly". 
  9. ^ Courrier, p.296
  10. ^ Price, Melynda Janea (2006). At the Cross: Race and Religion in the Politics of the Death Penalty Among African Americans. p. 222. 


External links[edit]

Preceded by
Season Seven
List of Law & Order seasons
Succeeded by
Season Nine