Gil seems to connect with a young boy who has many issues, but the pensive cop ends up feeling bad about the whole experience

By Lynette Rice
November 14, 2008 at 05:00 AM EST
Monty Brinton/CBS

‘CSI’ recap: Little boy blue

Life returned to normal in Las Vegas last night — no hearing problems for Gil, no mysterious video messages from MIA gal pals — just a good old-fashioned mystery surrounding the shooting death of a prostitute and her well-intentioned brother-in-law. Truth be told, the episode was a welcome respite from the Sturm und Drang of a certain (failed) office romance on CSI, though I still kept my ears tuned to pick up any hint of what’s to come with those two. But it looks like all we got was a murder in Koreatown where no one from this police-fearing community wanted to finger the culprit, unlike crimes involving “black, white, and brown” victims when there’s always a witness who’s ready to give up their “height, weight, and tattoos,” claimed Riley (I’m still unimpressed). The team found a blood-spattered pair of kids’ sunglasses in the parking lot, and immediately made the assumption that the bearer of those faux-Wayfarers must have gone missing after the shooting (though he was only hiding out in a nearby home). And what were we treated to next? The second Godfather reference of the season, with Catherine opining about how the male victim, a fresh-from-the-pokey parolee named Sung, had died within two hours of his release, aka “the running time of The Godfather” (I predict the requisite Fredo reference by season’s end).

Sung had sprung the boy, Park, from his mother’s toxic care (Kora and her boy were living in the basement of a gangbanger named Jin), and had taken him for a carefree shopping spree and a trip through a neighborhood block party before he violently met his maker. And it seems that mom did, too! But who pulled the trigger? The team immediately suspected the formerly tatted-up Jin, but then Park’s HIV-status — and the baffling cocktail of drugs he was taking for his condition — prompted Gil to sniff in a different direction. Seems the boy was involved in a clinical trial that kept him hopped up on meds while keeping his mom flush with cash. But the creepy doctor who administered the juice was nothing more than a slimy opportunist (and a heartless one, to boot: That scene in which he injected Park with more of the serum was gut-wrenchingly painful). Taking Park back to the scene of the crime is what ultimately helped Gil finger the culprit. By having the now-trusting Park assemble the dummies in such a way as to re-enact the fatal shooting, the team was able to figure out that it was actually Park — not Sung — who killed the unsuspecting Kora. Park’s smile at the end of the episode ended up saying it all: The bitch was dead and only in juvenile hall would he finally get the care (and peace of mind) he deserved. Somewhat predictably, Gil hardly seemed satisfied with the results. “I’m sorry we solved this,” he said, clearly distressed by the notion that a young boy with a debilitating disease was about to be incarcerated for an unspeakable, though justifiable, crime.

As usual, there were a few lines of dialogue that are definitely worth a day-after shout-out. Hodges (Wallace Langham) had a bitchin’, f-you moment when he quickly found some evidence in a trash can that Riley and Nick were expecting would take hours to find (“You can work harder…or smart,” he said). And Gil, after trying to explain his job to Park, finally said he didn’t know who he was other than a man “who mostly did a lot of thinking.” Another moment of self-realization for our broken-down hero — or just another sign of a clever guy trying to relate to a troubled minor?

Time for you to sweat the small stuff. What did you think of the episode? Were you happy that it represented a return to the traditional, just-the-crime-ma’am format? Or are you still hungry for some more personal tidbits about Gil and Sara?