Law & Order: Season 2, Episode 3

Aria (1 Oct. 1991)

TV Episode  |  TV-14  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
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An aspiring actress dies from a drug overdose. Investigation reveals that her domineering mother may have driven her to suicide by forcing her to act in a pornographic film. The DA's office pursues murder charges against her.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Defense Attorney Lucas Pollard
Marilyn Rockafellow ...
Elizabeth Blaine
Patricia 'Patti' Blaine
Dr. Joseph Stern
Stephen D. Newman ...
Dr. Seliger (as Stephen Newman)
Angel Greer
Director Franklin Frome


Cerreta and Logan investigate the suicide of a young college student found dead backstage in a theater. As the investigation deepens, it's discovered that the girl had a secret life in pornography which was egged on by girl's mother. Stone and Robinette must find a way to go around certain legal channels to bring the case to trial. Written by danny gonzalez

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Release Date:

1 October 1991 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This is the first of 13 appearances of defense attorney Danielle Melnick, portrayed by Tovah Feldshuh. This character also appeared briefly in the series finale of Law and Order:Criminal Intent titled "To the Boy in the Blue Knit Cap" See more »


Priscilla Blaine: Mama... are you awake? I couldn't sleep. I haven't slept in days. Last night in the dark, I looked at myself in the mirror and all I could see were the whites of my eyes... and I knew how scared I really was. Are you dreaming, Mama? Remember Abilene, Mama? How the towns clicked by and I begged you to stop the train? Lexington, Nashville, Little Rock. I was sick for a thousand miles... and I hated you for it. Well, Mama, you sleep. Me, I'm getting off this train. I'm tired now, Mama. When you ...
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User Reviews

Driven to Despair.
15 July 2012 | by (Deming, New Mexico, USA) – See all my reviews

A rather complicated story. A young student at the Academy of Dramatic Arts is found dying of a drug overdone, muttering, "I didn't want to do it." But do what? The detectives find that the girl's mother had been pushing her towards a career in the performing arts since childhood, and pushing hard. An older, less manipulable daughter had already given Mom the finger and dropped out of the grueling regimen. The younger daughter, though, was shy, retiring, still under Mom's thumb and did whatever she was told to do, even if she hated it to the point of self mutilation.

The detectives uncover the fact that Mom had introduced the younger girl into porn movies, but in parts that just involved stripping, not doing naughty things. The overdose took place the night before the daughter was supposed to have her innocence erased.

I kind of like the way the porn people were pictured. Not slimy, evil thugs with tattoos and sadistic impulses, but just ordinary cynical New Yorkers who go about their vile business with a shrug. "Sure, I make sex tapes. Everybody's got to make a living." Unfortunately, as frequently happens with this series, the ending is a cop out. A Big Issue is brought up -- the pornographic industry -- and then the bait is switched. The mother, as it develops, is not only a stereotypical stage mother but a psychotic as well. The story would have had more depth -- but would have had to take a position -- if the mother had been perfectly sane. Another, less important problem. The actress cast as the mother has the face of a hawk. We really didn't need it.

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