Law & Order: Season 20, Episode 4

Reality Bites (16 Oct. 2009)

TV Episode  |  TV-14  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery
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The father of several adopted special needs children is accused of killing his wife over her reluctance to sign off on a reality show based on their family, and the subsequent trial threatens to turn into a media circus.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Larry Johnson
Attorney Novelle
Belinda Alvarez
Larry's Accountant
Artie Kramer
Tim Johnson
Phillip Bramwell ...
Steve Johnson
Suzanne (as Zoë Winters)


When Larry Johnson drives home from picking up his adopted, physically disabled children from school, he discovers his wife's dead body on the floor of their home. Detectives Cyrus Lupo and Kevin Bernard question Vaughn, who explains that he and his wife had adopted a child with special needs and felt it was their calling, so they adopted nine more children. While the detectives question the children for suspects and a motive, they uncover an affair and an offer for the Vaughn family to appear in a reality show causing tension in the household and with another family. Written by NBC Publicity

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Release Date:

16 October 2009 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


The title comes from the 1994 movie "Reality Bites" starring Ethan Hawke, Winona Ryder, Ben Stiller, Steve Zahn, Janeane Garofalo, and Swoozie Kurtz. See more »


D.A. Jack McCoy: [watching an excerpt from the reality show] Not very entertaining, what happened to the Cosbys?
Executive A.D.A. Michael Cutter: They didn't have enough kids.
See more »


References Jon & Kate Plus 8 (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

She'd just kill to be on television
22 September 2013 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

It is entirely possible that I am totally the wrong person to review this particular Law And Order episode. I truly hate reality TV as entertainment. This episode will give one more reasons than ever to hate it.

The mother of several adopted special needs children is murdered and after some and accent on some investigation the father is arrested for his wife's murder. Jim Gaffigan is in need of liquid capital as a lot of his real estate projects have gone south. The wife was not crazy about the idea even with the enormous amount of money that the show will give them.

Gaffigan is a likely suspect, but my own opinion is that the DA's office went into this one with half a case. But even with a whole airtight case the producers of the proposed reality series turn the whole process into a joke.

Also a likely suspect is Nina Lisandrillo a 'bouncy' suspect who tells the world that she the mother of septuplets courtesy of a fertility drug and a donor sperm would just 'kill to get that reality show'.

Anthony Anderson and Jeremy Sisto should have finished the investigation on this one. If you hate reality TV this story will give you a dozen more reasons to.

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