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In the Dark 

The murder of a homeless worker leads to the discovery of seven murdered homeless men and to a mechanic who'll do anything for the woman he loves and her unseen adult daughter.


Alex Chapple


Dick Wolf (created by), Rene Balcer (developed by) (as René Balcer) | 3 more credits »


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Vincent D'Onofrio ... Robert Goren
Kathryn Erbe ... Alexandra Eames
Jamey Sheridan ... James Deakins
Courtney B. Vance ... Ron Carver
Geoffrey Lewis ... Butch
Amelia Campbell ... Vicki Hale
Devin Ratray ... Kenny Miles
Paul Lazar ... Donald
Leslie Hendrix ... Dr. Elizabeth Rodgers
Rosemary De Angelis Rosemary De Angelis ... Melanie (as Rosemary DeAngelis)
Rutanya Alda ... Rose
Angel Caban Angel Caban ... Taylor
Russell G. Jones ... Gil
Matthew Maher ... Bo
T.J. Edwards T.J. Edwards ... Lee (as Jason Edwards)


The murder of a homeless worker leads to the discovery of seven murdered homeless men and to a mechanic who'll do anything for the woman he loves and her unseen adult daughter.

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Did You Know?


[All trivia items for this title are spoilers.] See more »


When questioning the used parts dealer, they notice he doesn't sell certain parts (driver's door, bell housing...) and states he doesn't sell those parts because the VIN is stamped on those parts. The VIN or VCN is etched in one spot somewhere on the body. The "loose parts" (doors, gates, trunks, hoods...) have Anti-Theft Labels with the VIN printed on them stuck to them. They are not easily removed. The VIN printed area is thinner than the rest of the sticker and stays behind when you try to peel it off. See more »


Detective Robert Goren: Cat got your tongue?
[indicating one of several body parts in the anatomy lab]
Detective Robert Goren: Because there's an extra one here.
See more »


References Mister Magoo (1960) See more »

User Reviews

In the bizarre dark
17 September 2020 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Season 4, following on from three solid previous seasons, started off so well, with "Semi-Detached" and "Want" being especially brilliant episodes thanks to very interesting killers and seeing a different softer side to Goren. So it was a shame that it went downhill with the uneven "Eosphoros", which had a good idea and interesting title but didn't completely work. So there was the hope that "In the Dark" would be better, as the premise did sound interesting.

"In the Dark's" execution sadly wasn't as interesting and it turned out to be a bit of an inconsistent potential waste. It started off very promisingly, so on that front it was well on its own way on being a big improvement over "Eosphoros". So it did frustrate me that it became increasingly bizarre and implausible, when looking at the premise it had the potential to be really quite chilling. "In the Dark" could easily have been one of the best Season 4 episodes with that premise, but ended up as one of the season's weaker episodes.

By all means it is not all bad and there are actually a number of good things. The slickness and grit is still present, complete with a moodier atmosphere that fits very well with the concept. The music is suitably haunting and doesn't make the mistakes of over-powering or overuse. The script probes enough thought, Goren's perceptions are entertaining and interesting and Eames' snappy one-liners bring a smile to the face.

Did think that "In the Dark" did start off incredibly promisingly, it held my attention, had me invested and there was a creepiness to it. Goren is such a big part of 'Criminal Intent's' appeal and he continues to shine, as does his chemistry with Eames. Although there is no doubt that it is them early on, the perpetrator is fascinating and creepy. The acting is very good, not just from Vincent D'Onofrio and Kathryn Erbe but also a sinister Geoffrey Lewis.

After such a promising start though, the more obvious and conventional the story gets the less suspenseful and such the episode becomes. Other than a surprising and quite bonkers twist concerning the truth about a character's condition things get pretty predictable. By the final act, "In the Dark" had not become too tame but it also had become really strange and confused from trying to cram in too much and not going into enough depth.

Found the perpetrator's motives for the crimes underdeveloped and implausible, and if the episode delved into his mind and explained further his psychological state that would have made more sense and been easier to swallow. The final solution had a lot to cram in and really struggles to do so, the ending felt very rushed and left too many things left in the air.

Bottom line, another disappointing episode. 6/10

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Release Date:

31 October 2004 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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