Tv series star Annabelle Fundt, a vicious diva, is murdered by smashed skull in her Vegas hotel, and shortly after her surgically enhanced lookalike-PA Natasha Steele in a sabotaged car in Hollywood. The team considers possible motives from studio politics, revenge or greed on the part of a lover, either co-star and heir Bud Parker or a scorned former flame.
A temperamental sitcom actress is found dead in her Las Vegas hotel room, and there are plenty of suspects. Soon afterward, her photo double is also killed, this time in Hollywood in the dead actress' car.
- This episode brought to you by the writers of Two and a Half Men. Let the sex jokes begin!
A woman, Annabelle, harangues a man in an elevator for not writing funnier jokes. They head to set and she sits down to start the scene. But first she has to make out with Bud. She whines about not getting enough support. Bud tells the man: "Annabelle wants it funnier." They start filming and Annabelle stops the scene when her costar gets the funnier line. Turns out Bud is an executive producer, but used to be her driver. (Got all that? Subtlety decoder: actresses are divas who give their boy toys credit and titles they don't deserve.) They swap lines, shoot again and Annabelle still doesn't get any laughs.
Cut to Annabelle, dead on the floor. Grissom and Brass are on the scene. The man from the elevator, Spencer, the actual executive producer, found her. He explains that Annabelle doesn't travel at night so she made him stay behind while the rest of the cast went back to Los Angeles. "Made you?" Brass says, "I thought you were the boss?" Spencer laughs: "That's not how television works."
Spencer recounts his night: he got drunk, threw up, got drunk again and went to bed, praying for death.
David pries open Annabelle's mouth and finds a whole rubber chicken stuffed in it. Spencer snaps a cell phone picture saying, "I thought it would make a nice Christmas card."
David can't believe Grissom hasn't made a wry observation. He suggests a few: "I suspect fowl play? That's poultry evidence...."
Grissom speaks: "Dying is easy, comedy is hard."
A "news" report from "Extra," reporting the death of TV's "favorite unwed mother."
The CSIs look over the hotel room. Catherine notes there's no booze in the room. Spencer says she wasn't allowed to drink when she was working. Flash to Annabelle freaking out, offering to let her TV son (who looks like Angus T. Jones from "Men") to feel her new boobs.
A suit from the studio shows up, Stewart Lytle.
Catherine finds candy wrappers in the closet. Spencer says Annabelle was bulimic. "But at least the vomit seemed to take off what the camera put on."
Catherine finds a bottle of urine in the closet and they ask if she had a drug problem.
Stewart: "Define 'problem'." Grissom: "The kind that requires using other people's urine to pass drug tests." Stewart: "Then yes."
Bud shows up, saying he wants to kiss his wife good-bye. News to Stewart and Spencer. He says he and Annabelle married two days ago. They had a deal: they'd get married if he gave up coke. Spencer points out that he didn't. Bud says she didn't know that.
Grissom has had enough and calls in Brass. Spencer tells Brass that Bud was a parasite. Bud says he didn't kill her and they slept in separate room because she didn't like to look at him after sex - or during. Cut to her whacking him with the rubber chicken while astride him.
Nick walks through the lab with Stewart, he sees hot Wendy. "Beautiful people doing police work, there might be a series in this."
Nick and Greg show Stewart the elevator footage showing Bud going up to her room and someone leaving. Stewart says it might be one of the writers. They also see Natasha, Annabelle's stand-in and helper. She looks exactly like Annabelle. Stewart explains that Annabelle made her have plastic surgery.
Brass goes to talk to Natasha. She says she grabbed wardrobe from her room. She calls her a "bitch" to Brass, asking if he has any idea what that woman put her through.
Dr. Robbins does the autopsy, saying the chicken wasn't the cause of death. "Maybe it was a gag," Grissom says. David removes her breast and butt implants then notices she has no uterus. Dr. Robbins says she had a hysterectomy. David asks why she would have been using the tampon he found. Replies Dr. Robbins: "Nostalgia?
More "Extra," an interview with her costar, Megan, trying to seem sad.
Back at the lab, they're conducting tampon absorbency tests. Hodges tells Wendy that Annabelle was dousing her tampons in vodka. Wendy shows Hodges the right way to use a tampon, mercifully using a beaker.
Catherine and Grissom go to talk with Warrick, who's examining the blood stain. "What does this look like to you?" He asks. Grissom: "A hermaphrodite on rollerskates." Catherine: "A puppy."
Warrick sees a woman's shoe impression.
Grissom gets a call. He's heading for the airport.
Cut to: Grissom and Brass, on a golf cart driving through a studio backlot. They pass the Two and a Half men, Angus is gnawing on a cigar. Ah, underage smoking joke.
Grissom checks out the body, it's Natasha - their prime suspect. She died shooting a scene when a car crashed. It was Annabelle's personal Ferrari.
There's a brief interchange about why a single mom would be driving a Ferrari. Brass explains that they had her winning a radio contest, "for me, that's when the show really jumped the shark." (Any resemblance to "Roseanne," which in its final season had the star winning the lottery and on which this episode's writer Chuck Lorre worked, is surely coincidental.)
They learn Annabelle was supposed to be driving the car.
There's a scream and Megan is freaking out over her dead dog. Grissom and Brass look on awkwardly.
Grissom calls Catherine to tell her the car was rigged.
Back at the lab, Hodges has found Internet cell phone footage of Annabelle's wedding to Bud, except that it's not Annabelle, a chin mole tells them it's Natasha.
More "Extra." Reports on Bud, who used to be just an Iowa bar back, and how they were made for each other. Scenes of him being a rube on set. (Again, any resemblance to Roseanne's one-time husband Tom Arnold is probably totally accidental.)
Brass and Grissom search Bud's dressing room. They find tampons. He says Annabelle was a mean drunk, but worse sober. They confront him with the fact that Natasha was found to have just had sex.
He admits he and Natasha had planned to stage a wedding and get Annabelle's money by killing her. But he says they didn't kill her, that Annabelle was already dead when Natasha went up to her room.
Brass accuses Bud of killing Annabelle then Natasha. Bud: "Why would I kill Natasha? Doing her was like doing Annabelle except she didn't yell at me when I couldn't get it up." Brass: "Why'd you reprogram the computer chip in her car?" Bud: "There are computer chips in cars?"
Brass tells Bud they can hold him for conspiracy to commit murder. "Wow," Bud says, "that went really badly."
Back at the lab, Greg's looking at elevator video. He finds four writers went up but only three came down.
Brass goes to talk to the writers. They tell him the fourth guy was the new guy "Jimmy" some writer Annabelle must have hired.
In the lab, they dust the water bottle "Jimmy" was drinking from for prints. The print comes back belonging to a street performer named Richard. Warrick and Nick go to pass out flyers and find him, painted in silver and walking like a robot. Cracks Nick: "A mime is a terrible thing to waste."
Cut to, more "Extra" reporting that Richard is the prime suspect and once had a bit part on the show. Richard talks to Nick, telling him that he was up for a regular part but he lost his chance when he wouldn't sleep with Annabelle.
He admits he went up to her room to talk to her to try to get a job. He hid in the closet while Bud stopped by then came out to talk to her. He said she grabbed his package and he flailed and accidentally knocked her over. He swears it was an accident, but that he stuffed the chicken in hoping it'd lead police to someone else.
They think that's the end of it, but Doc Robbins has found something: blood thinners in her system. They found it in her mouth wash. Doc Robbins says that without the blood thinner she might not have died. He says the L.A. coroner's office said there was blood thinner in Natasha's system, too.
They try to figure out who, other than Bud, knew Annabelle was drinking her mouthwash.
Grissom and Brass go to talk to Megan. She knows the medicine because her dog was on it. They accuse her of spiking Annabelle' mouthwash and then tampering with Annabelle's car when she didn't die soon enough. Megan denies it, while envisioning using it for a character. She creates the plot. She makes a whole back story involving the second banana's uncle, a mechanic in Italy. She asks them what the character's motivation would be. They say she might have known she was running out of time to make it as a lead. She asks what evidence they have. None.
She narrates the end of their script as Spencer, her executive producer-slash-lover comes in to congratulate her on her 13 episode commitment from CBS. They walk off.
Brass says to Grissom: "Forget it Gil, it's Burbank." (Bonus Chinatown reference.)
Cut to Bud, shaving. He nicks an artery, bleeds profusely and we fade out he says "that looks bad."