The CSI crossover going on this week may involve one story split across three shows, but in reality it's really three different crimes with one common thread. I thought it was the former after watching CSI: Miami Monday night, with the cliffhanger of sorts about a woman leaving a written plea for help inside a truck stop's restroom. I tune in to CSI: NY last night and realize that we won't see much of a connection between what we saw before and what we're seeing now.
Sure, there's Madeline Briggs. Pegged in part one of the crossover as a suspect in the murder of a model wannabe, she has become the victim--the person Mac and the team must save as quickly as possible, before she dies of the grim circumstances she got herself in: possibly prostitution, possibly organ farm. Maybe it's just me and my expectations of the crossover, but there was a bit of disappointment when the NYPD finally got in touch with Langston (who's still billeted in Miami) and suddenly all these details that we didn't see before came in. The missing notice we didn't hear of, the death of the guy accompanying Madeline over there. It feels a bit plastered in.
In this case, Langston last night merely served as a thread between the events in Miami and the events that will unfold in tonight's CSI. There wasn't really much of him in last night's CSI: NY, or at the very least, he wasn't as prominent as Monday night. While in Miami there was some interaction between Langston and the new members of the team, in New York it was strictly business--and by business, we mean a charged climax when Mac and Langston pursue their suspect.
It was enjoyable, but if that's all he amounts too, well, you might feel a bit cheated. Apart from a couple of major Langston scenes, it felt much like the usual CSI: NY episode: there was some mention of Danny and Lindsay's aborted honeymoon, or Adam dealing with that new girl Hayden, and of course, the usual emphasis on Hawkes, which we've seen as late as last week's episode.
If anything, we get to see a bit of Langston's personal side. There are the things CSI viewers might already know: his dad fought in the Korean War, and he's not really fond of the idea of murder. Mac, in this case, was a parallel, and even if they don't know each other well, it seems both have a lot in common.
The new thing we're seeing in Langston now is his dogged dedication to find Madeline: it's something that was hinted upon in his stint on CSI so far, but not explored as much as in this trilogy. Suddenly I feel the crossover is more of an effort to sell Langston to CSI fans, perhaps to those who left the show when Grissom left the crime lab. Nobody can surely tell if the intended effect is happening, but for Langston fans like me, it's a welcome watch.
Overall, CSI: NY's contribution to this week's crossover could be the weakest, and because it feels like I'm watching what I watched last week. But as a set-up to tonight's CSI--which sees Langston returning to Las Vegas and wrapping up his search for Madeline once and for all--it's pretty important: we get to see why he is doing this in the first place, and suddenly, the stakes are much higher than they ever were.