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Recap / Law And Order Special Victims Unit S 9 E 18 Trade

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Written By Jonathan Greene

Directed By Peter Leto

A young pregnant woman is murdered and a family of wealthy coffee importers-of whom the woman was sexually involved with both father and son- are the prime suspects.


This episode provides examples of:

  • Adult Fear: Seeing your child die in a Murder-Suicide.
  • Amoral Attorney: Avery Hemmings bribes jurors to cause a mistrial in the Bartletts' favor.
  • Asshole Victim: Jenna Ludlow turns out to be one hell of a Gold Digger and an all-around scumbag who financially abused the men in her life to the point that Sergeant Tutuola at one point tells the others, effectively, that Jenna basically brought her death on herself. Deconstructed when Novak admits that, yes, Jenna was a greedy asshole, but that didn't make killing her right.
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  • Big "NO!": At the end of the episode when Avery takes PJ down with her, Pierson Bartlett lets out one.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Heaven Moscowitz. She talks to angels and practices "Therapy" with credentials from a "Higher authority".
  • Disney Villain Death: Hemming invokes one upon herself during her Villainous Breakdown. Unfortunately, she takes PJ with her.
  • Double-Meaning Title: The title refers to the Bartlett Family Business and the father and son Love Triangle.
  • Entitled to Have You: Basically the reason why Avery Hemmings murdered Jenna Ludlow is because she believes (which is true) the latter doesn't deserve P.J.
  • Foreshadowing: Avery Hemmings threatens Casey that she could be suspended and lose her job.
  • Gold Digger: Jenna Ludlow's obsession in life was getting as much money as possible, and she was more than willing to exploit any man who showed an interest in her. She did porn shoots, took her boyfriends to court for breaking up with her, took Black Mail videos of her having sex with her lovers, and even slept with her wealthy boyfriend's father — and got pregnant by him — to increase the money she could squeeze out of both of them.
  • Hello, Attorney!: Avery Hemmings, as played by Michelle Borth. And of course Casey.
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    • Don't forget about Trevor Langan, played by the Tall, Dark, and Handsome Peter Hermann.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Given a dark twist with Hemmings, who turns out to have murdered Jenna out of a combination of jealousy and outrage over how Jenna was cheating on and financially exploiting P.J. Bartlett, whom she was in love with. She also confesses to having stalked P.J. when he was dating other women, because she felt that none of them were ever good enough for him. At the episode's end, she declares that she can't bear the idea of leaving P.J. "to be hurt"... which is her rationale for grabbing him and leaping off of the roof with him to their mutual deaths.
  • Love Makes You Crazy: Avery's unrequited crush on P.J. leads her to stalk him and his lovers via a PI and she escalates to murder when his latest turns out to be a reprehensible Gold Digger. Once she's found out, she drags P.J. to his doom alongside her in a last-minute Murder-Suicide.
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