Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Law and Order SVU (Snail Victims Unit)

I had a dream last night.

This is not unusual. I dream vividly every night. A few nights ago, I had a terrible nightmare that I left bread baking in our oven and went off to Canterbury Cathedral with my in-laws who were here on holiday and our house burned down killing the Spiderbabes and the Bronte snail GALS.

No, this was one of my “crack-ass” dreams (as Spiderman calls them.)
                              Image result for law and order
I am a firm believer that your everyday life bleeds into your dreams. We have been watching DVD marathons of Law and Order  from seasons 3-7. The good ones—the ones with Jerry Orbach as Detective Lennie Briscoe. I have such a crush on him. 

Anyway, in this dream Charlotte Bronte the snail was on trial for murder of a homeless man. I missed all the Law part…I did not dream of her arrest, only the Order part where she was actually on trial. She was being defending by Jack McCoy (played by Sam Waterston) and the prosecutor was Tovah Feldshuh (she is on many episodes as a lawyer). I think of all the lawyers that have repeat parts on the show my dream picked her because she is also in another favourite show Crazy Ex Girlfriend playing Rachel Bloom’s mother.

Interestingly, as I write this I have just realised that the roles were reversed—on the show McCoy always is the prosecutor, not the defence. In the dream, he was the defence.

Much of the dream is lost into the ether, but a few fragments remain which I will try to recreate them for you.
                      Image result for african land snail lettuce
They had Charlotte in her little terrarium on the witness stand.

Tovah Feldshuh: Where were you the night John Doe was murdered?
Charlotte: (eats lettuce)
Tovah Feldshuh: I ask you again, where were you?
Charlotte: (eats lettuce)
Jack McCoy: Your honour, she’s a snail. She can’t talk.
Judge: Sit down, Mr McCoy. The witness must answer the question.
Charlotte: (eats lettuce)
Jack McCoy: The witness can’t answer! She’s a snail, for God’s sake!
Judge: Pipe down, Mr McCoy or I will find you in contempt.
Tovah Feldshuh: Permission to treat as hostile, your honour?
Judge: Permission granted.
Tovah Feldshuh: (takes lettuce leaf away)

I don’t remember what else happened here, but the next bit I remember was this.

Tovah Feldshuh: You claim your name is Charlotte but isn’t it true you are both male and female. A hermaphrodite!
Jack McCoy: Objection! Irrelevant!
Tovah Feldshuh: Goes to credibility, your honour. If the witness lied about this, then we can show she lied about other things.
Jack McCoy: The witness can’t lie. She’s a snail!
Judge: Overruled. I’ll allow it. Answer the question, Miss Bronte.
Charlotte: (eats lettuce)
Tovah Feldshuh: Isn’t it true that as a Giant African Land Snail that you are a menace to society, eating everything that gets in your path?
Jack McCoy: Objection!
Tovah Feldshuh: Giant African Land Snails have been known to decimate crops. Is that what you did to John Doe? Did you decimate him, too?
Jack McCoy: Objection! She’s badgering the witness! Snails don’t eat people! They are vegetarians! Besides, that’s not even what happened to the victim.
Judge: Calm down, Mr McCoy. I’ll allow it.

The rest of the trial is a blur, but the ending I remember clearly.

Judge: Madame forewoman, you have deliberated for three days. Is there any indication that if you have more time, you will be able to reach a verdict?
Forewoman: No, your honour. We are deadlocked.
Judge: Then I have no recourse, but to declare a mistrial. (bangs gavel) The jury is dismissed.

The last bit of the dream took place in Adam Schiff’s office. In the show they always end with him saying something pithy in his trademark gruff way. God bless Steven Hill who was a wonderful character actor in this role.

Adam Schiff: Well, you got the snail off. Until the next trial.
Jack McCoy: I heard it was eleven to one. Eleven people could clearly see that a small snail couldn’t have possibly stabbed a homeless man 37 times. Snails can’t hold a knife. They’ve got no arms!
Adam Schiff: One holdout, eh? Must have been a gardener.

So, this is what happens when you watch too much crime drama from the 1990’s.

You get crack-ass dreams.

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