TV Article

Manhattan Transfer

On ''CSI'' this week, two cool reruns -- a four-murder Vegas extravaganza and a Miami-New York crossover -- are fresher than New York's new episode

Gary Sinise | MAC THE NICE The character's debut was nothing to Sinise at
Image credit: Gary Sinise: Timothy White
MAC THE NICE The character's debut was nothing to Sinise at

''CSI'': The doorman, the sniper, and the very busy day

CSI: MIAMI: ''MIA/NYC-NONSTOP'' (MON., DEC. 6)

Miami crime In this episode from last May, which introduced viewers to the characters from the future CSI: NY, a 16-year-old discovers the bodies of her parents in their upscale home. Horatio follows the evidence trail to Manhattan to sniff out the killer and to compete with New York detective Mac Taylor for camera time.

Connected New York crime The prime suspect is the victims' son, who may have stabbed his 'rents after discovering that he was sharing his girlfriend with his billionaire father. Meanwhile, a shady doorman keeps lurking about looking guilty.

Kewl We are reminded why we watch CSI: NY each week: because Gary Sinise is far, far, far! more tolerable than David Caruso: He isn't arrogant, and he doesn't look constipated when he mugs for the camera. No wonder the guy has an Oscar nom.

Not kewl Does Horatio feel the need to wear sunglasses everywhere — indoors included? But on second thought, who can blame him? If I were returning to NYPD Blue country, I'd hide in shame too.

Huh? Eric claims Miami is known as New York's sixth borough. Really? Is the rent cheaper?

CSI: ORIGINAL: ''VIVA LAS VEGAS'' (THURS., DEC. 2)

Crime No. 1 In a rerun of the high-body-count season premiere, Grissom and techie turned CSI wannabe Greg investigate a shooting at a nightclub. Oooh, yay! Because we haven't seen that before . . .

Crime No. 2 A stripper is found dead in a hotel room, and her latest conquest — an Ohio businessman who's going to have a really big mini-bar bill — has no recollection of her murder. Damn those one-night stands!

Crime No. 3 A skeleton dressed in an alien costume is found buried in a shallow grave near Area 51. Only in Vegas would Elvis be seemingly connected to the murder.

Crime No. 4 A seedy man has apparently committed suicide by electrocuting himself in the bathtub in his even seedier motel room. And really, who can blame him? Did you see how nasty the room was?

Duh! After examining the hotel room's blood-soaked walls, Catherine hypothesizes that the stripper may have died from ''massive hemorrhaging.'' Wow, she's an observant one, that Catherine.

Duh! Duh! Grissom finds a noticeably singed Polaroid of yet another dead body at his nightclub crime scene. Upon noticing the photo's burnt edges, he remarks, ''This looks like it's been burned.'' That is why he gets paid the big bucks.

Nudge, nudge In a nod to actress Jorja Fox's salary kerfuffle and brief firing this summer, her character, Sara, says, ''I had some time to think while I was away. Enough time to figure out why I made such a stupid mistake.'' Indeed.

Ugh, don't go there This episode features Catherine getting dumped by her cheating nightclub-owner boyfriend. The one thing that has always worked for CSI is that it has stayed away from the characters' personal lives. Let's just stick to the evidence.

CSI: NY: ''OFFICER BLUE'' (WED., DEC. 1)

Big crime A mounted officer gets shot in the back by a sniper while patrolling Central Park. (As if tourists weren't sufficiently afraid of the park after seeing Kate & Allie's Chip commit rape there a few episodes ago.)

Little crime After a sports bet turns sour, a 19-year-old ends up dead in an alley with a gigantic second-degree burn on his face.

Okay, we get it In yet another effort to emphasize Aiden's sex appeal — and psychic abilities — a horny detective ogles her tush while she leans over a dead body. Without even turning around, she tells him to cut it out.

Cult of personality For once, Stella gets fiery and lays the smackdown on Mac after he postpones extracting a bullet from the police horse's neck because it might kill the animal. Finally, the show gets some dramatic oomph! I cheer her on. Note to self: Get out more on Wednesdays.

Not kewl Using a crying kid to solicit sympathy for the horse. Even worse? Making the tot tell the horse, ''Say hi to my daddy up in heaven, okay?''

Oh, shut up ''Let's pimp this ride,'' Stella says, as the team is about to dismantle a car in hopes of finding a secret gun compartment. Somewhere out in L.A., Xzibit is laughing his butt off.

GRADES

Though Stella's newfound spunk was a delicious treat (as was the repeat of Miami's crossover episode), New York still needs to unravel the secret to making a crime captivating. Perhaps the Big Apple should take a bite out of Vegas, as the original's reheated four-fer episode managed to suck you in faster than you can say, ''Viva Wayne Newton.'' Miami: B. Vegas: A-. New York: C.

What did you think? Did the reruns beat a new New York? And who came off better in the Horatio-Mac face-off?

Originally posted Dec 07, 2004