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Too Much Information Season 02 Episode 13

Boston Legal / Season 02, ep 06 starring James Spader, Mark Valley, Julie Bowen, William Shatner, Candice Bergen, Rene Auberjonois, Justin Mentell, Sara Michelle Bathe

Episode Credits  |  Dialogue  |  Did You Know... ?  |  Reviews  |  News & Ratings

Episode Summary

"Too Much Information" / Season 2, Episode 13
A story of Catherine-Get Your Gun! bribery, Internet privacy and tie flambé!
Broadcast: January 24, 2006

Alan Shore bails out Catherine Piper (Betty White) after she goes on a spree of convenience store holdups with a rubber gun. Alan, feeling guilty for not hiring her as his assistant after Shirley fired her, tries to make it go away. Meanwhile, Denise Bauer, consulting Alan, assists Emily Hayden in suing an HMO for inadequate internet security that led to the brutal murder of Emily's mother -- all the while trying to get through to her hospitalized boyfriend, Daniel Post (Michael J. Fox), who won't take her phone calls. And, as the partners begin to see Beverly Bridge's influence on Denny Crane, Brad Chase makes her a proposition and tries to convince her to leave Denny.

Episode Credits

Directed by .... Steve Robin.
Written by .... Andrew Kreisberg & Lawrence Broch

Michael C. Alexander .... Officer Lawrence Michaels
John Aylward .... Tom Orchard
Jeff Bowser .... Clerk No. 2
Hildy Brooks .... Judge Nora Lang
Regan Burns .... Stan
Joanna Cassidy .... Beverly Bridge
Michael J. Fox .... Daniel Post
Shirley Jordan .... Foreperson
Kayla Mae Maloney .... Emily Hayden
Marshall Manesh .... George Keene
Sharon Omi .... Ming
Ana Ortiz .... A.D.A. Holly Raines
Mark L. Taylor .... Attorney Adam Jovanka
Lisa Vidal .... Irma Levine
Betty White .... Catherine Piper
Michael Shamus Wiles .... Ned Hayden

Set Photographer: Ron Tom
Set Photos taken November 3-18, 2005
© 2005 ABC, INC.

Too Much Information Season 02 Episode 13


Episode Dialogue

Catherine Piper: I'm in trouble now
Alan: Yes
Catherine Piper: What's with me?

Ming, the manicurist: Happy ending, Mr Crane.
Denny Crane: Well not, today, Ming. I’m engaged now.

Tom Orchard: Her father killed her mother and we are all upset about it, but it was not our fault. However, to make this go away we were willing to make a gift of twenty thousand dollars.
Alan Shore: Well, as a gift that’s very sweet of you. We’ll put it in the den next to the armoire. However, as compensation that you owe Emily Hayden because your negligence lead to he mother being brutally murdered. Your offer is offensive. Even more offensive than your tone.

Denise: You don't get to set the rules in this relationship.
Daniel: You're right. But if you hit me or anything, I might literally die.

Brad: I'm prepared to give you $500,000 right now if you walk away and never have any contact with Denny Crane ever again.

Beverly: He didn't disrespect Beverly Bridge. He disrespected the fiancée of Denny Crane. He disrespected you.
Denny: The son of a bitch.

Do you have anything without bread?
Beverly Bridge: Do you have anything without bread?
Stan: These are sandwiches. They have bread.
Beverly Bridge: Well, there’s a thing called Protein Style.
Stan: Well, if they don’t have bread, then they’re not a sandwich and I only do sandwiches.
Beverly Bridge: Do you know who I am? I’m Denny Cranes’ fiancée.
Stan: Yeah? So? Hey, Mr. Chase! Roast beef and havarti!

Did You Know... ?

Footnote TV: a study of "Too Much Information"
by Stephen Lee
Health Privacy. Federal and state laws do require health care providers to take steps to ensure that electronic personal information about a person's health is protected from unauthorized access, though the rules are complicated and do allow for some flexibility in compliance.
>> read more

There are laws to protect health information that are often updated. The major law about this is Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). HIPPA laws have been around 10 years and has just been revised for this year. In short, HIPAA laws basically say that information about your health care can not be released to anyone without your consent. Alan makes a quick reference when he said something to the effect of 'that little waiver you sign at the doctor's office allows doctors to share information over the internet.'

Six Degrees
John Aylward (HMO defendant Tom Orchard) might be familiar to some from his recurring role as Donald Anspaugh on ER. He also played a judge in Season 5 of The Practice. Ally McBeal

Stan the Sandwich Guy is played by Regan Burns. On his website, he writes about his part on Too Much Information: "First off, it's very last minute, but check out my small, but oh so memorable stint on Boston Legal this Tuesday night (1/24) at 10:00 PM Eastern time on ABC. I shall be portraying the controversial character of Stan the sandwich guy. Blink and you might miss me!"

HMO attorney Adam Jovanka is Mark L Taylor, a character actor who has made a career out of a bazillion guest appearances, including in three episodes of The Practice (as 3 different characters, one of which is a federal judge) in seasons 5 and 7. He also had appearances on Boston Public, Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Voyager.

HMO judge Judge Nora Lang is played by Hildy Brooks, who appeared in "Questionable Characters" season 1.  In that episode, she played "Chairwoman Nora Lang".


Episode Reviews

Knowledge Corrupts | 2.13 'Too Much Information' written by Abney

Knowledge is a tricky thing, if you think about it hard enough - what you know can be your saving grace or lead to your downfall, and what you don't know can drive you to insanity. In the case of Denise's client altruistically hijacked by Alan, the knowledge of the woman's whereabouts - so easily accessible via that information superhighway (does anyone still call it that?) we all know and love, the Internet - led to her death. But by the same token, knowledge can be a veritable cure-all, can allow the most painful of experiences to be bearable when you share that knowledge with
others. Denise had been completely cut off from Daniel Post's suffering, and knowing that he was willingly making an effort to keep her OUT of his life was killing her as much as his disease was killing him.

On a suggestion from Alan, however - whose knowledge of strong women we can assume dates back pretty far - knew that it wasn't in Denise's nature to be passive and wait for the outcome she desired. That isn't the nature of Denise as an attorney, and it certainly isn't her nature as a person. Alan understood that, even if he doesn't truly understand her (or anyone else, for that matter) for who she is.

Most of the time, the worst thing about knowledge is not what is known or not known, understood or misunderstood. It's not the what that really makes the difference, but rather the who. In this case, that who is Beverly Bridge, the venomous vixen who has Denny enchanted, poisoned with love (or is it lust?) and the rest of the big guys (and gal) at Crane, Poole, and Schmidt, (Paul, Shirley and Brad, to be exact) in a bit of mess. I must admit, it is odd seeing Brad in this administrative setting, but I've come to view him as a bridge between the active attorney group (Denise, Alan, etc.) and your purely 'I own you, shine my shoes' group (named partners Schmidt and Crane, Paul, etc.). He can go back and forth between the two echelons of the firm and be considered on equal footing, a position that no other member of the firm can claim.

On a much, much lighter note - Catherine Piper, we hardly knew you when you left the see-through halls of Crane, Poole, and Schmidt. But of course, you return, with yet another juicy appearance. Throughout her crime spree, I kept saying to myself out loud - "What is wrong with this woman?" It was Alan who finally figured it out. She was having a traditional identity crisis - she didn't know who she was, where she belonged; without working for Alan, the fun was gone from her life and she was left home alone with nothing to bring meaning to her life the way being Alan's assistant had been. So, she turned to the last thing that had brought her into contact with the world she left behind - crime. Killing Bernard and the subsequent trial was her last connection to Alan and the sense of belonging she had been lacking, which is why we see her calmly (and quite elegantly) knock over a 7-11 clone.

As for the dramatic headline case of the episode, as much as I try to see the other side, I can't help but believe that the way Alan argued and the way the jury deliberated was correct. There is no doubt in my mind that the Internet is an invaluable tool - schoolwork and this very reviewing and forum-ing has more than proven that to me. But like anything that is this effective, it is a double-edged sword. The internet can access anything - Alan proved that with the inane, personal details he was able to come with about opposing counsel and even judge. This type of easily accessible knowledge, in the hands of the wrong person; say, for example, Emily Hayden's father; can be fatal. The defense says, "Is the HMO really at fault for posting this information on their website, though? After all, it is not as if they were the one's who murdered the young girl's mother. Why should they have to make compensation?"

The answer is, while they may not have killed her, they supplied the weapon, which was, in this case, knowledge. The man knew where she was going to be and when she was going to be there, and he killed her, flat out. If he hadn't have looked at the website's information - posted by the HMO - then
she would have still been alive. So, yes, Emily is entitled to something, even though no amount of dollar signs and zeros could mitigate the fact that she had to live through her mother's death at the hands of her father.

Which brings me to the overall theme of this review, as I saw it in many of the storylines of this episode. If knowledge is power, and power corrupts - then is it not logical to conclude that knowledge corrupts?

- The opening scene of two city hoodlums suspiciously sulking into a convenient store. I know what you were thinking, because I was thinking it, too. But things are never what they seem with this show, are they? It was a fantastic contrast to have them be the paying customers and Catherine Piper pop up to be the criminal. Good thing the clerk already had that little button pushed or Alan might never have shown up to save the day.

- I love it when characters on this show that have been isolated from each other start to interact more. Denise and Alan is one such pairing. The fact that, despite all of his womanly woes, he can still offer sound advice to someone else is uplifting, and it makes me look forward to...

- ...what might progress with Irma Levine. Interestingly, she is the only woman we've seen so far to immediately pierce through to the core of Alan Shore (that rhymed...), past the cockiness and the disregard for authority, and see him for a compassionate man - something that has shone through on certain cases since we first came to know the man.

- Also worth mentioning was a tiny little throwaway line on the balcony that made me chuckle. Denny and Alan always seem to observe both the real world and the fictional world inside the show (which aren't too different despite some of the unlikely things that happen in David E. Kelley's Boston), and in this case, it was this line - "There you are. Hardly seen you this episode."

- Alan "It saddens me." -Denny
It saddens me too, Denny. It saddens me too.

- I don't buy Daniel and Denise as a couple. Sorry, but the chemistry, for me, isn't there. They don't seem like they care for each other; I felt more with a few stolen moments between Denise and Brad earlier in the season than I do with this relationship stuffed down my throat. (Not to slight the acting of either - the characters themselves are excellent, I just don't appreciate them as a romantic pairing.)

- I suppose if I'm going to put anyone in here it ought to be Catherine.  Honestly though: will she ever learn? Ever? Not with Alan as her attorney and a steady job as the new 'Sandwich Guy'.

- Beverly, too, is getting on my nerves. Anyone who would prey on poor, sexually starved Denny like that ... shame on them. Not to mention her obvious abuse of HIS power, and the moment of hesitation before refusing Brad's offer - yes, Brad was right, she definitely did think about it for a moment.

- Beverly lighting Brad's tie on fire. Oh, BURN! Literally.

Written by: Abney | Send feedback and comments to Abney at aliasabney@hotmail.com

Episode News

Ratings  Ratings [101 by Nielsen]

Jan. 24, 2005 "Too Much Information"
Households: 8.6/14, #4; adults 18-49: 3.7, #T4; 12.8 million, most viewers this season; BL took the top spot on TV for 10pm. SVU" averaged 6.6/11 for NBC, while CBS' "Love Monkey" managed only a 5.1/9


Catherine and Alan contemplate her rubber gun shooting spree

Episode Video

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Airdate: January 24, 2006
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Episode Ratings
January 24, 2006:
Households: 8.6/14, #4; adults 18-49: 3.7, #T4; 12.8 million, most viewers this season

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