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The Good Doctor 

Goren and Eames attempt to locate the missing wife of a plastic surgeon.


Constantine Makris


Dick Wolf (created by), Rene Balcer (developed by) (as René Balcer) | 1 more credit »


Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Vincent D'Onofrio ... Robert Goren
Kathryn Erbe ... Alexandra Eames
Jamey Sheridan ... James Deakins
Courtney B. Vance ... Ron Carver
Robert Knepper ... Dr. Peter Kelmer
Barbara Garrick ... Jennifer Barish
Penny Balfour ... Lisa Voight
Judie Aronson ... Valerie Kelmer
Robert Hogan ... Judge Van Vliet
Donna Hanover ... Lauren Barbera
Stephen Rowe Stephen Rowe ... Dr. Nathanson
Jean De Baer Jean De Baer ... Medical Examiner (as Jean DeBaer)
Joe Bacino Joe Bacino ... Dave
Adoni Anastassopoulos Adoni Anastassopoulos ... D'Alacosta (as Adoni Anastasse)
Cullen O. Johnson Cullen O. Johnson ... Milton Barish (as Cullen Oliver Johnson)


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When the philandering, drug-abusing wife of an arrogant plastic surgeon disappears, Detectives Goren and Eames suspect the doctor's earnest efforts to find her are bogus -- especially when they find he has a lover of his own. But even when the body of a decomposed woman washes ashore weeks later, the cops can't crack the doc's airtight defense -- and their only hope might be to turn his ego against him. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TV-14 | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


"The Good Doctor" strongly appears to have been inspired by the real-life disappearance of Gail Katz-Bierenbaum from her Manhattan home in July 1985. In October 2000, after years of investigation, Gail's husband, the plastic surgeon Dr. Robert Bierenbaum, was convicted of his wife's murder. Her body has never been recovered. See more »


If, in fact, the torso was found in Cape May, it would not be examined by the Ocean County ME. Cape May is located in Cape May County, not Ocean County, which is nearly an hour and a half away by car. See more »


Detective Robert Goren: I want to shove a stick in Kelmer's cage. See what he does.
James Deakins: What do you got in mind?
Detective Robert Goren: A leak to the media about finding a torso.
Detective Alexandra Eames: We're going to tell her family it's not her though, right?
Detective Robert Goren: No. He could find out.
Detective Alexandra Eames: I made a promise to her cousin.
James Deakins: I got to go with Bobby on this one.
See more »


Remade as Paris Criminal Investigations: Scalpel (2007) See more »

User Reviews

Doctor of evil
20 August 2019 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Really liked to loved all the previous 'Law and Order: Criminal Intent' episodes, "The Pardoner's Tale" (the one that won't be to everybody's taste with it being particularly sordid) being perhaps my least favourite but even that managed to have a lot of great things. "The Faithful" and "Jones" fared the best of the eight, with the ending (one of my favourite 'Law and Order: Criminal Intent' endings) for "Jones" being especially memorable for its increasing tension.

"The Good Doctor" up to this point of the show is one of 'Law and Order: Criminal Intent's' better episodes and an excellent episode for the show overall and for anything for that matter. Namely for one of the first season's, and early seasons' even, most detestable main suspects, some of the regular cast's best acting and an ending that is likely to stay with one for a while after (it certainly did with me and still do remember it).

My only nit-pick for the episode is that, and can see where another commentator is coming from here, the suspects being far too few and the over-obviousness of the responsible does take away from the surprise and doesn't keep one guessing as much as other episodes. Considering though that this is not the only episode of the show where this is the case it didn't frustrate me enormously.

Production values are still high, never too elaborate and never sedate. The music isn't constant and is not overbearing, which are always great things. Do prefer 'Law and Order' and 'Special Victims Unit's' main themes but the one here suits well.

Writing achieves as ever a good balance of not being overly-simple or too complicated, treating the viewer with respect with neither making them feel dumb or losing them. All the dialogue in the courtroom is both entertaining and powerful. The story is compelling throughout, with the methods the detectives use to get a result as ever fun and interesting to watch, the ambiguity of some of it may frustrate somewhat but not enough to ruin the episode for me because the outcome wasn't really in doubt.

As far as individual parts go, "The Good Doctor's" best part is the ending, the back and forth between Carver and Kelmer riveting in its increasing tension before concluding in explosive fashion. Goren's behaviour is unprofessional in this portion of the episode and not really something that would usually happen regularly in a courtroom but it proves crucial in getting a result and works, making for an interesting change of pace.

Cannot fault the acting, Kathryn Erbe contrasts beautifully with Vincent D'Onofrio and her softer approach is effective. D'Onofrio's intensity avoids being over-played and is quite thrilling. Courtney B Vance's acting in the final parts of "The Good Doctor", in his rapport with an appropriately repellent Robert Knepper, is some of his best ever in my mind.

In summary, excellent episode. 9/10

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Release Date:

25 November 2001 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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