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NYPD Blue: Personal Foul

Kelly arrests one of his closest friends after an argument during their weekly basketball game inadvertently and without clear reason results in a death of one of the players. Meanwhile, Sipowicz grows suspicious of a husband whose wife was killed, shot while they were out driving on the FDR Expressway.


Episode Info


Episode number: 1x6
Production Number: 0K08/5108
Airdate: Tuesday October 26th, 1993

Director: Brad Silberling
Story: David Milch
Teleplay: Burton Armus


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Guest Stars
April GraceApril Grace
As Judy Foster
Recurring
Dean NorrisDean Norris
As Father Jerry "Curly" Downey
Recurring
Gordon ClappGordon Clapp
As Det. Greg Medavoy
Recurring
James Pickens, Jr.James Pickens, Jr.
As Nathan Foster
Recurring
John OttavinoJohn Ottavino
As Jimmy Craig
Recurring
Markus RedmondMarkus Redmond
As P.O. Lucas
Recurring
Peter AppelPeter Appel
As Angry Driver (Harvey(
Recurring
Robert CostanzoRobert Costanzo
As Alfonse Giardella
Recurring
Sharon LawrenceSharon Lawrence
As ADA Sylvia Costas
Recurring
Teddy ColucaTeddy Coluca
As Driver
Recurring
Tobin BellTobin Bell
As Jerry
Recurring
Clarence FelderClarence Felder
As Hardwick (Corrections Officer)
Donald BermanDonald Berman
As Player
Earl CarrollEarl Carroll
As Court Clerk
Gary WerntzGary Werntz
As Marshal
Joe SagalJoe Sagal
As Legal Aid Lawyer
Joel SwetowJoel Swetow
As Jerry the Doctor
John RothmanJohn Rothman
As Zimmer
Michael JayceMichael Jayce
As Larry Kohnstam
Tom Alan RobbinsTom Alan Robbins
As Larry Kohnstam
Tom McCleisterTom McCleister
As Corrections Officer
Main Cast
Dennis FranzDennis Franz
As Det./Sgt. Andy Sipowicz
David CarusoDavid Caruso
As Det. John Kelly
Sherry StringfieldSherry Stringfield
As Laura Michaels
Amy BrennemanAmy Brenneman
As PO Janice Licalsi
Nicholas TurturroNicholas Turturro
As Det. James Martinez
James McDanielJames McDaniel
As Lt. Arthur Fancy
Episode Quotes
(Kelly goes to give a confession, his first in five weeks. He discusses his marital status, expressing that he's mostly given up on reconciliation, and also expressing his interest in Janice Licalsi, who shot and killed a gangster and his driver when he ordered her to kill Kelly)
Kelly: The other woman, I mean, in terms of my romantic interest for her, I don't want to talk about that right now.
Father Downey: In what terms then?
Kelly: Well, she's a good person, but certain events have taken place and she's ended up doing something that most people would think is wrong.
Father Downey: Do you think it's wrong?
Kelly: (pause) Yeah, I do.
Father Downey: Does she?
Kelly: (sighs) So far, she seeems OK with it.
Father Downey: Well, if she's the good person you say she is she can't be OK with it, you know that.
Kelly: I don't know that.
Father Downey: I think that's why you're here. What exactly did she do?
Kelly: I don't want to talk about that.
Father Downey: What, a venal sin, a mortal sin, what?
Kelly: I can't say.
Father Downey: I'm your priest, what do you mean you can't say?
Kelly: I can't say.
Father Downey: Yeah, well, then why don't you come back here when you're ready to stop acting like a tube steak?



Cultural References
Father Downey: What, a venial sin, a mortal sin, what?

The two concepts are mostly limited to the Roman Catholic religion. Sins are divided into two different types -- venial sins are "minor", forgivable sins, usually unintended. Mortal sins are serious and potentially damning of one's soul to Hell. Janice Licalsi's actions would almost certainly constitute a mortal sin (argument can be made that it was self-defense or in protection of others, but it's certainly skirting a dangerous line if there is a God, such that absolution is strongly suggested)


Father Downey: Yeah, well, then why don't you come back here when you're ready to stop acting like a tube steak?

The term tube steak is a euphemism for the male sexual organ. He's basically exasperated with John's pussyfooting around with him in what is generally considered a sacrosanct and protected discussion, and thus should offer no external risks to privacy. Such a reference in the middle of a confessional would be rather unexpected, generally inappropriate, and creates a highly comic component to an otherwise serious scene (as a tention release, it works). The very close, friendly relationship of John and his Priest makes it clear that this is not as utterly inappropriate as one might initially think. Kelly, on the other hand, possibly correctly, doesn't believe that it's right for him to reveal someone else's indiscretions in his own personal confession.



Warning: NYPD Blue season 1 episode 6 guide may contain spoilers
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