Duggar based SVU episode: Nov 4, 2015, Patriarchal Burden

A 13 year old discovers she's pregnant.


Auggie said...

I am looking forward to watching this show.
Sharla, thanks for adding this topic!

Andrea said...

Oh, I know. I'm so interested! I wonder if they're will be any truth written into it about reality TV which the writers in the business might be privy to that those of us that work outside of show buz know nothing about.

pretty girl said...

i will be watching this one also.

Heart in Florida said...

I hope that this isn't a whitewashed version of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar's belief system. Hopefully, they will portray exactly what kind of home life these kids actually have in that cult. I'm not interested in "fictious drama" here, but but real story. Perhaps this episode will finally let the public know what it's like to live like one of them.

gen said...

What I like is that it's airing around Jessa's due date. If she gives birth around there, the episode will steal a bit of the thunder she thinks she deserves.

Bobbi said...

Jessa deserves NO thunder she's in a Cult no one wants to watch the "like" & "totally" Jill & Jessa. I for one will definitely BOYCOT the upcoming reality program about Jill. & Jessa. Just refuse to Ruin my day.

Marie said...

What makes me angry are all the smiles by the women. According to the cult women should always be joyful. How can life be experienced to the fullest if you use only one emotion? The show will only portray them as a cult because you will see how shallow the characters are. There will be no feelings about missing family, the difficulties of raising a child, living in a new culture, and living with a partner. The program will only show joyfullness with all other emotions stuffed into a neurotic ego. How can any one in the family say they are not a cult?

Rudy Tecat said...

Let me guess... the oldest son is the father of his sister's baby.

Andrea said...

Loved the way the SVU episode ended, the mother yelling: "We don't care about the damn show." LOL Those words would never come from Michelle's mouth. Creepy . . . Have to say, really enjoyed watching it.

Dee said...

Wow...just wow. This episode managed to touch on a lot of Duggar related points, from the camera man's perversion to the older brother's issues to a church leader abusing his power and being completely unrepentant.
The only thing that wasn't very true to type was the response of the mother and father at the end. That would never happen. We have months of proof that the brand comes first and the kids are far down the line as far as consideration goes.
Good show though.

Christine said...

Good episode. I don't usually watch SVU and only watched this episode because of the tie-in with the Duggars.

"I don't care about the show!" -- cries the mother at the end of the show and all I could think was "I wish I could be sure that Michelle would act the same way."

So many instances of perversion and male abuse of power -- that's Christian patriarchy for you.
-The camera-man is a pervert.
-The eldest son is a pervert.
-The pastor is a pervert -- and the family's lawyer. How did he manage to pick up a law degree on a pastor's salary?
-The father-daughter "Virtue Ball" dance at the beginning of the episode is so incredibly creepy -- to girl trying to her hair the way her father would like, the father telling her that she was pretty "like her mother" -- that it had me thinking that the dad had raped the daughter.
- the pastor explicitly telling the wife not to disagree with her husband's decision because "he is your patriarch."

Other reactions:
- the SVU team never mentions that the girl's parents were guilty of child neglect by letting their eldest son live at home with their daughters after they were aware that he had...issues.
- why is it called a "Virtue Ball"? "Purity Ball" isn't trademarked.
- interesting that they explicitly name-drop the Duggars in the episode. The SVU team is talking about how the parents are trying to protect their brand and protect their TV show "after what happened to the Duggars."

Heart in Florida said...

IN that "purity ball", the Duggars aren't allowed to dance.. so that was not true to life; Michelle would have NEVER spoken like the TV character did; saying "damn", not caring about the TV show, etc..I'm sorry they didn't show a more in depth day to day life for those other children, but I realize they only had one hour in which to identify and wrap up the plotline.
That's why I still say that A TV network, cable or not, should do a 2 hour "no fluff stuff" documentary about life exactly as it is in this belief system, warts and all. I'd love to learn truths about this group.

Jozie said...

I don't usually watch this show, but I thought this episode was done very well. I appreciate that they made sure to point out that these people do not represent all religious people, but that there are those who use their religious authority to hurt others. I also liked the last words at the end that rapists aren't usually strangers on the street, they are people you trust. I'm glad that in the end they gave the mother a back bone. Sadly, I don't ever see Michelle developing a back bone like the mother in the show; for Michelle the "damn show" is all that matters.

Tones said...

Jozie said...

for Michelle the "damn show" is all that matters.

Don't forget Jim Bob (her wooonderful husband) is also the only other thing that matters in her world.
She would never hug her child and apologize for not being there to any of them unless the cameras were on.

JeannieBean said...

I thought last night's episode was very well done considering that it had to be wrapped up in an hour. A few other subtle (and not so subtle) comparisons I noted...
- the mom's tv interview talking about how 'spirited' the little ones are.
- the entire family always relying on the one older (still single) daughter for everything.
- the oldest daughter (now married) and her husband in their tv interview talking about the no kissing before marriage.
- the mom asking Detective Rollins if her husband 'approves' of her working around 'all these men'.
- same scene- automatically assuming that Detective Rollins couldn't wear her wedding ring because of swelling during her pregnancy. Never even occurred to her that Rollins might be an unmarried pregnant woman.
- when they started the investigation and went online they made a point of saying that the family's entire life seemed to be an open blog.

I agree with Christine. That Virtue Ball was creepy.

Girlfriend said...


Here are the things I noticed:

*girl trying to fix her hair the way her father would like (Duggar girls said once that they wear that hair long because Daddy likes it that way)
*the father telling her that she was pretty "like her mother" (Didn't Jim Bob say that to Jill and or Jessa at her wedding?)
*The mom saying she didn't care about the show! (Reminds me of Michelle telling people not to watch tv....I always wondered why she would say that....Hmmmm...maybe she realized back then if no one was watching that would be the only way they wouldn't be on that show, which if she was allowed to have an opinion is probably something she does not like.)
*holding hands in a circle in NYC. (Exactly what the Duggars did!)
*Seeing the family in NY (just like the Duggars unloading)
*Another site reports the cameraman pervert thing was the Duggars had a film editor who was into kiddie porn.(Detective Rollins?) said "look what happened to the Duggars" or this is just like what happened with the Duggars. (writing it in like that the Duggars could not sue claiming this story was about them. LOL!!! However, it shows that in cults there are others doing this type of stuff.)
*"Anything you wanna say Graham?" "Yeah, when do we get to eat cake?" (Sounds like Josh....always wanting to feed his face...It is all about him!)
* "wedding cake" with a daddy and daughter cake topper instead of a bride and groom (CREEPY)
*Was the pastor supposed to be Doug Phillips or Bill Gothard?
* ""Bad choices" "curiosity" (yep, they got that in!)
** Central American "mission work" (The writers got it in!)
* the mom asking the 15 year old daughter (sister mom)if she's watching her little brother.
*the husband was told "Control your wife!" (Because a man is supposed to be able to do that?)
*Those little ones are very "spirited" sounded JUST like Michelle!
*The mom asking, "Is your husband ok with you working here with all these men?!"
*"It was God's will (for her to get pregnant) ...just not until I was married."
* I loved the policeman in their small town stopping them to deliver the goods on Graham (Josh). (I'd bet the police there are too scared to do anything for fear of retaliation from Jim Bob's buddies in high places.)
*"It's not always easy having a big family, but we always pull it all together"
*The mom dressed much nicer than Michelle in her denim skirt with the black stockings and witches shoes. And why weren't Jim Bob and Michelle ....I mean Mr. and Mrs Baker both wearing matching colors.

Christine said...

Another reflection on the episode. I felt that the show portrayed parents very sympathetically -- far moreso than they deserved, given their actions. The second-to-last scene, where the pastor is arrested, shows the parents being shocked and horrified and choosing to protect and defend their kids, even though they're going to lose their TV show. It's kind of sweet...

...except for the fact these are the same parents who thought that their son raped and impregnated their daughter (Summer). Then let him stay at home with his sisters. Then, when believing that their son raped and impregnated a second daughter (Lane) a few years later, shipped him off to Ecuador so that he couldn't be prosecuted by SVU. Now, it turned out that it was their pastor who raped both girls...but what if it had really been the eldest son? That would make Mr. and Mrs. Baker phenomenally bad parents. JimBob and Michelle were bad parents for letting Josh stay at home after he molested his sisters, instead of having him stay with a childless relative or friend -- but while both are crimes, rape (especially impregnation through rape) is much worse than molestation. The only reason why Mr. and Mrs. Baker got upset and defended their daughters was because it was someone outside the family who raped them. If it had been their eldest son, they would have just covered it up again and pretended that the baby belonged to Mrs. Baker.

Yet the SVU team never calls the parents out on it. The most that they do is briefly criticize them for being worried more about losing their TV show than figuring out who impregnated their 13-year-old. Heck, even the Bakers decision to protect their son and ship him off to Ecuador is treated sort of sympathetically when the detective tells Mrs. Baker that their rapist pastor lied and told her that her son had raped her daughter Summer, "because he knew that you'd do anything to protect Graham." Mrs. Baker is shown as a mother protecting her son -- not a mother hurting her daughters by making them live with someone she thought was a rapist.

Also...the parents thought that their son had raped their daughter for 2-3 years -- because their pastor told them that he'd confessed some inappropriate sexual behavior. That means that they never really talked to their son about him raping his sister. They never talked to their pregnant daughter (Summer) either about being raped. If she was okay with her supposed rapist living at home with her. Didn't talk about it at all. If they had, they would have found out pretty quickly that while their son was groping girls, he wasn't raping them.

The Bakers make JimBob and Michelle look like much better parents.

Eli said...

I thought it was interesting that the pastor ended up being the rapist when we all know the duggars don't attend a real church and Jim Bob is the "pastor". Perhaps it was a nod to Bill Gothard and the many allegations of sexual misconduct against him. All in all I was impressed the SVU writers did there best to expose the creepiness that comes with fundamentalism without decrying Christianity as a whole.

Tammy C said...

I assume that a few of the writers for this episode binged watch 19 Kids and Counting to get so close to the show.

Nutmeg said...

Love Law & Order! I don't usually post anything Duggar, but when I saw SVU and the reference to the Duggars, I had to say what a great episode it was! The Baker's Dozen or whatever the reality show was, wasn't supposed to be the Duggars, given that they referenced it in the show as a separate but similar entity. Some thoughts:
- The Virtue Ball was incredibly uncomfortable, yikes. I started thinking Daddy did it, which was the point probably.
- I also think the mom suspected Graham was the father of Tate, with the reference to how spirited they both were. I doubt there was a confession and Summer probably didn't come clean about anyone being the father, thus the reliance on her to mind Tate every time he acted up. He's not one of the Bakers born in wedlock and almost brought them some shame.
- I also think maybe the parents suspected Graham again with Lane and were terrified someone else would hear it from her first. Maybe they gave Graham the shakedown and sent him away because they didn't believe him this time, too much of a coincidence.
- The creepy pastor was the one who likely told Lane to tell on the cameraman instead, pedophiles usually have pretty good radar on other pedophiles. He also likely knows of Graham's indiscretions and the cover up there. Graham's assaults seem to be on older non-family members, so you actually start to think it is the cameraman at that point.
- I thought it was well done with enough eerie similarities to the Duggars to point a finger and say hey, this could have been you, with enough differences that it's not the same old story. The mother's reaction was also a snub - this is what a concerned mom is supposed to do even though she's under the patriarch's thumb.
Anyways :) thanks for reading!

Syndee said...

I thought the same thing. I was thinking, SVU took the "easy" way out by making it someone outside of the family, then the parents could be furious but they wouldn't have been if it was the son.

But maybe that's just for TV, they wanted a nice neat closure where they put away the bad guy, but if it really was the brother there'd be no nice neat ending, the parents would hide him and the show would end with no resolution.

What a bore! said...

Just watched this episode on Hulu tonight. (Oh no! Does that mean my viewing will count in the ratings? I know you guys have all kinds of games you play to avoid that but I don't know the rules! Sorry!) This is the first episode of Law & Order I've seen since Christopher Meloni left, and man has this show jumped the shark since then lol! This was one of the worst episodes I've ever seen! NBC is really reaching, huh? lol. Can I have a refund for that hour of my time please?

jlp said...

I loved the show, for the most part thought they were spot on.

Ashley said...

First of all, I just have to say I love SVU.

I did wonder if the details that were *not* like the Duggars were intentional, or if they just didn't know. Cross necklace on a man? Never would happen! Same with dancing, Mom knowing the word "damn" (lol) and the girl being able to say the word "sexual."

Someone mentioned above that they referenced the Duggars specifically. SVU often does that when they use a recent high-profile case, probably to avoid the idea that they are trying to mimic them exactly.

I have nothing against the Duggars' film crew, but I thought the show made a good point that if you let camera crews into your home, you really can't control where they are putting the cameras. That was a fairly minor point in the episode, but I thought it was interesting.

Beth said...

someone commented that it was interesting that they mentioned the duggars in the episode, i think they did that for protection from lawsuit, duggars can't sue they saying they were using their likeness when the story itself mentions them as a completely separate family, but i love the mannerisms they had the family use, especially the 'mother' that sooooo reminded me of Michelle (other than the ending which again i'm guessing is their way from keeping from kickback from the family, trying to in the end make them look human)