So we're to understand, I think, that Meg died, the baby was delivered, and the Manning parents, who were at the hospital at the time, declined to put Duncan down as the father. They took the baby home and refused to allow Duncan to see her. There being no, um, hard evidence that Duncan is the father (and that's why this was a kidnapping charge), they were within their rights. Presumably, Duncan went to his mother for help, but was denied, and he couldn't ask his father, because he's on Commander In Chief. Not being twenty-one, Duncan's practical access to funds was limited, and as such, he felt he couldn't mount an effective legal challenge to the Mannings, especially since they intended to demonstrate that Duncan was unfit to be a parent because of his medical history. That all seems reasonable to conclude, and it all rang fairly believable when I first watched the episode. Unfortunately, as several more well-informed posters were quick to point out and minimal independent research confirmed, it's all complete fantasy. Even if Duncan didn't make it to the hospital while the baby was still there, all he had to do was hire even the most cheapo lawyer and have him bring a motion for a paternity test, and when the test confirmed him as the father, he would win immediate custody. There's no grey area, and that's a problem. If there were even a small chance that Duncan wouldn't gain custody, I could absolutely buy that he would go to these lengths and that Veronica would help him, no matter how ill-judged it might seem. To me, Duncan likes running away, and Veronica loves flouting authority and outsmarting people. Plus, they wouldn't want to take even a small chance that the baby would end up with the Mannings (and I'm forgetting about the adoption agency, because it looks like that idea was basically dropped). So I buy that they would do this if there were a chance Duncan couldn't get custody, but according to real-world law, that doesn't appear to be the case. It doesn't ruin the episode for me personally, probably because they at least did a much better job presenting the scenario as plausible than in the ludicrous A-plot in "One Angry Veronica," and more generally, you can always assume in Neptune that the law is not on the good guys' side, but it still detracts from the quality of the episode rather a lot.
Episode Report CardCouch Baron: B | 1293 USERS: C+
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