Back in what we'll call HQ (which, like most of the show, displays a washed out color scheme that is so two-years-ago Prada), staffers are milling about and debating Lyla's role in the Rickle incident. Some guy calls it "a bad day," but one outspoken nurse is having none of that -- she "screwed up bigtime," opines Ms. Nightingale. Abe enters and asks Nightingale if she tells fortunes; he also says her name, which is either "Mrs. Mrpmhn" or completely unintelligible, so I think she's got herself a nickname. Anyway, Nightingale thinks Rickle looked thoroughly sane-free when he was in before, and says that Lyla had no excuse. Abe says, "You know what they say," to which some blonde at a desk replies, "Hindsight is 20/20?" My answer would have been, "You're a bitch," but Abe seems satisfied with the blonde's choice. Nightingale goes on, talking about various other wackos who killed people, as Abe wonders if "you took a fistful of your nasty pills this morning." He then challenges her as to whether she's ever misdiagnosed a patient, which I guess means that he thinks Lyla did, since that's the way he's chosen to defend her. Whatever. Valiant try, lame choice. The argument continues, and the shakycam shakes, as Lyla walks through the door, and everyone suddenly shuts up and it's glaringly obvious that they've all just been discussing her. Nightingale stares, and Lyla, ears on fire, looks haughty and says, "You got something to say to me?" The Robert DeNiro homage pays off, and Nightingale backs down with a sarcastic, "Good morning, Dr. Garrity." Shake shake shake, goes the camera, contributing to the forced feeling of this show. Even the look is too mannered -- the minimalist palette, the grainy film, the flat texture, the hazy lighting. It's so tightly wound it can barely breathe. We get it.
Bobby's in his office on the phone with someone involved in the custody hearing, and we discover that until further notice, Bobby has the kids on Wednesdays and weekends. That's cool -- he can use them to pick up chicks but can give them back when they get boring. Neil walks in as Bobby hangs up the phone, and gets sucked into some "housecleaning" (a.k.a. "signing forms") so it at least looks like they talk to the patients once in a while. More arty camera work, with Bobby chopped in half by the door frame -- they must have hit some B-level film school and hired up all the Danish wannabes for a pittance. Neil wants to know, "What's up with Rickle?" Bobby says -- duh! -- that Rickle's acute schizophrenia is acting up again, and goes into some long medical mumbo-jumbo explanation of Rickle's current state. Bobby then gets fed up with his pen, and throws it at the wall. Bobby throws like a girl. Cutting right to the point, Neil asks Bobby if he's saying that Rickle is not fit, and Bobby tells Neil that it's perfectly natural for him to be obsessing, since the guy did stab his pregnant wife. Maybe Neil will go all Mad Max in an upcoming episode. It must be huge pain in the ass to work with psychiatrists every day -- two questions and Bobby's got Neil's mental state all figured out, thank you very much. Neil manages to deny that he's obsessing for twelve milliseconds and then admits that he is, saying, "I've passed him half a dozen times this morning. I can't seem to let it go," pacing and sounding like someone from a Cagney film. Bobby reminds Neil that Rickle is sick, and Neil tells him that, while he knows this to be true, it doesn't really help; Bobby tells Neil he reacted like a human, Neil says he could have killed Rickle in that moment, and then Bobby pipes up with, "Welcome to the Dark Side!" in a sunny tone. Thank you, Satan's tour guide. Launching into Dark Side 101, Bobby tells Neil, "You'll think that you've processed the rage. Know that it'll be back. You'll intellectualize it away. It'll be back. You'll tell me you're fine, you'll feel fine, and it'll be back. Trust me, it will be back." Neil's rage is The Terminator. I think Ted Levine may have a long career in voiceovers -- he's simultaneously commanding and soothing (just the right combination to sell things nobody needs. Buy it. It's good). Bobby tells Neil that if he had strangled Rickle, he'd be out a job. Neil confirms that he is, in fact, aware of the murder = bye-bye policy, and Bobby looks at him like he's not fully convinced.
Back in Grand Central Ward, Rickle sits in front of a chess board before deciding that he's not in game mode; he gets up and heads back to his room, as strains of a professional-sounding conversation rise. Rickle's lawyer is asserting that his client has the right to refuse medication, and Bobby is there to provide counterpoint. Seems the lawyer thinks Rickle's best chance for survival is to let a judge and jury see him as he really is ("as he was on that day in Times Square") -- unmedicated-schizophrenic warts and all. Specious legal reasoning about making sure that Rickle is evaluated for his condition at the time of the crime quickly evolves toward truth as the lawyer basically says that he thinks a certifiable lunatic will be much more effective with a jury than a drugged-out zombie, but Bobby says you don't need a Loopy Person Exhibit A to press for NGRI ("not guilty by reason of insanity," as the lawyer explains to the two other people in the room, who are presumably Rickle's parents). Bobby wants to medicate, and promises to fight Joe Law. Parents are looking mighty stressed -- having a kid who kills has got to be one of the worst things ever -- and the dad, perhaps still dealing with the denial portion of processing bad news, maintains that his son was feeling better because "he always goes off his medication when he's feeling better." Bobby must have left his bedside manner on the counter this morning, because he snaps back, "He's not better. He killed five people, okay." And the caring in that room brings everyone together for a group hug, or not; Bobby proceeds to explain that the lawyer wants Rickle as sick as possible to improve their chances for a "not fit for trial" opinion, asking if the Rickles are down with that. Mrs. Rickle's no dummy, and says that she'd rather see her son sick than dead, which I'm guessing will not be majority opinion; Bobby tells them they're being inhumane. Lawboy says that chemically altering Rickle wouldn't be fair to him, and Bobby accuses him of helping Rickle into "a psychotic freefall so you can support your legal strategy." Both think the other's plan is dangerous -- Bobby promises to work with them to get Rickle the care he needs, but Mr. McBeal thinks that life in the state mental system is a best-case scenario, and when Bobby states that Rickle should not be held accountable for his actions, Mrs. Rickle wants to know why anyone should believe his opinion. "Because I know what I'm talking about," says Bobby. Buy it. It's good. Mr. Rickle looks a little shell-shocked, but as Bobby and the Law start hurling "my client" at each other, he gets angry at his son's objectification. "He's my son!" growls Dad. "My son, who got into Columbia, and loves Chinese food, and rock climbing in the Catskills. My son. Whose dream was to build a boat and follow the journey of the Odyssey". And who shot five people in Times Square. Sounds like Rickle's dream led him astray on a particularly messed-up tangent.
Getting coffee from a street vendor, Bobby explains to Assistant DA Strickler that schizophrenia doesn't distinguish between the bright and the not-bright and that just because Rickle is a smart guy doesn't mean he's not crazy. Got that? Strickler maintains he knew where he was and what he was doing, and that he was wandering around with a loaded nine-millimeter, which suggests premeditation to her (nothing gets past our Ms. Strickler). She says she knows Bobby can argue both sides, and asks him to be her expert witness. Bobby suggests she prosecute the guy who sold Rickle the gun (perhaps she can get in bed with the Federal Government) when a cab suddenly skids to halt, narrowly missing Bobby and Strickler, who goes off on th