Chicago Justice season 1, episode 6 rewatch: Dead Meat

CHICAGO JUSTICE -- "Dead Meat" Episode 106 -- Pictured: (l-r) Monica Barbaro as Anna Valdez, Jon Seda as Antonio Dawson, Joelle Carter as Laura Nagel -- (Photo by: Parrish Lewis/NBC)
CHICAGO JUSTICE -- "Dead Meat" Episode 106 -- Pictured: (l-r) Monica Barbaro as Anna Valdez, Jon Seda as Antonio Dawson, Joelle Carter as Laura Nagel -- (Photo by: Parrish Lewis/NBC) /

Look back at where Chicago Justice began this summer. Read our retrospective as we rewatch Chicago Justice season 1, episode 6.

Over the One Chicago summer break, we’re looking back at where it all began by rewatching the first seasons of our shows—and today we’re revisiting Chicago Justice season 1, episode 6.

If you want to rewatch this episode along with us, you can find Chicago Justice season 1 on iTunes and DVD.

“Dead Meat” is the first episode that provides backstory for Peter Stone (Philip Winchester). It’s also the first consecutive episode, as NBC decided to run the two Stone-centric episodes back to back.

Looking back on it, the same thing stands out the second time that was clear on first watch when the episode aired last March—how similar it it to one of Law & Order‘s finest episodes.

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“Dead Meat” feels an awful lot like “American Dream,” and the similarity is more striking because the main character in that Law & Order episode is Peter’s father Ben Stone (Michael Moriarty).

In “American Dream,” Ben Stone squares off with the suspect in the case that made his career—when the man is able to get himself released and it’s up to Ben to get him back behind bars.

In “Dead Meat,” we are introduced to the man whom Peter Stone has bad blood with (played by guest star Michael Rispoli). While the history is different, as he’s the one Peter saw get away, there’s the same back and forth while the bad guy delights in trying to turn the screws.

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And just like in “American Dream,” the strength of “Dead Meat” rests largely on the shoulders of the lead actor. Michael Moriarty’s performance carried his episode, and Philip Winchester’s acting in this Chicago Justice installment has the same zeal, anger and frustration necessary to make this one work.

Of course, if you watched Chicago Justice but never saw Law & Order, then all of what we’ve just said might feel like white noise to you. It’s certainly not referenced in this episode. When judged on its own merits, “Dead Meat” is an entertaining cat and mouse game.

Rispoli plays the defendant with such smarminess that you understand why Stone dislikes him so much—it’s not just personal pride. He’s a genuinely unlikeable person, even before you consider the crimes he’s committed and thus far gotten away with.

And like with “Judge Not” it’s important for One Chicago to lay down the backstory of these new characters, and show us who they are. This is an episode where we get a clear message of what makes Peter Stone tick, how personally he takes things, and how much he actually is like his dad. Once the writers made that choice, they really committed to it, and it’s born out here.

This is one of Philip Winchester’s best performances of the season, and more than worthy of a rewatch on either iTunes or DVD.

Next: Where are the Chicago Justice stars now?

Join us every Sunday this summer for our Chicago Justice season 1 review. For more Chicago Justice related news, follow the Chicago Justice category at One Chicago Center.