Detective First Grade Robert Goren
 
Played by: Vincent D'Onofrio
Introduction Scene: CI Episode 1, "One" (9/30/01)
First Lines: "They live here?"
Exit Scene: N/A
Final Line: N/A
Reason for Character Departure: N/A
Reason for Actor Departure: N/A

Work Information
Office Address:
Major Case Squad, One Police Plaza, 11th Floor. CI Episode 8, "The Pardoner's Tale" (11/18/01)

Office Phone Number:
(212) 555-0146. CI Episode 16, "Phantom" (3/17/02)

Known Partners:
Detective Alexandra Eames (2001-Present)

Professional Idiosyncracies/Quirks:

  • Carries a brown zippered notebook, cell phone, cloth handkerchief, pocket knife.
  • Leaves Eames task of interviewing witnesses at fresh scene; examines physical evidence personally.
  • Can catch forensic evidence CSU techs miss.
  • Extremely detail-oriented; doesn't miss a thing. Most of the time.
  • Not always totally accurate with his profiles. 
Career History
  • Served in U.S. Army, where he learned to speak and read German.  CI Episode 2, "Art" (10/7/01)
  • Prior to joining the Major Case Squad, worked as a detective in Narcotics for 4 years, running 3 sting operations that resulted in 27 major arrests, all of which resulted in convictions. CI Episode 13, "The Insider" (1/27/02)
  • Disinterested in Narcotics now; when Captain Deakins suggests Goren and Eames hand off a killing spree case to Precinct 15 to join the mayor's drug task force, Goren recognizes that it's a good chance to "get noticed," but neither he nor Eames seem enthusiastic about the career opportunity. CI Episode 5, "Jones" (10/21/01)
  • Excluding hostage situations, between them Goren and Eames have handled nearly a dozen kidnappings and have not lost a single person. CI Episode 14, "Homo Homini Lupus" (3/03/02)


Medical/Psychological History

  • Shown smoking once, bumming a puff from a street person. CI Episode 4, "The Faithful" (10/17/01) but has said he quit smoking 7 years ago. CI Episode 30, "Pilgrim"(11/17/02)
  • Has experience dealing with the mentally ill (later on it is revealed his mother was schitzophrenic). CI Episode 4, "The Faithful" (10/17/01)
  • Takes an antacid after eating pastrami with mustard. CI, Episode 13, "The Insider" (1/27/02)
  • Has keen sense of smell.
  • Considering getting teeth fixed. CI Episode 5, "Jones" (10/21/01) (Episode in dispute; this may have come from CI Episode 16, "Phantom" - confirmation is pending) 
  • Has observed sodium amital used on Soviet defectors. CI Episode 30, "Pilgrim"(11/17/02)
  • Does not like confined or closed in spaces (i.e. small elevators.) CI Episode 41, "Cherry Red" (04/07/03); CI Episode 50, "Pravda" (10/26/03) 


Personal Information/History

Religion
Catholic (lapsed); former altar boy. CI Episode 4, "The Faithful" (10/17/01)

Other Aliases/Nicknames
"Bobby" (Detective Alex Eames and Captain James Deakins); "Goren" (Captain James Deakins); "'Detective" (ADA Ronald Carver)

Childhood Events/Family Issues

  • Goren's mother disliked most of his childhood girlfriends. CI Episode 3, "Smothered" (10/14/01)
  • Goren's mother was a librarian before being hospitalized with schitzophrenia. CI Episode 30, "Pilgrim"(11/17/02) Symptoms of the disease began manifesting when Goren was 7, and he remains protective of her.
  • Father saw Johnny Unitas when he attended the 1958 championship game that went into sudden death overtime. CI Episode 41, "Cherry Red" (04/07/03)
  • Has a brother who is a gambling addict. CI Episode 95, "In the Wee Small Hours" (11/06/05)
  • His recently-deceased father left them when he was young. (Undocumented)
Friends
  • Lewis, an auto mechanic/body shop owner specializing in classic car restoration. CI Episode 8, "The Pardoner's Tale" (11/18/01)
  • Has a friend named Max who is a rabbi. CI Episode 31, "Pilgrim"(12/01/02)
  • Has a friend named Stephen who is a linguist at Princeton. CI Episode 52, "A Murderer Among Us" (11/09/03)
Romantic Entanglements/Dates
  • Once dated Irene, a stockbroker, who is saving up to buy a house with (presumably new significant other) Carlos. CI Episode 10, "The Enemy Within" (12/9/01)
  • Read the Koran while stationed in Germany to impress a Turkish girl who lived near the base. CI Episode 30, "Pilgrim"(11/17/02)
  • Once dated a girl named Lola, who had cats. (Goren to Eames: "I had a girlfriend, Lola. She had cats...." Eames: "You ate furballs for her?" CI Episode 41, "Cherry Red" (04/07/03)
Education
  • Took a few psychology courses in college. CI Episode 9, "The Good Doctor" (11/25/01)
  • Learned to speak and read German while in the Army. CI Episode 2, "Art,"(10/07/01)
  • Read the Koran while stationed in Germany to impress a Turkish girl who lived near the base. CI Episode 30, "Pilgrim"(11/17/02)
Political Opinions/Affiliations:
  • Did not vote for current governor (Pataki, Republican). CI Episode 8, "The Pardoner's Tale" (11/18/01)
  • Believes that idealy, children should have two parents. CI Episode 6, "The Extra Man" (10/28/01)
  • Pro-choice. CI Episode 11, "The Third Horseman" (1/6/02)
Interests/Hobbies/Tastes
  • Likes the art of Lucien Freud, preferring it to Impressionist works. CI Episode 2, "Art"(10/07/01)
  • Likes to dance. CI Episode 5, "Jones" (10/21/01)
  • Knows how to make bouillabaisse  (the French seafood-based stew). CI Episode 16, "Phantom" (3/17/02)
  • Reads "Smithsonian" magazine. To Eames: "It's the perfect size for my treadmill." CI Episode 30, "Pilgrim"(11/17/02)
Catch Phrases/Personal Quirks:
  • Refers to and addresses his partner, Detective Alexa Eames by her surname, but in serious moments has called her "Alex."
  • Usually addresses ADA Ron Carver as "Counselor."
  • Has referred to spiking over the counter drugs with cyanide [CI Episode 7, "Poison" (11/11/01)] and publication of names of doctors willing to perform abortions [CI Episode 11, "The Third Horseman" (1/6/02)] as "terrorism."
  • Tends towards calling appealing automobiles "sweet." CI Episode 8, "The Pardoner's Tale" (11/18/01); CI Episode 12, "Crazy" (1/13/02)
  • Left-handed.
  • Size 13 shoe.
Repeat Offender?
D'Onofrio has not appeared on any Law & Orders as anyone other than Det. Goren. 

Other Relevant Appearances
D'Onofrio appeared in H:LOTS 64, "Subway" (12/5/97) as John Lange


Web Pages
TV.com Personal Information
TV Now Schedule
NBC.com Bio
IMDb Page
The VDO Vault
The Reelblog

Key
* = denotes information yet to be confirmed
H:LOTS = Homicide: Life On The Streets
L&O = Law & Order (the original series)
SVU = Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
CI = Law & Order: Criminal Intent
thanks to Lisa Harris, 
Donna Bauerle, 
and Wende Morgaine
last updated June 2008
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