Good show, bad characterization
You watch Goren and Eames solve these cases (well, actually Goren) yet you know nothing about them. In the later years you do learn about Goren's family, and there is a episode regarding the death of Eames husband. But for the most part, they're just cops you see week-to-week you know nothing about. So much missed opportunity over the years.
In all those years, no one could write not one single effing episode where Eames shines? Where she's the star and solves the case? It almost seemed like nothing she did matter. Goren could've easily been a single cop like Columbo and the show still would've worked.
Every episode ending with all the drama got old quick. D'Onfrio was good at making it entertaining and believable at times, tho. Chris Noth trying to pull off that same style in the later years was just reprehensible to watch. The writers should've let that style go.