Law & Order: SVU Character Review: Elliot Stabler

The new characters I will be reviewing are…the characters from Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.

*Warning: This post contains spoilers about the characters from the television series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Read at your own risk if you have not watched the show.

There is something to be said about a well written, human character. They leap off the page and speak to us as if they were right in front us, as flesh and blood human beings, instead of fictional creations.

In this series of weekly blog posts, I will examine character using the characters from Law & Order: Special Victims Unit to explore how writers can create fully dimensional, human characters that audiences and readers can relate to.

When we arrive home after a long day of work, we want to be able to relax and leave work at the office. But for some, work sometimes bleeds into their home and personal life. On Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Elliot Stabler (Chris Meloni) is a New York City police officer who is assigned to the Special Victims Unit. Stabler is a husband, father and former Marine whose late father was also a police officer.

Though he has done well in his chosen profession, he has his moments. Particularly when he is in a mood, which can hinder what is considered to be the lawful method of receiving a confession from a suspect. This is where his partner, Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay), comes in. She is able to calm him down so they can proceed with the case and not create a hindrance when the accused is put on trial.

He has long simmering anger issues, which complicate both his home and work life. These anger issues eventually lead him to the decision to retire and focus on himself and his family.

To sum it up: We all have light and dark in us. We all have those moments when all of our emotions bleed together and we say and or do something that will later on require some sort of act of contrition. It takes a mature person to realize this and take the necessary steps to work on themselves.

As a character, Stable is fascinating. He is a devoted husband, father and police officer. But he also has a temper and unresolved emotional issues that sometimes complicate his life. It is the light and the dark, which from my perspective as both a fan and a writer, that is absolutely fascinating dichotomy to explore.

Though he stepped off the SVU stage nearly a decade ago, the fan base is drawn to this dichotomy that is Elliot Stabler.

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Filed under Character Review, New York City, Television

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