Tag Archives: Law And Order: Special Victims Unit

Law & Order: SVU Character Review: Amanda Rollins

*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.

We all have personal demons. The question is, do we let these demons rule us or do we find a way to live as best we can in spite of these demons?

On Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Detective Amanda Rollins (Kelli Giddish) is one of the newer members of the the SVU. Originally from Georgia, she transferred to the NYPD in 2011. Initially, she was a little wet behind the ears, but experience soon kicked in.

Amanda does her job well, but she has her demons. She has been known to drink more than she should, has dealt with a gambling problem and has a younger sister who adds more to Amanda’s plate than is needed or asked for. While in therapy, she spoke of her tumultuous childhood and the impact it had on her as an adult. If all of that was not enough, she was taken advantage of sexually by a former boss.

But like anyone who has battled personal demons, there is a light at the end of the tunnel, if one is willing to do the hard work. Amanda is the mother of two darling little girls who have changed her life for the better.

To sum it up: it takes a strong person to not only fight their personal demons, but to win. Amanda has won, at least for now. Personal demons have a way of staying with us, no matter how old we get. It is just matter of choosing to let them control us or we control them. As a character, Amanda is an inspiration because she survived the battle with her demons. If she can do that, so can the rest of us.

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Filed under Character Review, Feminism, New York City, Television

Law & Order: SVU Character Review: Olivia Benson

*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.

I know that it is sounds cliche, but what does not kill you makes you stronger. On Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, this concept is personified by Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay). Conceived by rape, Benson was raised by an alcoholic single mother who abused her. As a police officer, she is sympathetic to the victims and hard as nails on the accused because of her past. She is also the yin to Elliot Stabler’s (Chris Meloni) yang, her first partner. Their good cop, bad cop chemistry was one of the keys to their success in catching the perpertrators.

But Benson has also had a few lumps along the way. William Lewis (Pablo Schreiber) is obsessed with her. He kidnaps her, tortures and nearly rapes her, but Benson is able to undo her bonds and defend herself. She also again nearly raped while undercover and was the unofficial foster mother of several children before adopting her son.

Like many women, Benson is delicately balancing motherhood and work. In her position as Lieutenant, she is often akin to a mother bear. She has to ensure that her squad does their jobs while occasionally dolling out tough love.

To sum it up: Olivia Benson has been through the ringer several times. While others might have crumbled under the emotional weight of the same experiences, Benson came out harder and stronger. Though she still bears the scars, she does not let them stop her.

As a character, Benson is an inspiration. In spite of what she has gone through, she continues to be strong for herself, her son and her squad. It is that strength had kept the SVU fanbase in raptures for twenty years and hopefully for many years to come.

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Thoughts On The 20th Season Of Law & Order: SVU

On September 20th, 1999, a new crime drama was added to the NBC lineup. It’s name was Law & Order SVU.

It was an offshoot of Law & Order. But instead of focusing on crime in general, the focus of the show are victims of sexual crimes.

On Thursday, SVU will start off its 20th season, making it the longest running drama in television history.

I’ve been a fan of SVU from nearly the beginning of the run of the show. Most shows, if they are lucky, run out of steam perhaps five or six years after their premiere. The fact that SVU is still going strong 19 years later says something. Not only is the writing and acting absolutely still fantastic after all of these years, but it still speaks to audiences. The show has broken barriers, created conversations and allowed us as a culture to talk about topics that must be discussed, but are often avoided.

After all of these years, nothing gives me a high like the opening theme song.

Here is the 20th season and many more seasons to come.

The new season of Law & Order: SVU premieres this Thursday, September 27th and 9PM. 

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Flashback Friday- Law And Order SVU (1999-Present)

For twenty years, Law And Order was a staple of the television schedule. With that success, the creative team decided to try a spin-off. That spin-off is Law And Order SVU (1999-Present).

While the original SVU was focused on a variety of crimes, this spin-off focuses solely on sexually related crimes. The current cast includes Mariska Hargitay, Ice-T, Kelli Giddish, Raul Esparza and Peter Scanavino.


I have been a fan of this show since the beginning. Like it’s predecessor, the show deals in the grey areas of life and fighting crime, especially when it comes to the cases that the characters deal with. I also very much appreciate the strong women on show, Lt. Benson (Mariska Hargitay) and Detective Rollins (Kelli Giddish).

I absolutely recommend it.

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Waste

Warning: This post reveals spoilers of this week’s episode of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. If you have not seen the episode, I will not be offended if you do not read any further.

The premise of the episode is as follows: A transgender teen Avery Parker (Christopher Dylan) is taunted and attacked by a group of African-American teenagers.  After sustaining traumatic injuries, he passes away from his injuries. One of the young men who attacked him, Darius McCrae (Dante Brown), is being tried as an adult for the crime.

The question posed around the squad room is a difficult one. Darius is only fifteen, should he be tried as an adult or as a juvenile?

What struck me about this episode was that hate is a waste. It is a waste of time, of breath, of life.  The end result was that Darius was tried as an adult and his crime was labelled as a hate crime. He would not be a free man until he was in his 20’s.

There was no reason for Avery to die and Darius to spend his formative years in prison. In the end, two lives were forever changed and two families have to face the reality of the loss of their child.

I hope it was worth it. It feels like a waste to me.

 

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