Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

Season 17 Episode 15:

Collateral Damages

Two high-profile suspects are arrested in the takedown of an online pedophile ring following a sting operation.
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About Law & Order: Special Victims Unit:

Law and Order: Special Victims Unit (Known as SVU) is a spin-off of the original crime drama Law and Order. SVU differs from its original series as it focuses on sexual assault cases. The series follows the same format as its predecessor, with one half of the episode following detectives investigating a crime and the other following their trial and prosecution. The show shares some similarities to actual crimes, with various aspects of the crime changed for legal reasons. 

Being on air since 1999, it has become the longest-running prime-time drama series in history. 

The most famous characters of SVU are Detective Olivia Benson and Detective Elliot Stabler. Benson and Stabler were a great team together. Whilst they were never romantically involved with one another, they cared deeply about one another. They would often argue because of their differing points of view. Benson would openly support all victims that come to them for aid, whereas Stabler would be more cautious. There have been times where his intuition has been right. When Stabler left because of an accidental shooting which involved him, it caused a development in Benson. She develops some of his traits, such as roughing up suspects like he would and left her emotionally vulnerable. Their reunion is one highlight of later seasons.

Other than these two detectives, the series also focuses on Detective John Munch and Detective Fin Tutuola. At first, they don’t really get along because of their differing views. However, the two find a mutual respect and friendship for one another. After Munch retires, Tutuola gains a new partner. First it is Detective Chester Lake. Then it is Detective Amanda Rollins. Rollins struggles at first, being very naïve, but later becomes an asset from the team. She also struggles with a gambling addiction, though she gets help for this. It damages her position in the team. 

The District Attorneys also play a huge role in prosecuting these criminals. The first notable district attorney Alexander Colbert, who is their district attorney until she enters the Witness Protection Programme for her own safety. Like the detectives, the attorneys also change multiple times throughout the seasons. Some of the most loved by fans are Casey Novak, Rafael Barba, Peter Stone and Sonya Paxton. The latest is former detective Dominick Carisi Jr., who would often pester Barba with questions whilst he was prosecuting a case.

Because of its various themes and results, the show has gained a cult following with survivors of abuse. This has affected various casting choices such as the outrage from Mike Tyson being cast in Season 14, because of a conviction he received in 1992. Aside from its cult following, the show has been a critical and commercial success, winning multiple awards and even gave the Law and Order franchise its first Emmy.


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