Law & Order SVU: do these people piss you off?

I like the show but sometimes I find myself fuming at the behavior of these bullies. They badger suspects, are rude and insulting, enjoy publicly humilating arrestees, employ every dirty extralegal trick they can, use the savage conditions of the Riker’s holding pens to squeeze people, bend the law as far as it will go to bring charges, use physical intimidation and even aren’t above police brutality when they think they can get away with it. But of course this is all OK since the people they’re investigating are scum and the good guys should win. :rolleyes:

If I found myself transported to the L&O universe and through no fault of my own was a suspect in a crime they were investigating, I sure as hell would demand having an attorney present during questioning- even a shitty public defender- so I would have a witness present while these goons had me in the interview room. And my answers to them would largely consist of “bullshit”, “go to hell”, and “f*** you”.

Is this a realistic depiction of how police detectives interview and question suspects?

I don’t think the show is quite that black and white. Stabler in particular is often portrayed as going too far in cases that push his hot buttons. I know his coworkers have commented on this, and I seem to remember that his superiors have punished him for such behavior. Fin does seem to get away with slapping a lot of suspects, though.

Everytime they pull out the “sex offenders can’t be rehabilitated” cliche, I want to scream and claw at the TV screen. Sex offenders actually have the LOWEST recidivism rate of any criminal category. How cruel to imply something so horrible and untrue for entertainment…

Don’t get me wrong, I watch it, of course. :smiley:

I generally agree with you but I put up with it since I like watching Christopher Meloni, B.D. Wong, Ice T and Richard Belzer work. I don’t care for Mariska Hargitay, which is odd since Angie Harmon played essentially the same character on Law & Order: Prime for a couple seasons and I loved every minute of it, and so it bothers me greatly that her character is seemingly never allowed to be wrong by the writers.

The show, like Criminal Intent, needs a little more Order (and more guest appearances by J.K. Simmons as Dr. Skoda). :smiley:

I’d like to see him appear as Verne Schillinger, just to fuck with the audience.

And if anyone thinks Christopher Meloni’s character is too moralizing, just watch a few seasons of Oz. :wink:

B.D.Wong is totally hot. And I love Stabler, even though I know he goes too far, because he so obivously cares about the job, but balances it with his family. I’d like to have more Belzer and Ice-T (because Ice-T is hot, too), because I think they’ve become also-rans.

But yeah, I wouldn’t want to be one of their suspects.


SVU is annoying to the point I have turned it off a few times mid show

Main peeves

1: Preachiness dial apparently has a setting past “11” on SVU that is reguarly employed.

2: The level of verbal abuse directed toward witnesses in interrogation is absurd by any standard.

3: The psychiatrist always has some lame, made up offender profile he can pull out his ass to explain anyones motivation.

4: The way there is continuously some reference made in the stories to the female detectives having been raped so she can “understand” the victims pain.

5: If a sex offender gets killed as port of the story, the point that “It coudn’t happen to nicer guy!” is repreated over and over again by every detective in the squad, and then they sing it in choral harmony in case we didn’t get the point the first time .

6: Generally lazy, paint by numbers script writing.

I’m waiting for Stabler (Meloni’s character?) to lose his daughter so he can go postal.

Mariska Hargitay. :slight_smile: I can look at her all day long.

I still can’t believe Stephanie March was only 24 when she first joined the cast. She always struck me as older in a way unsupported by her looks. Mebbe it’s her acting as Alex Cabot, the attitude and the way she carries herself, that did it?

That’s an extreme exaggeration.

The vast majority of the time they work within the system, without breaking any laws. Sometimes they push it pretty hard, but it’s still technically legal.

Now, there have been a few times, due to extreme circumstances, where a character (Fin, Stabler) has crossed the line into unexceptable behavior territory. And each time this happens, Captain Cragen calls them on it.

On the very first episode, Benson starts freaking out on someone (I think it was a woman who refused to help in a rape case) and Stabler calls her on it saying something like, “You know you can’t do that, right? You have to control yourself in this line of work.”

Now it’s usually the other way around. I did enjoy it when Stabler almost choked that Riddler guy to death.

You can keep your J.K. Simmons (although I’ll agree that he is good in that role), just give me more Carolyn McCormick as Dr. Elizabeth Olivet!

I’m a big fan of SVU and I find the interrogation methods extremely mild-mannered. The Law and Orders are the civilized edge of the cop show world. I actually prefer NYPD Blue and The Shield, where they beat people with phone books. As Tiger Teamer said, suspects’ rights are hardly ever violated, because we get to see the trial process where that would get the case thrown out.

Despite their misinterpretation of statistics, the cops usually treat the “stereotypical” suspects (statutory rapists, pedophiles, homosexuals, the mentally ill) rather decently, and make some effort to indicate that sexual abnormality is not the same thing as sexual crime. SVU is probably the most stark of the three L&Os, with Criminal Intent being the most genteel.

There are plenty of other reasons to despise SVU:

  • The writing is attrocious
  • The “Ripped from the Headlines” mentality is crass (though I liked their Fred Phelps episode)
  • Corollary: When presenting opposing viewpoints of a trendy issue (can women rape men, for instance), the viewpoints are scattered among the detectives seemingly at random, making their characterization inconsistent.
  • TPTB are ignorant of sexual studies to a degree that’s embarrassing
  • John Munch doesn’t get a big enough part

I may be a bit defensive, I saw the best episode yet (Weak 6x9) last night. :o

Watching SVU is like reading Writing an episode is easy when you are already handed a case and have two-dimensional characters.

Olivette makes my zipper break, I’ll tell you whut!

My main gripe with the show is the lighting in the police station. Esp the SVU branch. Every police station I’ve ever been in (watch it…) has been well lit, sometimes to the point of appearing clinical. A police station is an office, after all. Well, at least part of it is. The part where Mr and Mrs Cop sit at their desks and go over paperwork and make phone calls and shit.

In the TOS version of Law & Order, and in the CI version, even though the buildings are older, the office part of the station is wel lit, like you expect. Hell, even in Barney Miller, where the precinct building they occupied was 100 years old, it was lit like an office.

But in SVU, because the subject matter is so disturbing, they have to give us effect lighting to set a mood. Feh. Any fans of the show are capable of picking up on the nuances of the heavinessabilityism* of the subject matter. Light it like the other shows and begone with your silly shadow people!

it’s a real word*
to me, anyways*
***shut up…

Which female detectives are you talking about? I don’t remember there ever being any mention of the main one (Benson) being raped. They do occasionally reference the fact that she was born as the result of a rape (her mother being the victim), though.

Oh, I second everyone who mentioned that the show needs more Munch & Fin.

Slight tangent to another show: On CSI, there’s been some implication that Sara’s been raped, and we learned in last week’s episode that she spent some time in foster care as a child. She’s always had a soft spot for rape victims and children, but they (the writers) have never come right out and mentioned anything.

I agree, SVU needs more Munch and Fin. I’ve liked Richard Belzer since he was on Homicide: Life on the Streets.

And I could look at BD Wong all day.

Actually, I think they are fairly accurate when describing much of that. He always does just have ti hanging out i the air and pulls it up in five minutes for the viewing audience, though.

BD Wong is adorable!

Munch is sexy too in an “eww he’s old” kind of way.