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Why Martina Rodriguez From Law & Order: SVU Looks So Familiar

Crime dramas have a large, rotating cast. They have to; detectives age as do their real-life counterparts, and that doesn't even cover the victims and killers that dominate the plots of every episode. In "Law & Order: SVU" Season 24, Episode 5, titled "Breakwater," audiences saw Diego Rodriguez (Damien Diaz) a concerned brother who asks the Special Victims Unit for help when he suspects his boss Paul Greco (James Carpinello) of taking advantage of his sister, swimmer Martina. It was sadly true, and while Greco was able to silence Diego by drowning him, Greco was rightfully convicted for his crimes against Martina and the other victims. Though Martina lost her brother, she is at least able to know their shared assailant is in jail and justice was still served.

Martina Rodriguez is portrayed by actress Samantha Boscarino, who should look familiar for a couple of reasons. She's been acting since the late 2000s and has gone on to appear in several projects since then. Some have even watched her grow up on the screen on quite a few Disney Channel shows; here are the places you have probably seen Boscarino before.

She was a sassy party girl in The Clique

Many millennials loved watching "Mean Girls" and still quote lines from the movie. A similar film came out a few years later but captured something almost a little crueler: younger "mean" girls. "The Clique", based on the novel by author Lisi Harrison, follows a group of four girls in middle school who taunt and tease an awkward newcomer, Claire (Ellen Marlow). The leader of the group Massie (Elizabeth McLaughlin) is intimidated by Claire and enlists her clique to help her show Claire who belongs.

Samantha Boscarino portrayed Alicia Rivera, a member of the "Pretty Committee" who follows behind Massie and is joined by Dylan Marvil (Sophie Anna Everhard) and Kristen Gregory (Bridgit Mendler). Together, the group shows audiences that even young girls are capable of being just as cruel. Claire can fight back in her way and for a second, audiences aren't sure who to root for or if any of the girls are redeemable.

However, by the end of the film, it's a happy ending, as Massie decides that Claire can be on their committee now and admits that she felt jealous of her for being "the new girl." The girls can grow up a little and reconcile, which is a good message to take away from the movie.

A Disney star, tried and true, on Good Luck Charlie

While Samantha Boscarino never truly arrived in her own Disney channel sitcom, she was part of many. With one-episode appearances in "Jonas" and later in "Wizards of Waverly Place", she found a more permanent role in the family feel-good series "Good luck Charlie." The show followed Teddy (Bridgit Mendler) who tapes videos for her youngest sister Charlie (Mia Talerico) giving her advice for the future while navigating her own life as a teenager. Boscarino joined the cast as the character Skyler and was in nine episodes during the show's four-season run.

Skyler is memorable for a few reasons. While she eventually goes on to date Teddy's older brother PJ (Jason Dolley), she first is known for dating Spencer (Shane Harper), Teddy's boyfriend at the same time Teddy and Spencer are together. The girls realize that Spencer is cheating on both of them because when Teddy runs into Skyler, she apologizes for overreacting, leading Skyler to say, "He told me that you two were cousins."

The two girls take their revenge as Skyler dumps a pitcher of smoothie on him, and Teddy throws a slice of pie, which she brought as a form of apology into his face. They become friends for the rest of the series and interestingly enough starred in "The Clique" before being brought back together for "Good Luck Charlie." 

She was a cheerleader turned detective in The Cheerleader Murders

In 2016, Samantha Boscarino was the main star in David Jackson's TV film "The Cheerleader Murders," playing the role of Ellie Davis. Tragedy seems to follow the young Ellie, who has recently lost both her sister and father to an unknown murderer. She tries to put it behind her, pushing herself in her main preoccupation as a cheerleader for her high school football team and spending time with her love interest, Nicholas (Austin Lyon). At a sleepover with fellow cheerleaders and friends, Dee (Amanda Leighton) and Morgan (Hannah Kasulka), she is having fun for the first time in a while.

The fun is later soured when both girls fail to arrive at school the next day and Ellie realizes something has happened to them. Her gut feeling is proven when Morgan's body is found. No one seems to believe Ellie's gut feeling that it will keep happening, and that she'll be next. Ellie trades in her pom-poms for some suspense as she takes it upon herself to investigate, determined not to let another one of her loved ones get hurt.

Thrilling and suspenseful, Boscarino's appearance in "The Cheerleader Murders" is just another to an already long list of credits. If audiences enjoyed her small role on "Law & Order: SVU," they should take a peek at what she's done previously.