Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Dann Florek's Favorite Law & Order Episode Goes All The Way Back To The Very First Season

Dann Florek has spent a lot of time working in the "Law and Order" franchise. He played Captain Donald Cragen on the original "Law & Order" for Seasons 1-3 in the early '90s, and was later transferred over to the spin-off, "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," where he continued playing the same role through the first 14 seasons of the show, with sporadic appearances after that. He's even appeared in a few episodes of "Law & Order: Organized Crime."

Despite the serious nature of both of the "Law & Order" shows he starred in as a regular, he and the rest of the cast had a surprising amount of fun fooling around on set. In an interview with People for the show's 25th anniversary, Florek revealed his favorite behind-the-scenes memory. "I remember starting on the show years ago," he said. "We were at Chelsea Piers. And nobody was down there then. And my buddy Chris Noth and I used to take the golf carts and drive all the way around there. ... It was a lot of fun to go out there and we actually would go hunting for vermin. We found and we conquered." In another interview with "Today," it was revealed that Florek was the biggest practical joker on set.

Between the three "Law & Order" series, Florek has logged more than 400 episodes. So what's his favorite episode? It turns out that goes all the way back to his first season on the original "Law & Order."

Dann Florek's favorite episode is Mushrooms

In a 2015 interview with The Wall Street Journal, Florek was asked to select his favorite episode from the "Law & Order" franchise, and he reached all the way back to Season 1. "One of my favorites, it's from the very first season, and it's called 'Mushrooms.' Terrific, terrific episode. Very powerful, very emotional." The episode "Mushrooms" follows two young boys who are struck during a drive-by shooting, with the older boy paralyzed and a baby killed. In the end, it turns out that the killer is a teen hitman hired to kill someone else but he got the addresses confused because he was illiterate. The episode featured S. Epatha Merkerson as the victims' mother. She would later star in "Law & Order" as Lt. Anita Van Buren. Interestingly, Florek didn't bring up the episodes he directed in Seasons 4 and 5. 

"Mushrooms" is still considered by fans to be a classic "Law & Order" episode. In a thread in the r/LawAndOrder subreddit, u/devilsadvocate1966 called it one of their "earliest memories of [Law & Order]." Other fans weighed in on the episode, mostly to praise the first performance on the show by S. Epatha Merkerson. "This was such a stunning performance!" wrote u/hedgiebetts. "When she gets the notification and breaks down, I was like 'Whoa, this lady is going places.' All the way to top!" It seems that Florek was right about this being a standout episode, as many fans agree with him.