TV - Movies
The Real Reason
Law & Order: SVU
Is Losing
Longtime Fans
Law & Order: SVU has hit a ratings crisis and while some would like to try to easily blame it on the show’s political slant, it is more complicated than that. While there are several elements at work here, the biggest danger to the long-running series isn't its politics, but its lackluster approach to storytelling.
In response to public backlash to cop dramas blindly glorifying law enforcement, Mariska Hargitay's Olivia Benson was called out for her bias-driven blind spots in the Season 22 premiere, but the series quickly dropped this thread. Rather than imbue its detectives and their investigations with a greater degree of realism, it simply stopped showing the investigations altogether.
Half Response To Criticism
This exercise in avoidance meant provocative debates about the interpretation of legal precedent and prosecutorial approaches were similarly cut. Unfortunately, the series has replaced its two most interesting and controversial aspects with a focus on the detectives' personal lives and heavy-handed takes of its progressive stance on a headline.
Too Much Fluff
There's a time and place for a blunt-force approach, and that time and place is in the 1980s, in the concluding scene of an after-school special. The series has chucked the nuance it was known for in its first 21 seasons and instead, has Benson bending over backward to represent and clarify every episode’s thesis.
Subtle As A Jackhammer
Instead of tackling hot button issues the show’s new structure and its safe, myopic narratives, encourage the depressing, even dangerous approach to art that says the mere depiction of an opinion or behavior necessarily equals the promotion of that opinion or behavior. In reality, the only thing such a model promotes is a complete lack of critical thinking and audience engagement.
It Stopped Taking Risks