T.V. Series Review: Law and Order: SVU Season 1

Law and Order: SVU Season 1 Trailer

Law and Order: SVU Season 1 Summary

Season 1, Episode 1: Payback

Two detectives from the NYPD’s Special Victims Unit, Olivia Benson and Elliot Stabler, investigate the stabbing and castration of a cab driver, only to learn that the victim had purchased a phony hack license from an inmate (Matt Skollar) at Rikers Island. Further investigation reveals that the dead man was a Serbian soldier named Stefan Tanzic, who had been indicted on charges of ethnic cleansing. Herself a child of rape, Benson has trouble separating herself from the case after realizing that the victim was a rapist. Stabler tries to keep her from crossing the line in her attempts to protect suspects whom she feels were justified in their actions.

Season 1, Episode 2: A Single Life

When the body of Gretchen Quinn is found wearing only a red slip after having been thrown out of a window, Benson and Stabler soon find out that “Gretchen Quinn” was just an alias. While trying to piece together her life, the detectives are led to the victim’s psychiatrist (Dennis Boutsikaris) and a well-known television newscaster (Michael Nouri), both of whom were sleeping with her. It soon comes to light she was a young woman who changed her name and identity after graduating high school, to get away from her sexually abusive father (Paul Hecht)

Season 1, Episode 3: …. Or Just Look Like One

After teen model Jazmin Burgess is beaten, raped, and dumped in front of Roosevelt Hospital, Benson and Stabler investigate to find out why a sixteen-year-old girl was out alone after midnight. High levels of drugs in Jazmin’s system lead them to take a look at not only the modelling agency with which Jazmin was signed, but also the photographer (Ritchie Coster) who was supervising her last shoot (and had booted her out because she was “too heavy”). Stabler’s disgust with the whole issue is aggravated by his concern that his daughter Maureen, who has been refusing to eat, may be anorexic.

Season 1, Episode 4: Hysteria

When a young woman is found dead, she is initially believed to be a prostitute and the latest victim of a serial killer. As they look into her home life, however, Benson and Stabler realize that the victim does not fit the pattern, and may not be connected to the other deaths after all. After Munch’s instincts lead the team to believe their suspect is a cop (Joe Lisi), Cragen consults his old friend Det. Lennie Briscoe for help.

Season 1, Episode 5: Wanderlust

After a travel writer (Bruce Barney) is found nude, strangled, and beaten to death with lingerie stuffed down his throat and duct tape over his mouth, Benson and Stabler initially suspect his landlady’s (Patricia Richardson) boyfriend (John Dossett), a convicted child molester. But suspicion soon turns to the landlady and her daughter (Lynn Collins), who seemed far too interested in what their tenant was doing with his time. After learning the daughter had a sexual relationship with the tenant, things take an even stranger turn.

Season 1, Episode 6: Sophomore Jinx

After a female student is found raped and murdered at a local college, Benson and Stabler turn their attention to two star players on the school’s basketball team. However, the college, unwilling to risk the negative publicity that the investigation could bring to the school and the upcoming championship, blocks their investigation at every turn. But the worst secret actually lies with one of her teachers.

Season 1, Episode 7: Uncivilized

When a young boy is found murdered, suspicion leads Benson and Stabler to a recently paroled child molester (Stephen Bogardus), who soon becomes a test case for a new and broader application of civil commitment. Although they both hate what the man has done in the past, it is soon obvious to the detectives that the teenagers who initially steered them in the man’s direction (Jerry Careccio and Dominick Charles Carbone) are hiding disturbing secrets of their own.

Season 1, Episode 8: Stalked

When the body of an assistant district attorney is found raped and beaten in Central Park, Benson lets her emotions get the best of her as she takes it upon herself to bring the suspected rapist, a local realtor (Bruce Kirkpatrick), to justice. Stabler tries to get the man’s business partner to help in the investigation, but Benson may be the one who ends up needing help.

Season 1, Episode 9: Stocks & Bondage

When a financial analyst and devotee of BDSM is found strangled to death in a leather harness in her bedroom, Benson and Stabler at first suspect either suicide or accidental death from autoerotic asphyxiation However, the discovery of a large quantity of hidden diamonds leads the detectives into a shadowy world of money laundering and securities fraud.

Season 1, Episode 10: Closure (Part 1)

Benson does her best to help a rape victim (Tracy Pollan), who is able to describe her attack, but not the attacker (Neil Maffin) in perfect detail. When the detectives revisit the case a few months later, they find the woman even less willing to talk about what happened, as she claims she has moved on. Things turn uncomfortable within the squad when Benson and Cassidy, who spent a night together, argue over whether the relationship should be continued.

Season 1, Episode 11: Bad Blood

The death of a young gay man initially leads Benson and Stabler to investigate his homophobic father, but once they start looking into the young man’s living arrangements, they realize the person they’re looking for may be closer than they think. Munch tries to help Benson find the man who raped her mother.

Season 1, Episode 12: Russian Love Poem

When Andrew Harlin, a bisexual multi-millionaire, is found murdered in his home, Benson and Stabler turn their suspicion to Harlin’s long list of lovers. Evidence at the crime scene leads detectives to a pair of Russian escorts, but before they can get the truth from them, one turns up dead, and the boyfriend (Olek Krupa) of the other confesses to murder.

Season 1, Episode 13: Disrobed

After a judge is found murdered in his car, the detectives begin looking into his background and learn that he often delivered special verdicts for women in return for sexual favors. The team soon turns its eye to a battered wife (Kathryn Meisle) with a secret. Detective Cassidy transfers to Narcotics feeling unable to cope with the SVU cases, leaving Munch without a partner.

Season 1, Episode 14: Limitations

At the request of a victim, the police commissioner comes to Cragen with a special request: close the case of the man who raped three women (Jenny Bacon, Judith Hawkins and Seana Kofoed) nearly five years ago before the statute of limitations expires. The detectives finally get a lead when they realize one of the victims knows the rapist, but she is not willing to talk. Following Cassidy’s departure, Munch is partnered with Jeffries.

Season 1, Episode 15: Entitled

After a salesman is murdered, the detectives turn their attention to Stephanie Mulroney (Noelle Beck), the youngest daughter of a well-known family with some deep connections. But as they join forces with the officers from the 27th Precinct, they realize that their case is connected with a long-unsolved case that Briscoe once handled years ago with his former partner, Detective Mike Logan.

Season 1, Episode 16: The Third Guy

An elderly woman is found tied up and sexually assaulted in her apartment and suspicion is initially on the young men that had broken into her home and robbed her. Once the detectives catch the young men, they learn that there was someone else in the apartment. The offered plea bargain initially doesn’t go over well, but they finally reach a deal which leaves the detectives with a new case – whether or not the person who sexually assaulted the woman (Denis O’Hare) was mentally handicapped.

Season 1, Episode 17: Misleader

After the pregnant daughter-in-law of a prominent Christian right leader (Robert Foxworth) is found murdered in her hotel room, the detectives investigate a rash of hotel burglaries, only to discover that her adultery (and the probable father of her child) was what led to her death.

Season 1, Episode 18: Chat Room

When a teenage girl (Paz de la Huerta) comes into the squad room to tell the detectives that she was raped by a man she met on the Internet, the detectives set up a special sting operation. They end up stepping on some highly-placed toes as Munch plays the kid to net the big fish.

Season 1, Episode 19: Contact

After seven young women in a six-month time span are raped by a flash-and-dash assailant (Sal Viscuso) on the city subways, the brass calls in a psychiatrist to help the team get into the head of the perpetrator. When he is caught, all seven victims identify him in a police lineup, but the IDs are suppressed. However, the detectives find that he possesses the driver’s license of a new victim who could put him away.

Season 1, Episode 20: Remorse

Television reporter Sarah Logan (Jennifer Esposito) refuses to let her recent rape get her down, and talks about her experiences on the air, leading to the arrest of a young man that the team feels is responsible. Over the course of the investigation, Munch and Jeffries become unusually affected by the case, albeit in different ways.

Season 1, Episode 21: Nocturne

After a pharmacy turns over some disturbing photos of a young boy, Benson and Stabler arrest a piano teacher (Kent Broadhurst) for child molestation. After the boy claims to have seen other pictures of young boys at the teacher’s house, the detectives get a warrant and discover a series of videos that document the life of a young boy named Evan (Wilson Jermaine Heredia). Believing he can make or break their case, the team searches for him, only to realize that his testimony may not help at all because Evan is scarred far more deeply than they realized.

Season 1, Episode 22: Slaves

After a shopkeeper brings a note for help to the squad, the detectives begin trying to locate a young Romanian woman named Ilena (Layla Alexander), who has not been seen in months. The squad eventually find her working as a nanny at the home of the Morrows (Andrew McCarthy and Susan Floyd), a successful yuppie couple who harbor a terrible secret. A forensic psychologist analyzes the team, and presents disturbing findings to Cragen, suggesting that one of the detectives be removed from the team immediately.

Law and Order: SVU Season 1 Review

Rating: 5 out of 5.

While this series is great covering Detectives in New York, it is also very difficult to handle if you are a Sexual Assault, Domestic assault or rape victim. So if you can not handle hearing or seeing elements, this is not the show for you. Otherwise I love that the shows off New York that isn’t just tourist spots, plays off real stories, and has a great character arcs through all the seasons. Watch at your own risk.

Leave a Reply