One of the great things about covering a television show for a media outlet is that I often get to see episodes ahead of the general population. Then I get to delicately share with my readers a tantalizing tease of what’s to come during that installment of the show.
As a fan of ‘SVU,’ this is extremely fun for me, especially this year. I’ve been covering the show for several years now and a few years ago it was suggested by some that ‘SVU’ no longer seemed to warrant weekly coverage. To be honest, I was stretched with many writing duties and while I’ve remained a loyal viewer, taking in every episode, I was on the verge of agreeing. But something told me not to let go, so I didn’t.
Now I have colleagues who openly admit that they wish they were in my position given how sinfully good ‘SVU’ is this season.
But one of the drawbacks of knowing things before they air in the regular ‘SVU’ timeslot, is the fact that I know things before they air in the regular ‘SVU’ timeslot.
While there’s assuredly always a pleasing element of surprise for me in every episode no matter when I watch it (quick shout out to the 'SVU' writers compelling storytelling skills here), I do lose a little something that regular fans of the show get. I lose the ability to curl up on the couch, set aside everything, blissfully unaware of exactly how things will unfold during the course of the episode, and then watch all of the twists and turns transpire at the same time that other fans are doing the exact same thing. Believe me when I say that screening an episode ahead of time, no matter how good it is, just doesn’t produce the same results as watching it air on television, especially now with social media. When you see something gripping/interesting/shocking you want to talk about it immediately, right? Well, when you watch an episode early you don’t have the luxury of doing that, unless you want people to really hate you for ruining it for them.
Just imagine watching “Surrender Benson” or “Psycho/Therapist” and then not being able to talk about it with anyone for about a week. Would you have the self control to do that? Let me tell you, it wasn't easy - on either occasion.
Even in this day and age of binge watching, there’s something to be said for the thrill of anticipation and for enjoying the journey of a story in a timely manner. Maybe I’m old fashioned, but when I read a good book, as I near the end, I don’t rush, I slow down to enjoy it. It’s basically the same principle as when viewers tweet during a show that they’re sad that there’s only ten minutes left in an episode. It’s all because, just as in real life, we always want to spend more time with people we care about and it hurts when we know that our time together is coming to an end, for whatever reason that may be.
Now, having said all of this, my point here today is that I know virtually nothing about this week’s episode of ‘SVU,’ except the description, which reads, “A troubled young woman struggles to recover her own repressed history of child abuse leads members of the ‘SVU’ squad to a shocking discovery.” This week, I’m not an insider, I'm just like every other viewer. So if you’re looking for a hint or spoiler here, my apologies to you as I have nothing to give.
This will be the episode that I watch just like a devout viewer. I want to know, just like everyone else, what happened to the victim, and how this case will go down, as well as what’s up with up with Brian and Olivia and what happens with Olivia and that stunningly adorable little abandoned baby boy. I can’t wait to find out about all of these things. Well, yes I can, and I will, until 9pm on Wednesday.
Rest assured, my dear readers, I’ll be back with more episode specific information soon enough as we roll into the final episodes of season 15.
In the meantime, I do have just one tidbit from Warren Leight, the ever courteous ‘SVU’ showrunner, in reference to episode 20, “Beast’s Obsession,” which features the return of Benson’s tormentor, William Lewis.
The promo for the episode, which features Lewis escorting a handcuffed Benson to some secluded location and then shows her holding a gun to her own head, already has fans understandably on edge.
Unfortunately, what Leight told me may only scare fans even more, but, conversely, the information may heighten anticipation for the episode, which as we’ve just discussed, is clearly a good thing.
Whatever the case, the statement from Leight, is a strong one that will surely evoke emotion. He simply said, “This is going to blow everyone out of the water. If everything goes well, it’s the audience’s worst nightmare.”
Yes, it’s a cryptic statement, but remember, this season, ‘SVU’ has really lived up to every promise made, so it seems we’re all in for it, together.
This week’s hashtag = #StolenChildhood
“Law & Order: SVU” airs Wednesday nights at 9e/8c on NBC.