Here are advance photos for Law & Order SVU “Real Fake News” which will air on Wednesday, May 3, 2017 at 9PM ET on NBC. The photos feature Mariska Hargitay, Ice-T, Kelli Giddish, Peter Scanavino, Frank Deal as FBI Agent O'Connell, Naiya Ortiz as Marian, and James Waterston as Congressman Luke Bolton.
Photos by: Michael Parmelee 2017 NBCUniversal Media, LLC
Here are preview clips from Law & Order SVU “Real Fake News” which will air on Wednesday, May 3, 2017 at 9PM ET on NBC. The videos feature Mariska Hargitay, Ice-T, Kelli Giddish, Peter Scanavino, and James Waterston.
Please note: these videos have a limited life and may be removed at any time, so catch them while you can!
“The Newsroom” could have easily been titled “Life at Fox News” as it mirrored the recent happenings at Fox News with founder and former CEO Roger Ailes. Maybe SVU didn’t want to mirror Ailes too much as they selected Christopher McDonald to play the pervy CEO role. Mind you, he played his character with perfect lecherousness, although I would have expected Harold Coyle to be older and far less attractive.
It was fabulous having Peter Gallagher reprise his role as Chief Dodds, allowing him and Benson the opportunity to close the loop on Sergeant Mike Dodds’ death. They deftly wove this into the story via Harold Coyle alleging that Dodds died and the case closed quickly as a result of both Benson’s incompetence and some sort of NYPD corruption. Those threats only made Chief Dodds angry and not only strengthen his resolve to pursue a case against Coyle, but also to patch things up with Benson. I believe that Chief Dodds is one of the few people that we’ve seen in years that Benson actually has some real chemistry with. (I attribute that to Peter Gallagher, who always is so likable no matter what role he’s playing.) Too bad he is her boss.
We also find that Barba was on suspension as a result of the situation he mentioned in “Know It All” where he gave money to a junkie witness in a previous case.
I found this episode highly enjoyable and fast paced. But something gnawed at me while watching it live and that got even stronger as I recapped it: the victim(s) were completely unsympathetic. Of course, Heidi was not to blame for being raped, period. Heidi did, however, allow Harold Coyle to sexually harass her for years and while she complained about it after the rape, she never seemed to say no to Coyle as long as it benefited her career or her bank account. Once it came to rape, the line was drawn and she was clearly traumatized. The same thing for Margery, who didn’t turn on Harold until she herself was close to being raped. These women were willing to look the other way as long as they were being compensated. Again, there is no excuse for rape but I find it inexcusable when women (or men) allow harassment to continue over long periods. This only emboldens the harasser.
I was surprised that Benson suggested Heidi may have a better chance with her case in civil court. Had Heidi formally taken that action before Barba turned down the criminal case, it could have torpedoed Barba’s case and made it look like Heidi only made the rape claim for money. She was fortunate she was advised later not to go that route.
Here is the recap:
Mariska Hargitay - Lieutenant Olivia Benson
Ice-T - Detective Odafin “Fin” Tutuola
Kelli Giddish - Detective Amanda Rollins
Raúl Esparza - ADA Rafael Barba
Peter Scanavino - Detective Dominick “Sonny” Carisi, Jr.
Peter Gallagher - Chief William Dodds
Christopher McDonald - Harold Coyle
Bonnie Somerville - Heidi Sorenson
Mark Moses - George Thanos
Peyton List - Margery Evans
J.C. MacKenzie - Counselor Richard Pace
Beth Chamberlin - Gwendolyn Gates
Jenna Stern – Judge Elana Barth
Paloma Guzmán - Davina Delucci
Joanne Baron - Counselor Diane Schwartz
Stephen Bradbury – Judge Colin McNamara
Danny Wolohan – Steven Turner
Jacob Ware - Mark James
Mellissa Miller – Christine Davis
Joanna Howard – Diane Douglas
Christine Jones – Alana Reed
Heather Girardi – Counselor Allison Bell
Amber Owens – Female Anchor
Michael Chenevert - Reporter #1
Dawn Yanek - Reporter #2
Jack Nawada-Braunwart – Noah Porter Benson
Tyree Simpson – Desk Sergeant
On the set of an HNT Morning Live, Heidi Sorenson thanks Benson for appearing on the segment. Heidi comments she hasn’t seen Benson “forever” and when she asks Benson how is she, Benson says she is good, just a little nervous. Heidi tell Benson not to be, she is a pro. Co-anchor George Thanos asks who they are waiting for, a damn actress, then the actress - Davina Delucci – arrives. She has been escorted to the set by Harold Coyle, who says he practically kidnapped her. He kisses her while Heidi and George look on with mild annoyance and discomfort. The show then opens and introductions are made. The hosts explain Davina alleged she was raped on the set of her 2007 film by her co-star in the film’s infamous sex scene. Heidi first asks Benson to tell them about workplace sexual assault. Benson says it happens all too often and is one of the least reported crimes as women are afraid of not being believed or losing their jobs. Davina explains she was scared if she said anything she would never work again, her rapist was her co-star and director. While Davina explains how she was assaulted, Heidi seems to feed her comments as if she knows exactly what Davina is going through. Benson picks up on this and gives Heidi a questioning look. When George says he can’t imagine what she is going through, Heidi hotly counters of course he can’t because it never happened to him. George gets a strange look on his face and the producer Steven Turner motions for them to cut the interview and George does so. When they cut off the air, Heidi quickly excuses herself and Benson follows. She asks Heidi if she is okay and what just happened. Heidi blurts out that Harold Coyle raped her in January on a couch in his office. Producer Steven Turner suggests that Heidi get some air, but she says she is fine, she is just tired. Benson counters she thinks they need to speak, and Heidi backtracks and said to forget what she said, she didn’t mean any of it. She races off and Benson watches, stunned.
Back at SVU, Benson and the detectives replay the segment. Benson asks the detectives if they all saw that, and Rollins asks if that was an on-air disclosure. Fin comments they were watching live, and they couldn’t cut away fast enough. Benson states then Heidi told her that Harold Coyle raped her. Carisi adds he’s heard a lot of rumors about that guy; he’s paranoid and he is a predator. Rollins asks Benson how well she knows Heidi, and Benson explains they met at a women in New York panel year ago and they stayed in touch. She doesn’t see Heidi making this up. Rollins questions if Heidi gave her any more details, and Benson says no, she backtracked and is now not returning her calls. Carisi asks what is their move now, and an officer nearby interrupts and has a man with him who says it is urgent. Benson asks how can she help them, and he says he saw her on HNT this morning and asks if Heidi was talking about Harold Coyle. Benson questions why does he ask, and the man explains that he assaulted his wife. Benson appears stunned.
In the interview room, Mark James explains to Benson and Rollins how his wife Amy was raped by Harold Coyle. They did not go to the police as Amy said Harold made a tape which made it look like they were having an affair and Harold said if she went to the police, he would release the tapes. After that, she was depressed and committed suicide 6 months later. He wants them to go after the network as they knew about Coyle and didn’t do a damn thing. Mark adds that Harold did not threaten her directly, it was the producer, Steven Turner, who said if Amy went after Coyle, it would be scorched earth and HNT would destroy them.
Later, Fin and Carisi approach Steven Turner as he enters the HNT office building. He tries to blow them off but they say they are there about Amy James. He suggests they talk to the lawyers but Fin says they will ask them to turn over the tapes of Amy that Harold was blackmailing her with. Steven says they are off base. Carisi says now they have two allegations of assault and that a publicist who is mentally unstable is easy to discredit but the star of the network, not so much. Harold arrives in the building, surrounded by reporters. Harold, there with Margery Evans, and he explains Heidi was emotional after hearing Davina’s story and that is why they love her here. When asked what is next for her, Margery states she hopes to follow in Heidi’s footsteps and she considers her a mentor. As Fin and Carisi watch, Steven said the real reason why Heidi had her breakdown is because she is trying to renegotiate her contract and she found Margery Evans is being groomed to replace her. Carisi asks groomed by who, Harold Coyle? Steven explains this is a brutal business for women, there is a shelf life, no matter how much plastic surgery they get.
At the apartment of Heidi Sorenson at 472 East 51st Street on Thursday, March 16, Heidi opens the door to find Benson, and Heidi states she told her she didn’t want to talk. Benson says please, it is important. Heidi sighs and as she walks away from Benson, Benson follows and asks if it is true that she is renegotiating her contract with HNT. Heidi explains she is exploring her options. Benson questions if that is why she doesn’t want to tell her the truth about what happened this morning. Heidi states she should have never said his name out loud like that. Benson asks why, because it isn’t true or because she is scared of getting fired. Heidi gives her a look but doesn’t answer. Benson says okay, let’s say it is true. Heidi counters that she is not ruining her career because she had a weak moment; she fixed it and apologized to Harold personally and he knows it won’t happen again. Benson questions if she knows Amy James, and Heidi replies she had “problems.” Benson comments he had tape on her, and when Heidi reacts strangely, Benson asks Heidi if he had tape on HER as well. Heidi insists no, but Benson says they can fight this. Heidi tells Benson not to judge her and don’t worry, she is not going to kill herself. Benson suggests to Heidi when she is ready to have a serious conversation, Heidi knows where she is. Benson quickly turns and storms out. Heidi gets a look of worry.
Back at SVU, Benson is at her desk and Rollins enters her office and announces that Chief Dodds is there. He enters Benson’s office, greeting her and Barba, who is also present. Dodds explains that One PP got a call from Steven Turner at HNT, and asks if they are investigating Harold Coyle on assault charges. Benson states it is very preliminary, and Dodds questions who is the complainant. Benson emphasizes it is really very preliminary, and Dodds says that is what Turner said, adding that her detectives are basically throwing spaghetti against the wall. Barba interjects that, with all due respect, he is hoping Dodds is not instructing them to stay away from HNT. Dodds states of course not, a powerful, bombastic news organization with a penchant for suing law enforcement who go after enemies on Twitter and who have friends in the current administration. Benson says that she hears him. Dodds adds that if they have reasonably there individuals in such organizations that may be guilty of sexual assault, of course she has to investigate…just have a damn good reason. Benson acknowledges that she hears him. He states he will leave them to it, and he exits her office. Benson comments to Barba, “So, happy to be back at work yet?” Barba replies, “After that, it almost makes me miss suspension.”
Here are the details for a new episode of Law & Order SVU, “Conversion.”
Law & Order SVU “Conversion” Air Date May 17, 2017 (9 PM ET/8C Wednesday NBC)
When a young woman is raped by a member of her church group, Barba (Raúl Esparza) must argue that the First Amendment doesn't entitle a person to break the law. Also starring Mariska Hargitay (Lt. Olivia Benson), Ice T (Sgt. Odafin Tutuola), Kelli Giddish (Det. Amanda Rollins) and Peter Scanavino (Det. Sonny Carisi). Guest starring Jessie Carter (Ann Davenport), Casey Cott (Lucas Hale), Michael Kostroff (Atty. Evan Braun), Kip Pardue (Reverend Gary Langham) and Sarah Deaver (Lydia Banks).