Could One ‘Law & Order: SVU’ Character Lead a Spin-off?

by Suzanne Halliburton
Raymond Hall/GC Images

Think back to a recent Law & Order: SVU episode. Hint, it’s the Christmas one. Did the show reveal casting for a new spinoff?

A Law & Order: Hate Crimes series has been in the works for a few years. Speculation has it headed straight to NBC’s streaming service, Peacock. But the Law & Order: SVU episode called Silent Night, Hateful Night, which ran Jan. 6, certainly revealed perfect casting for a spinoff. And that was especially true with the return of Donal Logue as Declan Murphy.

Logue’s Murphy appeared in 2014-15 on Law & Order: SVU, so he’s a familiar face to the series and the ways of a procedural drama. He had chemistry with SVU cast members, particularly Kelli Giddish’s Amanda Rollins. After all, Murphy and Rollins had a child together, but Murphy hasn’t been involved in the daughter’s life.

In the earlier SVU episode, Captain Olivia Benson and her crew were pulled away from Christmas celebrations because of a string of hate crimes around the city. And we see that New York already had a Hate Crimes division (with a dynamic cast). About 4.1 million people viewed the episode.

Law & Order: SVU Revealed a Talented Hate Crimes Team

Murphy, who had worked undercover on cases around the world, was back in New York to direct the program. Jason Biggs’ Andy Parlato-Goldstein was a new character to the show. But the others on the Hate Crimes team were ones we’ve seen before. Ari’el Stachel returned as Hasim Khaldun, a detective who’d appeared on Law & Order: SVU as a mass transit cop. Stachel’s Khaldun worked undercover assignments with Rollins, as the two pretended to be a couple as they investigated cases. Plus, Cyndee Rivera, who appeared in season 22 as detective Mia Ruz, also was part of the Hate Crimes team.

TV Insider reporter Matt Roush recently addressed the status of a Hate Crimes spinoff. He said the Dick Wolf team is consumed with the revival of Law & Order, the OG. That show went off the air in 2010, but is returning Feb. 24.

The Hate Crimes spinoff now is on the “back burner again.” TV Insider also said that if the spinoff comes to fruition, it still likely is headed to streaming and not NBC’s primetime. There’s not a ton of room for another Wolf show to appear on the network. He already has control of NBC’s Wednesday and Thursday’s lineups. The Chicago One shows air Wednesday. Then Thursday is all about Law & Order, with Law & Order: SVU now the signature show. Wolf also has the Tuesday lineup on CBS with its FBI series and two spinoffs.

And given that subject matter for a Hate Crimes show would be so dark, a streaming service probably is the better platform. The Law & Order: SVU episode had one death. That was when Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay) was forced to shoot the main suspect after he pulled a gun.