‘Chicago Med’ Star S. Epatha Merkerson Praises Realism of the Series

by Shelby Scott

One Chicago receives a lot of praise for its realism from fans and critics alike. However, in a new statement, Chicago Med actress and former Law & Order star S. Epatha Merkerson is highlighting the authenticity of her current show, speaking to the talent of the medical drama’s creators.

According to Hollywood Outbreak, Merkerson stated specifically that the scenes and stories we see on Chicago Med closely mimic those of life in a busy urban hospital. Of the series, she stated, “[One Chicago‘s] plots may not be literally ripped from the headlines, [but] the show’s writers and producers do strive to make the stories as authentic as possible.”

Dick Wolf’s Franchises Achieve Mass Success Thanks to Their Authenticity

Merkerson also spoke to the authenticity of her former show, Law & Order. From 1993 to 2010, the Chicago Med actress played Lieutenant Anita Van Buren. Altogether, she starred in nearly 400 episodes and remains one of the longest-running characters in the series.

During her discussion, Merkerson admitted that some of Law & Order‘s storylines see influence by actual headlines. It’s likely one of the main reasons the series has achieved such notable longevity.

Back on Chicago Med, however, there’s a reason the show comes off so authentically. And that’s because showrunners and writers are consistently working with their cast alongside genuine industry professionals. In fact, Chicago Fire‘s fictional Firehouse 51 features a genuine fireman, Tony Ferraris, who has continued to play himself in the series since the pilot launched in 2012.

Additionally, the cast and crew of Chicago PD are consistently working alongside the Windy City’s law enforcement officers, learning the pace of their profession and the problems they confront every day.

‘Law & Order’ Alum Hopes for ‘Chicago Med/SVU’ Crossover

Because she has starred in both the Law & Order and One Chicago franchises, S. Epatha Merkerson likely remains one of the best cast members to approach to talk multi-universe crossovers. Since finding success with Law & Order in 1990, Dick Wolf has gone on to absolutely dominate primetime TV. Part of that is due to his affinity for powerful, impactful crossover events.

As we’ve seen, especially in the world of One Chicago, writers are not shy about bringing diverse casts together. Across 10 seasons of the first responder-based franchise, we’ve seen the stars of Chicago Fire, Chicago Med, and Chicago PD come face to face multiple times. Overall, it has made for some memorable events and seasons.

However, so far, the only crossover S. Epatha Merkerson wants to see is one between her current show Chicago Med and her former series, Law & Order. Of the potential event, she said, “I think it would be really cool if at some point we do a crossover.”

Interestingly, though, some fans pointed out the actress might need to choose between what role to fulfill: that of Lt. Anita Van Buren or her current role as Gaffney Chicago Medical Center’s head of patient and medical services Sharon Goodwin.