‘Law & Order: SVU’ Fans Debate the Best and Worst Season Finales

by Caitlin Berard

Since its premiere in 1999, Law & Order: SVU has produced 23 seasons and an astounding 516 episodes (and counting). But if you think the police procedural’s vast catalog prevents fans from recalling specific episodes (and their placement within seasons) with ease, you’re wrong.

No, SVU fans are a particularly dedicated bunch, many of whom can recall the smallest details from the series, such as a single-episode guest star or a villain who stands out among the rest as especially heinous. And among that knowledge are the events of each season’s finale episode.

In a recent Reddit thread, SVU‘s most ardent fans discussed the best and worst of all 23 season finales thus far. Let’s start with the negative.

The Worst ‘Law & Order: SVU’ Season Finale, According to Fans

So, Law & Order: SVU is unquestionably iconic. Despite technically being a spinoff of the OG series, SVU is the franchise’s flagship. It’s far and away the most beloved of them all (and there are a lot – eight, in total).

And when you consider just how popular the original series is, in addition to the other highly regarded spinoffs, such as Criminal Intent and Organized Crime, it becomes clear that SVU is nothing short of a cultural phenomenon.

All that said, when a series runs for close to a quarter-century, it’s impossible not to have a dud here and there. Unfortunately, some of these missteps have taken place in the all-important season finale.

For fans, the clear worst of them all is Season 19’s “Remember Me/Remember Me Too” and it isn’t close. In the thread, fans refer to this episode as a “dumpster fire” and “a mess”.

In this two-hour season finale, a victim of human trafficking takes matters into her own hands when she holds her attacker hostage at gunpoint. What she doesn’t realize, however, is that a camera in his home live streams the entire incident. As always, Benson (Mariska Hargitay) steps in to save the day but is then taken hostage herself.

More happens along the way, but all you really need to know is that it’s a lot. And fans agree, one saying, “I’ve watched this finale like 3 times and still don’t quite understand it.”

‘SVU’ Fans’ All-Time Favorite Season Finale

For every misstep in Law & Order: SVU canon, there are 50 stellar episodes. So, while fans passionately dislike “Remember Me,” it’s not indicative of the series as a whole. On the contrary, there were a variety of season finale favorites among the Reddit fans rather than the singular misstep to which they universally pointed as the worst.

The most popular finale of all, however, was the end of Season 8, “Screwed”. In this episode, Ludacris guest stars as Fin Tutuola’s (Ice-T) nephew, Darius. To Fin’s horror, Darius is on trial for rape and murder. And to make matters worse, he refuses to go down without a fight.

During the course of his trial, Darius reveals information about everyone in the Special Victims Unit, determined to take the detectives down with him. Fans’ opinion of this episode couldn’t be more different from that of “Remember Me.”

“Season 8 is a rightfully controversial season overall, but that finale is FIRE, as is Ludacris’ phenomenal performance,” one fan wrote. “It’s one of the most dramatic episodes of all time and that’s saying so much. A masterpiece!” another added.