Law & Order: SVU star Demore Barnes once explained the emotional challenges he faced while working on the show. Barnes played Garland on the series before leaving the show this season. People know SVU for its incredibly intense moments and consistent tackling of sensitive real-world issues.
In a January Starry Mag interview completed before Barnes departed the show, he discussed the emotional Toll a show like Law & Order: SVU can take. The interviewer asked if there were any times when it was hard to distance himself from the dark subject matter.
“Yeah, there has been instances,” he said. “As actors we’re paid to be emotionally brave. Really in a lot of cases I think we’re paid and expected to be braver than we have a tendency to be naturally on our own. So, part of that bravery… part of that courage – is us remaining open empathetically and emotionally to what it is we’re encountering; what it is we’re navigating.”
Barnes has Had Some Very Emotional Table Reads With the ‘Law & Order: SVU’ Cast
This has come out in different ways. Sometimes, he and his castmates have been moved to the point of tears. In one instance, they were doing a table read for his second-ever episode. The actors had a tough time getting through it.
“We read through that particular script which centered for the most part primarily on abortion and some of the jurisdictional issues that were being navigated around abortion. It was a heavy, heavy, episode,” he said. “A crack of thunder would shoot through the room and had us all pause and look at each other and as this continued to happen it was just like there were people. I mean, some of us were crying or almost crying and at a certain point Ice just said, ‘Yo! This is real, man!'”
Law & Order: SVU has never shied away from addressing the brutal reality many victims face in the real world. Actors, who are supposed to be able to portray the emotions felt by their characters. So they are definitely challenged emotionally and as performers on a show like Law & Order: SVU.
Demore Barnes Left the Show This Year
Barnes, for one, did what many fans think was a fantastic job during his time on the show. Unfortunately, however, the curtains closed for his character way earlier than expected. In a move that seems to have confused both the actors and the fans, NBC decided not to move forward with Demore Barnes and Jamie Grey Hyder, who played Kat.
The two characters left in the two-part season 23 premiere, and the show has since continued on with replacements. Barnes has expressed gratitude for his time on the show. Hopefully, this isn’t the last fans will see of him.
If you want to catch new episodes of Law & Order: SVU, you can tune in to NBC on Thursday Nights at 9/8 Central.