Law & Order: Special Victims Unit is a spinoff of the original series, Law & Order. The first episode aired in 1999 and was created and produced by Dick Wolf. Following the exact format of its predecessor, Law & Order: SVU begins with a crime; taking the audience through the entire judicial process. What differentiates Law & Order: SVU is that this particular police squad deals only with heinous crimes that have a sexual nature. The idea came to Dick Wolf as he wrote episodes for Law & Order and he realized he wanted a show that delved deeper into the psyche of a sexual offender.
Law & Order: SVU is the highest rating of all Law & Orders including the original. Often loosely based on real crimes, SVU immediately grabs the audience with an often disturbing crime and as the show progresses the audience begins to take on the role of both cop and prosecutor looking for an answer.
Both Christopher Meloni
and Mariska Hargitay
have been long standing actors on SVU, acting as police partners in the fictional 16th District of Manhattan. In fact, Hargitay was the first actor of all the Law & Order show to take home an Emmy for Outstanding Female Actress in a Drama Series.
Though a spin off from a well-renowned series, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit has created its own following and still surprises audiences today. Using real-life crimes, Law & Order: SVU is sure to have enough material to last for many more seasons.