I've recently become an avid fan of Law and Order: SVU. And when I say "avid" I mean "obsessed." As in after-sitting-and-watching-an-entire-SVU-marathon-via-USA-Network-I-still-want-more obsessed. I hadn't encountered the show before (yes, apparently I was living under a pop culture rock for the last 10 years), and this kid I met at the airport strongly suggested I watch it. And, low and behold, what was on when I arrived back in Boise? Thank you, Airport Guy from Yale for introducing me to an amazing show. But why is it that I love SVU so much? I love a lot of things. Cupcakes. Labrador Retrievers. Bon Jovi. But what I love about SVU is that it is actually an intellectually stimulating show (unlike some of the junk I watch). They present very real issues and very accurate information about issues like rape and domestic violence. I love Detective Benson because she is an extremely strong, intelligent character: the show rarely delves into her personal life, she's not sleeping around with everyone nor is she obsessed with getting married or having kids, and her relationship with Detective Stabler shows that men and women can indeed have a deep, plutonic friendship. She's not reed thin. She does not let people walk all over her, she sticks up for herself, and she's just all around kick ass. The show focuses on her as a competent career woman. I must say that it is AWESOME and let me reiterate AWESOME to have a strong female character to have for a role model. Don't get me wrong, the show isn't perfect and has some issues, but it is certainly a great step forward. Let me tell you, it is hard to find many female characters on television (at least the shows I watch) that are not obsessed with marriage, children, and don't look like supermodels. So, hats off to you Mariska Hargitay. Thank you for giving me someone to look up to. This is why I love you.
*Sidenote: as much as a fan I am of being politically active, voting, civic duty and the like, I was extremely bitter when, come 9/8 central Law and Order: SVU was NOT on NBC...and there was President Obama giving the State of the Union Address. Why not Thursday? Yeah, tradition, yadda yadda yadda. In the future, I encourage you to not schedule during a very popular prime time show. And yes I realize the importance of the State of the Union address, however I just needed this selfish moment.