NBC's "Law & Order" programs are long established and all over the schedule. But the sex-obsessed vice cops of "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" are a breed apart. They exist to be socially provocative, which is to say, to rattle, to disturb. Viewers at home probably weren't ready for the plot that aired on NBC on March 3. These scriptwriters are so revolting that they become almost comical.
As you read what follows, you decided how closely this mirrors anything resembling the world of reality.
Someone was strangling prostitutes to death and leaving prayer cards behind. The first suspect was a perverted man whose wife proclaimed he had converted to Christianity and overcome his sinful ways. The cops quickly discovered the man dismissed his wife as a "prude," and he was cheating on her with a variety of young girls because "it's not a crime to want a little variety" in his sex life, including "toys, role play, and threesomes." Despite his ardor for sexual gunplay as well, this so-called Christian was not the strangler.
Unsurprisingly, the killer was a Bible-quoting minister. During an interrogation by the male lead detective on "SVU," he claimed, "There is a better life waiting for girls like her (a murdered prostitute) in Heaven," that "God put me on this earth to fight Satan's grip on these girls' souls!" And: "Sometimes dying is better than living."
This minister's religious creepiness was off the charts: "Whoever did this wasn't a murderer. Whoever did this sent these girls to Heaven out of love." When he was inserted into a line of suspects, he walked right up to the mirrored windows and yelled like a prophet from the Old Testament: "They shall fall by the sword, their infants dashed to pieces, and their women with child ripped open!"
The prostitute who was brought in to identify him ran down the hall and fell down a flight of stairs, damaging -- surprise -- her unborn baby. When she later identifies the killer and he is convicted in court, the Christian killer screams more Bible verses at the judge. "He who sitteth on high, upon the wicked, he shall rain snares, fire and brimstone, and a horrible tempest: This shall be the portion of their cup!"
Now let's try to turn this around, or make it less upside-down. Instead of Christian minister villains and saintly prostitutes, reverse it. Let's say the innocent victims are nuns, and the vicious assailant is an atheist. How would this plot sound to Hollywood?
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