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Law & Order: Tonight’s May Not be the Last Episode

Law & orderOne of the surprises of last week’s TV news was the cancellation of Law & Order after 20 seasons. The venerable NBC drama had been on the cusp of becoming the longest-running primetime drama on American television. Tonight marks the series finale of the show, or does it?

Created by Dick Wolf, Law & Order revolves around criminal investigations by the NYPD and the trials that follow. The current performers include Jeremy Sisto, Anthony Anderson, S. Epatha Merkerson, Linus Roache, Alana de la Garza, and Sam Waterston.

The ratings for Law & Order have been pretty low for awhile but, in part because it is produced in-house and in part because the rest of NBC’s schedule has done so poorly, the series has remained on the air.

It looked like it would certainly be back for season 21 but Wolf and NBC couldn’t come to an agreement over the finances. One potential deal even had NBC paying for eight episodes and TNT (which airs syndicated reruns) paying for another eight but the cable channel wouldn’t go for it.

Last week, NBC announced that a new series, Law & Order: Los Angeles, would be joining the schedule in the fall and that the original Law & Order had been cancelled. TNT released a statement that said the cable channel wasn’t in talks to pick it up.

However, it seems Wolf and NBC aren’t giving up. The veteran producer says that he’s seeking “other offers” for the show to try to keep it going as a weekly series. There are now reportedly meetings set up between NBC Universal and TNT execs to revisit the possibility of the cable channel funding original episodes. The NBC folks are apparently going over the numbers to try to figure out a way to make it work financially.

If these efforts don’t succeed, there has been talk of NBC working out a deal with Wolf to film some sort of wrap up for the show. That would most likely take the form of a two-hour movie.

Whatever happens, it doesn’t sound like tonight’s episode will be the last we’ll see of Law & Order. Despite issuing a statement that the series has been cancelled, NBC is now referring to tonight’s installment as merely the season finale.

What do you think? Do you think the TV show will continue on another station, will wrap up in a movie, or just disappear?

 

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{ 63 comments… read them below or add one }

Patricia Jones August 3, 2012 at 4:27 pm

I miss seeing L&O on TNT on a regular basis like it use to be. The Mentalist is nothing compared to L&O series. Please bring it back and do a marathon verfy soontoo. Pat jones

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dwight l smith May 18, 2012 at 6:31 am

I have, like many of the shows fans have watched law every since it started. When the reruns are on. I will watch nothing else. I have been watching tv since its inception and went through the horrible shows of the fifties, and most of the junk we were stuck with since that time. The shows theyhave on now I turn off the tv when most come on. Is it possible that our poor educational system created the writers and producers that give us the garbage and drivel. And I have stopped buying many products that sponsor this crap. Why doesnt someone start a law and order channel that has Lennie and crowd. And show nothing else I would watch nothing else. And would show favor to whoever sponsored it. and buy their products. are any adults left at the networks. And please stop showing all the stupid so called adult cartoons.

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I Malone January 25, 2011 at 7:54 pm

I love L&O and I have tried to watch the new L&O LA but does not come near to the
originial.

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Anne Brewbaker November 29, 2010 at 4:39 am

I must agree with the majority of viewers, L&O is the best show on TV and has been ever since its beginning. However after 20 years, it is time for a new one. That should not stop TNT from showing reruns on a regular basis and some marathons of the show best years. Viewers will enjoy it more.

Although I think that criticism can be counter productive, there is enough trash at TNT to alarm the viewers: Angel, Charmed, Supernatural and Las Vegas to name the most silly. They are not only clogging the TNT airwaves with inanity but they are in “double dose” each, two long, long hours at a time in the morning, EVERY WEEK DAY.!!!! What happened to shows like Judging Amy ?. That was good TV.

Anne Brewbaker-Dallas

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Trisha Taylor October 30, 2010 at 3:01 am

Although the posts are old, the sentiment for me has not changed. Aside from Homocide, L & O is the best program on TV. Its not about breaking a record, its about quality television. The stories are ripped from the headlines of the day and living in NY and how the show is written, its like actually living in the city. This is my opinion and only my opinion but it seems that the new viewing audience are into more of the mindless, simplistic reality shows which does not require too much, maybe physical beauty and a tape of sorts. ( Not all of the reality show are crap, some actually showcase talent such as cooking, auto making, fashion…). Again, I mean not offend anyone yet if you get offended, then maybe it might be true. Today’s audience does not have patience to try and figure out problems, they want an immediate stimulation and have it last for at least 22 minutes then they are bored until the next silly thing comes along. They do not like inferences, they want it in your face because they have no patience. To bring this back full circle, L & O was and is the best show ever put on TV. Its not all black and white, everything is not fixed in 30 minutes and they do not always win like Perry Mason. I still watch it on TBS but, they need to keep it on, at least people will have a a job as long as there is crime and someone to write about it.

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ve June 20, 2010 at 12:12 pm

This is the one show that I watched every episode from the pilot.
And it is the only show I never get dissapointed or get bored after watching it after season after season.
Law & Order : LA? No! Law & Order seems so real because it’s in NY.
If money is the problem don’t make LA. Let us have the original Law & Order.

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Vin June 16, 2010 at 3:05 pm

Hands down the best program on TV. I watch little other than sports and I make time in my schedule to see Law and order(Original).

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Anonymous May 31, 2010 at 9:10 pm

OH, NO!!! I argued with a friend about this. He tried to tell me that it was cancelled and I told him he was crazy – they wouldn’t give up one of the best shows on television! Law and Order is one of the few shows I truly love and will watch every time it is on the air. Originals, reruns, reruns of reruns, more originals…between L&O and CSI, I watch very little else. Tehr eare some excellent summer shows, but they are only here for the summer and do not interfere with L&O and CSI. All these ___y reality shows ar just cheap trash that require no true production values: no scripts (if there are scripts, fire the writers and get some good ones!) no costumes (ditto re: scripts) nothing except showing people we don’t care about doing things we would not be caught dead doing (or we’d be in jail for doing!) – People wonder why our young people have no respect for anyone or anything – look what they see presented as “normal” on TV – You cannot take our Law and Order away from us!! — PLEASE!!!

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A.C.E. -LAW & ORDER ADDICT (AKA LUPO LOVER) May 30, 2010 at 5:11 am

I HAVE BEEN WAITING AND WAITING FOR THE LAST THREE EPISODES TO AIR, MY WEEK ISN’T COMPLETE WITHOUT A LAW AND ORDER AND A DOSE OF LUPO. THIS SHOW HAS BEEN ON FOR MOST OF MY LIFE AND THE THOUGHT OF IT BEING CANCELLED SEEMS ALMOST A CRIME. I HAVE SEEN ALMOST ALL THE EPISODES IN PRIME TIME AND MULTIPLE TIMES ON CABLE AND FEEL LIKE THE CAST AND STORIES ARE FAMILY. I DIDN’T KNOW HOW I WOULD REACT WHEN LENNY LEFT AND THEN JESSIE L. MARTIN, BUT S.EPATHA, BERNARD, AND LUPO HAVE CREATED A RAPPORT THAT WORKS AND I ALSO THINK THAT THE CASTING FOR THE NEW DA THAT REPLACED SAM WATERSON WAS SPOT ON-THEY MANAGED TO FIND A CHARACTER AS PASSIONATE, AS BLACK AND WHITE ON ISSUES, AND AS WILLING TO “CREATIVELY” BEND THE LAW IN ORDER TO PUT “THE BAD GUYS AWAY” THAT THE CHANGE IN ROLES FELT SEAMLESS. I HAVE TO HOPE THAT PUBLIC OUTCRY WILL BRING THE SERIES BACK WITH LUPO AND BERNARD AND THE GANG, I GET TEARY THINKING THAT THIS IS THE END…AND WITH NO WARNING. IT’S LIKE LOSING A FRIEND OR FAMILY MEMBER IN AN ACCIDENT…NO WARNING ABOUT THE BIG HOLE THAT THEIR DEPARTURE WILL LEAVE. C’MON NBC AND DICK WOLF…LIFE IS CRAZY AND UNPREDICTABLE ENOUGH, LEAVE US WITH THE ONE CONSTANT THAT WE HAVE COME TO RELY ON…DA DA DADADUM….(MY HUSBAND AND I SING THE INTRO TOGETHER, WE KNOW THERE AREN’T WORDS, BUT WE HAVE A TWO YEAR OLD AND WANT HIM TO JOIN IN SO WE NEED TO SEE LAW AND ORDER STAY ON THE AIR). RESPECTFULLY SUBMITTED BY A TRUE FAN WHO WILL MOURN THE END OF AN ERA IF LAW AND ORDER IS OFF AIR FOR GOOD.
PLEASE HEAR THE FANS AND BRING IT BACK.
(AND THIS IS SUBMITTED BY SOMEONE WHO WORKS FOR A CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY – THAT IS HOW GOOD THIS SHOW IS – I LOVE A SHOW THAT SHOWCASES THE PEOPLE I TYPICALLY CANNOT STAND – DISTRICT ATTORNEYS!)

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Betty Seip May 29, 2010 at 12:13 pm

I would love to see Law and Order continue on. I think the show is the best show ever on TV showing how the NYC police works and how the Order side prosecutes. I still miss Jerry Orbach. In my opionion, his caracter and lines were very well written. We need more shows like Law and Order. There is not excessive violence, as on L&O-SVU.

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Kerry May 29, 2010 at 9:31 am

I love Law & Order!

I would be very sad to see the show end without a proper, advance-warning send off that unites old and new cast-members and contains more than one obscure reference to Jerry Orbach and Jill Hennessy’s character.

That said, of course I don’ t want it to end! It’s an amazing show with writing, production, and acting that is still fresh after 20 years. I will keep watching as long as it airs.

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