There may be no more powerful force to influence public awareness and perception than the entertainment industry. Most of us probably don't even realize how much our attitudes and assumptions are informed by what we see on television and in movies.
Tonight's harrowing SVU about a college systematically mistreating its student/rape victims featured plot twists so shocking they hardly seemed plausible -- except that they were drawn directly from real-life cases.
Most nights, SVU explores the nightmare of someone terrible hurting your family. But what if the terrible someone was part of your family? What if he was your son?
Tonight's episode finally answered the question Law & Order: SVU fans have been buzzing about for weeks: who is Olivia's mystery man? It immediately transitioned to: how quickly can he be thrown the wolves for our amusement?
Come on, admit it. Who hasn't fantasized about killing their sister's no-good boyfriend?
Watching Sky Ferreira in her video for the track "Everything is Embarrassing" conjures memories of Madonna in the '80s, a time when playful sensuality was captured in a single glance and a slight smile breathed effortless flirtation.
I can't stop thinking about the latest media train wreck that is the Jodi Arias case and what the possibility of actual justice being served is.
What's more controversial than a hip-hop star beating his pop-star girlfriend so badly she can't sing at their Grammy gig that night? SVU portraying a barely-fictionalized version of their relationship, which ends with the guy killing the girl.
After last week's Mike Tyson debacle, I was hoping SVU would regroup and come back with a strong, realistic episode. Instead, "Secrets Exhumed" eschewed plausibility and focused on creating unbelievable plot twists. It succeeded... in being unbelievable.
It's hard to decide which was the worst part about last night's SVU: the decision to cast convicted rapist Mike Tyson as a rape victim, or a storyline so convoluted it had the entire NYPD Special Victims Unit working to exonerate the Ohio prisoner he portrayed.
"Criminal Hatred" was a strong episode blending serious, cutting-edge issues like gay-on-gay hate crimes with the sparkling entertainment provided by dressing up the detectives to infiltrate gay bars and strip clubs.
Confidential informants can be great sources for police, but also present challenges to their police handlers, especially if they're accused of crimes themselves.
Sure, there were hookers in Santa hats, pedophile priests, and a gory Christmas Eve shootout. But the one question SVU fans were buzzing about by the end of "Presumed Guilty" was this: Whose masculine mystery hand was Olivia holding as she flew to the Bahamas for a winter holiday tryst?
There wasn't a special victim in sight, but "Dreams Deferred" was a strong episode about a regular joe who snaps and goes on a killing spree.
"Lessons Learned" was an intense episode combining some of the most disturbing elements from the real-life cases of Jerry Sandusky, the Boy Scouts, and a posh prep school in Minnesota.
Each Wednesday, I find myself tweeting the sentence, "Tonight's #SVU explores every parent's worst nightmare." I've gotta hand it to the writers: it really is a skill, coming up with something more disturbing every week.