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Law & Order: SVU fans react to 'gut wrenching' episode

Mariska Hargitay as Captain Olivia Benson, Octavio Pisano as Detective Joe Velasco in Law & Order: SVU
(Image credit: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit might be the longest-running primetime live-action series of all time, but it never fails to deliver a punch, especially when it releases episodes like last night’s. 

The show depicts and follows the lives of the Special Victims Unit of the New York City Police Department, an elite squad of detectives who investigate crimes of sexual assault, child abuse and domestic violence. 

The episode itself was brutal in all the ways audiences have come to expect, but it still left everyone speechless. It’s easy to get sucked into and invested in each episode’s case, and this one serves as the perfect example. 

“This #SVU episode stressed me TF out! It’s been a minute since i gasped in shock like i have tonight…” read one reaction.

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As always, many took the time to praise Mariska Hargitay’s incredible performance as Captain Olivia Benson. No matter what the storyline, she never fails to amaze those watching and it was no different this time around. 

“Let's just talk about the unmatched talent of  @mariska and how she’s able to display a thousand different emotions with just a single look,” one fan tweeted.

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Fans were especially impressed with the burned body in the recent episode, which some saying it was "hard to watch" yet still being fascinated by the behind the scenes work.

The official Twitter account for Wolf Entertainment shared some photos of the episode’s makeup artist, Mike Harvey, with his work on the “burned body” from the episode. The scene was painful yet fans were impressed to hear more about the process it took to create. 

They wrote: "Our incredible #SVU Makeup Artist, Mike Harvey, seen here sporting lab coat while wheeling our burned body through the courtroom, used his makeup skills to add details to a dummy to make it look more like our character, Maribel, had been burnt alive!"

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Responding to the tweet, fans said: "okay while that scene was hard to watch, this is cool" and "That is both amazing and horrifying at the same time congratulations he should be proud of himself".

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit season 23 airs live on NBC Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET. Anyone with a traditional cable/satellite pay-TV subscription or TV antenna can tune in via their local NBC channel to watch. 

Also, subscribers to live TV streaming services like Fubo TV, Hulu with Live TV, Sling TV and YouTube TV also have access to their local NBC channels (make sure you’re signed up for Sling TV Blue though).

Sophia Soto has a passion for all things entertainment. She currently writes for What To Watch, The Nerds of Color, Remezcla, Looper and Den of Geek, with bylines in Young Hollywood. Some of her favorite shows include Grey’s Anatomy, The Goldbergs, Riverdale and Roswell, New Mexico. She is also a complete Marvel nerd!