Weeks ago, we saw photos circulating of Law & Order: SVU star Mariska Hargitay alongside Lucy Liu and also former UnREAL star Shiri Appleby. The obvious impulse is to get very excited about this — we knew that Liu was directing the episode, but we hadn’t received confirmation on Shiri’s guest-star status. Now, consider it official — she will be in “Dearly Beloved,” the upcoming 19th episode of the season, airing on Thursday, April 4. There’s a new episode airing on Thursday — rejoice in that — but on the other side, there will be another hiatus. It’s a bummer and it’s frustrating for those who want to blow through new episodes, but it’s a reality of the SVU experience. We’re pretty used to it at this point. Store away some repeats on your DVR.
So what role will Appleby play within the episode’s story? Check out the synopsis that CarterMatt has for you below for more on that:
04/04/2019 (10:00PM – 11:00PM) (Thursday) : The SVU investigates a he-said, she-said case when a woman crashes a wedding to accuse her therapist of sexual assault. Starring Mariska Hargitay, Kelli Giddish and Peter Scanavino. Guest starring Shiri Appleby (Kitty Bennett), TJ Thyne (Dr. Joshua Hensley), Maureen Sebastian (Lana Stallworth), Poppy Liu (Hannah Berkowitz) and Garrett Turner (Bo Albrecht). Directed by Lucy Liu.
Is the therapist one of the parties getting married? We don’t have to put on a detective cap to draw that assumption. That would be the primary motivation to speak out at a wedding (this is far more heartbreaking than your typical “I object” you see in the movies); you learn that the assaulter is about to commit their life to someone else, and you want to be the one to ensure that someone else does not make a devastating mistake.
Has Appleby appeared before?
Absolutely. She took on the part of officer Amelia Albers back during the 2013 episode entitled “Military Justice.” Is it unusual for a former guest star to come back in a different role? If you haven’t read CarterMatt articles on SVU before, you may not realize that it’s actually quite common! The SVU philosophy for guest stars seems to be something this like.
1. Let’s find the best actors available.
2. Even if this person has already done the show, who cares? They’re too good to pass up for another go-around!
It’s really that simple. If an actor is good enough to appear on the show in the first place, they’re good enough to easily hop from one role to the next and make the two characters feel different. The same goes for the writers. How the creative team writers for Shiri Appleby in 2019 is going to be different from how they wrote for her back in 2013. The world is different now and there are SO many different roles someone can play. Take, for example, on the next new episode — you’re going to see Titus Welliver come back to SVU, and he appeared previously in a very different role than the one he’s set for now. Typically, we see returning actors to SVU have a little bit of a longer hiatus than Appleby has here — not that we mind in this instance, given that she’s incredible and worthy of another guest spot.
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What do you want to see on Law & Order: SVU season 20 episode 19? Be sure to share some of your thoughts in the comments. (Photo: NBC.)