Rate Law and Order SVU’s second Chicago Justice reunion

CHICAGO JUSTICE -- "See Something" Episode 101 -- Pictured: Gary Basaraba as William O'Boyle -- (Photo by: Parrish Lewis/NBC)
CHICAGO JUSTICE -- "See Something" Episode 101 -- Pictured: Gary Basaraba as William O'Boyle -- (Photo by: Parrish Lewis/NBC) /

Law and Order SVU had another reunion of Chicago Justice alums Thursday with the return of Billy O’Boyle. What did you think of SVU season 20, episode 7?

While Chicago Justice is gone, its attorneys are definitely getting a second life over on Dick Wolf‘s Law & Order: SVU.

Gary Basaraba became the fourth Chicago Justice lawyer to appear on SVU last night, bringing his defense attorney Billy O’Boyle over in the episode “Caretaker.”

Basaraba followed Carl Weathers (“Zero Tolerance”), Christopher Wiehl (“Service”) and of course, Philip Winchester (who joined the series as a regular last season).

And unlike the first two, whose appearances amounted to little more than extended cameos, he got an awful lot to sink his teeth into.

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“Caretaker” was a very dark episode, which involved a mother (Sasha Alexander) who murdered her entire family under the belief that she was preventing their future suffering.

Family annihilators, as they’re referred to, are some of the toughest cases—and this defendant being a woman introduced a whole gender angle to the plot as well.

The defense’s argument, making the mom a sympathetic character who was literally driven into insanity by the pressures society places on women, was more than a little controversial.

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It was also what made this episode the perfect fit for Billy O’Boyle. One Chicago fans will recall that he isn’t shy about controversial defenses. He was the defense attorney in “Comma” which presented a very particular argument about gun control and the punctuation in a certain Constitutional amendment.

The script for “Caretaker” gave Gary Basaraba enough screen time to be the blue-collar showman that O’Boyle fancies himself to be. He made some pretty theatrical arguments, and SVU also gave some more room for him outside of the courtroom.

It explained that his law firm was actually based in New York with a satellite office in Chicago (easy but plausible) and that he had a history working with the defendant (interesting but not otherwise touched upon).

Furthermore, he once again tried to buddy up to Winchester’s character Peter Stone. This time he crashed Stone’s dinner with Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay). One of the interesting things about “Comma” was how genial O’Boyle was, or appeared to be, with Peter off the clock and “Caretaker” kept that going.

It was the best Chicago Justice appearance on SVU yet, and hopefully the show brings him back for more, because Stone still needs a recurring adversary and the rich characters of Justice deserve to be used a lot more, too.

Did you enjoy Gary Basaraba’s work on Law & Order: SVU as much as we did? Tell us by going to the comments below.

Learn more about this episode in our SVU recap. dark. Next

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