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  • Law & Order: Special Victims Unit - The Fifth Year
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Law & Order: Special Victims Unit - The Fifth Year

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Editorial Reviews

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, the hard-hitting and emotionally charged second series from the critically acclaimed Law & Order franchise, chronicles the compelling cases of the elite Special Victims Unit of the New York City Police Department. Created by Emmy Award-winning producer Dick Wolf, this award-winning series follows the investigations of Det. Elliot Stabler (Christopher Meloni), a seasoned, seen-it-all veteran of the unit, and his tough but compassionate partner, Det. Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay), as they try to solve the city's most heinous crimes. Directing their intense efforts is Capt. Donald Cragen (Dann Florek, reprising his Law & Order role), whose tough but supportive approach guides the entire squad - which includes Detectives John Munch (Richard Belzer) and Odafin Tutuola (Ice-T), forensic psychiatrist George Huang (B.D. Wong) and ADA Casey Novak (Diane Neal) - through the dangerous challenges they face every day.

Special Features

Disc 4:
  • Police Sketch: Ice-T
  • Police Sketch: B.D. Wong
  • Police Sketch: Dann Florek
  • SVU Alumni

  • Product Details

    • Actors: Mariska Hargitay
    • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled
    • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0)
    • Subtitles: Spanish, French
    • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
    • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
    • Number of discs: 4
    • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
    • Studio: Universal Studios
    • DVD Release Date: September 14, 2004
    • Run Time: 2117 minutes
    • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (100 customer reviews)
    • ASIN: B0002CX224
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,811 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
    • Learn more about "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit - The Fifth Year" on IMDb

    Customer Reviews

    4.5 out of 5 stars

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews

    22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Adam Raper on September 24, 2004
    Format: DVD
    At the beginning I was questioning Universal's strategy to release season 5 before seasons 2,3,and 4. They said it was to help promote season 6. Plus I didn't really watch any episodes from season 5, the only one that I did watch fully was "Painless" on USA network. I must say I was very pleased with what I bought. I had never seen the episode "Loss" until I bought the DVD set. That episode is probably the best SVU I have EVER seen. After that episode I was sad to see Stephanie March go. However to be honest with you, I think her character got replaced with another one just as good. A lot of reviews that I've read say more bad things than good things about Diane Neal and her character. I will admit in her first few episodes her character didn't make some good decisions and had a lack of self-confidence. However towards the middle of the season and at the end I think that Diane Neal played her character very well.

    The only thing that I don't like about this DVD set is the double sided discs, but that disadvantage is completely overlooked by everything else.

    Here are my top five favorite shows on this DVD set:

    1. Loss

    2. Mean

    3. Escape

    4. Tragedy

    5. Ritual
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    19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Erica Anderson on July 1, 2005
    Format: DVD
    Of the few crime dramas I watch ("Cold Case", the original "CSI", "Without a Trace", and "Law & Order: SVU"), "Law & Order:SVU" is by far my personal favorite show. I watch this show religiously on both NBC and USA network. Out of the five seasons, I strongly believe that season five is the strongest season in the series because the storywriting has been so compelling. That is just my personal opinion. I was originally unhappy when Stephanie March left the series after the first 3 or 4 episodes in season five and was wary of Diane Neal as the new assistant D.A. Thank heavens I was proven wrong. Diane Neal has proved to be a worthy assistant D.A to me. Casey Novak is just as defiant and strong-willed as Alexandra Cabot was, especially when she butt heads with Detectives Stabler and Benson like in her first episode "Serendipity". Kinda funny how Diane made her first appearance on the show a couple of seasons back as a co-defendant, and now she is back as the new A.D.A. Sure the plot twists can be confusing but that makes watching this show so enjoyable to be. A lot of my favorite episodes comes from season five. One of my personal favorite episodes is "Ritual" where a young African boy is found murdered. His death appeared to be a ritual death but appearances can be deceiving. Ice-T really shines in this particular episode as 'Fin'. His involvement in the case really shines through and is definitely one of Ice-T's best performances. I really think Ice-T compliments Richard Belzer's snarky, conspiracy loving character. The dynamics between the detectives are certainly worth writing home about. Another really strong episode was the last episode with Stephanie March as Alexandra Cabot in "Loss" which involves a murdered undercover agent. I was moved by the ending and how Stephanie left the show.Read more ›
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    18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Dj Pawz on September 20, 2004
    Format: DVD
    This is a definite box set to have if you like the show. Like many, I am also wondering why they chose to release the fifth year ahead of the others. Don't get me wrong, the last season was amazing, but those who have really only followed the show starting in the 2003-2004 season and bought the first season box set are missing all the stuff that had happened, but again amazing box set! The only downfall to this is that rather then the 6 or 7 disc set, they have reduced it down to four double sided discs and the way that they are packaged you're bound to put fingerprints or scratches on the discs. The extra features on the fourth disc are really good as well. I am waiting for the other box sets to make their way out onto shelves. Superb show!
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    7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Lauren on December 22, 2004
    Format: DVD
    This season of SVU is very good! Some of the episodes are pretty intense and the introduction of the new ADA is in season 5 as well. Some of the best episodes are Mean, Slaves, Mother, Loss, Serendipity, Choice, and Careless.

    As far as the DVDs themselves, I was a little disappointed that they went the cheaper route and used 2 sided DVDs. In my experience, these get messed up a little easier due to the fact that there isn't a side that can take a little injury, and no matter how careful you are with your DVDs, you are going to encounter fingerprints and/or scratches.

    There weren't many extras but I rarely watch those anyway. The "police sketches" of Ice-T, BD Wong, and Dann Florek were interesting, though. I was disappointed in the SVU alumni montage because I think it missed some good stars that have appeared.

    All in all this DVD set is great.
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    9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Nick the Greek on March 13, 2005
    Format: DVD
    Let me just start by saying that this is easily one of the best shows on TV. The acting is fantastic, and the story lines are great. Unfortuntely, this season saw the departure of Stephanie March's character, Assistant District Attorney Alexandra Cabot. However, her departure created what's arguably the best episode of the series, "Loss." While it may be a little overdone, it's definitely an edge-of-your-seat episode.

    ADA Casey Novak (Diane Neal) is her replacement, and she doesn't quite fill Cabot's shoes. Her character is less interesting and a little more whiny and she is constantly crusading for different causes. Also, she's not nearly as good a lawyer. But she's not all horrible, and she gets the job done I suppose.

    One complaint I've always had about the show is that Det. Stabler's character sometimes overshadows the other detectives, who are more entertaining. His "bad cop" routine and constant squinting get on my nerves after a while. Det. Munch (Richard Belzer) is horribly overlooked, and it's a shame because he is the funniest and most interesting of the four detectives. Also, even though she's one of the two main detectives, Det. Benson doesn't have enough of a role on the show. When she is leading an investigation, she often ends up making mistakes, even though she is much more level-headed than her partner, which isn't quite fair to her character.

    I didn't quite mean to ramble so much, but these flaws seem to become magnified come season 5. Despite this, it has some of show's best episodes, including "Loss," "Lowdown," and "Mean." I can't wait until they release seasons 2-4.
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    Topic From this Discussion
    L&O SVU Season 5...Booklet anyone?
    I haven't gotten one either plus the first copy I brought was faulty.
    Feb 18, 2008 by Kelly Byrne |  See all 3 posts
    Has Law & Order (Reg and SVU) for Season's 3 and 4 Unavailable?
    season 5 is out on the website, i know that season 3 is not out yet due to the 9/11 attack. soo look for that in the future,
    Nov 3, 2006 by Eric Burgess |  See all 4 posts
    She was NUTS!!!("Head ep,possible spolirs) Be the first to reply
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