Law & Order: Special Victims Unit "Unstoppable" (partially found unaired episode of crime drama series; 2016)

From The Lost Media Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search


This article has been tagged as NSFW due to its references to sexual assualt and molestation.

Law & Order- SVU - Title Card.png

The show's original logo.

Status: Partially Found

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit is an ongoing prime-time American television series that premiered in September of 1999 on the NBC network. It is the second entry of Dick Wolf's Law & Order franchise, and as of 2021, it is the longest-running scripted live-action TV show in the United States. The series focuses on a group of NYPD detectives from Manhattan that are part of a squad known as the Special Victims Unit (SVU), which are mainly dedicated to the investigation of sexually-based offenses or abuse allegations. Although fictional, the show frequently takes inspiration from real-life crimes and news, basing the featured cases on true facts and occurrences. This would later prove to be disadvantageous for the show, as it lead to a fully produced episode remaining unreleased due to its close ties to then-current events.

Unstoppable[edit | edit source]

"Unstoppable" was an episode of the show produced in early 2016 as part of its eighteenth season, with it initially being set to air in October of the same year.[1] The episode starred actor Gary Cole as a politician running for the White House, who was accused of sexual misconduct by several women during his campaign.[2][3] Cole’s character turned out to be innocent, with the accusations being revealed to be fake and a "booby-trap" conducted by his campaign advisor, who believed he wasn't a good fit for the country’s ideals.

This episode was inspired by businessman Donald Trump, who at the time was the Republican candidate for the 2016 United States Presidential Election.[4] The plot is thought to have been based on a then-pending lawsuit against Trump which accused him of raping a 13-year-old girl in the 1990s, although NBC never confirmed this claim.[5]

Due to the delicate nature of the portrayal, the produced episode sparked an inner controversy among the screenwriters, actors and producers of the show, as well as NBC executives, resulting in changes in the original storyline to soften the final product and avoid direct comparisons between Cole’s character and then-presidential-candidate Trump. "Unstoppable" was initially scheduled by NBC to be broadcast on October 12th, 2016,[6] but was later pulled from the air and rescheduled to October 26th, two weeks before the election.[7] A promo for the episode would later be broadcast in mid-October.[8]

Throughout the first weeks of October (before either of the planned air dates), several women came forward to accuse Donald Trump of sexual harassment, and footage of Trump giving controversial remarks about women surfaced in the media.[9] Following these events, NBC decided to further postpone the episode to November 16th, one week after the November 8th election.[10] On November 9th, the day after the election, "Unstoppable" (along with another episode set to premiere that same night entitled "Great Expectations") were removed from the schedule until the following year. The episodes were instead replaced with episodes of the television series Chicago P.D., as there was a need to broadcast some P.D. episodes before a certain date in order to allow a crossover plot between it and fellow TV dramas Chicago Fire and Chicago Justice to go forward, along with NBC needing to reorganize its programming line-up in order to better compete against Fox's broadcast of the MLB World Series taking place that same night.[11]

Following Trump’s inauguration ceremony as the 45th President of the United States in January 2017,[12] Law & Order executive producer Dick Wolf admitted to not knowing when NBC would choose to air the episode, but hypothesized that it may be released in spring of the same year.[13] But while "Great Expectations" ended up airing the following month as the season’s 11th episode,[14] "Unstoppable" remained unreleased.

In March 2017, Ice-T, a rapper and actor who was part of the main cast of the show, admitted during an interview that he doubted that the episode would ever air, claiming it wasn't "worth showing". Speaking on the resemblances between the episode and Trump’s real-life accusations, he noted that "Law & Order wants to be close, but not too close", confirming that the similarities between the then-President of the United States and Cole’s character were the likely cause of the episode's shelving.[15]

Availability[edit | edit source]

As of March 2021, the episode has remained largely unreleased, with no plans for a release being known. To date, the promo remains the only thing from the episode to have been made public.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Promo for the episode.

External Links[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]