Sorry Benson and Stabler, This Is the Best Detective Duo on ‘Law & Order: SVU’

With 25 years under its belt, Law & Order: SVU has gone through countless changes in its run, most notably in its lineup of main characters.

We’ve come to love so many of the show’s characters, and have also had to say goodbye to some as they moved on to other ventures within the show or real life. But through it all fans have remained loyal to the show and its characters. It’s no secret that fans love Elliot Stabler (Christopher Meloni) and Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay) as partners. Nor is it a secret that we all yearn for them to finally bite the bullet and date already! They’re a dynamic duo, a tour de force, there’s no denying that. But there is one partnership that may just edge them out, and that’s Fin Tutuola (Ice-T) and John Munch (Richard Belzer). While no one can ever really replace the chemistry between Benson and Stabler, Munch and Fin offered a new perspective that benefited the show greatly and provided light on an otherwise very dark series.

Munch and Fin Provided Comedic Relief Throughout ‘SVU’

Given that SVU follows the detectives in the Special Victims Unit, which primarily focuses on touchy cases such as cases involving children and the elderly, as well as sexual assault, things can get very dark very fast. There are certainly moments, or lines throughout the series that serve to break up the tension, but SVU at its core is a very serious police procedural, and a damn good one at that. But it can also be a little tough to watch at times for that very reason. There are only so many horrific and tragic cases one can sit through before it really starts to get under the skin, especially when there’s little to no reprieve from it. This is where Fin and Munch shined most. Not only were they both phenomenal detectives, dedicated to their jobs and those they help, but they also provided many of the show’s light-hearted moments.

The detectives could be working on an absolutely devastating case, and yet Fin and Munch always have some sort of interaction that cracks a smile. It’s not even to do with the actual cases, or even in specific dialogue, it was just them. There’s really no other way to explain it. Their dynamic was so different from that of Elliot and Olivia, where they were fairly reserved and serious, Fin and Munch were a lot more loose and breezy.

It didn’t make them any less focused on the job, though, in fact, their approach was rather refreshing in comparison. Fin and Munch were often sent out to investigate potential suspects or interrogate witnesses, but they had very different approaches to doing so. Both are eccentric characters, no doubt, but when it comes to the nitty-gritty of the job, Munch is more level-headed and subdued, while Fin is blunt and outspoken. Munch is more talkative and psychological, while Fin is the muscle. They just balance each other out in a way that we don’t see with the other partnerships.

Fin and Munch bring two different approaches to cases that, when put together, work miraculously well and bring about the justice we as viewers crave. That’s not to say that watching Elliot and Olivia take on a case is any less thrilling, but when it comes to entertainment value, Fin and Munch will always take the prize. We saw their dynamic best in the Season 2 episode “Manhunt,” which put Munch and Fin in the driver’s seat rather than Elliot and Olivia. With any other series, doing such a thing so early on in the show’s run could’ve proved detrimental, but in SVU’s case, it turned out to be arguably one of the season’s best episodes. We not only got to see their brilliance in action, but also got to see a softer side to both of them, specifically Munch. If there was ever any doubt about the two skills, this episode blew them right out of the water, and quickly solidified Fin and Munch as one of SVU’s best pairings. So it was outright baffling when the show decided to separate them later on in the series.

‘SVU’ Wasn’t the Same After Munch Retired

In Season 9, Fin was reassigned to a new partner, Chester Lake (Adam Beach). It was never outright stated in the show why he was split from Munch, but it became very clear that the dynamic just wasn’t the same, and Lake was written out fairly soon after. Fin was reinstated as Munch’s partner, but the backlash around Fin getting a new partner posed a larger problem when it was announced that Richard Belzer, and in turn his character of John Munch, would be retiring. Fin’s new partner became Amanda Rollins (Kelli Giddish), and though Rollins is well-liked by fans, and worked well alongside Fin, the show hasn’t been the same since Munch’s exit. More importantly, Fin hasn’t been the same. He’s still badass and a favorite to watch, no matter who he’s partnered with, but the show has yet to find another partner that can replicate the charm and wit that exuded from his partnership with Munch. It’s nothing against Fin or even his new partners, but it just isn’t the same.

The closest the show has come to finding that balance is with Fin and Olivia. Although the pair have never officially been partners, they have worked countless cases together and through it all have one another’s backs. It also stems from the fact that they’re the two longest-running characters in the show, so it’s hard not to feel something for them. Even still, there’s a sort of dedication and respect that Fin and Olivia have for one another that feels reminiscent of Fin’s time with Munch. But at the end of the day, the show may never be able to replicate the duo, as that sort of chemistry is like lightning in a bottle. Even the best writing can’t replicate the charm that exuded from Munch and Fin every time they shared a scene. Though Law & Order: SVU certainly isn’t struggling, it hasn’t quite been the same since. As much as we love to see the characters grow in both their personal and professional lives, it’s hard not to be nostalgic and reminisce about the days when Munch and Fin were working through cases with finesse. No offense to Benson and Stabler, but Fin and Munch will forever win our hearts for favourite detective duo.

Related Posts

Our Privacy policy - © 2024 News75today