I'm massively bummed about this! I'm a big fan. Law & Order is a standing series record on my DVR. I watch most of the spin-offs, too. And reruns on cable are a good way to pass an otherwise un-busy weekend afternoon.
Several years ago there was an ad campaign for Law & Order which said something like, "it's not about the characters, it's about the stories." Bull cookies! It's totally about the characters for me. I still miss Lenny Briscoe and Adam Shiff. I cried when Claire died (spurring Lenny's becoming clean and sober, btw). I am going to be really bummed if Lt. Van Buren dies of cancer in the season - now series - finale. Then there're Olivia and Elliott, whose lives are pretty darned messed up and who keep bucking the system to solve crimes. And what about Bobby and Alex, who got fairly rooked by the system and had to leave the force? But, at least that opened the door for Zach and Serena, who are pretty awesome. Lastly, I cannot forget to mention Munch, who holds the record for being the same character on FIVE different shows - really!
(Incidentally, if you followed all that, [especially if you know which characters are in the spin-offs!] odds are you're a fan, too!)
I'm really going to miss that show. So is New York City. I heard a report on Marketplace today about the economic impact losing Law & Order will have on the city. Every time you turn it on, any actor who's anyone who lives in NYC and has some spare time is on the show! Sopranos' actors were known to double-dip from time to time. Big, big names would guest star just for the opportunity to do a major dramatic turn. And I cannot forget all the crew and support staff who will also be adversely affected.
"In the criminal justice system, the people are represented by two separate yet equally important groups: the police, who investigate crime, and the district attorneys, who prosecute the offenders. These are their stories."
On May 24th, we close the book. Chung, CHUNG!