Okay, I am going to step up to the plate and say it: I really liked Elizabeth Rohm. For those of you without cable (or an appreciation for the Dick Wolf oeuvre), she played the assistant D.A. Serena Southerlyn on “Law & Order” for the last four years, and thus will be seen ad infinitum on TNT until the Sun turns into a “red giant” star and dwarfs us all.
The internet is a perfect place for shit-talking, and the brave anonymous souls over at Television Without Pity have been heaping opprobrium on her since tonight’s episode, where her character came out as a lesbian, and was summarily fired for being a loose cannon. First off, that’s a ballsy move by “L&O” to actually fire somebody rather than have them quit or get killed off, and the lesbian thing seemed like a perfect choice.
I was always drawn to Elizabeth – she looks a little bit like my wife, for one, and her mother is close to my stepmom. I thought she was sexy on “Angel,” and her stint as Serena added a little confusion to the fire. I do know she was roundly disliked by many of my friends as something of a robotic actor, but I think the female assistant district attorney du jour is always a hard role to pull off without being too cute (Jill Hennessey), a trifle dull (Carey Lowell) or scarily skeletal (Angie Harmon).
Personally, I was charmed by her weird delivery, and in the context of her character’s sudden lesbianism, it might be interesting to look back at the past few episodes and see if her blank exterior was actually masking volcanic rage. She didn’t seem to have chemistry with Sam Waterston, but in the end, I think that turned out to be a good thing – he’s at his worst when he has a cute lapdog to waggle tail the minute he fixes up a nice dinner of righteous indignation.
And so now we’re on to Annie Parisse as our new female A.D.A. – does it seem a little sexist that “L&O” eats up little hotties and spits them out after 2-4 years? Why can’t another woman besides the venerable Epatha Merkerson chew the scenery for a decade like all the rest of the guys?