Just when you thought there was no way for NBC to swim another lap in the pink marble pool of Donald Trump, the network has scheduled a ripped-from-the-Donald-Trump-headlines episode of Law & Order: SVU for October 26 – one week after the GOP candidate’s final debate with Dem hopeful Hillary Clinton.
It’s also the night before the start of the November sweep, which is a bit surprising given that high-profile L&O franchise’s topical episodes are tailor-made sweep stunts. On the other hand, waiting until the following week puts it uncomfortably close to Election Day, November 8, and given all the Trump/Election-related minefields NBC is tip-toeing through right now, that’s a date best avoided on this episode.
This now-ironically titled “Unstoppable” episode of SVU is not to be confused with Seth Meyers’ offer to Trump, which we think is still good, to star him as President in a new totally-not-Dick-Wolf-produced-but-he-can’t-stop-you-from-making-comparisons drama series Chicago President, if Trump will drop out of the race. Which, as Meyers pointed out, never was actually endorsed by NBC but, after last week’s tape drop and Sunday’s debate, we’re pretty confident would be endorsed by House Speaker Paul Ryan and other GOP bigwigs.
Anyway, getting back to SVU, in the episode, the totally-not-Trump-but-they-can’t-stop-you-from-making-comparisons character, played by Gary Cole, is a big galoot but loaded with the stuff. He’s contemplating a change of address to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. N.W. for eight years, only some women with sordid stories are trying to thwart him from moving on up.
Last month, chatter about the episode intensified when it was booked for this week. At some point that plan changed, which is just as well because, well, Billy Bush, Access Hollywood, etc.
Some press reports then moved it to the day after Election Day. Which made no sense, given the way Trump’s numbers have been trending since WaPo released that Access Hollywood tape in which the then-Apprentice star told Bush he’s so rich he gets to kiss and grope women with impunity. That would have been a high-risk date. Ryan’s decision not to campaign with Trump and focus on saving GOP control of both houses of Congress suggests he, like NBC schedulers, think there is a good chance Trump will have been sent to the dustbin of history that day.
So NBC settled on October 26, which is one week after Trump’s final debate with Clinton, moderated by Fox News Channel’s Chris Wallace. Should be a doozy. Deadline will live-blog it as per usual.