Law & Order: Special Victims Unit was up to its old tricks again this week, stuffing its hour with guest stars, some of them doing appalling things. One guest who had something appalling done to her was Miranda Lambert, and while she didn’t have many lines, she made her presence felt.
The plot was about a reality-TV producer played with goaty eagerness by Michael McKean. He used his position to “audition” young woman, drugging and raping not a few of them. The whole thing was as seamy as the series usually gets — the tale was echt SVU, but this one with better dialogue. (Bonus casting: Robert Klein as McKean’s goaty, avid lawyer.) And Harry Connick reappeared as the ADA who has an unrequited thing for Mariska Hargitay’s Detective Benson. (Bonus literary reference: Connick’s character quoted from novelist Stanley Elkin. Go read The Dick Gibson Show or A Bad Man right now.)
Lambert, bless her heart, has more stomach for SVU than I do; she’s said it’s one of her favorite shows. She told CMT News, “I have all of the [episodes] TiVo’ed. I watch the marathons. I love them. And I never wanted to act. I still don’t. I don’t want to be an actress. I just wanted to be on that show mainly so I could be a groupie [for their autographs].”
But in her brief role as Lacey, one of the McKean character’s victims, Lambert quickly communicated a convincing air of sodden despair and desperation. The script’s idea, an all too believable one, was to have Lacey be so desperate to become famous as a reality-TV star, she declined a rape kit test. “If he goes to prison,” she said of McKean’s creep, “what happens to the show? I really want this part.”
And Lambert really made you feel Lacey’s addled yearning.
I don’t know, Miranda — I wouldn’t rule out that acting career so quickly… Think Willie Nelson in Thief…