Occasionally at SpotLoss we have to tackle important issues. So after much discussion, arguing, and pulling an all-nighter, here's the official SpotLoss rankings of the cops on Law & Order.
The Top Cops
1) Lenny Brisco - Jerry Orbach (L&O) - Orbach was born to play this aging cop.
2) Elliot Stabler - Chris Meloni (SVU) - It takes a while to warm up to him, but you realize he's a true to life character.
3) Joe Fontana - Dennis Ferina (L&O) - It's disappointing that he only lasted one season.
4) Rey Curtis - Benjamin Bratt (L&O) - The three seasons with Brisco and Curtis were when Law & Order was at its peak.
5) Olivia Benson - Mariska Hargitay (SVU) - She's the face of the SVU franchise.
Solid Second Tier
6) Ed Green - Jesse L. Martin (L&O) - There's a reason he lasted for as long as he did.
7) Logan - Chris Noth (L&O, CI) - Plays the prototypical angry Irish cop almost as well as Meloni.
8) Anita Van Buren - S. Epatha Merkerson (L&O) - Spent more seasons as a Law & Order cop than anyone else.
9) Brian Cassidy - Dean Winter (SVU) - It doesn't hurt that his "Mayhem" commercials are completely awesome.
10) Carolyn Barek - Anabella Scioria (CI) - starred opposite Noth on the first season of Criminal Intent ... the one bright spot of that series.
11) Monique Jeffries - Michelle Hurd (SVU) - Hurd was on the first two seasons of SVU before it became the Benson and Stabler show.
12) Amanda Rollins - Kelly Giddish (SVU) - New character added in the twelfth season as an eventual replacement to Mariska Hargitay.
13) Nick Amaro - Danny Pino (SVU) - Stabler's replacement, who along with Giddish has brought some new life to SVU.
14) Rex Winters - Skeet Ulrich (LA) - He was killed halfway through the first and only season of Law & Order: Los Angeles
15) Nina Cassady - Milena Govivh (L&O) - She was on one season of Law & Order and hasn't been seen since.
16) John Munch - Richard Belzer (SVU) - Munch is in awe of himself, which gets old.
17) Kevin Bernard - Anthony Anderson (L&O) - Not bad, but not good either.
18) Cyrus Lupo - Jeremy Sisto (L&O) - Anderson and Sisto have the black mark of being the two main cops when the show was canceled.
19) Fin Tutuola - Ice T (SVU) - His acting style alternates between talking loudly, yelling, and yelling louder.
20) Riccardo Morales - Alfred Molina (LA) - He went from being a prosecutor to a cop. How often has this really happened?
21) Max Greevey - George Dzundza (L&O) - Killed after season 1 ... probably a good choice.
22) Phil Cerreta - Paul Sorvino (L&O) - Sorvino was great as Pauly in Goodfellas, not as interesting on Law & Order season 2.
23) Arleen Gonzalez - Rachel Ticotin (LA) - You might remember her as Arnold's love interest in Total Recall.
24) Megan Wheeler - Julianne Nicholson (CI) - You probably have no idea who this is.
25) Serena Stevens - Saffron Burrows (CI) - We probably have no idea who this is.
26) T.J. Jaruszalski - Corey Stoll (LA) - He was the star of the show and still nobody knows who he is. No wonder this version was canceled.
27) James Deakins - Jamey Sheridan (CI) - Once played Ozzie Nelson in a TV biopic of Ricky Nelson.
Make us want to pull our hair out:
28) Robert Goren - Vincent Denofrio (CI) - We wish one episode of Criminal Intent would end without a 8 minute diatribe from Goren.
29) Chester Lake - Adam Beach (SVU) - Beach was brought in to show that Ice T's acting could be worse.
30) Danny Ross - Eric Bogosian (CI) - Separated at birth from Adam Arkin.
31) Don Cragen - Dann Florek (L&O, SVU) - It was good news when they took him off regular Law & Order, but then they brought this character back on SVU.
32) Alexandra Eames - Katheryn Erbe (CI) - A totally useless character.
33) Zach Nichols - Jeff Goldblum (CI) - Goldblum's got to find a new gig where he plays someone besides the smartest guy in the room. He's not that good an actor.
This blog has been edited to include the Law & Order: Los Angeles cast and the new additions to SVU.