It is a sisters-in-jeopardy episode of “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” airing tonight when two young visitors to New York City attend a college party and the younger girl gets kidnapped by a high-tech predator who posts photos of her on a kiddy-porn site.
“It’s so disturbing,” says Kelli Giddish, who plays Detective Amanda Rollins. “Even watching the images during the filming of this, it was just … and we, of course, we generated all the images. It was like, ‘Oh, God,’ you know? As much as you don’t like to think it exists, it does.”
The SVU squad is at its wits end, trying to find the missing girl, but with his Internet savvy, the predator is using the Darknet, which makes it even more difficult to find any trace of him.
“Is it a team? Is it just one person? How far reaching is this network?” continues Giddish, who puts some of the responsibility on the older sister. “She doesn’t step up to the plate when she should, so the younger sister ends up getting kidnapped. [The episode] is about stepping up to the plate for your family when you need to be there.”
That theme continues in the B storyline when Rollins is reunited — and distracted — by her troubled sister (guest star Lindsay Pulsipher) and tries to step up and do the right thing. But how effectively she can do that depends on how she is dealing with her own issues, which include a gambling addiction.
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“One of the joys of playing a character like that is you get to play someone who gets to fight back, who gets to rise up from the bottom and come up to the top,” says Giddish. “You know if Amanda has problems and her sister has problems, her sister has some real problems. You get to see her sister come in and you get to see a different side of Amanda — the older, the responsible, the bigger sister. We all have roles like that in our families. I think that relationship reflects that.”
But in trying to keep it real, Amanda and her sister won’t get everything resolved. That is also the case because word is that executive producer and Showrunner Warren Leight wants Pulsipher to return.
“It’s not a warm and fuzzy feeling at the end, you know? Lindsay portrays a character that’s got a lot of problems, maybe psychiatrically-rooted,” Giddish says. “So, it’s going to be fun to play. It’s kind of open-ended. This is the sixth episode of this season, and, hopefully, we’re only a quarter of the way through the season, so we’ll see how it plays out.”
“Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” airs Wednesday nights at 9/8c on NBC.