Law & Order Fans Are Distraught Over the News of a Sudden Exit

Law & Order Fans Are Distraught Over the News of a Sudden Exit
Image credit: NBC

Not every show will return the same after strikes.


  • Law & Order has been on the air since 1990. The titular show has started a large franchise with various spinoffs.
  • Law & Order was revived in 2022 and came back with its 21st season.
  • Jeffrey Donovan, who portrayed Det. Frank Cosgrove in the revival, was reportedly let go, and will not be returning for season 23.

When the show reaches a certain point in the number of seasons or the amount of time it has been on television, it's not surprising to see many cast members change. Depending on the circumstances of a storyline and the general premise of the show, characters may be killed off, move to another city, or simply change jobs.

The point is, no show that has crossed the 10-year mark is expected to end with the exact same cast as when it started.

Of course, there are exceptions to this rule. Ellen Pompeo, for example, has been on Shonda Rhimes' Grey's Anatomy since the very beginning of the show and only decided to step down as Meredith Grey after the 19th season. Some opera stars, like General Hospital 's Maurice Benard, spend more than 30 years on one set.

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Dick Wolf's Law & Order franchise is also full of examples. One of the most popular and prominent characters in the procedural world, Olivia Benson, has been portrayed by Mariska Hargitay since 1999 and doesn't plan on retiring anytime soon. However, not everyone is willing to stay with Law & Order for that long.

Jeffrey Donovan Leaves Law & Order

The actor who portrayed Det. Frank Cosgrove, who was just introduced in 2022, does not intend to return for the show's 23rd season, according to TVLine. Although the character was somewhat controversial and didn't immediately win over viewers, many are shocked to see the actor leave so quickly.

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Although NBC representatives reportedly refused to comment on the situation, the sources claim that Donovan did not leave the show on his own, but was fired by the production team.

With little to no official information, there is some fan speculation on the matter. The majority of viewers tend to blame the poor writing for making his character unexciting and boring, while some just hope that Frank Cosgrove's departure doesn't mean the departure of his partner Shaw, portrayed by Mehcad Brooks.

To see what season 23 of Law & Order has in store for the characters, what will happen to Shaw, and how Cosgrove's disappearance will be explained, stay tuned for the release date. Until then, you can stream back seasons of Law & Order on Peacock Premium or on the NBC website.

Source: TVLine