• Network: NBC
  • Series Premiere Date: Sep 13, 1990
Season #: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20
User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 12
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 12
  3. Negative: 1 out of 12

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  1. Jun 9, 2014
    10
    It's like watching two shows, a police investigation series for the first half hour, and a legal series for the next half an hour. Performances are very convincing, lots of mystery and drama, but very realistic. 20 great seasons.
Metascore
68

Generally favorable reviews - based on 5 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 5
  2. Negative: 1 out of 5
  1. Reviewed by: Ken Tucker
    Jun 7, 2013
    83
    It's a little gimmicky, but it works, primarily on the strength of the cast.
  2. Reviewed by: Hal Boedeker
    Mar 7, 2013
    50
    Missing here is the complexity that makes shows like "L.A. Law" or "Hill Street Blues" fun to watch. Executive producer Dick Wolf has said Law & Order is not an ensemble show. What it is is a show about police and legal procedures -- and they're recounted in almost documentary fashion. Of course, as with so much TV law, time is collapsed and these complicated procedures are neatly wrapped up by the show's conclusion. [9 Sept 1990, p.H1]
  3. Reviewed by: Tom Shales
    Mar 7, 2013
    80
    Nothing if not serious, and nothing if not good, NBC's Law & Order nevertheless seems a victim of one particular TV tyranny. Its stories are too long for the one-hour format into which they are stuffed. Otherwise the series... has all the ingredients associated with quality television: strong scripts, relevant themes and a cast that qualifies as first-rate-plus. [13 Sept 1990, p.D1]