9/11 Anachronism 'Oddity' By Lori Price, www.legitgov.org 02 Mar 2014 A March 2001 episode of 'Law & Order: Special Victims Unit' includes a character referencing the urgency of capturing Osama bin Laden.
Season 2, Episode 16, of 'Law & Order: Special Victims Unit' is entitled 'Runaway.' It first aired 2 March 2001. (IMDB, Wikipedia). The opening New York City trailer for that 'SVU' episode, pre-9/11, includes visual footage of the World Trade Center.
In the episode, Darrell Hammond plays attorney Ted Bolger. The plot centers on SVU detectives searching for the underage daughter of a police officer. in the course of the investigation, SVU detectives round up a group of underage teens after entering a rave manager's loft. Bolger then appears at the SVU precinct, announcing that he is representing the group of kids.
In the squad room, Bolger addresses his clients and the police officers who brought them in. "I'm Ted Bolger I'm going to be your attorney. Hey, you enter uninvited and enter a private home and then you bring them in for questioning... I don't care if you're looking for Osama bin Laden -- this is still America!"
The kids then clap and cheer, exclaiming, "That's my lawyer!"
Why does a television script have an actor referencing the urgency of capturing Osama bin Laden in a show that aired six months before the 9/11 terror attacks? The Twin Towers are still prominent in the open of the program, as they have yet to fall. (Later seasons of 'Law & Order: Special Victims Unit' do not include shots of the World Trade Center.) If the show aired in March 2001, production had to take place long before that date.
True, Osama bin Laden was considered a top fugitive by the FBI before the 9/11 attacks. But for a line referencing the hunt for Osama bin Laden to seep into pop culture, most Americans would have to be familiar with his name and deeds. That was not the case, until the 9/11 terror attacks.