Entertainment | TV Shows/Movies

13 Facts You'll Only Know If You Watch Way Too Much 'Law And Order'

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Think you've seen every episode of Law and Order? If you have, we're impressed, because there are over 1,100 episodes and counting of America's favorite cops and lawyers show.

See how many of these facts you already know. If at least 10 aren't new to you, consider yourself a Law and Order superfan.

1. It's all in the family

When series creator Dick Wolf was making characters for the spinoff Law and Order: SVU, he named the main characters Olivia Benson and Elliott Stabler after his own children.

Wolf poses with his son Elliott.

2. The "Dun Dun" sound is pretty complicated

More than a dozen noises are mixed together in this classic sound effect, including monks stomping on the ground. To settle the debate once and for all, it's meant to sound like a judge banging his gavel and a jail door closing.

3. The voice-over actor is famous in his own right

The intro read at the beginning of every episode is done by Steven Zirnkilton. He had a small role in the pilot episode of Law and Order, and Dick Wolf asked him to read the introduction. He did such a good job that he's read the intro for every single Law and Order series in the U.S.

But Zirnkilton also has a successful career in politics. He served in Maine's House of Representatives for eight years, and now records voice-overs for TV ads.

4. There have been a LOT of shows in the series

After the original Law and Order was a hit, the series branched out.

Next was Law and Order: SVU, the only show in the series that is still on the air.

There was also Law and Order: Criminal Intent, following the Major Case Squad.

Law and Order: Trial by Jury, which focused on court cases.

Law and Order: LA, the only American show in the series set outside of New York.

And finally there have been a number of spinoffs in foreign countries, including a pair of Russian series and Law and Order: UK.

5. Mariska Hargitay keeps things real

The SVU star stays grounded on set by keeping a photo of her real mother, Jayne Mansfield, on her character's desk.

Hargitay and Mansfield.Mariska Hargitay / Instagram

Hargitay is also a trained rape crisis counselor, who runs a charity for sexual abuse survivors called the Joyful Heart Foundation. She even helped a pregnant woman who fainted near the actress on the streets of New York. Who's more heroic, Hargitay or her character?

Another detective on the show was only meant to last a few episodes...

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