‘Law & Order: SVU’: The Show’s Second Major LGBTQ Character Was Introduced in a ‘Casual’ Way

Since being introduced on the show, Jamie Gray Hyder has made her mark as the new detective on the block, Kat Tamin, on Law & Order: SVU. The character is also a historic one, due to the fact that Tamin is just the second openly LGBTQ character on the show.

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit - Season 21
Ice T as Detective Odafin “Fin” Tutuola, Jamie Gray Hyder as Officer Katriona “Kat” Azar Tamin, Mariska Hargitay as Captain Olivia Benson on ‘Law & Order: SVU’ | Heidi Gutman/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Jamie Gray Hyder as Kat Tamin

Before appearing on the show, Hyder appeared on numerous television series over the past decade. She had recurring roles like Danielle on True Blood and Lucia on Graceland. She is known for providing the voice and motion capture for Nora Salter in Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare.

A void was left on the SVU team when former Detective Sonny Carisi (Peter Scanavino) left to work at the District Attorney’s office. After this, Tamin was introduced. She once a vice detective, first appearing in a #MeToo-esque episode assisting SVU in an undercover sting involving a Hollywood exec (Ian McShane). Since then, she joined the squad and is primarily partnered with Ice-T’s Fin Tutola.

Kat Tamin’s sexuality was addressed in passing

Earlier. this year, Tamin was revealed to be the second LGBTQ character on the show. She is bisexual. The first major LGBTQ character was Dr. George Huang, a gay character, played by B.D. Wong. However, Wong’s Huang hasn’t been a principal character on the show in years, making the Tamin reveal a long time coming.

Tamin’s sexuality reveal wasn’t something that was made a big deal by the show and was just said during an episode in passing. For Hyder, that was in important.

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“I think that kind of bringing it up in this very casual way is important because it doesn’t need to stand out,” said the actor in an E! interview. “I think by it not totally standing out to the members of the squad, it really will help the community with acceptance when it comes to that community. Because sadly in the last year, the support for the LGBTQ community has eroded. You can see it in statistics and in surveys. It’s scary and it’s sad. I think that now is a better time than ever to present a member of this community in a way that reminds you that we’re all the same and that we’re all human beings.”

“I want to present a whole person and Kat’s sexual orientation is only a part of who she is.,” she continued. “And while it’s a very important part to her, I think the goal in the end is to present a whole and nuanced human. It’s important to me as a person to make sure that while Kat’s, bisexuality definitely informs a lot as to her life, it’s definitely not the only aspect of her life.”

Law & Order: SVU airs weekly on NBC.