Just as “Law & Order: SVU” will often bring characters back, it also will sometimes unexpectedly write actors off the show. Such was the case for Demore Barnes, who portrayed Deputy Chief Christian Garland, per Deadline, exited the show during the Season 23 premiere after initially joining the cast in Season 21 and becoming a series regular in Season 22. Season 22 found Garland being increasingly iced out by Chief Tommy McGrath and at odds with the NYPD brass at One Police Plaza. In an Instagram video addressing his departure, Barnes admitted that it was not his choice to leave the show. “I don’t totally know why this happened,” Barnes shared.
The Season 23 premiere also saw fans saying goodbye to Detective Kat Tamin, the squad’s first LGBTQ detective, played by Jamie Gray Hyder. Hyder also was surprised by her exit. “The decision was made above my pay grade and wouldn’t have been my choice,” she tweeted (via Newsweek). “But hey, that’s showbiz for ya.”
Fans of Barnes can catch him as Mr. Ibis on “American Gods,” while Hyder will soon star in the film “Mischief Upon Mischief.” Hopefully, the “SVU” door will be open to both Barnes and Hyder returning in the future.