Law And Order's Hugh Dancy Discusses The Very Personal Case Coming For Price: 'He's Stretching His Own Rules'

Hugh Dancy as Nolan Price in Law & Order Season 22
(Image credit: NBC)

NBC’s Law & Order has been successfully telling stories split between the police who investigate crimes and attorneys who prosecute for more than twenty seasons now, but the new episode on March 30 will blur those lines for none other than ADA Nolan Price. The lawyer who is usually found within the courtroom will find himself at a crime scene under some dark circumstances, and actor Hugh Dancy opened up to CinemaBlend about how personal the case is going to get for his character! 

The next new episode of Law & Order is called “Bias” and will see Price discovering a body and then going on to be involved in the trial, which understandably is going to cause some complications. The promo suggests that Jack McCoy will have some choice words for the ADA. With “Bias” as a big episode for Price, Hugh Dancy shared that he was “busier than usual” and got to “dip into the law and the order” this time around. The Hannibal alum went on to share how personal the situation is for Price, saying: 

It is personal. I think that Price is somebody who takes justice and what justice means for victims of crime very seriously, so it's always personal for him. And this is obviously at a whole different level.

Finding a body and then being active in both the investigation and prosecution means that the pursuit of justice will hit closer to home than usual for Price. Viewers saw earlier in this season with Maroun that cases can come dangerously close to being compromised if personal feelings affect prosecution… which Price himself pointed out at the time

In light of how their dynamic has developed over the two seasons since Law & Order was revived on NBC, Hugh Dancy previewed how Price having a personal connection to the case will affect Maroun: 

I think that she is at times frustrated with him in the way that you can afford to be frustrated with somebody that you're very close with, because she can see that he's stretching his own rules, because of how strongly he feels about the case.

Maroun has worked closely enough with her boss to get to know him well, which evidently means an extra level of frustration with him this week. After all, bending the rules as prosecutors can lead to cases falling apart or even being thrown out, as proven across the Law & Order franchise for decades now. Price normally knows this, but will the case hit too close to home? The episode is called “Bias,” after all! 

While Hugh Dancy didn’t divulge all of the details of what’s on the way with the big episode, he did weigh in on whose bias will be affecting the case after Price finds the body. He said:

I think it's bias across the board. Without giving anything away, the suspect or the defendant ultimately in the case is somebody who has some sway, and that seems to have an impact on the case as it's going along. Price has a vested interest in it because he was close to the victim, and we learn more about that as the case goes on, and maybe more than he had initially let on, so there's a lot of bias to go around.

Bias “across the board” may be bad news when it comes to a good old-fashioned Law & Order trial! Under normal circumstances, Price might be able to use the bias of his opponents against them, but these will not be normal circumstances. Usually, the closest that fans have to a character who embodies both law and order is Mehcad Brooks’ Jalen Shaw, who was a lawyer before deciding to join the NYPD and become a detective. 

So, what was it like for Hugh Dancy to play both sides for this episode of Season 22, when Price is usually firmly on the “law” side? The actor shared: 

Well, I didn't get to do the actual detective work. I wasn't kicking down any doors. Maybe one day, but it was fun for me. You know, I spend 95% of my time on the show in the courtroom and in the DA's offices or maybe coming down the steps outside the courthouse. The rest of the time, those guys, Jeff [Donovan] and Mehcad [Brooks], they're out barreling down the alleyway somewhere or finding a body in the park at 2 a.m., and I got to find out.

Fans shouldn’t go into “Bias” expecting ADA Nolan Price to be kicking down doors and storming buildings with a SWAT team just because he’s also involved in the investigation side of the case, but it did mean Hugh Dancy spending some time filming elsewhere than the courtroom and office sets. Unfortunately for his character, he’s going to make a grisly discovery once he does step out of his usual haunts! Take a look at the preview for a taste of what’s on the way:

Tune in to NBC on Thursday, March 30 at 8 p.m. ET for the “Bias” episode of Law & Order, and check back with CinemaBlend for more of what Hugh Dancy had to say about the experience. You can revisit earlier episodes of the hit series streaming with a Peacock Premium subscription, which also offers episodes of Law & Order: SVU, Law & Order: Organized Crime, and even Law & Order: Criminal Intent. For some more viewing options while waiting on renewal news from the network, be sure to check out our 2023 TV premiere schedule

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.