After 10 long years, the show ‘Law & Order: Special Victims Unit’ reunited everyone’s favorite television detectives. Fair warning roommates, there will be spoilers ahead. Olivia Benson and Elliott Stabler finally linked during the show’s latest episode ‘Return of the Prodigal Son.’ The result was a wave of memories for SVU fans everywhere.
The guest appearance was part of a crossover event to promote NBC’s new spinoff ‘Law & Order: Organized Crime.’ Chris will play the lead role as Stabler on an elite task force fighting against the most powerful criminal organizations in New York City.
In the SVU episode, Stabler’s wife suffers serious injuries after a failed car bombing. Benson arrives on the scene, recognizes the wife named Kathy and has the first teary-eyed, stunned confrontation with Stabler.
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Later in the episode, during a hospital visit to Kathy from Stabler and Benson, fans get the juicy conversation about Stabler’s departure.
“Liv, I’m sorry,” Stabler says to Benson. She tries to discourage the conversion, but Stabler persists and Benson responds.
“Are you sorry for leaving? Or, are you sorry for walking, for not giving me the courtesy of not telling me?” Benson asks Stabler. He responds “both” and she tells him again that he “walked away” and that he was “the single most important person” in her life and he “just disappeared.”
We later get more answers about where Stabler ran off to all this time. Fin Tutuola, played by Ice-T, tells Benson that Stabler has been working in Rome, Italy on a special task force.
Prior to this episode, the last time actors Mariska Hargitay and Chris Meloni portrayed the pair together was on Season 12 of the show. Their characters shared the lead in taking down criminals committing sexually-based offenses and helping all kinds of victims.
Stabler’s time on the SVU team ended after he shot and killed a young, rape victim in the season 12 finale. Stabler was trying to stop the victim from going on a shooting spree in the squad room. The deadly shooting meant the NYPD’s Internal Affairs Bureau wanted to review his case files and Stabler wasn’t here for it. Fans (and Benson) learned that Stabler retired from the police force in the premiere of SVU’s season 13.
In real life, actor Chris left the show in 2011 to chase other career opportunities. During the last ten seasons of SVU, Mariska held down the lead role. Her character Benson was promoted from detective to captain, had a couple relationships and adopted a son named Noah Porter.
There’s no official word on future crossover events, but not to worry. SVU show runner Warren Leight revealed that this won’t be the last Benson and Stabler reunion, according to ‘Entertainment Tonight,’ so we have something to look forward to!
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