Law & Order: SVU is the longest-running live-action primetime scripted series in American television history. The crime drama debuted on NBC in 1999, and it’s still going strong today. When most people think of the series, they most likely picture Christopher Meloni’s Elliot Stabler and Mariska Hargitay’s Olivia Benson, as the pair rank as one of the most iconic TV duos of all time. But while Hargitay is still on the series, Meloni’s been gone for almost a decade. The actor departed the series in 2011 at the end of the twelfth season, and has spent the last nine years appearing in a number of other film and TV projects. But now, Detective Elliot Stabler is finally coming back to TV.
Meloni will be reprising his most iconic role in a new Law & Order spinoff series from producer Dick Wolf. The series will follow an NYPD organized crime unit that Stabler heads, which could set up some very entertaining Stabler vs. the mob storylines. The series will air on NBC, like SVU, so the possibility of a crossover reunion between Hargitay and Meloni seems highly likely.
It’s unclear when the new series will begin — especially with all TV production currently on hiatus due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic — but NBC has already ordered 13 episodes of the spinoff. So you’d better think twice before committing a crime on the streets of New York, because Det. Stabler is back on the beat!