Law & Order: SVU Invades Law & Order: LA

TV Guide – Keck’s Exclusives: Law & Order: SVU Invades LO:LA

Skeet Ulrich and Mariska Hargitay

Crossover alert! In Law & Order: SVU’s September 29 episode, Mariska Hargitay’s Det. Olivia Benson leaves New York for Los Angeles, where she joins forces with Skeet Ulrich’s Det. Rex Winters—the central character in the new Law & Order: Los Angeles (which debuts that night at 10/9c, on NBC).

It’s an issue close to Mariska’s heart that brings Benson to L.A.: a case about a rape survivor (played by Jennifer Love Hewitt) who, several years earlier, submitted to an invasive exam for a rape evidence collection kit that was ignored by police. The episode took shape when a real rape survivor shared a similar scandal at a fund-raiser for Mariska’s Joyful Heart Foundation, which supports survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse. “I’m so honored that the SVU writers see the value in telling this story,” says Mariska. “And it’s very cool how they’re weaving our two shows together.”

With her contract expiring at the end of the season, Mariska says she’s open to negotiations, as is costar Chris Meloni, who says, “We’ll all have a chitchat and see what’s best.” But Mariska would also welcome relocating Benson to LO:LA. “I’m born and raised in L.A., so I’m definitely up for doing more,” she says. “I go where the work is. My L.A. friends all want me to be on LO:LA.” That includes new pal Skeet. “We could use an experienced detective,” he says. “That would be fantastic!” Watch out, Stabler!

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Here’s how I see it, the ONLY way Mariska needs to go to LOLA full time is if SVU is canceled (or if Meloni leaves)! In the meantime SHE (and Meloni) IS SVU. I don’t see either of the two happening, but I will settle for occasional crossover/two-part episodes where the NY office and LA office work on a case (like the NCIS “Legend” crossover).

I’d like it if Mariska stayed as long as SVU stays. But at least we know if her contract doesn’t get renewed by Spring 2011 we can expect her (and I wish Meloni) to be on Law & Order: Los Angeles.

The two-hour season premiere (“Locum”/”Bullseye”) of “Law & Order: SVU” is September 22nd at 10pm/9c on NBC!


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