Law & Order: SVU – Chris Meloni Departs; Is there a Future for this Show?

Clarissa May 24, 2011 4

I actually find this news depressing. Out of all the Law & Order shows, my favorite has always been SVU. Because of reruns, I’ve literally watched every episode at least four or five times.

A little while ago, it was reported that Mariska Hargitay, who has starred on SVU for 12 years, was going to be appearing part-time for the next season. She will reportedly be appearing in the first 13 episodes of the season and then appearing in a part-time capacity for the remainder of the season.

Now it’s been reported that Chris Meloni – who has played Elliot Stabler for 12 seasons – is leaving the show.

As in, no part-time. No 13 episodes. Nada.

Apparently Meloni was not able to reach a contract agreement with NBC for the show and has elected to depart. When it returns in the fall for its thirteenth season, Law & Order: SVU will be the only remaining Law & Order show on television, as Law & Order: LA was canceled by NBC and another spin-off (Law & Order: Criminal Intent) is currently ending its run this season.

I have no idea who they might bring in to replace Meloni. Rumors were swirling that Jennifer Love Hewitt (who I thought was fantastic in her guest appearance earlier this season) might come in as a new police officer to help fill the void left by the part-time Hargitay. But that’s still just a rumor and hasn’t been confirmed. And as of right now, there’s no indication who else might be added to the cast of SVU.

Yes, other Law & Order shows have been able to handle some pretty significant cast changes, but Hargitay and Meloni have been the stars of the show since the very beginning, so we don’t know how much longer SVU will be able to go once they depart.

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  • George

    Yes its the final chapter in the Law and Order franchise. All the Crime Dramas on broadcast tv are predicatable.

    CBS and NBC have bland crime procedurals

    ABC and Fox have contrived buddy crime procedurals

    Anyways Shawn Ryan is currently shopping The Chicago Code around to other networks. He suggest sending emails to Netflix demanding a second season.I know people are unoptimistic about this. Netflix is growing and recently some months ago pick up the series House of cards for two seasons. So I wouldn't be to quick to count Netflix out of the equation.

  • LTB

    This is goodbye to SVU for me … SVU is Benson and Stabler – without both of them there, it just will never, ever be the same again.  The Benson and Stabler partnership is arguably the most famous, the longest and the most "connected" partnership of TV drama (the only one that might come close is the X-Files' Mulder and Scully), and without both of them on SVU, they might as well end the show now.

    • Patti

      that is for sure those two make the show it would not be the same without them.

  • EAG46

    Maybe this means Munch and Fin will get more screen time?