Law & Order: SVU fans have been eagerly anticipating a romantic connection between Olivia Benson and Elliot Stabler for over two decades. Christopher Meloni's return to the show last year reignited those hopes, but Mariska Hargitay, who plays Benson, acknowledges the complexity of their relationship.
Hargitay understands that fans want to see Benson and Stabler together, but she believes it's crucial to handle their potential romance with care. She emphasizes the need to respect the nuance and complexity of their bond. Stabler has recently lost his wife, Kathy, and Hargitay feels it's important for him to grieve and heal before exploring a romantic relationship. Additionally, Stabler is adjusting to a new job and is in an unbalanced state.
Nevertheless, Hargitay affirms that Olivia loves Elliot and will always be there for him. Their connection is profound, and they share a unique bond. Fans witnessed a pivotal moment in Law & Order: Organized Crime's first season where Stabler expressed his love for Benson, only to retract it swiftly. This emotional confession demonstrated the depth of their relationship.
Apart from Stabler's recent loss, the long separation between Benson and Stabler also affects the timing of their potential romance. Benson had been hurt by Stabler's absence and their lack of communication during those ten years. Therefore, she approaches the idea of a romantic relationship with caution.
When asked about their first date, Hargitay envisions a simple dinner rather than a grand affair. She explains that the pressure surrounding a significant event makes her nervous, suggesting that starting with a casual dinner would be a more comfortable option.
Ultimately, Bensler fans will have to continue watching Law & Order: SVU and Law & Order: Organized Crime to witness the development of Olivia Benson and Elliot Stabler's relationship. The shows will likely take their time to carefully navigate the complexities and history between the characters before exploring a romantic connection beyond sharing a meal.