Elliot Stabler, one of television’s most celebrated fictional Marines, is set to return in the new NBC series “Law & Order: Organized Crime,” premiering on April 1 at 10 p.m. ET, one hour after the character makes a guest appearance on “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.”
Det. Stabler disappeared from “Law & Order: SVU” after 12 seasons without a proper sendoff. The real reason is that actor Christopher Meloni walked when producers declined to meet his contract demands, and fans were left with news that Stabler had asked for a transfer and didn’t say goodbye.
Obviously, this Marine has some explaining to do when he reunites with his former colleagues during the “SVU” episode. A promo for the new series shows Stabler trying to make things right with Det. Sgt. Fin Tutuola (Ice-T).
Stabler struggled with anger management issues during his entire “SVU” run, damaging his relationship with his wife and kids. He also faced more than a few issues with aggressive behavior toward perps.
What’s our man been up to in the past decade? Did his marriage survive? How did he end up leading an organized crime task force? Has he done the work necessary to address his anger management problems?
NBC and Dick Wolf Productions have kept details to a minimum. Meloni has been vague as well and flat-out dodging questions in interviews about the new show. Fans will have to tune it to find out what’s up.
Meloni is joined by Dylan McDermott (“The Practice”), Tamara Taylor (“Bones”), Danielle Moné Truitt and Michael Rivera in the series’ regular cast. They promise that the organized crimes they’re investigating won’t be perpetrated by a bunch of old-school mob guys chowing down on spaghetti in Little Italy.
Since leaving the “Law & Order” universe, Meloni has made a name for himself in outrageous comedies. After appearing in the first two “Harold & Kumar” movies during his “SVU” run, he’s moved on to appearances in the “Wet Hot American Summer” TV series, “Veep,” “American Dad!,” “Family Guy” and “Rick and Morty.” He starred in the surreal and scuzzy Syfy series “Happy!” as a hitman who befriends his daughter’s imaginary friend, an animated flying blue unicorn voiced by Patton Oswalt.
Sure there were dramatic roles on “The Handmaid’s Tale” and “True Blood,” but Meloni has worked overtime to prove he wasn’t actually the dark, brooding time bomb he portrayed as Det. Stabler.
Will we finally get more details about Stabler’s service in the Gulf War? Has the angriest Marine mellowed after some time away from the especially heinous crimes he investigated in the SVU? We’ll have to tune in to find out.
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