[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Law & Order Season 24 Episode 21, “Bad Things,” and Organized Crime Season 3 Episode 21, “Shadowërk.”]
Just when you think people can’t get worse. That’s one way to sum up the first two hours of the two-week crossover event to end the current seasons of Law & Order: SVU and Organized Crime (which brings back Kelli Giddish as Amanda Rollins).
To recap the case that brings the two squads together, it’s simple: Women are raped as part of a “revenge for hire” plot, leading them to a website (Shadowërk) where anyone can pay anyone to do anything to someone. One of the rapists is an inmate who has used furlough to continue to commit crimes (murder, too), already on Stabler’s (Christopher Meloni) radar when Benson (Mariska Hargitay) reaches out to her former partner.
Their first meeting after their almost kiss starts out with “Detective, thank you for meeting me,” and “Captain, it’s good to see you.” Stabler asks about Noah. “The last time we saw each other, that was a bad time for me,” Benson admits. “I know that you were just trying to make me feel safe. I think we both felt that.” It just wasn’t “the right moment,” they agreed before turning their focus to the case (and ending the SVU episode staring at each other).
Organized Crime picks up with them at his desk, and Benson notices he’s wearing his wedding ring again. “I saw her,” Stabler tells her. “Kathy. Over there, sitting down in a hospital gown, just waiting to be interrogated.” Benson suggests she wanted to interrogate him. “I’m not losing my mind,” he says. “El, if there’s one thing that I learned after all these years, it’s that if we don’t deal with our trauma, the world will.” Stabler argues he’s not a victim, and Benson points out, “You are a survivor. Sometimes that’s just as hard.”
As for the other reunion in the episode, it’s set up when Carisi (Peter Scanavino) lets it slip that Rollins is pregnant! “This is how you tell me?” Benson asks when Carisi says a house wouldn’t be big enough for the five of them. He swears her to secrecy because Rollins wants to tell her herself.
But Rollins knows she knows, as the former detective and now professor tells Stabler when he stops by to get her help with the case. He remarks that Rollins looks more excited talking to him than she did in the lecture hall when he was watching. How long has she been bored, he asks. “I love the students, but I do miss the feeling of solving a good mystery,” she admits. And she won’t tell Carisi because “it’ll break his heart. He’s the one who got me the job.”
What about Benson? “You, of all people, should know how she reacts when people leave her,” Rollins tells him. “I see your quandary. I’ve lived your quandary,” Stabler says, offering a way for them to help one another: He brings some mystery into her life, and she comes up with a profile for the person running Shadowërk.
Rollins does just that, joining Benson and Stabler at the crime scene of the murder of a judge who got them a warrant. Benson and Rollins take a moment to agree that Carisi can’t keep a secret (the pregnancy) before focusing on the profile.
These first two hours seemed more about setting the stage for the crossover action to come — as well as hopefully some significant Benson and Stabler, Benson and Rollins, and Rollins and Carisi scenes.
Law & Order: SVU, Thursdays, 9/8c, NBC
Law & Order: Organized Crime, Thursdays, 10/9c, NBC