Law And Order’s Christopher Meloni And Mariska Hargitay Have A Cute Routine While Filming Together, And It Was Caught On Camera

law and order svu stabler and benson dressed up nbc
(Image credit: NBC)

Christopher Meloni's return to the Law & Order franchise after nearly ten years for the Organized Crime spinoff meant the long awaited on-screen reunion with SVU's Mariska Hargitay, and it turns out that they have an adorable routine for when they film together. In fact, it was caught on camera, and Meloni explained it. 

Images from the set of Law & Order: SVU and Law & Order: OC caught the two former co-stars and now fellow L&O series leads (whose characters may or may not ever get romantic) back together as Benson and Stabler. Mariska Hargitay and Christopher Meloni have been friends for decades, and a new photo showed the two very sweetly looking at each other and touching each other’s faces. Meloni talked to TODAY about the moment, and it turns out to be very routine:

She and I used to do a schtick: ‘You’re great kid.’ We’d clip each other in the chin. But yeah, if we did a great scene, we’d go, ‘Hey, good job.’ So that ⁠— we were re-creating that.

It definitely shows just how close Meloni and Hargitay are that they have a routine when supporting one another after a scene. It makes me wonder how long ago they came up with it, but the fact that they are still doing it makes it all the more special. They first became on-screen partners when SVU premiered back in 1999. 

christopher meloni and mariska hargitay

(Image credit: Jose Perez/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)

Christopher Meloni and Mariska Hargitay clearly have a special bond, and it’s not often that we see these types of moments captured on camera. Their characters certainly aren't openly affectionate very often, but Hargitay recently wished him a happy birthday with a fun photo of them sharing a hug. Meanwhile, on-screen, Meloni’s Elliot Stabler finally met Hargitay’s Olivia Benson’s son, and while it was a moment that was cut short (and cut altogether on streaming), it was still a cute one.

It's also nice to get these cute moments with Meloni and Hargitay when there's no saying what their characters' relationship will look like moving forward, as fans have been waiting for developments for years. While Hargitay did mention that “Olivia’s been in love with him” for a while now, she was hurt over him leaving, and he’s still hurting over the loss of his wife. So, it may still be some time before the two realize their feelings, if indeed they do. 

Christopher Meloni and Mariska Hargitay have shared plenty of behind-the-scenes photos on Instagram, treating fans to funny photos and first looks. This was definitely one that was not expected, but it melted my heart over the strength of their relationship. Now I need it recreated on either SVU or OC so it can be Olivia and Elliot’s thing, or perhaps something similar.

Don’t miss the season finales of the Law & Order franchise on Thursday, May 19 beginning at 8 p.m. EST on NBC, with all three shows returning to the network in the fall. In the meantime, check out CinemaBlend’s 2022 TV schedule to see what else to look forward to.

Megan Behnke
Freelance TV News Writer

Passionate writer. Obsessed with anything and everything entertainment, specifically movies and television. Can get easily attached to fictional characters.