Why Law And Order: SVU Could Have Good News For Rollins And Carisi In The Season 23 Finale

Law & Order: SVU Carisi Rollins
(Image credit: NBC)

Spoilers ahead for Episode 21 of Law & Order: SVU Season 23, called “Confess Your Sins to Be Free.”

Only one episode of Law & Order: SVU is left before summer hiatus kicks off, and the penultimate episode was a rough one for both Benson and Carisi. While Benson faced off with Burton Lowe again due to his desire to “make amends,” Carisi had a crisis of faith when Special Victims discovered that a Catholic priest was assaulting women who made confessions to him. Rollins was nowhere to be seen, so he couldn’t even draw on her for support. Still, despite Carisi struggling and Rollins being MIA, there are some reasons why I think they could get some very good news in the finale.

So, following an episode that was pretty depressing with Benson’s storyline with Lowe, let’s take a look at some points in favor of at least Rollins and Carisi getting a potential happy ending to Season 23. 

Carisi Is Ready To Propose

Before everything started to go wrong for him in “Confess Your Sins to Be Free,” Carisi was in a pretty great mood when he visited a church to chat with a couple of priests. It seemed to be common knowledge that he has matrimony on his mind, but clarified that “she hasn’t even said yes” and he hasn’t even asked yet, so it’s “still early stages.” Carisi wanting to propose isn’t the same as Rollins and Carisi being engaged, but he seems pretty confident, and that’s a good sign. And would SVU really introduce this plot point in the penultimate episode only to not address it in the finale? 

Rollins Will Be Back

Rollins has been missing from multiple episodes of Season 23, with the reason previously being that she needed to spend some time with her mom when she was injured. So, it’s not unreasonable to wonder if and when she'll be around after those absences, but there’s no need to worry on that front when it comes to the finale. The promo reveals Kelli Giddish in the flesh, and the episode description for the finale – called “A Final Call at Forlini’s Bar” – reveals that she’ll have a major part to play: 

The SVU provides help and protection for a longtime domestic violence victim, but when she winds up at the defendant’s table in court, Rollins surprises Carisi with a formidable opponent at trial.

This may not mean an episode with Rollins and Carisi on the best of professional terms from start to finish, but at least fans are guaranteed that she’ll be present. Plus, the Season 22 finale last year proved that SVU doesn’t always have to deliver finales that are full of doom, gloom, and cliffhangers galore. An intense case for ADA Carisi and Detective Rollins doesn’t have to mean Rollisi on the outs in their personal lives.

Law & Order: SVU May Save The Relationship Drama For Benson (And Stabler)

For many years, Rollins and Carisi were firmly in the will-they-won’t-they class of TV relationships on SVU. The return of Christopher Meloni as Elliot Stabler meant that the relationship drama has more or less shifted over to Mariska Hargitay’s Olivia Benson, even though he stars on Law & Order: Organized Crime with relatively rare appearances on his former show. For better or worse, there's a level of tension between their characters, and throngs of fans have been wanting to see them together since the late '90s.

So, what does 23 seasons and counting of fans rooting for Benson/Stabler have to do with Rollisi? Well, I’m still fairly convinced that Benson and Stabler are unlikely to start a serious romantic relationship with much screentime for as long as Mariska Hargitay and Christopher Meloni are the stars of two separate TV shows, but I can definitely see both SVU and Organized Crime continuing to make the most out of their complex history together for crossovers. In light of that, SVU really benefits from also showcasing a dynamic with a whole lot less baggage, and that’s Rollins and Carisi if they get a happy ending to Season 23.

Find out if there’s some good news for these two characters who really deserve it in the Season 23 finale of Law & Order: SVU on Thursday, May 19 at 9 p.m. ET on NBC, between the Season 21 finale of Law & Order and the Season 2 finale of Organized Crime. For some viewing options after the L&O shows are finished for the season, be sure to check out our 2022 TV premiere schedule

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.