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Harry Conick Jr. Joins Law & Order: SVU As Mariska Hargitay’s Love Interest

Submitted by on January 7, 2012 – 10:13 am3 Comments

Head of NBC Entertainment Bob Greenblatt announced this week that Mariska Hargitay would not only be staying at Law & Order: SVU, but would be joined by Harry Conick Jr., playing her love interest in a multi-episode arc. The news is welcome for the popular series, which has seen its ratings slip after the departure of co-star Christopher Meloni.

Conick will play Executive Assistant District Attorney David Hadena, “a prosecutor assigned to a case with Benson, whose work relationship blossoms into something more”, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Greenblatt noted that this will be the first love interest in series history for Hargitay’s character, Det. Olivia Benson. (This, of course, doesn’t count any moments of meaningful tension between Benson and her long time partner, Eliot Stabler, played by Meloni, no matter how much audiences wanted them to get together.)

Meloni left the series before its 13th season after failed contract negotiations. He is now a series regular on HBO’s True Blood.

Hargitay has made a complete reversal in relation to the show recently. Just a few months ago, she announced that she would also be leaving SVU. Then, NBC announced she would be appearing in several episodes this season, slowly phasing out her involvement in the show. Finally, at the same press conference this week, Greenblatt announced that Hargitay would not only remain through this season, but has already committed to next season as well.

What do you think? Is Law & Order: SVU still going strong?

[via THR]

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  • Susan says:

    SVU is just not the same without Meloni. I tried to watch the first few episodes but quickly lost interest. The Benson-Stabler tension is what made the show work, without it, it’s just another run-of-the-mill crime show. All of the new characters, new look, changes have just made it seem chaotic and confusing, without anything to center and ground the show. I’m glad Benson is finally getting a love interest but not glad enough to keep watching.

  • Bingo says:

    Does anyone actually think that this casting will help with ratings? Both NBC and Dick Wolf made a terrible mistake not paying Meloni what he wanted, and the results are dire. Falling behind both CBS and ABC in the demo in the 10pm hour.

    I would have thought there is no way SVU is coming back next season, but with so many flops, NBC might bring it back for another year.

  • Geo says:

    Nice try, but Harry Conick Jr? Yikes! Nothing against him, he’s a great singer, but can they not find an actor that people will instantly know and like for the show? Really missing Meloni. Not wanting extra scenes with Ice-T and Munch. Not wanting an overdose of Hargitay either. This show is beyond dead.

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