‘Law and Order: SVU’ Recap: Stabler Returns — Season 22, Episode 9


So, did Elliot Stabler’s return to Law & Order: SVU stay as much as the hype?
That will depend on your L&O proclivities. If you take pleasure in a stable crime-o’-the-week episode, higher luck subsequent week. If you have been in search of an thrilling and emotionally messy ripping-open of the interpersonal mess left after El abruptly retired from the New York Police Department in Season 12, this was your Christmas. 
The hour was the primary half of a crossover occasion that led into the premiere of Law & Order: Organized Crime, the spinoff that follows Chris Meloni’s Stabler as he works with a distinct unit of the NYPD. Read on for a recap of the SVU episode, titled “Return of the Prodigal Son” (heh), and then go right here to learn our recap of Organized Crime‘s debut.

The episode opens with Olivia driving within the rain, dashing to against the law scene. Fin calls, questioning the place she is, as a result of everybody’s ready for her on the station. “You’re the visitor of honor,” he tells her. Remember that award she was getting? She makes her apologies, telling him she’ll show up when she will be able to. When arrives on the scene, which is a automobile bombing, she first notices that one of many victims — who’s being loaded into an ambulance — is Kathy Stabler. And when Liv hears somebody calling her identify, she turns and whispers, “Elliot?”
Yep, it’s him. The former companions stroll towards one another, looking at one another’s faces as if they will’t fairly consider they’re actual. “They tried to kill her,” Stabler finall says, considerably in shock. “They tried to kill Kathy.” This show is NOT. WASTING. ANY. TIME. Let’s go!
At the hospital, Fin fills Olivia in. The bomb was in a rental automobile. Apparently the Stablers have been dwelling in Italy, as a result of Elliot is the New York City Police Department’s worldwide liaison (!) in Rome (!!). (Liv speaks for all of us when she says, “Since when?”) He’s on the town for a division assembly, however she got here with him to make it a visit. And off a tip from Fin, they have been planning on attending the celebration to have fun Liv’s award.
While Liv is ready exterior the hospital, El comes out: Kathy is in tough form, however she’s nonetheless alive. “Tell me she’s going to be OK,” he says brokenly. “Kathy’s a fighter. You know that,” she replies. Then Stabler’s youngsters (*9*) and Dickie show up; they’re stunned to see their dad’s old associate, however they rapidly go inside.
The squad rapidly nabs a suspect at an anti-police demonstration close to the bombing. So naturally Stabler exhibits up on the precinct, rapidly meets everybody who’s confirmed up since he left and begs Benson to let him interrogate the man. “Liv, I provide you with my phrase, I’ll behave,” he says. Of COURSE it’s a horrible concept. Of COURSE Stabler is way too indignant and concerned to be wherever close to the suspect. And of COUUUUUURSE he’s almost decking the man by — I child you not — quarter-hour into the episode. It’s superb. Only Liv stepping instantly into El’s path stops him and his rolled-up shirtsleeves from clocking the man into subsequent week.

Olivia is ripping into her former associate on the roof when Dickie exhibits up: Kathy is awake. And what’s extra, the suspect shot his mouth off a lot that Carisi & Co. know that he wasn’t behind the automobile bomb. At the hospital, Kathy can’t keep in mind something in regards to the incident and is little greater than a pile of splintered bones and pooling inside bleeding, however even SHE doesn’t need to talk about something aside from the elephant within the room. “You actually didn’t speak for 10 years?” she asks. Liv confirms that she didn’t even know Stabler was working for the drive once more. “That’s what Elliot advised me. I didn’t consider him,” Kathy says, beginning to cry.
Later, within the ready room, Stabler apologizes for getting uncontrolled through the interrogation… and much more. “Are you sorry for leaving, or are you sorry for strolling, for not giving me the courtesy of telling me?” she says. “Both,” he replies. We are DOING THIS. They’re each almost crying as she calls him out for the way in which he departed (“I needed to discover out from Cragen”) and how deserted she felt within the aftermath. “You have been essentially the most, singlemost essential particular person in my life, and you simply disappeared,” she says, voice low. “I do know,” he says, eyes moist. “I used to be afraid if I heard your voice, I wouldn’t have been capable of depart.” Forget Kathy: I AM THE ONE WHO MIGHT BE DYING.
During drinks with Fin, Elliot runs by his current whereabouts. He went on a “walkabout” for just a few years, then labored personal safety abroad, then rejoined the NYPD in his liaison function 4 years in the past. He’s obtained extra to do in New York, together with testifying at a trial of some minor gamers he picked up in Puglia, Italy, just a few months earlier than. Fin additionally provides Liv a fast abstract of Liv’s private life during the last decade, together with the truth that she has a son and has had a few critical relationships. “Who’s the man?” El wonders, however Fin smiles and says he’ll should ask Liv about that.
But sufficient levity! Kathy goes into cardiac arrest! She finally stabilizes, however we get the purpose: There’s no assure Elliot’s different spouse (yeah, I stated it) goes to tug by this. Back on the station, Rollins asks Benson if she and Kathy have been mates. “Over time, we obtained actual shut,” Liv says, as a result of holding somebody’s neck steady whereas they’re concurrently in labor and a automobile accident actually bonds you.

The investigation is constant, however actually, I’m simply dwelling for the following Stabler/Benson scene. But Rollins and Kat observe down the man who truly put the bomb within the automobile, and he hinted that it was a job for rent. And then there’s some authorized stuff taking place however — oh wait, Stabler is asking Liv and she’s getting a horrible look on her face…
She exhibits up on the hospital, the place El is looking at Kathy’s empty mattress. She’s expired. As Olivia approaches, he turns to her and collapses onto her shoulder, beginning to sob. Liv embraces him, murmuring “I’m sorry” as he falls aside.
When he recovers a bit, we study that Kathy’s spleen ruptured, and she died in surgical procedure. “I didn’t get to say goodbye,” he says. “We have been completely happy.” Oof. As he prepares to name his youngsters — together with Eli, who’s in Rome — he makes Liv promise that Kathy’s killer will go down. That’s going to be robust, although, as a result of the suspect that they had in custody turns up expired in his jail cell; somebody made it seem like an overdose. But that’s the place it ends for SVU: Garland informs Liv that the case is being taken out of their palms.
Meanwhile, on the hospital chapel, Stabler hugs Dickie and (*9*), crying, whereas Olivia seems to be on.
Next factor we all know, it’s a brand new day, and Stabler is flashing his badge on the courthouse and interrogating the 2 unhealthy guys from Puglia in Italian (it’s scorching), whom he believes have been concerned in Kathy’s demise. Then he warns them that they’re expired males, and we’re out!
Now it’s your flip. What did you consider the episode? Grade it by way of the ballot under, then hit the feedback!

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