Savannah Guthrie sent Law & Order fans wild on Thursday when she shared new photos of Mariska Hargitay and Christopher Meloni cuddling together.
The pair star as Olivia Benson and Elliot Stabler in the long-running show, with Christopher recently returning after a 12-year break for a series of special episodes
Appearing on The Today Show, the two joined Savannah and Hoda Kotb to talk about the series and their character's enduring relationship - which has never turned romantic despite years of fan campaigning and on-screen chemistry.
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"Just love you @therealmariskahargitay + how cute are THEY? I’m Team Benson + Stabler Love Connection," Savannah shared on Instagram with a series of pictures.
In one, Christopher and Mariska were nose-to-nose with big smiles on their faces, as another showed them laughing.
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"Welcome to the EO/Bensler family!! Join our 22 year wait haha," commented one fan, as another shared: "@savannahguthrie SAID EO IS ENDGAME."
Fans loved the pictures shared by Savannah
"Benson & Stabler are endgame," added another, calling for the two characters to fall in love on the show and end up together.
Stabler's return came as part of a new spinoff series Organized Crime, which sees former Special Victims Unit star Christopher reprise his role.
One question that remains unanswered is whether a romance between Elliot and SVU’s Oivia Benson is finally on the cards but Christopher previously admitted that although they have always "toyed" with the idea, they still believe there are "no right answers".
The two are close friends
Christopher told People he and co-star Mariska have long been aware of fans’ hopes to see them involved romantically, saying: "Obviously, we recognized it when we were together on SVU. We were always kind of toying with that, leaning into that, teasing with that."
As for what the rest of the season holds for the pair who served as co-leads on SVU between 1999 and 2011, he said: "I think we're going to stumble, as I think most human beings do, through complicated areas or difficult terrain, emotional terrain."
He continued. "What are the answers? Really, there are no answers right now. And I think that's the art and the beauty of what we do, the writers get together and they create these connections or circumstances and the actors get to play them out, so I'm excited. I think there's a world of possibility."
The Law & Order franchise will return to NBC on Thursday 23 September, with a two-hour episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, which will air from 8/7c followed by the season two premiere of Law & Order: Organized Crime.
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