We’re getting close to the end of yet another season of obsessing over Law & Order: SVU’s Olivia Benson, and with every ending comes the opportunity for a new beginning. But what we don’t want to do is forget the true intent of the series, which is obviously “
show that Mariska Hargitay is better than nearly everyone, if not definitely everyone, else give a voice to survivors of sexual assault and other ‘especially heinous’ crimes.” According to some folks out there on the interwebs, that means as the main character, Olivia Benson can’t have a personal life—unless it’s with the IAB guy who once purposely tried to trigger her PTSD, a defense attorney she’s gone toe-to-toe with way too many times, a former ADA bff who’s now in the business of defending guys who tried to have her killed, her groomer, or Cassidy—so, we can’t necessarily talk about the potential for that new beginning without misogyny masked as feminism being thrown around.
…what we’re saying here is putting words in people’s mouths to prove how Feminist™ you are because you’re not saying the things you’re accusing people (who haven’t said those things) of saying, all while espousing truly misogynistic nonsense in the process yourself, ain’t the look some folks seem to think it is.
That’s…probably none of our business, though.
But what if, just for funsies—and hear me out on this one—we think about making incremental changes to Liv’s material possesions, things that won’t intrude on the true purpose(s) of this series.
Captain Benson spends so much time at her office, and the job is so dark. Why not add an element of comfort, and evidence of movement behind the scenes, to it? That can easily be done without having to take time away from what we’re all here to see: Badass Benson destroying shitty men (and, occasionally, shitty people of other genders…but…mostly men). We’ll even throw in a couple of things that have nothing to do with her love life, just for the outdated “Strong Female Characters™ can’t be in a relationship without it making them doormats” crowd.
If we had to be subjected to Noah Benson (future: Benson-Stabler) in a cage to “earn” the big coming out moment, we had damned sure better be celebrating Noah for speaking his truth. After all, nothing says “fuck bi erasure” like actually following through on representation.
So, as the world’s smallest start, why not dress Mama Liv’s office up a bit? We suggest a couple of mini flags: one that’s specifically for the pink, purple, and blue bisexual pride flag and one that’s the full rainbow for the overall LGBTQ+ community. It’s a practically microscopic detail, but visible love and support is kind of Benson’s brand. So, get visible, mama bear.
Burn the boxy blazers
Full disclosure here: I’d live in pajamas all day if allowed. So, the whole “dress for success” or “you’re not worthy unless you dress a certain way” thing isn’t for me. And no, no one needs to dress to please anyone else—not even God Herself. (I’m gonna get accused of saying Benson needs to dress “sexy” for Stabler, though. Just watch.)
With that being said…
SVU’s Captain deserves to look as utterly lethal as she actually is. Why are we always trying to hide Olivia Benson’s hotness? Is it to protect the fragile fangirls? Because, honestly, we’re fine with her being our cause of death. Truly, what a way to go…
And, while we’re at it, we’re long past overdue for murdering the idea that “strong” and/or “working” women have to stick to basic, bland colors, typically of the funeral garb variety.
A brilliant human belongs in brilliant colors. Jot that down.
And if we happen to go back to the days of alllllll the leather…Well. Nobody’s complaining.
There has been some decent movement on the wardrobe front toward the end of SVU Season 23, but our girl could still totally use a hiatus shopping spree.
OMG, peonies! Where did they come from? Nobody knows! Choose your own adventure.
(The geriatric who’s still stuck in his tween years when it comes to courting a woman would never get this level of clue anyway, amirite?)
This one goes out to all my fellow caffeine addicts. When you’re a member of an elite squad, you deserve elite-quality coffee. While we’re at it, let’s throw an extra mug on the desk—make it look like “my friend, Elliot” stops by for a cup whenever the timing is right. And—oops!—we’ve just missed him this morning. The losing of shit will ensue.
Fin can even make a snarky comment about all the snobbery, thus getting the Captain back in shady boss lady mode when she good-naturedly tries to tell him to shove it.
Bonus points if there’s evidence that the shared coffee is of the aforementioned elite quality and, God forbid, was even imported from some small batch place Detective StupidAFGhoster found in his decade-long journey through
his own idiocy Europe.
Update Captain Benson’s desk photos
There are so many opportunities to make this fun. First of all, as a dancer, I need to see some recital season looks from Noah. The more embarrassing, the better…because those seem to be the costumes moms love the most. I can’t say as I’d be opposed to some kind of mother-son vacation shots, either.
Next, and this is surely going to be taken in bad faith to mean I just want nothing but Elliot Stabler’s bald head and squeezable ass cheeks all over everywhere, but literally, the old guy’s face should make an appearance somehow. He was a huge part of Olivia’s life back in the day, whether people like it or not. So, while it was probably too painful to look at any of the partners’ Kodak moments for those 10 years he
had his bald head firmly up his otherwise beautiful ass was gone, he’s back now. Bring out old shots or drop a nice frame, with a new EO selfie, on the Captain’s desk. Done.
Nobody even needs to waste any time or effort on taking such a picture because the absolute monsters known as Marshmelon are forever murdering the fangirls with their bff moments. Exhibit A:
Just print one of those, pop it in a frame, and dump it, face-up, on the desk. God forbid we ask that it be mounted on a wall—that might cause a riot.
Or. Maybe Liv’s got candids from Fin and Phoebe’s 2021 not-wedding. Boom. What about some sort of corny family photo after a Rollisi-hosted meal? Just the precinct family—no “friends” need apply.
The possibilities are endless for showing this utter superhero of a character has a full life that isn’t just the job, yet that doesn’t take anything away from the valuable work she does.
Be creative…Or don’t.
At the end of the day, it still makes less than zero sense for EO to be back in each other’s orbits without, you know, actually having adult conversations about their complicated AF past, present, and (dear God, WHEN) hopeful future.
But outside of that, and more vitally, the bottom line is this: Olivia Benson deserves to live, and show off, her best life.
Period. End of discussion.
(…and we kinda just wanted to have some fun with figuring out exactly how we could have proof of that happening without it intruding on the very serious, very important nature of Law & Order: SVU.)
What items do you want to mysteriously appear in Olivia Benson’s space? Drop us a comment, and make sure to catch Law & Order: SVU Thursdays at 9/8c on NBC.