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Everything to Know About Season 25 of Law & Order: SVU

Law & Order: SVU celebrated 25 years of gripping cases and heartwarming storylines.

By Jessica White

It's official: We are Dun Dun with a historic Season 25 of Law & Order: Special Victims Unitand it was an emotional journey.

How to Watch

Watch Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Thursdays on NBC and next day on Peacock.

SVU has kept viewers on the edge of their seats for more than two decades with gripping cases and larger-than-life investigators dedicated to seeing justice served. Leading the charge has been the dynamite Olivia Benson (played by the legendary Mariska Hargitay), joined by a powerhouse cast of detectives.

RELATED: Mariska Hargitay Says Fans Need to Remember Something Important About Bensler’s Relationship

The milestone season was packed with mystifying cases, heartfelt storylines, and nostalgic nods to early SVU episodes, making Season 25 a treat for fans old and new. 

Captain Olivia Benson on Law And Order Svu Episode 2513

Who was in the Season 25 cast of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit?

The Season 25 cast of Law & Order: SVU boasted Hargitay as Captain Benson, Ice T as Sergeant Odafin TutuolaPeter Scanavino as ADA Sonny Carisi, and Octavio Pisano as Detective Joe Velasco. Hargitay and Ice T are the longest-running male and female actors in the same role in television history. 

RELATED: Octavio Pisano’s Best Memories with Mariska Hargitay and Ice T on the Set of SVU

Season 25 also saw the return of Season 24 recurring guest star Kevin Kane as the quick-witted Detective Terry Bruno.

Along the way, Benson recruited some new blood for her squad room: IAB Captain Renee Curry (Aime Donna Kelly), chosen for her passion for protocol and finesse with investigations, and Federal Agent Shannah Sykes (Jordana Spiro), an FBI profiler and expert on missing persons cases.


Benson Welcomes Captain Curry to the Squad | Law & Order: SVU | NBC

What happened in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Season 25?

Season 25 of SVU opened with Benson witnessing the kidnapping of a teenager, Maddie Flynn (Allison Elaine). Despite Benson's keen instincts, the missing person's case was a challenge as they faced several twists and turns during the search. Luckily, Benson had Curry and Sykes to put some heat on the investigation.

After more missing girls were connected to Flynn's case, the squad discovered a disturbing sex trafficking network. It took nearly the full season, but Benson returned Maddie home and arrested her assailant after a dramatic courtroom showdown.

RELATED: Olivia Benson and Elliot Stabler's Full Relationship History

There were several other tantalizing cases along the way.

A runaway bride case ushered the return of SVU legend Amanda Rollins (Kelli Giddish). On her first day off after leaving her teaching job, she teamed up with her BFF Benson to successfully crack that case. Later, Benson learned Sykes' passion for missing person cases was fueled by the 20-year-old cold case of her kidnapped sister, whose body was never found. After rummaging through mildew-infested files and relaunching that investigation, Benson arrested the killer, tracked down several bodies, and gave closure to her colleague and several traumatized families.

RELATED: 25 Celebrities Who Guest Starred On Law & Order: SVU

Benson's long-running tenure on the force came into play as she started therapy to work through the trauma of her workplace, dredging up painful memories of her own kidnapper William Lewis (Pablo Schreiber). Die-hard SVU fans enjoyed several flashbacks to acclaimed episodes, like when Benson reunited with the girl she saved in Season 7 ("911"). Decades after the rescue, Benson was delighted to learn that the little girl grew up to become a cop.

Additionally, she made headway with her adopted son, Noah (Ryan Buggle), after finally telling the story of his biological father, the villainous Johnny D (Charles Halford)

It was a chapter of growth and healing for Benson, inspired by a gift she received from Elliot Stabler (Christopher Meloni) in Law & Order: Organized Crime's Season 3 finale — a compass necklace designed to lead her to happiness. This summary would be remiss without addressing the elephant in the squad room: Did Benson brush paths with Stabler in Season 25? 

Yes, but no. Benson and Stabler played a mind-boggling game of phone tag throughout Season 4 of OC and Season 25 of SVU. Both busy with their respective investigations, the former SVU partners struggled to reach each other on the phone, leaving heartfelt voicemails for the other to hear.

Luckily, in the Season 25 finale ("Duty to Hope"), Benson and Stabler finally got on the phone together and enjoyed a wholesome chat about Benson's healing.

Captain Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay) and Sargeant Tutuola (Ice T) appear in Season 25 Episode 7 of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.

How many seasons of Law & Order: SVU are there?

There have been 25 seasons of Law & Order: SVU, and a Season 26 has already been confirmed. Though no specific date has been confirmed, it will occupy its normal time slot: Thursdays at 9/8c.

RELATED: Law & Order: SVU Is Returning for Season 26! (DETAILS)

Until then, fans can watch every episode of all 25 seasons of Law & Order: SVU on Peacock.

Originally published Apr 12, 2023.