‘Law & Order: SVU’ Fans Have a Hunch Show Will Use Gabby Petito Storyline

by Lauren Boisvert

“Law & Order: SVU” has a habit of taking topical stories from the news and turning them into interesting, relevant episodes. Fans call this “ripped from the headlines.” Recently, fans have taken to Reddit to discuss whether or not “Law & Order: SVU” will take on the complicated Gabby Petito case from this past September.

“What do you guys think are some of the ripped from the headlines episodes we are going to see next season?” one fan prompted in the original post. “Im thinking Gabby Petito vlog themed episode […] Anyone got any guesses?”

“There will definitely be a Gabby Petito one,” one fan commented, “but it might have to be a cross over or a multi episode arc.”

It wouldn’t make a lot of sense for Organized Crime to get in on a case like that. But, maybe Stabler and Benson could team up on their own for a crossover. Also, the writers might punch up the case a little more to make it fit within the Sex Crimes Unit parameters. As it stands, the domestic violence aspects of the actual case make it a pretty good “ripped from the headlines” contender.

“I feel like this would be a really great s23 finale/s24 premiere- the search could take place over the summer, they could introduce characters and revisit them next season, lots of potential there,” wrote another commenter, while another mused, “It would be interesting to see who plays the Brian Laundrie equivalent.”

As it stands right now, the case only started to unfold about two months ago; that seems a little soon to be making fictionalized accounts of Gabby Petito’s last days. But, in the future, it’s possible we could be looking at a “Law & Order: SVU” based on that harrowing case.

‘Law & Order: SVU’: Mariska Hargitay Breaks Down Her Toughest Scenes

In 2018, “Law & Order: SVU” star Mariska Hargitay spoke to TV Insider about the toughest scenes she’s ever done on the show, emotionally and physically. “The show is about the worst things people do to each other in the darkest part of humanity,” Hargitay said. “Which means many stories are difficult.”

Of her toughest scenes, Hargitay revealed that it came in season 15, during the William Lewis arc. William Lewis was a serial rapist and murderer who kidnapped Benson and tortured her gruesomely. The arc spanned 5 episodes, and Benson went through so much emotionally and physically, it doesn’t even bear repeating. The arc is harrowing, and sickening, and extremely dark. It’s hard to imagine how Mariska Hargitay got through it, other than that she’s a top-notch professional.

“The William Lewis arc [in Season 15] was the most taxing,” Hargitay said. “It was gut-wrenching to shoot. But it was a treat to work with Pablo Schreiber [who played William Lewis]. I trusted him, so I was able to go there.”