In “Law & Order: SVU” season 22 episode 9, Kathy Stabler died after suffering severe wounds in a car bombing meant for Elliot Stabler. She died from a ruptured spleen, after expressing her happiness at seeing Stabler and Benson back together after a decade. But fans are now speculating that maybe Kathy isn’t as dead as they initially thought.
“I have a hunch things will heat up between Liv and Elliot,” one fan commented on Reddit about “Law & Order: Organized Crime,” “only to reveal that [Stabler’s] wife was taken into protective custody from the FBI and no one knew.”
A bold claim; could “Law & Order: Organized Crime” be planning a love triangle situation with Benson, Stabler, and Kathy? All the years Benson and Stabler worked together, there was never any indication that Kathy was jealous of their relationship. The times she separated from Stabler were because of his dangerous life as a cop. She didn’t do it because he had feelings for Benson. Bringing in a love triangle could potentially ruin what bond is between Benson and Stabler.
Some fans are adamant that it’s not going to happen, though, citing the fact that Isabel Gillies, who played Kathy, has retired from acting. Fans are also saying that there’s no way Kathy would leave her kids behind like that.
One fan thought maybe they would recast Kathy. “[Organized Crime] wouldn’t be the first show to completely recast a character. If Kathy was in witness protection, they could also have some (dumb) story about plastic surgery to explain her change in appearance,” commented the fan. “To be clear, I think that it would be a big mistake for the show to pull a “SURPRISE! Kathy’s alive!” move. But Isabel’s retirement doesn’t totally close the door on that idea.”
‘Law & Order: Organized Crime’ Fans Contemplate Kathy Stabler’s Fate
Another “Law & Order: Organized Crime” fan was very confident in the fact that Kathy wouldn’t be returning.
“Kathy is 100% dead,” they wrote. “For one, Kathy’s portrayer no longer acts, which is probably the most important thing here. And for another, it would completely negate SO much of the story up until now […] I think we’re not done with roadblocks coming between [Elliot and Olivia], but “dead wife actually being alive” is not going to be one of those roadblocks.”
Fans commented on the fact that the entire immediate family is usually relocated when someone is put into Witness Protection. It’s unlikely that Kathy would be in Witness Protection without her kids.
Another fan answered succinctly, “We literally saw her in a car that exploded.” Yeah, that’ll usually do it. But, someone countered that argument, writing, “I don’t think [the episode] actually showed her die.”
Whatever fans are speculating, it’s safe to say that, at this point, Kathy Stabler is considered very dead. Whether or not she comes back in Witness Protection or as a ghost, is an issue for the writers to work out.