Olivia Benson’s worst nightmare just happened. At the end of “Intent,” the Law & Order: SVU midseason finale about an elaborate online catfishing that resulted in a social media star (Gage Golightly) getting raped by a famous fighter (Steve Howey), Mariska Hargitay‘s Benson received the call every parent fears: Noah (Ryan Buggle) is missing.
The episode featured Hargitay’s character lay down the law with Sheila (Brooke Shields), Noah’s maternal birth grandma after Sheila told Noah about his birth mother. The two reached an understanding of sorts and Benson agreed to let Sheila take Noah shopping for a winter coat. While in the clothing store, a hooded figure watched as Noah tried on coats. When Sheila turned her back to get Noah a coat with a smaller hood, the hooded figure seemingly pounced. We’re saying seemingly because SVU loves their twists. A panicked Sheila then made the call to Benson.
“I remember saying to [SVU showrunner Michael Chernuchin], ‘I don’t know how we did it. I don’t know how we did it.’ It’s just like this whole other flavor,” Hargitay said about the upcoming episode. “We just dove into motherhood, and what it means to be a mother and what we would do for our children. And again, we keep finding all these beautiful areas to excavate and it’s deeply exciting.”
Law & Order: SVU airs Wednesdays, 9 p.m. NBC. New episodes begin on Wednesday, Jan. 3.
(E! and NBC are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)