2006_02_svu.jpgAha. The Post published this photograph of Mariska Hargitay as Law & Order: Special Victims Unit's Detective Olivia Benson in a pool of blood, and it seems like Benson will be hurt in some way so Hargitay can go on maternity leave. Connie Nielsen, probably best known as Lucilla from Gladiator but will always be Dirk Calloway's mom in Rushmore to us, is going to play the detective that fills in for Benson. What's interesting is how the L&O shows are dealing with their actors' absences: When Jesse L. Martin filmed Rent, his character was shot and Michael Imperioli filled in for him, but when Criminal Intent's Kathryn Erbe was pregnant, they wrote in that she was carrying her sister's baby or something like that. Anyway, tonight's L&O: SVU sounds really gross:

When the body of a young woman is found murdered in her apartment, Detectives Benson (Mariska Hargitay) and Stabler (Chris Meloni) discover she's a successful attorney - and stripper, which is apparently unknown to her fiancé and boss, Tessa McKellen (guest star Rebecca De Mornay). Later, tape from a student crew filming the night of the murder reveals the victim was with Linus McKellen (guest star Chris Potter), Tessa's husband - whose sperm was found in both the victim and her friend and fellow stripper, also found murdered. The investigation is further complicated when it's revealed the killer entered both apartments from outside windows, leading the detectives to suspect the crimes could also be tied to Tessa's corporate work.

Those student film crews always come in handy. We'll be watching to see if this is an episode filmed in our work neighborhood - we always seem to stumble upon L&O vans every two weeks.