Ahead of their characters reuniting in the Law & Order universe, former Special Victims Unit co-stars Christopher Meloni and Mariska Hargitay got together and posted a fun photo on Instagram teasing their upcoming television reunion. When SVU first premiered on television in 1999, Meloni and Hargitay shined as lead characters Elliot Stabler and Olivia Benson, with the two characters expertly working together to take down New York's most perverted criminals. Meloni departed the series after its 12th season, but Hargitay has remained on the show ever since, with the long-running drama still going very strong after 21 seasons.

Much to the delight of franchise fans, it has since been announced that Meloni will reprise the role as Stabler for the upcoming spin-off series Law & Order: Organized Crime. Additionally, Meloni has hinted that he will first appear on SVU for Stabler to reunite with Benson, and to help set up the new series. Although both characters will primarily lead their own respective shows, Meloni has also suggested some hearty crossover storylines involving the two. "Benson and Stabler are inextricably linked, locked and connected. I think there is truly and deeply a worthwhile, inherent drama in exploring that relationship and the complexity of how Stabler left," Meloni has said.

RELATED: Christopher Meloni Talks SVU Spin-Off, Confirms Stabler-Benson Reunion

With fans looking forward to seeing Stabler and Benson sharing the small screen once again, Meloni and Hargitay took to social media to tease the reunion. On Hargitay's Instagram account, a photo of the two has been posted, with the actress adding the simple caption: "It's on." For his part, Meloni is looking a bit different from how most SVU fans are accustomed to, sporting a bushy goatee rather than Stabler's clean-shaven look. It's a great look for Meloni, but as it doesn't seem to fit Stabler, we'll see if he ends up shaving for the television series. You can take a look at the photo below.

Not many details have been revealed about Meloni's new series, but the show will reportedly follow Stabler returning to the NYPD following a "devastating personal loss." He will now switch his focus to busting criminals involved in organized crime, leaving it up to Benson and company to continue their own pursuit of the city's offenders of sexually oriented crimes. We can presume that it was organized crime in New York that led to this loss that will befall Stabler, with justice and payback serving as motivations for the former SVU detective to now go after these kinds of dangerous criminals.

Production on Law & Order: Organized Crime is expected to begin next month, with plans to debut the spinoff series on NBC this fall. The show will air Thursday at 10 p.m., immediately following new episodes of SVU. Of course, given the way things have been going the past few months, it's always possible we'll see a production delay before the series can get started filming. In any case, it's awesome to know that the television reunion of Stabler and Benson is in the works, whenever we'll get to see it. The reunion photo shown above comes to us from Mariska Hargitay on Instagram.

Jeremy Dick at TVweb
Jeremy Dick