‘Law & Order: SVU’ Star Mariska Hargitay Dishes on Benson and Tucker’s Romance: ‘He’s So Masculine and So Strong’

Robert John Burke and Mariska Hargitay
Robert John Burke as Captain Ed Tucker and Mariska Hargitay as Lieutenant Olivia Benson in 'Law & Order: SVU.' Michael Parmelee/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

A little less isolated! As Law & Order: Special Victims Unit airs its season 17 finale on Wednesday, May 25, Mariska Hargitay (Olivia Benson) told E! that her character continues to be affected by her romance with Captain Ed Tucker (Robert John Burke) of the Internal Affairs Bureau.

The Emmy-winning actress, 52, explained that Benson's burgeoning romance with Tucker has helped balance out the lieutenant's lows of this season, which have included getting taken hostage at gunpoint.

"I feel like it's really lonely, and she's been lonely and alone," Hargitay said of the season for her character. "And then enter Tucker, which has been such a game-changer for me because not only is he as powerful — she's such a powerful character — to have somebody that energetically matches her has been incredible. But also have somebody that understands because he's even more complicated and a leader more than her."

"He's so masculine and so strong and so powerful that she can [exhale] because he's that, so [Benson] gets to be a different color," the actress continued of the relationship that has received a mixed reaction from fans.

Law & Order: SVU's season 17 finale airs on NBC Wednesday, May 25, at 9 p.m. ET. 

Sign up now for the Us Weekly newsletter to get breaking celebrity news, hot pics and more delivered straight to your inbox!

Want stories like these delivered straight to your phone? Download the Us Weekly iPhone app now!