A lesbian astronaut’s life gets cut short on “Law & Order: SVU”

Last night’s episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit focused on the murder of a European astronaut named Marga Janssen (played in video footage and photos by Kristina Klebe).

While Detectives Stabler and Benson work to find a motive for the murder, a colonel (James Brolin) in town for the same space conference Marga was first points in the direction of her girlfriend, Andy (Therese Plummer).

Kristina Klebe, left, and Therese Plummer

Andy is questioned about a fight she’d had with Marga in the hotel. She clears things up right away — the fight was simply her pleading with Marga to take a vacation with her up state (you know how us lesbians like mini-vacations away from the city). Upon identifying her girlfriend’s body in the medical examiner’s office, Andy notices the matching moon necklace she had given Marga was missing. “She said she’d never take it off!” she said, and immediately it became a key piece of evidence.

Possible spoiler alert, for those who have yet to watch it on Tivo!

Later found at a pawn shop, the necklace helped Stabler figure out that Marga (a rising star with NASA and a prime candidate to revisit the moon in 2018) had been murdered by the colonel out of jealousy. (Space travel obviously makes people a little luney looney.)

Want to get a visual recap instead? Watch NBC’s two-minute replay of the episode:

I love how easily the women’s relationship was integrated into the episode. But the best line of the episode comes from Stabler.

When confronting the colonel, who he has known and idolized since he saw him speak about space travel in high school: “What pissed you off so much… Was it when you sweet talked her and it was falling flat because she was a lesbian?” That’s right — we’re not just waiting around for the right Dick to come along (that’s his name).

(You can watch this clip during Christopher Meloni‘s appearance on Jay Leno last week if you skip a few minutes in.)

This case was cut and dry, so we didn’t get to see any court room action. But it was sad enough to see Andy have to identify her girlfriend’s body, especially without their shared piece of jewelry.

Maybe Detective Benson could help console her. Just a thought.

Did you catch “Lunacy” or were you too busy replaying the first two minutes of House?