Mariska Hargitay considers hanging up her badge

Imagine chocolate without peanut butter. Milk without cookies. Rocky without Bullwinkle. It’s just, well, wrong. Still, the prospect of one of life’s great pairings parting ways is very real after Mariska Hargitay told Ladies Home Journal she would consider leaving the hit show for her family.

Mariska has played Det. Olivia Benson for 10 seasons on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Alongside Christopher Meloni as Det. Elliot Stabler, she has helped make the spin-off the most popular series in the Law & Order franchise. They’ve also turned Benson and Stabler into one of TV’s best on-screen partnerships.

When the magazine asked Mariska what would get her to hang up her badge, she mentioned her 2-year-old son, August, saying: “I just want to see my kid.” And even if she doesn’t leave the show for good, some leave may be in her future. Mariska also told the magazine that she and her husband, Peter Hermann, (whom you might remember as the cheating cad from the short-lived, sorta-lesbian series Cashmere Mafia) are “trying” to have another child.

So, could SVU survive without Mariska? Would Stabler work without Benson? And, as long as I’m asking impossible questions, what the heck is that “Chung! Chung!” sound supposed to be anyway? Discuss.