Law & Order: SVU Debate: Who Should Replace Chris Meloni Next Season?

I’m not happy that Law & Order: SVU‘s Chris Meloni is retiring his badge after 12 years. Not happy at all. But rather than throw myself a pity party to which you would have all been invited, I’ve decided to channel my negative energy into something positive: finding my girl Mariska Hargitay a new partner before she steps away from the beat full-time at midseason. Here are, for my money, the folks Dick Wolf should be courting:

| Jason Clarke: Since Chicago Code‘s premature cancellation, he’s a free agent. But, if Wolf is smart — and I think we know he is — he’ll transfer the star from the Windy City to the Big Apple ASAP.

| Michael Chiklis: No Ordinary Family didn’t take off, and his CBS pilot, Vince Uncensored, didn’t even get picked up. Maybe these are signs that it’s time for the former Shield lead to go back to the beat?

| Dermot Mulroney: Though the groom from My Best Friend’s Wedding is primarily a movie actor, we know he’s open to doing TV. Remember, last season he was all set to headline NBC’s ill-fated Rockford Files reboot. So, assuming he’s willing and able, SVU should start preparing an offer now.

| Scott Wolf: Not only does V’s cancellation make him available, but, if Jennifer Love Hewitt does end up succeeding Hargitay, we’d get the Party of Five reunion that everybody’s been waiting for! (OK, the PO5 reunion I’ve been waiting for.)

| Charlie Sheen: On the plus side, the former Two and a Half Men lead comes with his own personal library of sex-crime stories. On the down side… um… see also: the plus side.