On Thursday, Mariska Hargitay, the star of Law & Order: SVU, expressed her admiration for a young fan of the show who bravely fought off an attempted kidnapper by using blue slime to mark him for identification.
The following day, the actress surprised 11-year-old Alyssa Bonal with a virtual chat on the Today Show. During the show, Today Show host Kerry Sanders informed Alyssa of the surprise. He introduced Mariska as Captain Olivia Benson, the character she portrays on the show. Mariska greeted Alyssa and asked how she was doing. Alyssa responded that she was good. Mariska then praised Alyssa's bravery and commended her for her quick thinking in the face of danger.
Mariska then asked Alyssa what she was planning to watch on TV that night. Alyssa excitedly answered, "Law & Order!" This response was fitting, as earlier in the week, Alyssa had revealed that she had been inspired by Law & Order: SVU to smear blue slime on her attacker, just like the show's characters often use evidence to apprehend criminals.
The heartwarming surprise and conversation between Mariska Hargitay and Alyssa Bonal on the Today Show served as a reminder of the impact television can have on its viewers and how acts of bravery can inspire others.