Question: I love the chemistry between Andrew Lincoln and Danai Gurira on The Walking Dead, but I do not want to see Rick and Michonne get romantically involved. That would be a jump-the-shark moment for sure. Please tell me the show isn’t going there. —Jeremy
Ausiello: Series creator Robert Kirkman says he “wouldn’t necessarily rule a romance out,” but he reminds us that Rick’s “wife did just die in a horrible way, so I don’t think any kind of romance is really on his radar just yet.” Kirkman does, however, concede that the two are growing closer. “They are definitely forming a friendship,” he acknowledges. “They have a very large mutual respect for each other because of their capabilities and their ability to trust one another, and I think that’s a lot of what was growing in the [Season 3] episode where they both went off on a run together.”
Question: Begging you for any scraps of New Girl spoilers. Fat Schmidt, Nick and Jess, a possible Winston/Cece arc — I will take anything! —Sarah
Ausiello: Schmidt will find himself somewhat mojo-challenged in Season 3. “He’s going to slide a little bit and not be so on top of his game,” reveals exec producer Dave Finkel. Adds fellow EP Brett Baer: “He’s definitely on a journey to figure himself out this season. He’s going to be forced to confront himself, and get in touch with the little guy inside of him.” To that end, viewers will likely meet “some of his family members in the second half of the season,” Baer confirms. “You’ll get a vision of what his childhood and homelife were like growing up, the way we did with Nick last year.”
Question: Does The Big Bang Theory have any plans to bring back Lucy? I really liked her with Raj and was surprised the show split them up in the finale. —Missi
Ausiello: Exec producer Steve Molaro says “the door was intentionally left wide open” for Kate Micucci to return as Raj’s ex, noting, “Raj said at the end of Season 6, ‘I pushed it too hard. I need to give her some space.’ And he’s still heartbroken about Lucy and sort of picking up the pieces and trying to move forward… But I love those characters together.”
Question: I am dying to know if Nashville is losing either Rayna or Deacon due to the crash! Please, can we at least have a tidbit of a hint? —Anna
Ausiello: From what executive producer Dee Johnson tells TVLine, it sounds like the crash puts a very definite end to Deacon’s season-finale bender. “God, if this doesn’t wake you up, I don’t know what would,” she says. “That doesn’t mean he comes out of it singing about sunshine and lollipops, but he definitely feels for what happened and takes responsibility for what happened.”
Question: With the premiere less than two weeks away, what else can you tease on the Bones front? —Rachel
Ausiello: As with the Castle premiere, you’ll be hanging on the next words when Brennan says to her almost-fiancé, “I have to tell you something…”
Question: Thanks for that Bones preview! Do you have any more teases on Booth and Brennan? —Rachel
Ausiello: Booth’s priest-turned-barkeep pal (played by Mather Zickel) will serve as “somewhat of a touchstone this season for secrets,” offers exec producer Stephen Nathan, who reveals that both Booth and Brennan will seek his counsel as they attempt to resolve their seemingly insurmountable relationship issues. “He’s a neutral party that Booth can go to and talk freely,” notes the EP. “And when Brennan finds out about him, she feels she can talk freely with him as well.” Holy epiphany, Batman: This dude’s so going to end up officiating the B&B nups later this season! You know I’m right! What do I win if I’m right?!
Question: How long into Grimm‘s new season will it take for the crew to settle the zombie problem and save Nick? —Ole
Ausiello: You remember how Rosalee said she could only cure the zombie problem when the afflicted person was in the rage stage, right? Well, Nick gets there quickly – within the first two episodes of Season 3, creators David Greenwalt and James Kouf say. On a scale where “kitten” is 1 and “Bengal tiger” is 10, “He’s about an 11,” Kouf adds – and it leaves a mark. By the time the credits roll on the season’s second hour, Monroe and everyone will have Nick back – “but there’s kind of residual damage,” the EP says.
Question: Any new details on Glee‘s Finn tribute? Maybe something about song selection? —Jen
Ausiello: Although I don’t have any confirmation of this, rumor has it an iconic track from Glee‘s Season 1 setlist will be revived for the Oct. 10 farewell. Additionally, I hear Santana is featured somewhat prominently in the special episode, the script of which is garnering rave reviews.
Question: OK, I’ll bite: What happens at the start of Sons of Anarchy Season 6 Episode 3 that’s so shocking it made your hair stand on end? —Julie
Ausiello: All I’ll say is it involves Donal Logue’s vengeance-seeking lawman. (And for the record, the SOA twist didn’t do that to my hair. The six-hour Labor Day nap I took did.)
Question: Hey! Will we be seeing Anna Camp on The Mindy Project at all this season? – Billie
Ausiello: Hey! It’s not looking great for any of Mindy’s girls this season, mostly because rom-coms rely a lot heavier on the “rom” than the “com.” (After all, it’s called When Harry Met Sally, not When Sally and Marie Hang Out and Marie Has That Funny Scene With the Folded-Down Index Cards.) “There are not a lot of plans to see Mindy’s girlfriends,” says EP Jack Burditt. “But I also think we may touch upon the fact that she doesn’t spend a lot of time with her girlfriends, either.”
Question: Any Mindy Project scoop? What kind of time jump are we looking at since the last season? Thanks! -—Mary Kate
Ausiello: Not a huge one – but enough time for [Spoiler] and [Spoiler] to have moved to the [spoiler]s.
Question: I recently became addicted to 2 Broke Girls. Any scoop on Season 3, particularly involving Nick Zano and/or Ryan Hansen returning to woo my favorite broke girls again? –Nikki
Ausiello: When we asked co-creator Michael Patrick King that very question, he said both of the broke girls’ former guys were likely gone for good – or, at least, for the foreseeable future. “My whole thing is, [men] come in and they go,” he said. “At 25, they’re in, they’re out. They’re a memory. You maybe see them. Maybe you don’t.” As for the hot new pastry chef who’ll show up this season, King notes, “At this point, we’re hoping for a different guy who can bring out different things in Max than Johnny did.”
Question: Camp is my favorite summer show! Any news on if it will be back next summer? —Kristen
Ausiello: I’m afraid I have bad news for you, Kristen. According to my spies at A.C. Nielsen, you are the only person still watching the show. So… no. It won’t be back next summer.
Question: I will happily take a Middle scoop off your hands, Aus. —Jordan.
Ausiello: ABC’s stealth hit will celebrate its 100th episode this fall with — what else — a parade, celebrating the Orsontennial and featuring no less than the fourth-best John Cougar Mellencamp impersonator in all of Indiana.
Question: Can you give me some scoop about The Good Wife? —Ilone
Ausiello: I can. And I will. The law offices of Florrick, Agos and Assoc. will share little in common with Lockhart Garner’s tony digs. “We want to suggest more of a start-up quality to it,” exec producer Robert King says of Alicia and Cary’s fledgeling firm. “Lockhart Gardner has a very polished look. [Florrick, Agos and Assoc] may not be up to the financial standards of Lockhart Gardner’s architecture.”
Question: Is it too early to ask for Pretty Little Liars Season 4B scoop? —Cora
Ausiello: “We will pay off” that top-secret meeting between Mona and Shana in Liars‘ summer finale, executive producer Oliver Goldstick assures. “I’ve always said, Mona is a viscous little dumpling and no one should forget who she was in Seasons 1 and 2 — even if she has ‘redeemed’ herself or ‘absolved’ herself of some of those horrible deeds. She was still capable of them, and that’s important to remember.”
That’s a wrap! Please send questions, comments, and anonymous tips to firstname.lastname@example.org. (Additional reporting by Kim Roots and Meg Masters)
Question: I read that Penny and Sheldon will bond during Leonard’s absence on The Big Bang Theory – do you have any more details on this? —Emily
Ausiello: I can confirm that there will be some hugging (see photo). I can also confirm that there will be an exchange of classified information. “They [share] a couple of intimate secrets about each other,” exec producer Steven Molaro teases of the CBS comedy’s Sept. 26 opener. “They have some really sweet scenes together.”
Question: What’s up with Sons of Anarchy? —Robert
Ausiello: Jax won’t be making any conjugal visits to his jailhouse bride when Sons of Anarchy kicks off its sixth season on Sept. 10. In fact, he won’t be visiting Tara, period (although it won’t be for lack of trying on his part). When the unhappy couple do eventually come face-to-face, expect “a deep sense of sadness on both their parts,” shares series creator Kurt Suttter, who describes the reunion as “loving but very sad.” As the SOA boss notes, “They’ve been through so much already, and how many more times can you say, ‘I’m sorry?’ How many more times can you say, ‘It’s going to get better?’ How many more times can you say, ‘It’ll change?’ It’s almost like there’s a certain amount of resignation that they both are aware of.”
Question: Can I get tapes of the past two seasons of the Sons of Anarchy? —Don
Ausiello: Sure thing. What format do you prefer — VHS, Betamax or 8-Track?
Question: Are there any Beauty and the Beast Spoilers? –Viv
Ausiello: I foresee a helper… and a headache. The show is currently casting the guest-starring roles of Zach, a cocky former soldier who uses a reunion with an old friend (perhaps Vincent?) for vengeance (against, perhaps, Muirfield?), and Beth, a high school pal of Cat’s who is now the hard-charging producer at a news station — suggesting to me that she’ll be the next one to get wind of the beasts now in our midst.
Question: Can you please keep us updated with the latest on Beauty and the Beast? It will be much appreciated! –Carol
Ausiello: Speak of the devil, here is the very, very latest: I can exclusively report that Bryan Dechart (Jane By Design) will debut in Episode 4 as Aaron Keller, a relative of Vincent’s (!) who is a street-smart arson investigator prone to being a (ahem) “hot” head. Hailing from a family of firefighters, Aaron is desperate to make his mark. And there you have the very latest!
Question: First time asker and I’ll keep it short and sweet — Newsroom, Nashville or The Originals? I’ll take anything! —Zara
Ausiello: Let’s head to Nashville. According to showrunner Dee Johnson, Peggy is determined to have Teddy’s baby. “She’s not going to run out and get an abortion,” Johnson says, adding that Teddy is “certainly not happy” about the bun in his mistress’ oven and that it’ll take a little while for Rayna to find out that Pegs is expecting. (Though, given everything that happened in the season finale, this whole mess is the least of Rayna’s problems, am I right?)
Question: Can we look forward to any substantial Snow/Emma scenes in Once Upon a Time Season 3? Also, is Snow finally going to get back to her warrior ways? –Christina
Ausiello: Yes, and thus yes. As mom and daughter brave Neverland together while still adjusting to their family dynamic, “In a lot of ways, Mary Margaret may not be able to bond with Emma, but Bandit Snow and Emma have a lot in common,” notes cocreator Eddy Kitsis. Meaning, going up against Peter Pan and his Lost Boys will bring bow-toting Snow to the fore. “David and Mary Margaret last year were saying, ‘We are both,’” Kitsis reminds. “But this year it’s, ‘We need Snow and Charming.’ That’s what this mission requires.”
Question: Do you have any new Bones spoilers for us? —Maria
Ausiello: Booth and Brennan have more than just a wedding to look forward to this season. Per exec producer Stephen Nathan, Bones intends to show the love-struck pair experiencing a number of pre-marriage trappings, including, presumably, bachelor and bachelorette parties. Although the rituals “might not be in the right order,” Nathan teases. “We want to continue to mess up tradition while kind of keeping it traditional at the same time.”
Question: Since Person of Interest announced that Sarah Shahi would be a series regular, social media has been lit up by passionate fans who either love or hate her character, Sam Shaw. Are they sticking by their choice? —Casey
Ausiello: Absolutely — and the thing to keep in mind is that as a result, Shaw isn’t now some full-time member of Finch’s team. As showrunner Greg Plageman explained to Matt Mitovich as part of our Fall Preview Spectacular, Shaw’s betrayal by her own government “informed her opinion about belonging to anything or giving allegiance to anyone right now.” And as such, “She helps us out only when she feels like it.”
Question: Anything new on the NCIS front? –Cheryl
Ausiello: If you are by chance among the McAbby fans who worry that Tim’s new computer geek girlfriend Delilah (played by Big Bang Theory brainiac Margo Hasrhman) will be some ersatz Abby, Gary Glasberg is here to set the record straight. “I’d like to believe that maybe he’s drawn to people like that and is intrigued by women like that, but I wouldn’t say that [Abby and Delilah] are that similar,” the showrunner tells us. “They have their differences, that’s for sure!”
Question: Any scoop on Grimm? –Jordan
Ausiello: The third season of the supernatural drama will feature “alligators in the sewer” and “a reemergence of the Bauerschwein-Blutbad feud,” show bosses James Kouf and David Greenwalt tell TVLine. A word to the wise: You might want to DVR the Wu-centric episode – in which the cop comes face-to-face with the Wesen world – and watch it after dinner. The baddie in that hour is “something so creepy that the last thing that creepy was the fly episode,” Greenwalt promises. “This is right on par with that.”
Question: First off, I love your column! I have been reading Ask Ausiello since you were on Entertainment Weekly! Second, do you have any 2 Broke Girls scoop? I’m dying! —Richa
Ausiello: Thanks, Richa, but to be precise, I was in Entertainment Weekly, not “on” it. I’m a stickler for details, oh yes I am. Moving on to your query, showrunner Michael Patrick King tells us that Steven Weber will “probably” be back as Caroline’s pop this season and that “you never know” whether Candy Andy will return to romance Caroline. “We loved Ryan [Hansen] so much,” he says, but acknowledges that Hansen’s casting on CBS’ Bad Teacher complicates things a bit.
Question: Any Rookie Blue scoop? —Holly
Ausiello: The show’s two-part season ender, airing Sept. 5 and Sept. 12, will play out in roughly real time, which exec producer Tassie Cameron says should “give some indication of the urgency and pace.” Also, it’s a good thing ABC’s summer sleeper was renewed since Season 4 ends on a cliffhanger. Teases Cameron with a laugh: “I wouldn’t have wanted to end the show on our finale.”
Question: I know it’s early, but got anything on my favorite show, Cougar Town? —Christopher
Ausiello: Season 5 will answer the burning Q, “What would happen if Penny Can became a worldwide phenomenon?”
Question: Do you happen to have any news on Revolution to tide us over? —Carolyn
Ausiello: Things are getting darker, and not just because the power is out again. Despite moving to 8 pm, aka the family hour, all the characters will find themselves in “grimier situations,” previews executive producer Eric Kripke. “We wanted to explore more of our world – What does gambling look like? What do hookers look like? What does shadier nightlife look like? – and explore some of those corners.” Which, of course, is where they find Monroe.
Question: I have to say, the more I hear about Revenge Season 3, the more encouraged I become. Anything else you can share? —Melody
Ausiello: The weekly takedowns are back, but with a twist: They’ll play out over multiple episodes. They’ll also be less plot-driven. “We’re going to use them to explore who Emily is a little bit more than we’ve had a chance to in the past,” previews new showrunner Sunil Nayar. “We’re 44 hours into the show now. She’s experienced so many different things, culminating in the revelation of who [really] is to Jack. We’re examining not just who she is and what happiness means to her, but what are the ramifications of her plans are. Because now there’s someone who knows. And that’s going to have an impact on Emily. So the takedowns are still going to be wonderful, but they’re also going to have a deeper meaning and a deeper effect.”
Question: Anything on HIMYM? —Nick
Ausiello: The final season’s ninth episode, titled “Mom and Dad,” will introduce us to Robin’s French-Canadian cousin, Claude, who may or may not have been involved in some shady hockey-related doings. (Ted’s pretty confident he’s guilty as sin.)
That’s a wrap! Please send questions, comments, and anonymous tips to email@example.com. (Additional reporting by Vlada Gelman, Megan Masters and Kim Roots)
Question: Any spoilers on Once Upon a Time? —Patti
Ausiello: Matt Mitovich just got off the horn with series creators Adam Horowitz and Eddy Kitsis, and they caught us up on some of the backstory gaps that will be filled in via flashbacks during Season 3. Episode 2 is Snow/Charming-centric, covering the time between the former’s awakening from the sleep curse and when they encountered Regina on the battlefield. “How did the queen react to that? And who first told her?” Horowitz wonders. Episode 3 will relate Tinkerbell’s origin, featuring The Blue Fairy (but not Amy Acker’s Nova) and addressing the question: “What makes a fairy?” Also on tap for fall is a new chunk of Rumple’s past, the tale of how Hook became a pirate and the self-explanatory Episode 6, titled “Ariel” (and yes, Eric is being cast/will not be an existing character).
Question: Any spoilers on one of my favorite Bones couples, Hodgins and Angela? —Ariel
Ausiello: A third party is coming in to stir up some drama between the happily-ish married couple. But it’s not what you’re thinking. “Hodgins is going to have to deal with a new family member,” previews exec producer Stephen Nathan, “and that will impact both Hodgins and Angela and their relationship.” Are we talking a brother? Sister? Cousin once removed and then put back? “I don’t want to say,” he demurs. “The way it comes out is such a surprise; it’s somebody that he wouldn’t know.” Look for the family reunion to take place within Season 9′s first 10 episodes.
Question: Can you please find out the nature of Sweets’ new job on Bones? —Angie
Ausiello: “He’s trying to do something to help people avoid a criminal life,” Nathan reveals of the shrink’s brief professional detour early in Season 9. “He’s working with kids in the inner city.”
Question: Any new Season 5 Good Wife scoop? —Tonya
Ausiello: You may recall that Josh Charles inked a new deal with the show last spring to continue playing Will. You may also recall that said deal was only for one year, which means Season 5 could very well be his swan song. For his part, exec producer Robert King will be kinda-sorta prepared for either outcome. Creatively speaking, “We can turn on, well, not a dime, but a 50-cent piece,” he says of this season’s roadmap. “We can turn things pretty fast if we need to.” Regarding Charles’ unique contract situation (he’s the only Good Wife-r who did not sign a long-term deal), King explains, “It’s what Josh is about. He’s someone who wants to always explore different sides of himself. And how [Season 5] goes helps him decide what he wants to do. That sounds like there’s some contentiousness in our relationship. There’s not. Josh is one of the friendliest and nicest actors I’ve met. Anything that is contractual stays with the agents.”
Question: Heard a rumor Modern Family will be introducing a sibling for Cam this season. True? False? —Jeremy
Ausiello: You have impeccable sources, Jer. In this season’s fourth episode we’ll meet Cam’s big-boned, very non-glamorous farm girl of a sister, who has something of an explosive personality. Got casting tips? Post ‘em below! (But hurry up, the role starts shooting… in three weeks. OK, so you have a little time.)
Question: Thanks for the great True Blood post mortem. Just one problem — you failed to ask EP Brian Buckner about Pam and Tara! —Cara
Ausiello: Actually, I succeeded at making you think I failed. The fact is, I did ask Buckner about the Sapphic vamp duo — specifically, will their floundering relationship get any airtime in Season 7 — but I opted to hold his answer for AA. (Me = Totally sneaky.) “As the audience heard Pam say in Episode 1, life is long — especially for vampires,” notes the boss man. “She also told Tara that this is not going to be a love story. But I would urge [fans] to be patient. Because if the show delivers on the audience’s expectation every week, that’s not storytelling. Where’s the surprise in that? These [story] threads can be picked up later. I want to be able to tell more interesting, circuitous stories at times and not always deliver on the junk-food promise of the show. “
Question: I’d like some Once Upon a Time in Wonderland scoop, please. —Mason
Ausiello: The Once spin-off will, in its third episode, sic no less than Beowulf‘s Grendel on Alice and The Knave. Envisioned (via an actor in prosthetics) as a “large, warted, ogre-like beast,” the cannibalistic Grendel will pose a mortal threat to
its dinner the genie-seeking pair — though in typical Once fashion, there is more to this beast than meets the eye. But don’t go brushing up on your Old English just yet. “It’s a wink-and-a-nod, as opposed to a real deep-dive into Beowulf,” says series cocreator Adam Horowitz of the creature’s clash with Alice.
Question: I’ve burned through Seasons 1 and 2 of New Girl this summer, and now I need a hint about Season 3 — ideally something Nick-and-Jess-related. —Emily
Ausiello: I’ll see your hint and raise you a full-on recap of the Sept. 17 premiere, courtesy of Jake Johnson. Picking up where the Season 2 finale left off, “Nick and Jess find themselves driving straight to Mexico.” Once there, “We get Tazed. I end up in a pool. Some guy watches me go to the bathroom, because he likes the bad smells. Jess goes back and gets the gang to save Nick. There are flashbacks. It’s a lot. It’s a big crazy start.”
Question: Any details on how Ashley will be written off Revenge? —Geoffrey
Ausiello: Despite portrayer Ashley Madekwe’s very public plea that her character “die in a blaze of glory,” showrunner Sunil Nayar tells us that Ash — who will depart in the show’s Sept. 29 opener —will live to see another day. “We’re not killing her,” he reveals. “We’d never do that! She’s too great a character. As sad as we are to bid her farewell at the moment, you’ll see that the way we resolve her storyline now gives her an opportunity to come back with her own revenge agenda.”
Question: Can you tease any good Emily-Victoria moments in the Revenge premiere? —Joyce
Ausiello: I could, but I’m going to let Emily VanCamp do the honors. “We have a moment where we actually band together,” previews the actress. Of course, like most of the truces forged by the sworn enemies, this one is short-lived. “We put up this united front and then, after whatever it is is taken care of, it’s like, ‘OK, I’m outta here,’” VanCamp says with a laugh. “But it’s nice to be able to play something [civil] with Madeline [Stowe] because [Emily and Victoria] are always at odds each other. And I hate it because I love Madeline so much. We’re so evil to each other.”
Question: Do you have any news on Arrow? —Calum
Ausiello: Quite interestingly, the title for this season’s fifth episode, “The Demon’s Head,” is the translation of Ra’s al Ghul — as in Batman’s infamous mentor-turned-adversary. Thus, it kinda sorta makes sense that the hour will introduce the apprentice of a most menacing man — Awwal, a scimitar-wielding protege of Dark Archer Malcolm Merlyn.
Question: I know it’s not coming back till November, but that just makes me all the more anxious for some Raising Hope scoop. Got any? –Erick
Ausiello: The Chase family is going on vacation, and according to showrunner Mike Mariano, they’ll wind up on a boat — with one small catch: “There’s no water involved.” Secondly, the installment will feature an appearance by guest star Bernie Kopell — but the former Love Boat doc won’t be anywhere near the aforementioned vessel. “He’s playing the proprietor of a stuffed-animal museum, and he’s very funny” says Mariano. “My reference for Bernie is as Siegfried on Get Smart, so making a Love Boat reference never crossed my mind.”
Question: Will Adam Pally’s Mindy Project character bear any resemblance to Happy Endings‘ Max? Personally, I want him to be Happy Endings‘ Max. I can’t let go! —Ron
Ausiello: Neither can I! But we must. Particularly since, as cast member Ike Barinholtz tells us, he’s not playing Happy Endings‘ Max. “This is not Max,” Morgan’s portrayer maintains. “He plays a new doctor, kind of the most ‘male’ out of all the doctors. He’s like a big, straight, Dartmouth fraternity, cargo shorts-wearing animal, and he’s going to come on and really shake things up.” Bonus Mindy Project Scoop: The show will introduce Jeremy’s boisterous, judgmental father in Season 2.
Question: Do you have any scoop on one of my absolute favorite shows, Covert Affairs? —Carol
Ausiello: This Tuesday’s episode is tense with a capital T-E-N. It finds Annie working with a familiar face, FBI agent Vincent Rossabi (Rookie Blue‘s Noam Jenkins), on the murder of CIA agent Seth Newman (aka the one who fell off the bridge). But while the G-man wants to uncover the truth, Annie’s trying to suppress it by swapping out any incriminating evidence. Still, that’s not the story you’ll be talking about after the hour’s end. Let’s just say we haven’t heard the last of a certain secret that someone was keeping from the spy gal.
Question: I’ve got a Q about Rob Lowe and Rashida Jones’ Parks and Recreation exit — do we know why Ann and Chris decide to move away from Pawnee? —Jen
Ausiello: Although the pair don’t depart until Episode 13, ”The decision that they make that will transition them off the show is made very early,” confirms exec producer Mike Schur. “It’s not, like, in Episode 12 they’re going, ‘Hey, we’re moving to Hawaii.’ It happens in Episode 3, which is the first one after the hour-long premiere. Ann gets an idea in the very first episode after that. It’s dropped into the world very early. So it feels like a very fun, long arc and a big [farewell] to them.”
Question: So many mixed messages about Laura Prepon’s future on Orange is the New Black. Is she or is she not returning? —Lucy
Ausiello: Production on Season 2 is currently underway, and star Taryn Manning tells us, “I haven’t seen her [on set] and I miss her.” However, that doesn’t necessarily mean she’s off the show completely. “I don’t know what’s going on with all of that,” the actress stresses. “For me, I can’t worry about that. I’m just there doing my job.”
Question: Now that Laura Bell Bundy is on Anger Management, what will this mean for her role as Shelby on Hart of Dixie? —Vanessa
Ausiello: It means you’ll probably see her less. But rest assured you will see her. “We are definitely having Laura back for a few [episodes],” confirms EP Leila Gerstein, adding that Shelby won’t resurface “until a few episodes in.” In other Bluebell casting news, although Claudia Lee is a series regular on Fox’s Surviving Jack, Gerstein remains hopeful that Lemon’s little sis will make an appearance this season, too. And if not? “Well, she goes [away] to boarding school,” laughs the EP.
Question: Chicago Fire was one that grew on me quickly after its so-so pilot. Have any information about its second season? —Marc
Ausiello: Treat Williams will be back as Severide’s dad Benny, and he’s going to be stirring things up for more than just his son. “There’s going to be a firehouse arc between Benny and Bowden, which will further inflame their already touchy relationship,” previews executive producer Danielle Gelber. “More emotionally, there’s going to be layers of Severide’s past that are revealed through Benny and through some unexpected twists.”
That’s a wrap! Please send questions, comments, and anonymous tips to firstname.lastname@example.org. (Additional reporting by Vlada Gelman, Megan Masters and Michael Slezak)
Question: I’m a huge fan of Tina Majorino, and I loved her on Grey’s Anatomy last season. I know she has her own show on TNT now, but do you have any intel on whether she’ll be back for at least one or two episodes this season? I especially like her boss/student relationship with Meredith. —Ingmar
Ausiello: Majorino’s Heather will appear in the two-hour season premiere, which picks up right where last May’s cliffhanger left off. And according to series creator Shonda Rhimes, said opener “will account for Heather’s absence” moving forward, adding, “We loved [Tina], and she is wonderful on our show. But yes, we will account for her absence.”
Question: Hey, you got any Grey’s Anatomy scoop on this season’s fourth episode, aka the show’s 200th? —Sara
Ausiello: Hey, I do. Rhimes says she didn’t “want to do anything crazy,” noting that the milestone hour will center on “a really great” story. “We’re not doing anything insane that’s going to freak anybody out.”
Question: Dying for scoop on NCIS: LA. What’s going to happen now that Kensi and Deeks have kissed? —Leah
Ausiello: They’re going to have a serious chat. Per Eric Christian Olsen, the Sept. 24 premiere features “the most honest conversation that Deeks and Kensi have ever had.” Speaking of the opener, it “picks up exactly where we left off, continuous — [Deeks is] mid-torture, Kensi’s in peril,” Olsen reveals, adding that the episode ends on a cliffhanger. “I can’t give it away, but even that is ‘To be continued…’”
Question: How will Van Pelt and Rigsby be written out of The Mentalist? Also, how many Season 6 episodes will they appear in? —Chloe
Ausiello: Let me tackle your second question first. According to sources, Amanda Righetti and Owain Yeoman will appear in more than a dozen episodes before departing the CBS procedural in the spring. As far as how they’ll exit, series creator Bruno Heller would only say that the conclusion of the Red John chapter this fall will launch The Mentalist — and specifically Jane — on a bold new course. “I’ve always wondered how the show would go on from that,” Heller muses. “Once Moby Dick has been killed, what happens next? You have to tell the story about how Patrick gets back to shore. He’s been out of sea hunting this creature for so long, I think people will want to know what happens to him after that. Does he live happily ever after? What happens when you’ve been searching for something as long as he has? We are going to get into that. It would be cheating the audience not to tell them what happens after. We have a great story for that saga, because it begins a whole new saga. Where does he go from there? How does he live with what he’s done? Can he find happiness? All of those are big questions we are going to explore.”
Question: What can we expect of Olivia this season on Law & Order: SVU? – Allyson
Ausiello: We know that Olivia will make it out of last season’s cliffhanger alive, but how will her encounter with Lewis affect her emotionally? Executive producer Warren Leight tells us that Benson will have a season-long arc, beginning with the two-hour season premiere (airing Sept. 25), that finds her in bad shape. “Olivia will very much be dealing with and reeling from her encounter with Lewis,” Leight hints. “Her character’s got incredible empathy for others and yet has had a hard time looking out for herself. This is the season where she’s talked the talk to others, but she hasn’t had to walk the walk until now.”
Question: Can you give us some scoop on The Good Wife? —Ella
Ausiello: Prepare to despise Grace a little less in Season 5. “Grace has always been an impediment to Alicia’s advancement, and that’s one of the reasons I think she’s not as embraced by the audience as Zach is,” muses exec producer Robert King of the rebellious teen. “This year is a real attempt at a real change in Grace, to see how she and her mom can reach the same wavelength and not allow her differences to become an impediment for Alicia. [Their story] becomes an exploration of differences.”
Question: So, Bones creator Hart Hanson recently said that there were significant developments for the Sweets character in the upcoming season’s first half or so. Other than his guilt over Pelant’s actions, and an upcoming sabbatical that the 04/30 Ask Ausiello referred to, do you have more scoop on what else we are to expect from Sweets this season? —Ed Z
Ausiello: Season 9 will find the head shrinker questioning whether he “wants to keep doing what he’s doing at the FBI,” previews portrayer John Francis Daley. “No matter how hard he tries, he doesn’t feel like he’s making enough of a difference in the world. Profiling criminals wasn’t the reason he got into his profession in the first place. So this season will definitely explore that inner monologue that’s going on with him.” And as teased in that aforementioned AA column, Sweets’ soul searching takes him away from the Jeffersonian in search of greener pastures. “There’s an opportunity for him to do something completely different, and he tries it out,” Daley confirms. “And somehow it leads to a lot of guns being shot and a lot of drama in the interrogation room. It’s chaos!”
Question: I need some scoop on my favorite (and miraculously alive) summer show Drop Dead Diva! Grayson and Jane are endgame, right? I’m sure this is the last season and it just doesn’t seem to be heading that way. —Rebecca
Ausiello: Yeah, Sunday’s summer finale — in which Jane was about to confess her feelings to Grayson, only to see him macking on new GF Nicole — certainly seemed like a setback for the unrequited pair. Moving forward, series creator Josh Berman says the challenge for Jane will be deciding “how much can she meddle” in Grayson’s new romance. ”It’s one thing when the object of your affection is engaged to somebody else — you kind of just say, ‘OK, I give up,’” he explains. “But with a new relationship right outside your office, and Jane’s going to be witnessing it, the question is: When does Jane jump in? When does Jane proclaim herself? And will she? Will Jane throw down the gauntlet and say, ‘I love you. Pick me. Love me’? Those are issues we deal with in the fall. We packed a lot of juice into the fall season.”
Question: Will Haddie be making any appearances on Parenthood this season? —Erin
Ausiello: According to a Braverman insider, there are no current plans for Sarah Ramos’ college sophomore to pay a visit. However, my gut tells me we’ll see her at least once or twice during the show’s 22-episode fifth season (especially if it’s the last season). Also: My gut is never wrong. Ask anyone. It’s true.
Question: After catching up on Orphan Black in two days, it quickly turned into my favorite new show of the year. Got any scoop on what’s ahead in Season 2? —Jack
Ausiello: Two new recurring characters, for starters. The first one, Cal, will be introduced in Episode 3 and is described as a ruggedly handsome, adaptive and extremely well connected woodsman who possesses the heart of a lover. (Boyfriend for Felix, perhaps?) The other, more sinister-sounding newbie, Pastor Johanssen, debuts in Episode 2 and is the mercurial leader of a radical faith based “Prolethean” sect “who is fervently anti-science and views GMO’s and synthetic biology as a modern affront to God’s work.” (Um, Big Bad, much?)
Question: So is it too soon to ask about the upcoming season of Boardwalk Empire? —Denise
Ausiello: Not too soon! I screened the first two episodes of Season 4 (bowing Sept. 8) over the weekend and here’s what I can share: [Spoiler]‘s whereabouts remain a mystery, [Spoiler] developed a major drug problem, and Jeffrey Wright makes a solid and rather unsettling first impression as Chalky’s quietly intense new nemesis, Valentin Narcisse.
Question: Any new scoop on The Mindy Project? —Flo
Ausiello: James Franco’s new MD is going to be adored by everyone… except Mindy. “Usually there’s a character where the girls love him and the guys don’t, but we played him as straight popular,” explains star/EP Mindy Kaling. “He becomes the new ‘Dr. L,’ because his name is Paul Leotard, and my character [Mindy Lahiri] is very hurt and upset by that. And we become very competitive.” Of course, the line between loathing and loving is a thin one. “Mindy has to admit some attraction to him,” adds Kaling, who promises Franco’s arc will feature, “sex and intrigue and secrets and lies.”
Question: Can’t believe Dexter‘s almost over. Any scoop on the final episodes? —Claire
Ausiello: Deb’s fixation on removing Hannah from Dex’s life (and, by extension, her own) comes to a head this Sunday. (Warning: No matter your feelings about Dexter’s poisonous former flame, you might actually find yourself siding with her as Deb’s relentless pursuit escalates.)
Question: Anything on New Girl? Will we see Merritt Weaver this season? Is there a time jump? —Megan
Ausiello: Yes, Weaver’s Elizabeth returns. No, there isn’t a time jump. “The fans will find out what happened after the wedding,” confirms Hannah Simone, who says Schmidt is forced to “make some decisions” re: Cece vs. Elizabeth. “It’s up to Schmidt now. Cece is pretty self-explanatory and so is lovely Elizabeth, so he has a hard choice.”
Question: I’m so excited for Season 3 of Revenge — any scoop? —Simona
Ausiello: The words “The Initiative” — aka the symbol for everything that went wrong with Season 2 — will be uttered once in the Season 3 premiere. And then NEVER. AGAIN. “Conrad sort of said in the season finale that it never really existed in the first place,” notes new showrunner Sunil Nayar. “So we’re going to embrace that reality and go forward that way.” Nayar, meanwhile, confirms that the first episode will flash forward to Emily’s wedding day, although it won’t be immediately clear if it’s Daniel she’s marrying. “You’re going to see something spectacular happen,” he teases, “and we’re going to [build toward] that in the first half of the season.”
That’s a wrap! Please send questions, comments, and anonymous tips to email@example.com. (Additional reporting by Vlada Gelman)
Question: I’ve been dying for some Bones spoilers. Do you know when and how Booth and Brennan will get married? —Anne
Ausiello: No, but series creator Hart Hanson does, and here’s what he’s willing to share: “Like most things we do on Bones, the wedding will happen in a way you don’t expect and a time you don’t expect.” And what that, Mr. Cryptic McObscureson strikes again!
Question: First off I want to say that when people ask me what I want to be when I grow up, I say “a writer for TVLine.” I’m wondering if you can spill any scoop on Justin Hartley’s character, Patrick, on Revenge? I know he’s Victoria’s son but that’s pretty much all I know. —Daniela
Ausiello: He is really, really, really, really, really loved by his mom. Like, really loved. During the time-jump, mother and son “spent a lot of time together building a relationship, one that almost seems inappropriate when we first see them,” teases Emily VanCamp. “She’s just so in love with her son. It’s very bizarre.” Their close bond will make it tough for Emily to drive a wedge between them, which, as VanCamp reminds, is her character’s MO: ”The ultimate goal for Emily with Victoria is to turn her children against her. She’s successfully managing it with Daniel. You’ll start to see that she’s not so successfully managing it with Charlotte. And Patrick is the wild card. He’s going to be a very tricky person to turn, if she even can.”
Question: Can you clear up some confusion surrounding Barry Sloane’s involvement in Revenge in Season 3? I read that we will only see Aiden briefly in flashbacks. —Gina
Ausiello: You misread. Or you correctly read information that was wrong. Either way, it’s not true. Not only is Sloane a full-fledged series regular in Season 3, but his alter ego is moving front and center. “Last year he was very much a ninja on the periphery,” notes new showrunner Sunil Nayar. “And now we get to inject him into the world of the show. It’s reconception of the character and a real growth. The stories we told last year barely scratched the surface of what Barry is capable of doing as an actor and what the character is capable of doing on screen. He has such a rich history with Emily.”
Question: Any other hints on Ziva’s exit on NCIS? —Cheryl
Ausiello: Her send-off will be a love letter to Tiva ‘shippers. “We’re going to deliver everything the Tiva fans would want,” assures exec producer Gary Glasberg of Cote de Pablo’s two-episode swan song. “There’s tremendous romance and tremendous heart and pathos, and I hope fans enjoy it. We’re going to do our best.”
Question: Do you really think that Kenya is dead on Defiance? Or has Stahma squirreled her way somewhere so they can keep up their lady-loving ways? –Cinders
Ausiello: Let’s just say that production on Season 2 starts Monday, and a certain someone’s name is MIA (as in Kirshner) from this returning cast list: Grant Bowler, Julie Benz, Stephanie Leonidas, Tony Curran, Jaime Murray, Graham Greene, Jesse Rath, Dewshane Williams, Trenna Keating, Justin Rain and Nicole Munoz.
Question: I’d like to know what Eric is up to in the True Blood finale. So far no one knows anything. Be the first to let us know! —Lorraine
Ausiello: Sadly, I’m going to have to be the latest to tell you that I don’t anything either — unless the last line of HBO’s official logline for the Aug. 18 closer pertains to Mr. Northman.
Bill discovers that salvation comes at a price; Jason senses a vampire attraction firsthand. Sookie examines her future with Warlow, while Bon Temps braces itself when a new crisis threatens both humans and vampires.
Question: I’m having Grey’s Anatomy withdrawal! Have any scoop on Season 10 to get me through? —Molly
Ausiello: For those wondering if Webber made it out of the finale alive, Sarah Drew invites you to continue wondering. “The sad little Chief is still face-down on the [basement] floor,” she tells my colleague Matt Mitovich of the premiere. Meanwhile, on the romance front, Drew hints that April and Jackson may be driven further apart by the ”challenging” situation her character created. “Jackson proposed to her and she said yes, but then basically said no, and all of the sudden she just accepted a proposal [from EMT Matt, played by Justin Bruening]. But then Jackson almost dies and she decides now she wants him? Put yourself in his shoes — that’s gotta feel a little crappy!” Yep, just tried on his kicks — kinda crappy.
Question: Do you have any news on Lauren (Hilarie Burton) returning to Grey’s Anatomy in Season 10? I heard they will pick up right where they left off, so I’m assuming Lauren can’t disappear like that, especially during a super storm, right? —Khair
Ausiello: Yet disappear the homewrecker will. “We don’t have any plans for her to return at this time,” series creator Shonda Rhimes tells me. “But we loved her; she was great.”
Question: I’d like to know more about the new season of Once Upon A Time! –Joe
Ausiello: Lost fans just might get a sense of Season 4 deja vu when the Jolly Roger drops anchor in Neverland, and its passengers ultimately face the decision of who to follow. “You’ve got five people on a ship who all think they’re leaders, so we’ll have to see how they react when they face their first obstacle,” series cocreator Eddy Kitsis hints. Adds Adam Horowitz, “There’s certainly some friction, but there’s also a shared goal they have to achieve” — finding Henry. “The question is: Will they achieve it together, separately or at all?”
Question: We Gladiators will take what Scandal scoop we can get! —Miranda
Ausiello: Asked to describe the state of Fitz and Mellie’s marriage when the ABC hit returns next month, series creator Shonda Rhimes demurs, “That’s going to be really tough to answer without giving it away.” But after mulling it over for a few seconds, Rhimes delivers a most intriguing tease, allowing that first couple “are still together” and “Mellie is in caretaking mode.”
Question: Please can you spare some scoops on Sons of Anarchy? —John
Ausiello: Incarcerated Tara’s inner Pit Bull — which viewers first met last season when she went to town on Wanda De Jesus’ unhinged madam — will rear its ugly head again in the Sept. 10 season premiere. Also making a cameo in the super-sized opener: Charlie Hunnam’s naked arse.
Question: What are the odds Ryan and Amber will actually get married on Parenthood this season? —Rebecca
Ausiello: They were excellent, right up until I heard the show is adding the recurring character of Zack, a “funny and charming” drummer who figuratively charms the pants off Amber at his band’s recording session at the Luncheonette.
Question: I feel like we’re due for a juicy blind item. —Brandon
Ausiello: I feel like I agree with you. A recurring character on a show that gets a ton of (proverbial) ink in Ask Ausiello will bite the dust this fall, and I’m going to go out on a limb and predict few tears will be shed.
Question: Just wanted know about anything on Arrow season 2. —Dana
Ausiello: If you ever wondered how Oliver’s island existence, seen in flashback, could have been any worse, here’s a short answer for you: pirates. (Or is it pilates? My source’s note was smudged. But I’m going with pirates.)
Question: How ’bout some new intel on The Good Wife‘s 100th episode? —Ms. J
Ausiello: This season’s Civil War theme will leave footprints in the landmark episode, as will the ongoing “Will/Alicia difficulty,” according to series cocreator Robert King, who promises an “explosive” episode.
Question: Got any Chicago Fire dirt? —Sara
Ausiello: Casey will have attained “some peace” about his girlfriend Hallie’s death when the Season 2 premiere picks up a month after the tragedy, star Jesse Spencer tells TVLine. The firefighter “develops a relationship with a couple of kids that he has to look after, and they help him through some difficult times, and he helps them. It’s nice. It’s an appropriate ending to the Hallie story.” Meanwhile, don’t look for Dawson to mend Casey’s broken heart — at least not in the short term. “They have a mutual understanding between each other,” explains Spencer. “There’s an attraction, but there’s a professionalism. They kind of put it to bed. You know as well as I do it’s going to resurface at some point — and probably sooner rather than later. [But] right now, they’re just friends.”
Question: I am desperate for some Parks and Recreation news. Please share any scoop you have! —Alyssa
Ausiello: Pawnee mayor Walter Gunderson will be played by… Bill Murray. Or no one. “We’re still holding out for Bill,” exec producer Mike Schur tells me of the reclusive actor. “And if we never meet the Mayor, I won’t be sad. We never met Vera on Cheers. We never met Tim Allen’s neighbor on Home Improvement.”
Question: Any news on a replacement for Ziva on NCIS? —Cathy
Ausiello: Yep, and pretty big news at that. As exec producer Gary Glasberg revealed to Matt Mitovich Monday night, it’s going to be “a little while” before a full-time agent is brought in to fill the void left by Cote de Pablo. But in the meantime, the show — taking a page from Bones‘ squintern playbook — will “rotate some fun people” through the agency’s doors. “The first two episodes are all about Ziva’s departure,” Glasberg notes. “And then in the third episode we introduce, for instance, a woman in her 50s who is a few days away from retirement and just needs to fill the desk time. She, in theory, knew Gibbs all the way back to the days of Mike Franks. So we’re going to bring in people like that and have some fun with different characters. And then, hopefully, when people are comfortable enough, one will walk in and be The One.”
Question: Do you have any Grey’s Anatomy spoilers about Derek and Meredith? —Toni
Ausiello: The two-hour Season 10 premiere will delve into the “aftermath” of Mer’s turbulent delivery, teases Grey’s consulting producer (and Scandal Emmy nominee) Dan Bucatinsky. “She had a rough birth. We’re going to see them in the hospital together and juggling their roles in a major way.” The super-sized Sept. 26 kickoff is alternately “dramatic, emotional and exciting,” the actor-writer-producer adds. “Also, we’re going to watch these new interns become part of the fabric of the hospital. That’s going to be part of what’s fun and fresh about this season. We’re going to get to know them better.”
Question: Please tell me if you have any Grey’s Anatomy news on Christina/Owen. They seriously need to be over and done with. It’s time for them to move on for good. —Abdul
Ausiello: How do you really feel Paula (that is your first name, right?). Sadly, I have no news for you on “Crowen,” unless the new recurring character the show is adding figures into their fractured relationship somehow. The newbie, Bill, is a likable jazz musician in his 50s who has been “somewhat ravaged by drug abuse.” He’s slated to appear in roughly five episodes of Season 10.
Question: I need some fall Nashville scoop. – Titan
Ausiello: Well, when you ask in such a polite fashion, how can I say no? A new thirtysomething character, Trey, is going to be hot, rich, charming, confident, self-deprecating and European — which narrows his romantic pool to Juliette, Scarlett, Zoey, Will or anyone with a pulse.
Question: What’s going to happen with my favorite (almost) couple Jane and Lisbon on this season of The Mentalist? —Bethany
Ausiello: The conclusion of the Red John mystery later this fall will have a profound impact on their relationship — for better or worse. “Up until now, they’ve been tied by this professional dynamic and this mission they’re on,” notes series creator Bruno Heller. “And that held their personal relationship in suspense. Once the Red John saga is done, how do they find a new way to relate to each other? The chemistry has always been there bubbling up. But he now has other priorities and other agendas and other pressures.” The arrival of a major new female character — a series regular! — in early 2014 will serve as an added complication. “When you’re as good a detective as Jane is, it’s very hard to walk away even when you want to walk away,” Heller teases, cryptically. “Some people wont let Jane walk away from what he’s so good at. And our new female lead has something to do with that.”
Question: I’m sure you’re getting a ton of these emails, but I’m so heartbroken about Cory Monteith’s passing. Any more info on what the initial Season 5 episodes of Glee will look like? –Ellen
Ausiello: No doubt, Ryan Murphy and the show’s cast and crew have a difficult road ahead, as they navigate their own grief while trying to pay tribute to their fallen colleague — and still produce an entertaining season of television. The Glee writing team had already penned the first two Season 5 installments — built around the music of the Beatles — back in May, which gives everyone a leg up in advance of the Sept. 26 kickoff. And to that end, the show is casting five roles (to either replace or augment the three parts we told you about earlier this month) for the premiere, only one of which calls for a young actor. (Hrmmm.) The lineup of new characters — the first three of which are recurring — includes: Roderick Easton, a talented, theatrical fortysomething with a big ego; Jim Elliott, a handsome, smart academic in his mid-40s or 50s; Jurgen, another fella in his mid-40s or 50s, who’s either German or Austrian, with a definite accent; an unidentified, not-gender-specific, fortysomething “School Board Member”; and finally, “Nerdy Girl,” age 18 or thereabouts, who’ll likely wind up in the halls of William McKinley High (albeit with only a single line of dialogue). After Beatlemania hits the Glee-verse, expect one more episode — a tribute to fallen Finn — before the show takes its fall hiatus.
Question: So I spent my weekend watching Homeland, from pilot through Season 2. I’ll say this as kindly as I know how… GIMME SPOILERS. Please and thank you with a Snapple-sized Smurf on top! —Paige
Ausiello: Let’s play a game. I’ll throw some literal data your way from the first two episodes (both of which I’ve seen and thoroughly enjoyed) and you have to decipher the meaning. All of the following figures are referenced multiple times throughout the first two hours. Ready, set, translate:
* 219 People
* 14 hours
* 6 miles
Question: I can’t wait for Elementary to come back this fall. Do you have any Season 2 scoop for me? — Céline
Ausiello: A skeleton will come tumbling out of the closet early into Season 2 when we meet “someone from [Joan's] past,” EP Rob Doherty tells TVLine. “We’ve alluded to a mistake she made when she was a surgeon that cost a patient his life. We’re going to meet someone, like a very real connection to that patient, and explore Joan’s feelings of guilt. At what point do you tap your guilt and give yourself permission to live a life?”
Question: Parenthood tidbit, please? —Dakota
Ausiello: Look for Max to become an apprentice to Ray Romano’s returning Hank “in the world of photography,” previews Max Burkholder, who reminds, “At the end of the fourth season, Hank gave Sarah an old camera to give to Max. So he’s been fiddling around with that during the time jump.”
Question: Any scoop on the upcoming plot lines involving returning Good Wife guests America Ferrera and Gary Cole? —Beth
Ausiello: Cole’s McVeigh and Christine Baranski’s Diane are “still on the brink of getting married,” reveals exec producer Robert King. “So we’ll see if Diane will sacrifice [that relationship] for the judgeship or go with him.” Ferrera’s Natalie, meanwhile, “brings a case to Alicia’s law firm about immigration, and who should cross paths with her but [former crush] Eli. So all these feelings are brought up again and we see a re-sparked relationship. There was a lot of chemistry there. And we never felt like we explored it to its fullest because we couldn’t get America for more than three episodes; we’re going to try to return to that now.”
Question: Is The Good Wife really naming Ben Rappaort’s character Carey? Even with the extra “e” I have to imagine there will be plenty of confusion. —Michelle
Ausiello: Turns out, that’s the point. “That confusion helps us on one or two plot points,” notes King of Rappaport’s “Carey with an ey” and Matt Czuchry’s Cary. ”The very fact that they have the same name and they’re young men adds an [interesting] dynamic between them and Alicia [at Florrick Agos & Associates*]. Triangles are difficult, because there’s always a power between two people and someone is left out. So who’s going to be the person left out?”
* confirmed name of new firm
Question: Consider this a request for some general, non-specific Vampire Diaries intel. —Missy
Ausiello: The show is doing the time warp again. Exec producer Caroline Dries tells us that Episode 3 will be a flashback episode. “It is a decade we haven’t seen before,” she shares. “It’s going to be very good.”
Question: Any scoop on Grimm? – Larry
Ausiello: Gypsies are known for their nomadic nature, but Queen Estefania is staying put… at least for now. Executive producers James Kouf and David Greenwalt tell TVLine that Emmy winner Shohreh Aghdashloo will appear in at least a few episodes of the NBC drama’s upcoming third season.
Question: Can you give as any news on when or how Deeks’ mother will appear on NCIS: LA? –EcoSarahFans
Ausiello: At some point during the upcoming Season 5, Eric Christian Olsen assures, “You’re going to meet his mom and get into his past” — which as any fan knows wasn’t idyllic. “We already know a little about the dysfunctional and catastrophic relationship with his father, but we’re going to find out a lot more about what makes this guy tick and how it affects, obviously, the relationship with Kensi and his inability to make that work.”
Question: I’ve been wondering what the people at Criminal Minds have in store for Hotch next season. For example, will we find out more about his past? –Rachel
Ausiello: At this point early into the Season 9 writing process, showrunner Erica Messer says, no new backstories are on tap for any of the characters outside of JJ, but that could quickly change when the actors get invited to weigh in on what they’d like to see. (That dialogue between cast and scribes is how Garcia came to play the ukelele in one episode last year.) But this much known about Hotch as the show returns: He’s been filling in as section chief for a few months, and yes, he’s still with Beth.
Question: I would love some scoop on Beauty and the Beast. The show ended with a ton of cliffhangers and the fans are holding their breath, waiting for some clues. –Donna
Ausiello: Not only will Sendhil Ramamurthy be back for Season 2, but “Gabe has a great arc. It’s awesome,” raves exec producer Sherri Scooper. As fellow EP Jennifer Levin elaborates, “We saw that he was shot to pieces [in the finale], so if he’s back, that would affect his point of view on life. He could be ‘born again.’”
Question: I’m very excited about the arrival of Samantha on The Carrie Diaries. Anything you can share regarding her storyline? –Joyce
Ausiello: How about deets on her first conquest? The show’s producers are currently casting the role of Paul Haltom, “a genuine and kind Midwesterner who performs as a ninja at a Japanese Cultural Festival.” A grad of the Iowa State Gymnastics team, brown-eyed, twentysomething Paul moved to New York City to be an actor, and ends up sleeping with the young Samantha (played by newcomer Lindsey Gort). In the meantime, I’ll be taking bets about whether the legendary Ms. Jones drops a double-entendre featuring the term “corn-fed” or “katana.” Look for the Samantha-Paul cahoots to happen in Episode 3.
Question: Any Castle tidbits you can give us? —Stephanie
Ausiello: The show is about to stage a kinda-sorta Saved By the Bell reunion. In an upcoming episode titled “Need to Know,” the cast of an early-’90s sitcom called 2 Cool For School is reassembling for a new movie when — egad! — its version of Screech is offed! (This never would’ve happened on Miss Bliss’ watch! Just sayin’… )
Question: What’s new on the How I Met Your Mother front? —Dave
Ausiello: Three more (mostly uninvited) guests have RSVP’d for Barney and Robin’s wedding weekend, and they include Knight Templar, a spooky fella (think Grail Knight from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade) who passes judgement on pretty much everyone and everything; Robin’s horny old college roommate Sophia, who shows up at the wedding in heat; and Grace, Barney’s new assistant who’s hot, personable and dumb. BONUS SCOOP: For those keeping track at home, the title of Episode 5 is “The Poker Game,” Episode 6 is ”No Questions Asked” and Episode 7 is “Knight Vision.”
Ausiello: Well, I can tell you that he’ll have a major presence in at least two Season 4 episodes, both of which are being unofficially billed as ”standalone Governor” installments. No specific intel on when those episodes will air, but I hear they’ll likely fall in the first chunk of eight (premiering Sunday, Oct. 13).
Question: After watching your awesome Comic-Con interview with the cast and producers of How I Met Your Mother, I’m much more encouraged about this season’s “wedding weekend” structure. Any news on special guest stars? —Christopher
Ausiello: There’s a very good chance the Sept. 23 premiere will feature a Game of Thrones crossover. Of sorts. “We haven’t locked the cut yet, but there is a Game of Thrones reference in the season premiere that I hope stays in,” reveals exec producer Craig Thomas. “We reveal that in the same way that Barney is a big fan of Billy Zabka in The Karate Kid, Barney may or may not be a big fan of King Joffrey.”
Question: I missed Stephen “Little Birdie” Nathan at the Con this year! Did you at least get scoop from his Bones partner in crime, Hart Hanson? —Amelia
Ausiello: I did! Hanson — who dropped by TVLine’s interview suite (see video, below) — elaborated on the ex-priest character being introduced at the start of Season 9, describing him as Booth’s “ex-confessor when he was a sniper in the Rangers.” The new guy, whose name is Aldo Coulter, resurfaces because, as Hanson pointed out, “We left Booth with a terrible secret that he can’t tell anyone, which is that Pelant is not letting him marry Brennan. And that, in effect, is a lie for a Catholic like Booth every time he’s talking to Brennan. So he finds himself seeking out his old spiritual advisor, who now runs a bar, to talk things out. They have a very close relationship. As Coulter points out to Brennan in the premiere, he knows Booth better than she does.”
Question: So, the Bones crew made a really big announcement at their Comic-Con panel: Booth and Brennan are getting married! Do you have any idea when the wedding will be taking place during Season 9? —Maria
Ausiello: I tried mightily to get an answer out of Hanson, but he wouldn’t budge. “I’m not telling you when,” he protested, before adding with a laugh, “That’s my one shred of self dignity.” I did succeed in getting HH to cough up an
extremely vague detail about the type of wedding they will have, as well as an update on the possibility of a 10th season. Oh, and the show’s dreaded move to Friday night? Not necessarily happening! Press PLAY below for the complete Q&A.
Question: I was just wondering how Maggie Lawson’s role in ABC’s new comedy Back in the Game will affect her status on the new season of Psych? —Jackie
Ausiello: As James Roday maintained to me at Comic-Con, there will be a “strong Juliet presence in Season 8, no question,” despite Lawson’s new extracurricular activity. Added exec producer Steve Franks: “We found a fun way to make it work… She’s in a good chunk of the episodes. It certainly creates interesting challenges, but I think we worked our way through it.”
Question: Any Parenthood scoop on Ryan and Amber? —Kelly
Ausiello: They’ll be scouting wedding locations early in the season, so it seems like they’re pretty serious about this marriage thing.
Question: Since Comic-Con ended, that means you’ve gotta have some scoop on the best summer show ever, Under the Dome. Is it coming back for a second season? —Phillip
Ausiello: Yes. Although nothing’s official, rest assured there will be a second season of Under the Dome. The only question is whether CBS will hold it until next summer or bring it back in-season (i.e. next spring). In the meantime, in case you missed it, Rachelle Lefevre lightly spoiled the Season 1 finale, telling me at Con, “The last five minutes will contain a very, very large moment of whether or not [Barbie and Julia] have come far enough in our relationship to help one other out of a very difficult situation.”
Question: OK, there’s only two episodes left of The Killing‘s third season. Can you tell us if the killer is Becker, Henderson, Reddick or somebody totally out of left field? (It’s Becker, right?) —Murray
Ausiello: Oh, Murray, spilling the identity of the culprit in a serialized crime drama breaks Rule No. 2,714 of The Spoiler Code. But I can give you three clues about Sunday’s very intense “Six Minutes.” 1) All the action takes place inside the prison where Seward is awaiting his death sentence. 2) Holder shows up with a case of beer in his car. 3) The pas de deux between Linden and Seward covers almost every color in the gamut of human emotions. (Yes, have your Kleenex handy.)
Question: I need something on The Fosters, like, now. Obsessed. —Vona
Ausiello: The Aug. 5 finale features resolution for a number of “love triangles and love squares,” teases co-star Maia Mitchell, who adds, “There’s [also] a huge cliffhanger to do with my character. Something pretty big happens. And something big happens between Lena and Stef, too.”
Question: Is there any chance Covert Affairs will bring back Eyal this season? I just love his character so much. —Ashley
Ausiello: There’s a rock-solid chance, actually. Exec producer Matt Corman tells TVLine, “It’s safe to say [Oded Fehr's spy] will return, it’s just a question as to when. And we want that to kind of be a secret.”
Question: Grey’s Anatomy started production on Season 10 last week, so I’m guessing you have some scoop for us, right? —Danielle
Ausiello: Can’t get anything past you, Dani. Noted extraterrestrial magnet Veronica Cartwright (Alien, The X-Files, Invasion) will appear in Grey’s Anatomy‘s two-hour season premiere on Sept. 26 as… beats the bejesus out of me. But she joins a guest star roster that also includes Bobby Campo (aka Max on Syfy’s Being Human) and Heather Hemmens (Hellcats).
Question: I know it’s super early, but is there anything you can tell me about the next season of Mad Men? I really want Peggy and Don to come to some kind of understanding. – Hayley
Ausiello: And I really want Megan to take a gig in a Siberian summerstock production of Waiting for Godot 2: Waiting… and Waiting… and Waiting…, but we can’t always get what we want. After all, as Elisabeth Moss tells TVLine, the end-of-the-season scene where Peggy calls her mentor a “monster” was pretty tough. “We’ve had so many arguments, Peggy and Don. We’ve been through a lot. There’s been a lot of ups and downs,” Moss says. “But that moment, to me, was her lowest with him. Whatever they’ve been through, this thing really broke her heart. She really sees him for who he is in that moment and really is incredibly disillusioned for the first time.” Which means Don probably isn’t getting a World’s Best Boss mug when the series returns for Season 7.
Question: Mad Men! Anything! Give it to me! – Derek
Ausiello: How about this? Emmy nominee Linda Cardellini was as surprised as you were about the way Bob Benson’s storyline played out. “I wouldn’t let [show creator and executive producer] Matt Weiner show me the [last two episodes] or tell me about [them],” Cardellini tells TVLine. “He invited me to the read-throughs, and I said, ‘No, I don’t want to know what happens.’” So… what did she think? “The amazing thing about it is, it all makes sense, but it was never in a million years what I would have predicted. And I thought James [Wolk] as Bob Benson – he was so great, because he did nothing but be affable and nice,” she says, laughing. “And nobody trusted him!”
Question: How about some Pretty Little Liars scoop on Jake and Aria? —Jasmine
Ausiello: Jake “rides back into Rosewood” in next week’s episode, confirms exec producer Oliver Goldstick, “and their romance heats up by the latter half of the season.” He adds that the Ezra/Aria/Jake imbroglio is “a real triangle by the finale. There will be a turn of events in Ezra’s life, too, that may change his relationship with Aria. We’re editing the penultimate episode right now, which I wrote, and in it you’ll get to see Ryan Guzman show his fancy dance moves. We have a great Footloose/Urban Cowboy episode where he gets to let loose. You’ll see why Aria’s drawn in that direction.”
Question: On The Newsroom, will we be seeing any follow-up to the site hacking/death-threats-against-Will storyline from last season? My guess is the loss of the board from last week is connected to it, but there’s a distinct lack of Terry Crews… so will we learn why? —Tom Charles
Ausiello: Possibly, but not in the next two episodes. The question you should be asking, though, is: Why should I care about Neal’s silly Occupy Wall Street storyline? And the answer to that one is: It ties in (in a surprising way) to this season’s overarching “Operation Genoa” storyline.
Question: How much time will have passed when Orphan Black‘s second season starts? —Geoffrey
Ausiello: Not much. “We pick up very quickly from where we left off at the end of Season 1,” exec producer John Fawcett tells TVLine. “Kira has been taken. It’s very difficult to not go, ‘OK, what do we do next? Kira’s gone!’ The presumption is we have to begin right there.” Adds fellow EP Graeme Manson: “There’s no ‘Two Years Later’ and Sarah’s living a bucolic life on a farm.”
That’s a wrap! Please send questions, comments, and anonymous tips to firstname.lastname@example.org. (Additional reporting by Vlada Gelman and Kim Roots)