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The Ausiello Files for December 12, 2008

EW’s TV scooper spills on the ”Eli Stone,” ”Dirty Sexy Money,” and ”Pushing Daisies” finales, season three of ”Friday Night Lights,” and more

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Two out of three finales ain’t bad
With ABC stopping production on Pushing Daisies, Eli Stone, and Dirty Sexy Money, at least two of the underdogs will get to give viewers what has increasingly become a TV rarity: closure.

For their swan songs, DSM and Eli both had the time and budget to produce what an ABC insider describes as ”satisfying [series] endings.” DSM will finally answer the question ”Who whacked Dutch?” (brace yourself for a killer twist), while Eli wraps with what my source describes as ”a powerful scene between [Stone] and his father.” Daisies, however, got no extra money to resolve what series creator Bryan Fuller calls the last episode’s ”huge cliff-hanger” involving Ned and Chuck, but he hopes to tie up the loose ends in a comic book.

Of course, ABC has made no promise that it will air all of the remaining episodes. But that’s why God created DVD boxed sets, right? And for those glass-half-full viewers, the network hasn’t officially canceled any of the series yet, so an eleventh-hour stay of execution is possible. But, as one insider notes, ”Lightning would have to strike 15 times in the same spot for one of them to come back.”

Ask Ausiello

Q: Will True Blood return for a second season? And if so, got scoop? —Jeremy
A: Not only is there fresh Blood on the way, there’s also fresh…um, blood. HBO’s Twilight-gone-NC-17 series (which is slated to return next summer) is adding three characters: Sarah, the pleasure-seeking missus of the Fellowship of the Sun’s big kahuna; Daphne, Merlotte’s new waitress (and Sam’s new lust interest); and Luke, a burly twentysomething who’s as dedicated to religion as Jason is to sex.

Q: Any chance Bones and Booth will kiss for real this season, and not as part of some bet? —Jenny
A: ”I think we’ll do a little better than just a real kiss,” responds Bones boss Hart Hanson. Could he be talking about (gulp) sex? After all, Hanson has already revealed that B&B will find themselves sharing a bed this season. ”The truth is, if [two people] share a real, romantic kiss and they’re in their mid-30s,” he says, ”how long is it going to be before they consummate?” I’ll take that as a yes!

Q: I’m obsessed with Friday Night Lights. Any juicy gossip? —Anna
A: By season’s end, Dillon will open a second high school, upending both the town’s storied football program and Eric’s tenure as the Panthers’ coach. Also, the finale (airing Jan. 14 on DIRECTV; NBC reruns the season starting Jan. 16) will jump ahead to the end of the school year, at which point we’ll learn who’ll be going away to college, and who’ll be sticking around for a possible fourth season.