Teri Hatcher's husband takes on ''Brooklyn South'' this fall

Let’s just get the Teri Hatcher stuff out of the way, shall we? Yes, Jon Tenney is married to the former Lois & Clark goddess/muchdownloaded Internet babe, and, yes, things are going quite nicely. In fact, the couple are expecting their first child in November. ”Can’t you tell how nervous I am?” shudders Tenney over a bowl of soup at an L.A. diner. ”It’s all I think about right now. I can’t wait to discover how it will change my life.”

He could say the same about another highly anticipated arrival: Steven Bochco’s new CBS police drama, Brooklyn South. As the emotionally tangled Patrol Sgt. Francis Donovan, Tenney, 35, suddenly finds his mug among Hollywood’s Most Wanted. ”It does feel like there’s something…cooking,” he says with a pinch of caution. ”And if people feel they’re discovering a ‘fresh face’ in me, that’s great. But I have been working pretty consistently.”

Indeed, he’s filled out more W-4 forms than George Costanza. The Vassar-schooled son of a psychiatrist mom and a nuclear-physicist dad, Tenney first toiled on the regional theater circuit and nabbed a few TV guest spots (Ryan’s Hope, Spenser: For Hire). In 1988, he began his reign as the Duke of the Doomed Series, costarring in axed shows on all four networks: Fox’s WWII adventure The Dirty Dozen (”I’m still tight with buddies from that”), ABC’s DA drama Equal Justice (”If it were on now, it’d be a huge hit”), NBC’s detective hour Crime & Punishment (”A business education”), and CBS’ ad-agency sitcom Good Company (”Fun, like playtime”). In between cancellations, the New Jersey-born actor mixed it up with Broadway roles and gigs in minor films like Lassie and Fools Rush In. He’ll next appear on the big screen in Music From Another Room and Mom’s Up on the Roof, in which he plays a ruthlessly ambitious actor married to supermodel Elle Macpherson. (Teri and Elle? Is this guy charmed or what?)

His current bosses are also sounding a bit blessed. ”Jon sometimes suffers because he’s so extraordinarily good-looking that people don’t appreciate what a good actor he is,” extols South exec producer David Milch. Adds Bochco: ”He’s not just a potential leading man, he is a leading man.” With such arresting early word on Tenney, who knows? Perhaps he’ll even eclipse the fame of a certain loved one on the Internet. ”I don’t know about that,” he laughs. ”Unless I do one of those pictures where I’m wearing just a well-positioned badge. Maybe then I’ll get some downloading.”