By Sandra Gonzalez
August 19, 2011 at 03:07 PM EDT
Ray Mickshaw/Fox

Did you know the first 100 words of this column are the last 100 words I write every week? I say this for two reasons: 1) If you’ve ever noticed the coherency of this column increases as you work your way through it, you now know why. 2) You now also have an incentive to click to the second page of this column. (Yes! I’m paginated now! << I don't know if that statement is the "Spoiler Room" speaking or yours truly. I'm going to say it's the "room" since I, in fact, am not paginated.)

At any rate, take note of the little number “2” because it’s your path 2 more scoop. (See what I did there.) Hey, I warned you just one paragraph ago…

Remember to send scoop requests to spoilerroom@ew.com (note to the two smooshed “r”s) and follow me on Twitter for more things that don’t make a lot of sense and a few things that do (like TV scoop!). @EWSandraG

JOSHUA JACKSON: PETER IS A ‘CHANGED MAN’

Yes, we’ve all joked that Joshua Jackson has no job this season. But truth be told, he’s got one of the toughest jobs around, following last season’s ridiculously awesome cliffhanger on Fringe. And it’s not one he’s taking lightly.

“’My hope is that the journey of Peter and the journey of the show pays off that cliffhanger we saw at the end of last year,” he says of season 4. “In the beginning of this year, we’re back in our timeline but without one of our main characters. So we see the lives of all the people he would have touched and — for better or for worse — we see what their lives would have been like without him.” So will it be better or worse? One would guess the latter, but Jackson insists, it will simply be different.

“It’s a pretty cool conceptual thing to allow the show to go off in this direction. So the show is going to be grappling with that from an emotional point all year,” he says, adding that it’s especially true when it comes to Peter’s relationship with his father. “I’m looking forward to hashing out a new permutation of it. Because the dynamic is going to be entirely changed.”

For Jackson, the chance to start over in many ways, is a treat. “To me, I was glad they were able to go that big with the cliffhanger last year. The nobility of that sacrifice is a great ending for the Peter we used to know. His journey was to grow up and become a man, become part of a family and dedicate himself to something. The ultimate test of that was, ‘The choice is them or you.’ So I think the guy who would come back to us now would be a changed man.”

‘CASTLE’: TACKLING THE BIG ‘CHALLENGE’

As of today, it is exactly ONE MONTH to the DAY until the return of Castle. (Sept. 19, in case you have trouble with…months.) And with time dwindling down, I can see inside your hearts (and I can read your angry comments): You want to know what’s up with Castle and Beckett this year. Well, so do I! Luckily, Castle producer Laurie Zaks, knows and can tease appropriately.

“They’re still going to be your favorite couple,” she guarantees. “We are aware of the are-they/aren’t-they dynamic going on. I think the challenge for Andrew [Marlowe] and the writers this year is to take that relationship to the next level — whatever that next level is.” And truth be told, when I chatted with Zaks not long ago, she said some of the specifics are “still being ruminated on.” But, she says, they know a great journey is still before Castle and Beckett.

“We know that that’s there, and it can’t be that forever. That will be the biggest challenge this year,” she says, adding that the premiere episode will, in many, many ways, help set the course for where the show — and our beloved pair — is headed this year. “I think the fans will enjoy what they see.”

Meanwhile, what I’m excited to see? More of this.

KATEY SAGAL: CLUB WILL BE SPLINTERED ON THIS SEASON OF ‘SONS OF ANARCHY’

You know one of the best things about Sons of Anarchy? It starts at least two weeks before every other fall TV show. And let me tell you, this is going to be an amazing first taste of what fall has to offer. It’s intense, it’s gory, and (if I may present an anecdote) it made Mandi Bierly and I squeal in shock and awe. But enough of my lauds, let’s get to the facts, presented to you courtesy of Katey Sagal, who I caught up with not long ago to chat about the season, which finds Gemma in “a pretty good place” when we come back. Oh, but it won’t last.

“She has a new grandchild, her guys are coming back, there’s been an influx of income — so [Clay and Gemma] are a little bit more stable financially. But very soon after, things start to unravel,” she teases. “There’s an internal combustion within the club. We learn a little more about the history of John Teller from the letters that have followed us from Ireland. Once again she is thrown into chaos.” The 90-minute premiere, airing Sept. 6, will explain it all, but Sagal says much of the chaos will stem from “Clay’s internal struggle.”

“There’s actually a little bit of a splintering,” she says. “When you’re in a motorcycle club, basically, if you can’t ride anymore, you can’t be the president of the club. And Clay’s arthritis is really, really bad. He’s seeing his days are numbered. These are people who live off the grid. They don’t have retirement funds. They live paycheck-to-paycheck, so to speak. He’s realizing he’s gong to have to come up with a bigger plan. This is their bread and butter, and pretty soon, he’s not going to be able to be involved in that.”

SIDE DISHES

I was wondering if you had any news on Blue Bloods. — Dennis

I hear that Jaime (Will Estes) will be getting his feet wet in undercover work at some point this season on Blue Bloods. But he will find himself having a difficult time dealing with the intensity of what goes into such a decision. Also somewhat Blue Bloods related, did you hear the news? There’s a New Kid coming to the block on Oct. 14. That’s right, TWO NKOTBs in one night. Be still my heart.

I read that Dan Harmon wants more reality-based episodes of Community this season. That’s great, but I love me some spoofs. Will we be getting any this season? Any hints about what they are? — Ryan

I think there will definitely be a few. Actually, I’d bet you my entire collection of amphibious mariachi band attire that there will be. Harmon clarifies: “It just means we’re going to stay off NBC’s radar as the weird show for a little bit by not having any kind of stylistic experimentation take place within the confines of the stories themselves,” he says. “I just don’t want to give people the satisfaction of pitching them episodes like, ‘The whole thing is in black and white!’ just so they can say no. I’m not bothering with that and staying low to the ground and being weird in creative ways that will hopefully give us more insight into the characters.”

Sandra, [Re: Castle scoop from last week] I love that the Victoria’s motive is political, given that Kate is going after a political whale!  That’ll be fun. I also really enjoy Covert Affairs — any scoop about Auggie and Agent Walker??? Pretty Please!! — LA

When we return from this excruciatingly long break, Annie might find herself receiving a job offer…from the British government. Now that would certainly put a hitch in my plans for these two to live happily ever after in CIA land. (#yestheresmoretothisstory)

Any scoop on The Closer?! — Laura

Don’t miss this Monday’s episode. Aside from being a really gripping case, the last five minutes will change a lot about how you view the team. Let’s just say, Capt. Raydor sets in motion what will likely be a huge arc.

Do you know the sex of B&B’s BB on Bones?  — Tracy

[Answer page 2!]

NEXT: “Scoop on ‘Bones,’ ‘Nikita,’ ‘Parenthood,’ ‘True Blood,’ and more!”

Do you know the sex of B&B’s BB on Bones?  — Tracy

What clever use of the alphabet. But no, I don’t know. But Michaela Conlin does, and she claims the big answer will come in episode 2 of this season. Meanwhile, Conlin dishes that Angela and Bones will have plenty to talk about, considering Angela just had a baby and is in the process of trying to figure out how to be a working mom. The one saving grace? “I heard there’s a full-time daycare in the Jeffersonian,” she says.

Nikita scoopage would be appreciated. I’m counting the days!! — Nevaeh

We’re going to meet a blast from Michael’s past in episode 5. We learn via flashback that she’s smart, sensitive, sexy, and…the first lady of a nation whose president Michael is tasked with canceling. I never said it was simple…

Parenthood! The wait is unbearable. — Jenna

Looks like Bones won’t be the only preggo giving birth before the new year. (ICYMI: Hart Hanson has said that if his star’s real baby cooperates, they’ll have six episodes before the birth.) Kristina (Monica Potter) is also in full bloom and scheduled to pop in the fifth episode of the season. The twist? Adam is MIA for most of the big day, giving Crosby an opportunity to step up. Meanwhile, Adam is busy looking like he’s a cast member from Step Up. More on that later.

Thanks for the news on Grey’s Anatomy’s all-boys episode. Sounds delicious. ;) My only question is, these “special episodes” always have a big exit or a major twist — will there be one in this episode? — Shayna

I’d be willing to bet on yes. Especially since Shonda Rhimes told EW’s Tanner Stransky that this one has been in the works for a while. “We have a list of things we’ve always wanted to do, and you wait until you have the right way to tell a story or the right idea to tell a story or tell it the way you need to tell it, and this year, we have the right idea”

Anything on Parks and Recreation? Ron/Tammy scoop, perhaps? — Jeff

While I do not doubt the power of Ron and Tammy episodes, I’m more excited about episode 4. I’m going to take a huge leap and call it one of my favorite episodes of the season already. Why? Because it combines two things that could not be more contradicting (aka: pure television magic): Ron Swanson as a scout leader.

All Modern Family scoop will be rewarded with a personal appearance by Fizbo (well, me dressed as Fizbo) at your next birthday party!! (And happy belated birthday!! J) — Jen

Um, terrifying. How about, you promise NOT to do that, and I’ll tell you what I know. Rather, what Ariel Winter knows. Apparently, when we return to the house of Dunphy, we’ll find out that Alex has had some major changes in her life. Most notable? She’s sitting at the cool table! “She starts sitting with Haley at the cool table in high school. It’s so weird for me to say high school because I’m like, ‘Ah!'” she said. “[And] Alex might have a boyfriend — and have crushes on boys while she has a boyfriend.” Sounds like Alex might be more like Haley than we all thought. Now, remember: NO clowns.

Michael Desmond/The CW

Is Ryan Rottman’s character going to be a love interest for Teddy on 90210? — Julia

Could be. The casting intel did call for an actor who was “comfortable in romantic situations with another man.” So at least we know it’s a definite possibility, but I’d hesitate to go there right away. Word has it he will share scenes with not only Teddy, but Silver and guest star Brandy, who is guesting as a young politician. And as I mentioned in the casting announcement, Rottman’s character is a politically-active gay marriage advocate. Connect the dots how you will!

Any good Bill/Sookie scenes coming up? ~ Chris

All I can say is that you will like the scene near the beginning of Sunday’s episode very very much. Like, VERY much. And to bookend your joy, there’s a moment at the end where Sookie makes a grand gesture of — what some could say — are lingering feelings. Others might just say girl likes drama!

What ever happened to the plans to bring back Michael Trucco as Robin’s love interest on HIMYM? I heard that Kal Penn’s character is now a love interest? — Abby

You’re a sharp one! I posed the same question to Carter Bays and Craig Thomas, noticing that Penn’s character description seemed to dismiss the fact that Trucco’s character from last season was scheduled to re-appear. But I also seemed to forget that he’s also on Fairly Legal. “The funny thing is Michael Trucco, his series got picked up for another season. So we had to veer away from that even though we like Michael a lot,” Thomas told me. “Ultimately, it’s led us in a new direction.” Penn’s character is slated to appear some time in the first six episodes.

This season of Breaking Bad is amazing! Scoop PLEASE!! — Ryan

When EW last caught up with R.J. Mitte, who plays Walt Jr., he was just as thrilled with the season as you are. And he says it’s going to get even better, particularly in episode 9 (airing Sept. 11) when, he says, “Bryan [Cranston] and I have this amazing scene together. It’s wonderful. It hits home and things are said,” he says. Tears? You bet.

I’m afraid to ask, but anything on Glee? — Maria

Why are you afraid?! Fear not. Yes, there was a lot of drama this summer, but how about we all move on and focus on the show, the characters, and the pure corniness? Clear eyes, full hearts…oops, wrong show. Let’s just move past the ugly and talk about what’s next. Or in this case, what could be next. Max Adler reports that even though Karofsky is a senior, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll see him walk across the stage. “Karofsky could certainly flunk and be a 5th-year senior.” Meanwhile, ever wanted to hear Josh Sussman (Jacob) sing? Me neither. But he says though he doesn’t sing in the first episode, “I’m practicing.”

Carrie Borzillo, Tanner Stranksy, and Mandi Bierly contributed to this column.

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