By Sandra Gonzalez
Updated November 25, 2011 at 03:00 PM EST
Credit: Karen Neal/TNT
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Leverage’s season of consequences continues this Sunday. After years of what executive producer Dean Devlin calls “playing Robin Hood,” the team will, by the end of the season, feel the after effects. “Throughout the season we tried to bring back, ‘what happens when you play with fire?’ And it’s all going to culminate with the [two-part] season finale,” he said.

Before then, the next batch of episodes, beginning Nov. 27, will build on the introduction of Latimer, the investor who has been using to the team’s outcomes to make himself a lot of money. “We’re going to allow that to grow to its conclusion, but also to touch back on previous seasons and show how they all relate to what we’re trying to get to at the end of this year. There’s a lot of references — even a lot of references to the pilot– in the season finale this year,” Devlin said.

Jobs and overarching mythology aside, this season has also seen a lot of personal growth among the team, including the formation of two fan-favorite couples — Hardison and Parker and Sophie and Nate. While many shows have and continue to play the “will they/won’t they game,” Devlin said he had no reservations about taking both couples to the next level because each has different needs and challenges. “Someone said to me a long time ago, which has always stuck with me, which is ‘Young love is all about patience, but mature love is all about compromise.’ And that’s really what these two couples are dealing with,” he says. “Parker and Hardison are trying to deal with passion that they have for each other, yet they have all these roadblocks to exploring that passion. On the other hand, we have the two adults of the show, who are clearly in love, but they have to learn how to compromise and in their personalities they have been uncompromising their entire life.”

The first episode back, which explores the underground world of secret university societies, will particularly challenge the younger set, while episode 2, a fun nod to NBC’s The Office, explores Sophie and Nate’s respective issues. (More on that in Spoiler Room.)

Meanwhile, the somewhat odd man out in this equation, Eliot, will be faced with “one of the most grueling things we ever put him through” in the first episode back. “The thing that’s happening to Eliot is, Eliot suddenly finds himself caring about other people, which is something he hasn’t done for a long , long time,” says Devlin. “More and more he finds himself the big brother of everybody on the show and finds himself needing to take care of everybody and finding these emotional connections that he didn’t have before. So for him, he’s working on a level of fulfillment he’s never felt in his life. At the same time, there’s this enormous feeling of being uncomfortable. He’s never been a person that allows himself to show weakness or to show sympathy, or to show caring. But he’s overwhelmed with those feelings now for the first time in his life.” But as is often the case with sticky situations on Leverage, Eliot will find that “thing that saves him is the connection to his new-found family.”


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