Shameless New Season
Credit: Showtime

Happy Friday, all!

What a week it’s been. If you, like me, are suffering from this strange, post-holiday walking coma, then hopefully this week’s column puts a little skip back into your step.

Thanks to everyone who has been answering the call for questions. (Remember, no question is stupid! Unless it is. Kidding!) So keep it up!

Oh, and I just figured out how to make one of these nifty Twitter buttons! (Don’t tease — I know I’m ridiculously late to the cool button party.)


Who says Fringe is fading? If your questions are any indication, intrigue about this mind-bending series is at an all-time high. And while I couldn’t get to all the great questions you sent in for Fringe EPs Jeff Pinkner and Joel Wyman, here’s a glimpse at what they had to say!

When will we know more about whether Fringe will have another season? – Princess D

Official word won’t come for a while. (Series get officially renewed and axed in May at Network Upfronts, but early word has trickled down prior to that event.) And while Wyman said they had been given “an objective, ratings-wise,” which the show has met, “you never know with these things.” “The truth is, we just tell the story we want,” he says. “Also, we’re huge fans of television and have invested many hours in shows — you’ve either been let down or loved the ending … We have a couple of ideas on how, if the worst thing ever happens, we would be able to leave the fans in a way we’d feel comfortable and something, as fans of TV, we’d appreciate.”

We’ve seen this new timeline where both Peters died as children. Could we ever glimpse another timeline where they both survived and grew up? I’d love to see Josh given the chance to play an alternate. — Larissa

Sorry, but you likely won’t get that chance. But there’s a good reason, explains Pinkner. “We can definitively say no. Peter is our point-of-view character in so far is that he is aware that there was another time line that existed before he was pulled out of it. And now he’s planted into a history where he died. But there is not another Peter out there somewhere.” Wyman adds: “It comes back to choices. We have an embarrassment of riches because we have so many choices we could investigate. Right now, the one where Peter didn’t exist is sort of best for us to contrast what we all know.”

How come Peter took this whole wrong time line thing so easily? Last season, Olivia nearly died trying to get home, but Peter is all like, “Meh, whatever. Here’s some new glasses, Lincoln.” — Joe Blake

Interesting assessment, Joe. I’m not sure I feel the same, and here’s why: Many of us have been missing the people and relationships from the old timeline, correct? Well, according to Pinkner and Wyman, the season was designed to “put [the viewers] in the position of Peter” and “to make them want to get home and back to what was left behind.” “That was part of the plan,” says Wyman. “The major theme this season is that life is valuable and so are the connections you make – who you give your heart to and who makes you a better person. And how do you make them a better person. What impact do you have on their lives and them on yours?” So if you’re not feeling it quite yet, my guess is it’s only a matter of time. Also, am I the only cornball who loved the glasses moment? (Yes, probably.)

More from these two next week prior to the return of Fringe on Jan. 13! Be watching my Twitter feed for the full story!


One of my favorite things about Spoiler Room is that I get a chance to preview for you a lot of the fun things to come here on InsideTV, and here’s yet another: Yesterday, I hopped on the phone with Castle EP Andrew Marlowe, who talked about the second half of the season. And while you can expect a full report on our chat over the next few days (good stuff!), here are three bits I’ve pulled to entice you for the time being!

+ Another kiss coming?

As one of you pointed out in an e-mail to me, last January, fans were treated to a kiss between Castle and Beckett. So, I posed the factoid to the ever-coy Marlowe, while shamelessly fishing to see if there was something coming up to be equally excited about. “I think we can be treated to something, if not at that level, close to that level — in terms of movement and complication,” he teases.

+ Another high-stakes two-parter!

One of my favorite episodes of Castle last season was the two-part dirty bomb episode that guest-starred Heroes alum Adrian Pasdar. This season, Jennifer Beals will guest in another two-parter as a CIA agent (with ties to Castle!) who will allow the writers to “do storytelling on a grand scale.” “We have some folks here who spent some time in features and we want to try to bring that movie mentality to TV as best we can,” he says. “I think it will be as explosive as last season. Certainly, I’ll say, we were dealing with a dirty bomb so explosive is a good word for last season. This one will be equally high stakes.”

+ Finale planning in progress

Last season’s Castle finale was, for yours truly, the best episode of the series. So how does one top that? Simple: You don’t. “You try to do something different,” clarifies Marlowe. “If you’re doing the same thing, only better, it still gets a little bit familiar. We always like to keep the audience a little bit on their toes, so we’re conceiving the last couple of episodes — what can we do that’s really compelling in a way we haven’t explored on the show yet?”


Credit: Lewis Jacobs/NBC

Last night’s Jake-light episode is no indication of how much of the recently promoted Chris Zylka we’ll be seeing in the next few episodes of The Secret Circle. In fact, the actor says fans of the witch hunter can look forward to episode 12, which, he says, “is a big, big, big emotional episode” that will focus mostly on the emotional fallout of Jake being revealed as a witch hunter.

“The cast really, really, really shows up and hits it out of the park,” he says. “The overall feeling from everyone after we wrapped that episode was kind of joyful.” But that’s not to say the episode is all sunshine and rainbows. (Do either of those ever happen in Chance Harbor?) “It’s terrifying and scary, and a big emotional scene,” he says. “There are going to be a few answers to some questions that the circle has had in the past nine episodes answered, finally. Or so we think.”

And while next week’s episode will mostly feature Jake “lurking,” says Zykla, we’ll learn it’s just strategy. “One thing about Jake is that he never needs the validation of whether or not he’s a good person. He just wants to prove it to himself. So he’s looking over everyone as much as he can until he knows it’s the right time to make a move. That will be in [episode] 12.”


Because I can never have enough, any scoop on Bonnie? #TVD — Jenna

First, can we take a beat to recognize the epic-ness of last night’s episode? (Miss it? Read the recap here.) Second, you know that coffin dream that proved to be more accurate than initially thought? There are more of those to come. “I love that they brought in that aspect of her, because a lot of the stuff that Bonnie experiences in terms of being a witch is very external and all about doing a spell and a lot of physicality,” says Kat Graham. “I’m all about the mind, so the fact that they basically are shooting the character in kind of a parallel universe [in those dreams] is super exciting to me and definitely one of my favorite things that they’ve done this season with her.” This isn’t the first time Bonnie has had premonitions. In season 1, a vision predicted when Coach Tanner died, but since then, we haven’t had any more indicators of her future-telling abilities. “Now it seems like they’re evolving it into more actual dreams or visions in her sleep,” Graham adds. And per EP Julie Plec, “Her dreams are all leading her somewhere.” For more TVD scoop, read what Plec had to say about last night’s midseason return and next week’s episode (naked Damon!).

Anything on #WhiteCollar, please!! I miss that amazingly great show…! — @ love_mcdreamy

I promise you it will be worth the wait, especially after you get a chance to see the third new episode of this half of the season, which takes Neal undercover at a ritzy prep school as a poetry teacher. Sounds right up his ally? More than you know! In fact, there are so many scenes to love in this episode, I’d call it one of my top 10 episodes ever. From Neal teaching a room of teens how to love the words of wise poets to his asking Peter to drop him off “for school” a few blocks away, it’s the perfect blend of comedy and clever.

Did #Tiva just take a huge step forward on @NCIS [this week]? #loveit! — @cpusavant

That’s what is sure looked like to me. And you bet it’s going to be among the questions I ask EP Gary Glasberg, who I’m chatting with today. Speaking of which, questions, anyone? (You have two hours to send your inquiries to! Ready, set, go!)

Credit: Lewis Jacobs/NBC

Hi Sandra! One blogger/recapper to another, how’s about we show the new kid on the block some love! I’ve got major heart-eyes for Person of Interest this season, any scoop on upcoming episodes for the spring? — Mel

Well, with a batch of new episodes starting Jan. 12, there’s a lot to look forward to! But I’m hearing Feb. 2 will mark the return of someone we haven’t seen in a bit: Zoe, played by Paige Turco! As you’ll recall we first met, her in episode 6, “The Fix,” where we got to see her hit it off with Reese (Jim Caviezel) in a way we hadn’t seen him interact with anyone before. So what brings her back to town in Feb. 2’s “Root Cause”? Well, Reese and Finch’s find they need her help after their latest POI, a down-on-his-luck man, begins to reach a breaking point.

First One Tree Hill spoiler of the year? Please? It’s the last one and I’m already missing it :( — Nathalia

First of the year? Tsk, tsk. Someone didn’t read last week’s column closely! But here’s the second OTH bit of the year, courtesy of James Lafferty, who dished to me about the long-awaited return of Lucas! “Lucas comes back in response to some things that hare happening in Tree Hill that definitely involved Nathan. I can’t say whether or not they’re going to be directly involved with each other in scenes or having dialogue together, but his return is in response to some things that happen involving Nathan.”

Credit: Lewis Jacobs/NBC

I would love to hear from ANYONE from Once Upon a Time. I’m seriously addicted to this show and could never get too much info on it. — Lauren

You’re in luck! I just chatted with the Evil Queen (but sweet as can be, in-person) herself Lana Parrilla. I’ll share that full chat with you Sunday, here on our InsideTV blog, but in the meantime, she did tease that upcoming episodes would continue to develop the relationship between Henry and Regina, which thus far has been shown to be rocky, to say the least. “You’re going to see why Henry and Regina have the relationship they have. I’ve asked the writers about that because we often see him with Emma and are we ever going to see him with Regina again? Because, at the end of the day, he is her son. So there are some upcoming scenes with Regina, who tries to win him over again, but it’s genuine. It really is.”

How about some awesome Bones spoilers to get us through to January 2012? In my mind, awesome would include anything romantically related to our favorite parents-to-be, Booth & Bones. – Susan H

There’s always a lot of love between these two! But it could be a while if you’re looking for something physically speaking. It’s my sense that we won’t get anything like that for a bit, at least immediately following the birth of Baby Girl Bones, as new mom Bones will find herself dealing with the same issues most new mothers face — among them, getting used to her new post-baby shape. The good news, though, is that she’ll be back at work sooner than you think. The show is currently casting a few roles for her first post-birth episode, which centers around the death of a famous hair stylist.

Sandra, I was so excited about The Lying Game, but this week’s episode was all over the place. Is the next episode a little easier to follow or does it at least clear up the muddy waters a bit? – Marissa

Um, sort of… Early on, Ethan puts their troubles into context a bit with some very important (Sutton-related) background info that puts some of the mystery into perspective (temporarily). But, as always, there’s a final-moment twist that could derail any theory you form during the hour. Meanwhile, we learn a surprising thing about Dan and Alec’s past. Also, I recommend a game for the next episode. One drink every time someone says “lying game.” You’re welcome in advance for the fun.

Hey Sandra! It’s been a while since some Blue Blood scoopage. Anything for me? – Kat

An upcoming episode will find Danny working the case of a dead undercover cop and friend. And at the same time, Renzulli’s own surprising experience with undercover work will hit Jaime hard and leave him pondering his own involvement in that form of police work.

Anything great coming up on New Girl? — Jane

There’s a pretty funny episode in the works that will find Jess going toe-to-toe with a Mean Girl, which I’ve made into a proper noun because this particular girl deserves just that much respect for her acidic tongue.

Last week’s Chuck was so heartwarming! Yvonne Strahovski knocked it out of the park. Any Sarah scoop from the last few episodes? — Kylie

You’ll have to be more specific if I’m going to pose your question to Strahovski during our chat on Monday. Try again: (But, seriously, no restraint! If there’s anything you’ve ever wanted to ask Mrs. Bartowski, now’s the time!)

Credit: Lewis Jacobs/NBC

One word: SHAMELESS! – Todd

You could at least try to spare my feelings. Oh, wait… ehem. Well, in the first episode back (airing Sunday, woohoo!) Frank makes his biggest mistake yet after making (surprise, surprise) a powerfully stupid bet with a gun-loving brute. How big is this mistake? Oh, about the size of baby Liam, I’d say. Meanwhile, the episode will find one character making a surprising exit.

I’ve never watched Californication before, but I’m such a big fan of Scott Michael Foster that I plan on watching this year! Any scoop on what I can expect? — Angela

Oh, dear. Let’s just say this season opener is not Greek, hon. That said, Foster’s scenes aren’t uber-salacious — for now. But I get the sense his character, Tyler, who is dating Hank’s daughter Becca, has that side in him — especially since Karen seems convinced he’s Hank re-incarnated.

(Mandi Bierly contributed to this column.)

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