By Sandra Gonzalez
March 30, 2012 at 12:00 PM EDT
Alan Zenuk/USA Network

Romantic comedy is often a dirty phrase. But Fairly Legal star Sarah Sahahi couldn’t be happier to use the term in describing the upcoming fun that will be had on the show, which is currently two episodes into its 13-episode second season.

“I love it,” she says. “I’m all for anything that tugs on the heartstrings and anything that I can play to keep the show from being a heavy procedural and more in a romantic comedy.” The biggest factor in the shift? The arrival of new partner Ben (Ryan Johnson), who has turned Kate’s already unstable world upside down. Aside from their clashing personalities and different methods of operation, Shahi says there will soon be a new platform for drama: a love triangle involving her, Ben and her ex (Michael Trucco). (Mild SPOILERS ahead.

“I’m going to tell you what: She’s going to have to make a choice,” she says. “There’s a Kate and Ben kiss, and there’s a lot of ‘will they, won’t they’ for both of them. But if I had my pick, I’d say, why do I have to pick? Why can’t I just have both?”

But the luxury of having two pieces of man candy is likely not something that will be on the table as an option for the stiletto-wearing lawyer. In fact, you could add it to a laundry list of character-building challenges that will come her way throughout the rest of the season. (That’s not even counting the fact that her house boat blew up in the finale minutes of the season premiere!)

“The goal for her this year was we were basically going to take away all of her comforts and try to put her in a situation where she felt a little bit more unsafe and not so secure,” says Shahi. “She was going to be forced to grow up a little bit. That was the goal. We wanted to force her hand into adulthood. As you’ll see as the series goes on, she kind of fails miserably at it.”

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