Simon Baker, Mary-Louise Parker, Thomas Gibson
Every week, editors Adam Bryant and Natalie Abrams satisfy your need for TV scoop. Please send all questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I just watched The Mentalist finale again, and I have no idea what they're going to do next season. Any clues? — Chris
ADAM: It's simple: Jane will claim that he killed Red John in self-defense after he learned that Red John was communicating with his mole, Agent O'Loughlin. (We all saw the gun and the phone call, right?) Not so fast, says series creator Bruno Heller. "Not only is there no cell phone with any calls from an FBI Agent named O'Loughlin, but no gun will be found [by the police]," he says, hinting that someone is still pulling the strings. "Within five minutes of the season-opener, Jane is in jail for homicide with no way out. And he and Lisbon, to some extent, start questioning his sanity." There we go — the insanity defense!
I can't wait for Weeds to return! How will Nancy be different after "Plan C"? — Amanda
NATALIE: Don't assume that being behind bars has taught Nancy anything. (Yes, there will be a three-year time jump.) You'll see that her shrewd manipulation skills are as honed as ever — and she'll put them to good use on her cellmate. On the outside, things will be less copacetic, as Nancy's plan to reunite her far-flung family won't go smoothly, as not everyone will want to see her. "This year is the chickens coming home to roost," executive producer Jenji Kohan says. "You can only push your family so far before they start to rebel to a certain extent, and it's about what happens then."
So happy Thomas Gibson will make the team whole again on Criminal Minds. What can you tell me about the new season? — Regina
ADAM: The premiere picks up several months after the finale, with the team once again trying to prove its worth to the FBI brass, who wants to split it apart for budgetary reasons. "All of those threats that were made in the finale — that there might be changes and people were going to move on — have come true to some degree," executive producer Erica Messer says. "You'll learn who's been where and who's been doing what." Keep your eyes on Morgan in particular, as it's his summer investigations that will yield the discovery that Prentiss is still alive.
I'm so impressed with Falling Skies. Finally, an alien-invasion show that works! What's up with those kids in harnesses though? — Hank
NATALIE: We'll learn more about them in this week's episode, when Tom, Hal and a few other resistance fighters go in search of Ben, who's next in line to be a guinea pig for Dr. Harris (Steven Weber). The new doc is testing different ways of removing the harness. This may not be good news for Tom, though, since he and Harris have a bit of a past.
Have we really seen the last of Mike Franks on NCIS? How will Gibbs function without his mentor? — Julie
ADAM: Don't you worry about Leroy Jethro Gibbs. "Gibbs is a big boy, and even though his friend is gone, the memories and recognition of what Franks provided him with won't be gone," executive producer Gary Glasberg tells us. So does that also mean no more Franks? "We can still revisit some of those memories, honestly, and that will probably happen," he says.
Do you have any scoop on the upcoming season of Parks & Recreation? — Carlo
NATALIE: Megan Mullally, aka Tammy 2, will return during the fourth season. While she and real-life husband Nick Offerman initially hoped Oprah Winfrey would play Ron's first wife, Tammy 1, Mullally begrudgingly confides that the producers have decided to go another way. Regardless, the Will & Grace alum is prepping for two things: a full-on Tammy vs. Tammy brawl and new ways to make the Ron-Tammy sex scenes even more hilariously repulsive. "How does it get any dirtier? It's going to be, like, live sex acts," she says. "Nick and I are running out of disgusting ways to make out with each other."
I love White Collar, and I would love some scoop! — Emily
ADAM: It sounds like somebody might be keeping tabs on Peter. I hear the show is looking for a big-name guest star to play Peter's mysterious new neighbor later this season. He's a good-looking bad boy who just spent four years in Rikers for possession of stolen property. Watch your back, Peter.
Will we see Hoyt again on Rizzoli & Isles? — Michael
NATALIE: Jane will come face-to-face with serial killer Charles Hoyt (Michael Massee) again this season, but first she'll have to deal with the physical and emotional scars of the hostage situation we saw in the Season 1 finale. Complicating her convalescence will be a bomb that detonates at a ceremony being held in her honor.
Any more Sons of Anarchy scoop?
ADAM: The world of the Sons will expand when we meet the leaders and key members of the club's Tucson charter. But these SAMCRO "brothers" aren't exactly friendly types, especially where Clay is concerned.
Will Steve be back on Shameless this season? — Marty
NATALIE: Yes, but by the time the show returns, Fiona will have moved on to a new lovah: Tony. Speaking of lovers, remember Ian's new beard who we told you about? She helps him and Lip earn money by setting up a fight club. And did we forget to mention one of the children is taken hostage? (Obvious hint: It's Frank's fault!)
What else can you tell me about Leverage? — Mindy
ADAM: A case later this season will deal with a secret society at Harvard that serves as a proving ground for those who want to go on to work in intelligence. But what the group doesn't know is that its leader (we're thinking an Armie Hammer-in-Social-Network-type) is actually using the pledges to conduct experiments on coercion.
Got any scoop on Covert Affairs? — Vanessa
NATALIE: Remember Annie's professor, Dr. Mark Ramsay (Treme's Clarke Peters), from who she sought help way back in the pilot episode? His one piece of advice was to steer clear of the CIA, but we'll learn this season that he didn't exactly practice what he preached.
Natalie's Mega Rave: Props to Law & Order: Criminal Intent for its only slightly veiled take on the beleaguered Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark. Casting Cynthia Nixon as the boozy, Julie Taymor-esque director of a troubled Broadway production and Eion Bailey as a very Bono-like rock star was eerily accurate. To Spider-Man's credit, though: No one has actually been murdered... yet.
Adam's Mini Rant: It's a shame that this week's wonderful (but terribly tragic) episode of Treme got lost amid the din of post-finale praise for Game of Thrones and crucifixion of The Killing.
(Additional reporting by Kate Stanhope)
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